Luxury health club chain Life Time is pushing ahead with its
New York expansion, opening the first of four planned locations at 60 West 23rd
Street in the Flatiron District.
The 37,000 s/f club is set across two floors at the base of The Caroline condominium and features a fitness floor outfitted with state-of-the-art equipment, a cedarwood sauna with Himalayan salt wall lamp, indoor salt water lap pool, teakwood showers and radiant heat panels in the yoga studio.
“We are thrilled to grow our New York City presence
with Life Time 23rd Street,” said Bahram Akradi, chairman, CEO and
founder, Life Time. “Life Time is committed to the health of the
communities in which we operate and we see the opening of 23rd Street as an
investment in the future of the city. We look forward to bringing Life Time’s
healthy way of life mindset to even more of the local, wellness
The expansion is a result of a collaboration agreement with
New York Health & Racquet Club to transform four of their facilities to Life
Time clubs in a phased program. Following more than $25 million in planned
renovations, the clubs will reopen as Life Time HRC with modern design
aesthetics, proprietary programs and services, top performers and luxurious
As well as West 23rd Street, the locations include110 West 56th Street, 62 Cooper Square and 270 Park Ave South.
Life Time launched its New York City presence in 2016 with
the debut of Life Time at Sky, a 70,000 s/f resort-style health and fitness destination
located at Joe Moinian’s Sky luxury apartment building. There are also Life
Time resorts in Chappaqua, Garden City, Syosset and Westchester.
The brand has also signed a lease for 74,000 s/f at Macklowe Properties’ 1 Wall Street (rendering top) which is scheduled to open in 2022, and at 85 Jay in Brooklyn, where it has leased another 77,000 s/f.
The new clubs will expand its portfolio to 150 across North
America serving 1.6 million members who pay a $15-per-month subscription for
custom workout programs, on-demand classes and 1:1 virtual training.
The expansion comes as the fitness sector in general contracts amid the COVID-19 pandemic. The Flatiron District alone had built a reputation as Manhattan’s fitness epicenter, attracting big name and boutique studios alike, from Australian phenomena F45 Training, to celebrity-backed boxing club, GRIT BXNG.
The neighborhood had become so well-known as a hub for hip
gyms that the local BID organized an annual “sweatfest” exercise event on the
But according to the Flatiron 23rd Street
Partnership, the pandemic has put one quarter of the area’s 41 studios and gyms
out of business permanently. Just one third of those still clinging to life are
currently open and operating, with the remainder temporarily closed.
There has been an uptick in the “permanently
closed” category in the last two months, according to the BID, which has
been working with local operators to facilitate a program of virtual offerings
to help prop up business.
“Before COVID, wellness-focused businesses thrived in Flatiron and NoMad, but the pandemic has been extremely hard for fitness studios and gyms here — and everywhere,” said James Mettham, president of the Flatiron 23rd Street partnership.
“We’re hopeful that as vaccines become more broadly
available and office workers return to the neighborhood, our remaining studios
and gyms will have a strong recovery.”
Situated in the Midtown South office market, Flatiron had
enjoyed favor with the new wave of tech tenants and co-working companies drawn
to the cheaper office space in the area, which has borders running from 21st to
28th Street between Avenue of the Americas and Third Avenue.
Indeed, the TAMI sector helped drive leasing in Midtown
South to record-setting numbers in 2019 as powerhouse firms like Google set up
shop and acted as a magnet for start-ups and service providers. That created a
knock-on effect that drew in new restaurants and bars, retailers, gyms and
associated accessory suppliers.
After reaching its highest levels in four years, office leasing
in midtown south ground to a halt in March 2020, falling 44 percent on 4Q 2019
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