For those of us unlucky enough to live in colder climates, this is the time of year to make sure your gym membership is still activated to beat the winter blues and have a reason to crawl out of the proverbial man cave in the mornings. While most of us just head to Planet Fitness or whatever other gym offers the best deal with a well-lit locker room, there are some who go about finding a gym a completely different way. This is where the rich and famous go to sweat. Whether the big sell is training amongst Olympic athletes or the additional services offered could fill up a mall, these training facilities aren't playing around. These are The 10 Most Expensive Gym in America.
No. 10 - David Barton Gym
Monthly Membership: $125
Located in Bellevue, Washington, this trendy workout spot, has the design and lighting of the other kind of club. That would include valet parking and DJ's spinning on the gym floor, while you kick it on the stationary bike. A great place to see and be seen, in your healthy ways.
Worth It? Yes. This chique workout spot seems to distract too much from the actual nitty gritty of pushing yourself out of your comfort zone.
No. 9 - The Madison Square Club
Monthly Membership: $125
This gym is as much about celebrity trainer, David Kirsch, as it is about the client. That said, there is a great teacher to student ratio here, with no more than 6 of their total 600 members allowed in the gym at one time. The gym forgoes the typical frills in favor of a soft and minimal decor (Persian rugs) that leaves the focus on sweat equity (or sweat and equity) where it belongs. No frills except the private chef, that prepares healthy meals to take away. Previous members include Heidi Klum, Liv Tyler, Anne Hathaway, Faith Hill, and probably some male celebrities that don't want to admit to lifting on a Persion Rug as well.
Worth It? Yes. Very worth it because of the intense care that is put into their clientele. With some of the best trained staff in the world, any price seems pretty fair.
No. 8 - East Bank Club
Monthly Membership: $170
There's nothing better after a hard workout than lounging near a rooftop pool on a 60,000 square foot sun deck, something that you can do only if you're a member of Chicago's East Bank Club. They have classes and trainers for just about any sport you want to play, from squash to kayaking, which includes your (presumably wealthy) kids as well.
Worth It? Yes. This gym is almost like a sports complex, with a focus on educating it's members on just about any sport under the sun. That is not to mention the beauty it's facilities and the one of a kind view of the river from the rooftop pool.
No. 7 - Sporting Club at the Bellevue
Monthly Membership: $174
If you ever had trouble being inspired to work out when you're staying in a hotel, chances are that it will be a little easier if you are staying at the Bellevue. With it's 93,000 square foot facilities, including NBA regulation basketball court, sauna, and monthly parties for excercise challenges, maybe for once hitting the gym will be more fun than hitting the mini-bar.
Worth It? No. Like your favorite gym, but 10 times bigger. If they don't have a piece of equipment open for you, no gym will.
No. 6 - The Sports Club
Monthly Membership: $175
The LA original shows plenty of muscle when it comes to getting a good workout. But once that is done, The Sports Club also knows how to take care of it's very particular clientele, featuring not only a full service restaurant, and a luxurious spa with masseuses, but also a hair salon, so you can leave the gym not only feeling better, but looking better too.
Worth It? No. While being one of the cooler spots on the list, the actual focus seems to be a little off the point, putting a pampered self before a chiseled one.
No. 5 - The Houstonian
Monthly Membership: $365
If The Houstonian doesn't inspire flashes of Globo Gym, nothing does. How about some of the amenities: indoor driving range, indoor and outdoor tennis courts, batting cages, 3 swimming pools, and 125,000 sqaure feet of top of the line everything. It's so nice that many of the Texans football players train here, amongst the rest of Houston's sweaty rich.
Worth It? Yes. A gym, club, and general social way of life. The huge compound of the Houstonian is so much more than a gym, golf and tennis club, resort, etc. that it's easily worth the price tag.
No. 4 - The Detroit Athletic Club
Monthly Membership: $400
All that really needs to be said about the Detroit Athletic Club is that it can be accessed through their marina. The waterfront building, designed by the architect of Detroit, Albert Kahn, may be one of the most historically important gyms of all time, sponsoring athletes to olympic glory for decades, and featuring members like Ty Cobb.
Worth It? No. You're buying into history more than you are signing yourself over to a real workout experience. It's definitely worth seeing, but at what price.
No. 3 - E at Equinox
Monthly Membership: $500
Tired of forgetting your gym card? No worries, because E at the Equinox uses retinal scanners, like the ones in the Pentagon, to admit its members. If that isn't enough to demonstrate quite how elite the gym is, towels come in two temperatures(heated and chilled), there are private cabanas for pre and post workout lounging, and exercise scientists on staff will test and chart your progress. If you need a vacation, they will coordinate trainers and facilities for you wherever you go.
Worth It? Yes. Pound for Pound, this might be the best gym on the list. With the amount of research you can learn about your own body, not to mention the feeling of being in one of the most elite clubs in the world, couples the actual purpose with the privilege.
No. 2 - Peak Performance
Monthly Membership: $8,000 (for 45 days)
Working on an intense 90 day regimen has worked wonders for a lot of people. Hence, Peak Performance, a gym that capitalizes on the quick results of a short but incredibly intense and highly structured workout program. Working with both the old school gym's harsh and heavy no pain no gain strategem and the new knowledge is power nutritionalist and computational regime, there's no place more intense or more expensive than Peak Performance.
Worth It? Yes. Though it's one of the most expensive packages imaginable, the intensity of the 90 system ends after 90 days. You're paying for an experience, like a climb to Mount Everest.
No. 1 - Athlete's Performance
Monthly Membership: $2,500 per year
This performance center is really more about top class athletes than regular people, but with money, the same treatment is possible. This lavish, top of the line training ground in Phoenix has worked with some of the top athletes of the day(Evan Longoria, Mario Williams) but their underwater treadmill, indoor football field and hot and cold pools can be yours for a small yearly fee.
Worth It? No. Unless you are already a professional athlete the price tag doesn't live up to the services rendered. It's like hiring a pit crew to maintain your three car garage.