Equinox fitness is a luxury fitness club, designed for those looking for a great workout in a high quality, high-class facility. The perceived culture at Equinox Gym’s is one of elitism and Grade A quality—everything from the building locations to the brand of towels used is geared towards pleasing clients who pay top dollar for not only a fitness facility, but an overall health and wellness experience each time they attend the gym. Voted Best Gym in America by Fitness Magazine, Equinox gyms are considered to be the best of the best when it comes to an all-around fitness experience. Known for an impeccable attention to detail and elegant designs, Equinox is considered to be the leader in fitness innovation. Gym locations are always located in high-rent districts, and are almost exclusively found on the western and eastern coasts of the United States.

 

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The Good

  • Equipment
  • Cleanliness
  • Classes
  • Trainers and nutrition
  • Other available amenities
Equipment

Members say Equinox's equipment is always clean, and new types of equipment are continually being added. Equinox has just about everything you need for every type of workout: plenty of benches, free weights, and machines for a wide variety of workouts. While some gyms have member complaints about broken equipment or there not being enough machines for the after work crowd, Equinox seems to have enough equipment to avoid this issue.

Cleanliness

If you're a person who values cleanliness, then Equinox is for you. Customers at some locations remark how they see cleaning crew always at work trying to keep the gym as clean and fresh as can be. The locker rooms are always clean and well stocked. We found Equinox's reviews from customers an affirmation on cleanliness that many gyms did not receive online.

Classes

While many gyms we reviewed complained of a rush to sign up for a fitness class before spots run out, Equinox members use an app to check in, book a class, schedule training, and search for clubs. Some gyms allow you to sign up 26 hours in advance online, while others offer walk-in only classes. When members sign up for a class at the gym, they are given a number so that employees can keep tabs on who's in the class. The screens of the cardio equipment offer every kind of distraction that you might need while running. You can go on Facebook, read the news, watch TV, or listen to podcasts all while running on the treadmill or the bikes.

Here are the classes Equinox offers:

  • Active Regeneration
  • Athletic Training
  • Barre
  • Boxing and Martial Arts
  • Conditioning
  • Dance
  • Pilates
  • Swimming
  • Running
  • Studio Cycling
  • Yoga
Trainers and Nutrition

Equinox pride itself in being at the top in the fitness world. The gym advertises an "above and beyond" approach by only hiring the best trainers, teachers, and facility managers to keep gyms running at peak performance throughout the year. Equinox also provides the Equinox Training program for instructors. For individuals aspiring to become Yoga, Pilates, Group fitness, or Personal Trainers, Equinox offers top-of-the-line instruction to achieve your goal of becoming an instructor.

One specific personal training program offered is called Tier X, a lifestyle management program with a uniquely holistic approach to high-performance living. The way Equinox describes the program is mostly esoteric, but it appears to be for those in elite physical shape who want to take it to the next level of peak performance. Tier X coaches have to graduate from the rigorous curriculum of the Equinox Fitness Training Institute (EFTI). We definitely do not recommend Tier X for everyday people only wanting to lose a few pounds.

We looked for additional pricing for personal training from members and found training cost $120/session in addition to the membership fee. On the Equinox website, you can submit an email form to ask about the pricing for personal training and Equinox contacts you. While this lack of transparency normally places potential customers at a disadvantage-due to the added sales pressure-money is not usually in issue for Equinox's main customer base, and many seem to be able to afford the additional cost of a personal trainer.

Other Available Amenities

Some locations have benefits like pools and hot tubs, while others have steam rooms and saunas. Members rave about the eucalyptus steam room and refrigerated towels-which is a notch above most gyms regarding amenities. In some locations, spa massage and cabanas are also provided.

The Bad

  • Price and contracts
  • Upfront fees
  • Hidden fees
Price and Contracts

Equinox Gyms are expensive, and not designed for your everyday gym goer. Equinox's target demographic is the high-income earner. Meanwhile, gym locations, high-quality equipment, trainers, and esthetic appeal allow Equinox to be the most expensive chain gym in the United States.

A typical membership fee is $161.00/month with a withdrawal taken from your credit card the twenty-third day of each month. Equinox does not show if they offer an annual membership option, so this seems to be the only one. When compared to many gyms, this fee is on the upper end, while gyms like the YMCA only charge $55/month.

