Planning and Design - The Fitness Amenity
By Bryan Green Founder & CEO, Advantage Fitness Products | April 01, 2010
So very much of your time today is correctly focused on the guest experience. What factors inspire guests to utilize your fitness amenity? Are they purely driven by an acceptable level of equipment offering? Not any more. Properly outfitted and substantive fitness equipment offering some time ago moved from being an option to an expectation. Today, the best examples of hotel based fitness amenities incorporate a thoughtful design of space, not simply a supply of gear. The most challenging aspect of this endeavor is that an offering in fitness should not simply be static in nature, but rather a continually evolving and dynamic space, incorporating inspiring esthetics while always remaining functionally relevant.
Great design in fitness today requires revisiting your wellness offering frequently enough to insure the guest experience exceeds the growing expectation of this valuable amenity. Management should continually observe the way in which participants make use of the facility during limited but valued exercise time while away from their likely more sophisticated offerings at home. The following are 10 important areas of Planning & Design to be mindful of to more effectively maximize your property's commitments to fitness. .
Begin with the end in mind
The commitment to ongoing flexibility within the fitness environment requires both budgetary and creative support; areas often easier to contemplate than achieve. For existing facilities, a plan to "phase" into improvements to both equipment and interior design elements, while always working towards a vision of the finished product is the suggested way to start. Backing into an operational budget that will allow for the planned rotation of equipment with allowances for preventative maintenance, accessory support, and periodic re-freshing of floor coverings and other interior elements is essential.
Light and Space
A fitness environment is highly sensitive to energy flow. Natural or well planned artificial light sources are critical. Even with the best planning, real estate will generally always be constrained. However, by incorporating windows for effective lighting, and a measured use of mirror, you will always have the essential building blocks to work with for fitness. Mirror offers a duality of purpose as it is both desirable as a training tool to focus on ones exercise form, while at the same time it may be used effectively in creating the illusion of a larger space. Today, framed or free standing mirrors provide a more tailored look vs. the more commonly incorporated floor to ceiling supply found in health clubs.