Distance from the start of the pandemic has meant a steady increase in business travel. Hotels are clamoring to attract weekday sojourners to recoup lost income and are getting creative in their attempts to do so.
A new trend that has been picking up momentum is the rise of the private gym. Once hotels realized they could transform a traditional overnight room into a private space with a Peloton, treadmill, and a few weights, the idea was born. The concept is hourly, private rentals that mimic the at-home set-ups that became so commonplace during COVID lockdowns.
Guests enjoy them for their privacy and ability to take their exercise routines with them for those who became accustomed to home workouts over recent years. Hyatt and Hilton began testing the concept out this spring and have seen a significant increase in demand since launch, often renting them out for $25 an hour while still keeping the traditional fitness center complimentary. Those same hotels reported the private rooms remain continually booked while the fitness centers often sit empty.
Fitness accessibility has become an important search criteria for travelers when exploring accommodations. Peloton has a hotel finder on its website and Equinox, the brand that owns SoulCycle (competitor to Peloton), built an entire hotel around fitness in New York’s Hudson Yards where the in-room snacks available include kelp jerky and almond butter brussel sprouts. There really is something for everyone…
We have worked with many developers to design hotels over the years and are fascinated by this trend. Whether it will stick as a post-pandemic mainstay is up for debate, but we will be ready to design whatever the future holds.