Upfront Fees

Equinox charges new members a $50 initiation fee. The gym prorates the fee for the month you join upfront and charges you for the next full month. For example, if you sign up the last week of August, the fee is $10.39 plus the next month's dues and initiation fee. So what was $161 becomes $221.39 upon signup. This, again, is extremely expensive for most gym goers.

Hidden Fees

Some members claim it is an ordeal to cancel your membership. Former members encourage everyone to pay close attention to the contract terms when you sign up. Once you sign up, you have 3 days to cancel with no obligation but after three days you're obligated for 12 months. Equinox will also freeze your membership for you under certain conditions; however, your full dues and an additional $30.00 are owed for all of the months that you freeze. If you want to cancel you have to notify 30 days prior to the termination of your contract. You then must follow up numerous times to make sure it's cancelled.

Another hidden fee is parking. Many of Equinox's facilities have their own parking garages/floors. Equinox only validates for two hours of parking. Anything over two hours is $1.75 every additional 30 minutes. That's at least $360 dollars a year you didn't anticipate in parking fees if you workout four times a week.

The Bottom Line

Equinox Gym is the most expensive gym chain in the United States-mostly because of the high-income clientele the gym attracts and advertises to. Equinox only builds facilities in areas where high percentages of top earners live. Most members feel they get what they pay high prices for, while there are some that complain about parking fees and bad experiences with cancelling their memberships. Many customers rave about the personal trainers, which seem to be personal ad professional, earning a strong loyalty among clients. The amenities like cabanas and refrigerated towels and the eucalyptus steam room are unique. If you can afford Equinox's steep prices, and live close by, it may be the right choice for you.

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User Reviews

Star Rating

2.9
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12 Reviews

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Rocio Diaz

March 30th, 2020 Tallahassee, FL DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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Equinox is a luxury gym with as many amenities as you can imagine. Expensive, but well worth it. Equipment is always clean and the staff is always friendly.

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Reckholdt

February 26th, 2020 Magna, UT DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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Super nice with lots of equipment but their prices are way too high. It’s not worth the price.

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Juliann Mecham

February 12th, 2020 Managua, MN DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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Equinox is one of the best gyms around. It is very high quality and very expensive. It has a lot of high quality equipment, and only the best of things you want to find at the gym. I would say it is very high priced, but they have their reasons for such high pricing.

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David T

February 11th, 2020 Draper, UT DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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Equinox is nice, with lots of good equipment, but the prices are too high. It feels like an exclusive club for high rollers, instead of a place to pump iron.

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Connor

December 5th, 2019 Farmington, UT DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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If you want to go to the most elite and upscale gym,k go to Equinox. It's basically a private gym resort offering every amenity you would want. There's a reason the membership is so expensive and the staff is so great because they accept nothing short of perfection.

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Amanda

November 20th, 2019 Warrendale, PA

Although Equinox is more high end than other gyms, the price is not worth what you get in the gym unless you go every day

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Wendy

May 14th, 2019 DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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Awesome facility - clean, great classes, trainers, instructors, etc

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Icarus

September 18th, 2018 Chicago, IL DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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Chicago Michigan Ave Equinox is unprofessional, and clueless on how to treat people. I would never recommend a company which allowed its employees to behave so rudely .

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Diana Van Beever

August 31st, 2018 Miami, FL DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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I was a member in Equinox Aventura, Fl. up until a couple of days ago. I complaint several times to the managers that the personal trainers take over the stations to work with their clients and some of them do not like to share with other members the equipment while are not in use; apparently when you complaint to the managers they do not like it at all and they always back up their trainers no matter what because thats where most the money comes from ( not to mention that the member ship is already very expensive). Rebecca A, the general manager for Equinox Aventura tried to intimidate me in one of their offices with the trainer's manager Mat S also in the room. She was rude and disrespectful, and uses a passive aggressive method of intimidation. I quit my membership because I am no longer going to go to a gym where I feel uncomfortable or intimidated

