Is “Sportspitality” The Next Big Trend In Hotels?

Photographed by Kava Gorna.
How often do you exercise while traveling? Sure, you always mean to do it — stick to your healthy routines and maintain your workout regimen. But as soon as you see the murky lighting in the hotel gym, you lose interest. Or maybe you're just not focused on those things while you're trying to maximize your precious time off. Well, the fitness industry thinks it has the solution: It's called "sportspitality." Imagine your favorite cult boutique gym fused together with all the comforts of a luxury hotel. Because that's exactly what major fitness players like Equinox and Exhale are doing — developing gym-branded hotels. "The demand for fitness and high-performance living has never been greater, and we don’t see it slowing down," Equinox CMO Carlos Becil told Condé Nast Traveler in February. "We polled our members and we received a 95% response rate that our members would be interested in staying at an Equinox hotel." The numbers support the sportspitality trend: 84% of hotels have a fitness center or exercise room — up from 63% in 2004 — according to a 2014 survey from the American Hotel & Lodging Association. As hotels strive to meet the demand for fitness, boutique gyms are answering the call.
Photographed by Kava Gorna.
Equinox is planning to open its first high-end hotel in 2018 in New York City's Hudson Yards. The hotel will include a 60,000-square-foot Equinox gym, the brand's largest facility ever. Equinox also has plans for a Los Angeles location in 2019. Its eventual goal: 79 hotels worldwide. Meanwhile, SoulCycle — which was acquired by Equinox for an estimated $25 million — is opening a massive facility in the South Beach Miami location of the SH Group's 1 Hotels. Exhale has been on the sportspitality train for some time now; of its 27 studios and spas, 11 are in hotels, including the location at downtown Miami's Epic hotel. What it all comes down to is this: a personalized and fitness-focused experience for travelers. "We believe that to maximize results and reach your goals, you need to place equal focus on, and carefully plan, how you move, nourish, and regenerate your body," Becil told CN Traveler. If you're looking for a travel experience that doesn't interfere with your fitness goals, then this new hotel trend might be your answer.

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