The Best College Gyms in Boston
Think college campuses are just about the classrooms? Think again. We visited some of Boston’s best campus gyms, and what we found—juice bars, lazy rivers, climbing walls, and kayak rentals—will make wish you could have stayed in college forever.
Northeastern University Marino Center
If you’ve ever driven down Huntington Avenue, you’ve seen the stunning glass facade of the Marino Center. Built around a spacious, airy atrium, the gym contains two state-of-the-art fitness floors, basketball courts, several group fitness and martial arts studios, and a “Treadwall” that simulates rock climbing. This fall, the school added Revolutionz, a high-tech cycling studio complete with flashing lights, a professional sound system, and flat screen TVs for a sensory-overload workout.
Massachusetts Institute of Technology Zesiger Sports and Fitness Center
Thanks to a donation by Al and Barrie Zesiger, the “Z-Center” was built as an addition to the existing duPont Athletic Center 10 years ago. The gym boasts a sleek, modern exterior and a host of facilities open to the MIT community and members of the public alike. In addition to all the basics like fitness machines, basketball courts, and group fitness classes, you will find tennis courts, an indoor ice rink, an Olympic-sized swimming pool, massage therapy rooms, a PGA golf simulator room, a gymnastics facility, and a fencing room.
The Z-Center’s Olympic-sized pool is one of the largest in New England. (Photo courtesy of MIT)
Boston University Fitness & Recreation Center
Widely considered one of the top campus gyms in the country, BU’s FitRec center has something for everyone. As if an 18,000-square foot fitness area wasn’t enough, the facility also offers above-and-beyond amenities like a leisure pool—complete with a lazy river and a jacuzzi—a huge indoor rock climbing wall, a dance theater, a juice bar, nutrition and cooking classes, and an indoor track suspended over the basketball and volleyball gymnasium. Is it too late to transfer?
University of Massachusetts Boston Waterfront Recreation Center
In addition to a top notch, newly-renovated fitness center and an ice rink open for regular free skates, UMass Boston makes the most of its prime location by offering a seasonal waterfront recreation center. With programs like free kayaking and sailing classes for all students, stand up paddle board rentals, and free boat use, it’s enough to have any student itching to get their sea legs.
Harvard University Malkin Athletic Center
Judging from its picturesque red brick architecture, you’d never guess the Malkin Center is a gym. Built in 1930, the fitness center offers old-school architectural beauty with modern day amenities like cardio and weight rooms, group fitness classes, lap pools, swimming lessons, water aerobics, rooms for personal training, an indoor cycling studio, and basketball courts.
Did your university have gyms like these? If you are currently in school, what is your gym like?