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sewecs87

May 5th, 2017

This is by far the worse gym I have ever been too. ITS DESERVES A ZEROSTAR RATING. And I believe these ratings are fake. The first day, when I joined I didn't have any issues. In fact, I was excited to start working out. The sales person, Jeff W, who signed me up was awesome. He got me in contact with a trainer (Robyn S). That's when things started going downhill. She was extremely unprofessional, rude and doesn't care about your time. I had shown up after we schedule a meeting with my toddler in the cold, only to have her completely ignore me and booked another client in my spot. She didn't offer any apologies. Instead she LIED AND SAID WE NEVER SCWDULED ANYTHING.. I expressed my disdain about the situation and asked to cancel my membership. I had spoken to a Breana W who claimed to be the manager. She told me that my account is closed and promised to send a confirmation email. Instead, I received an email from Devorla asking my availability for a complimentary Pilates assement and a phone call from the sales guy Jeff, the sales guy. So, I called back asking to speak to breana.. who all of a sudden was not here. I asked for mike E (manager.) He was suppose to call back but didn't. Instead, the receptionist kept hangign up the line and laughing. I received a call from Matt P, the following day. I expressed my concern about the discrimination toward myself and daughter, and the run around for a closure of account. He apologized for the inconvenience. And confirmed the closure of my account.. Now here's where it gets worse. Matt calls me back to tell me: by the way you will receive your reimbursement but are banned from EQUINOX in the future. When I asked his reason he claimed I was rude aggressive and threaten people. it was quite apparent that in cancelling my memebership that I didn't have any interest in returning. But using the racist connotations as such is unexceptionable . coming after my character which is NOT OKAY. - Asking infront of my toddler if her father is white is completely racist and disrespectful and straight up ignorant -hiring receptionist that give the run around and have zero phone etiquette is not okay either. - having a trainer waiste your time by showing up in the cold only to have her train another client with no apologies or anything it's not ok. Matt Pinder then proceeded to tell me to let it go and move on. WTF!! We are in 2017. RACISM IS NOT OKAY! IT NEVER WAS AND NEVER WILL BE. I have never had such a poor traumatic experience as such in my life. For 200$ a month it is definitely not worth it. I will be exploring my options pertaining to the racist comments received..

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Alejandro Rodriguez

February 19th, 2016 Brooklyn, NY

This gym is a bit of a joke. I have been a NYC member for 5 years and have been meaning to cacncel for years - I finally did it and it felt great. So this is how it works - you pay $400 in initiation fee (!!), $200 for a monthly membership. They have good equipment and Kiehl's products (not a huge big deal to me). So at that price, you think you can go and work out peacefully, right? wrong - If you go to most of thei NYC gyms you will be lining up for equipment and to take a shower! And here is why, Equinox gives deep discounts to models and corporations. So while you are paying full price , the 22 year old models ahead of you in line for the equipment are paying $0. After a while you have to say to yourself - "I am not funding these models' gym membership" and leave. More things to get annoyed by this greedy brand: When you cancel they FORCE you to continue paying for 45 more days. They even tell you it is for your own good and that they are doing you a favor in case you change your mind .. HAHAHA. And if you want to freeze your membership because you are going abroad for a couple of months - they are more than happy to do it for you - but they still chatrge you a "freeze" free of $50 during that time and you can't use the gym.. what this fee is for???? I have no clue.. This is a crappy badge brand taking advantage of people who need status very badly. Stay away

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david

February 9th, 2016

Well, the new "Equinox Yorkville" has opened, and the most positive thing that comes to mind is lunch bag letdown; make that total lunch bag let down. After months and months of delays and hype, expectations were high. But at the least, we all expected something at least on par, if not slightly superior to the old Yorkville club. Sure, the latter was somewhat dated, and the lighting reminiscent of a night club, but what it had, it had head and shoulders over the new facility. Equipment is less; machines are fewer - except for the cardio set up which is set up like a military barrack. If you're a surgeon, then you're going to feel right at home, because the lighting is what one could expect to find in the OR. Is it rocket science that so many exercises happen whilst prone, and on ones back? Maybe they should hand out glasses at the front desk much as they do when you have some sort of laser treatment? The ceilings are, well, domestic. That is, much the same height as you would find in your home. Gone, gone, gone are the 12-14 foot ceilings of the old club, providing not only a less claustrophobic environment, but one that dissipates noise a whole bunch better. Who ever designed this place isn't winning awards, sorry, but it's just so; grey on grey. Absolutely zero ambiance or feeling of anything other than cheep industrial; think Wall Mart. It's sad; sad that what could have been and excellent pallet to create something truly exceptional, in keeping with the hood, in keeping with the brand, but most importantly, in keeping with the outrageous cost of belonging, is anything but. Looking for a gym, best look elsewhere.

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