Equinox Is Taking Over

By acquiring The Sports Club/LA, the Equinox brand is the only luxe chain gym left in Boston.

spin room sports club LA

The Sports Club/LA’s spin room in Chestnut Hill. Photo by Chelsea Kyle

There’s only a half mile that separates the brand new Equinox in Chestnut Hill from the also new Sports Club/LA across the street. In fact, the two gyms have been rivals in the luxury gym game for some time.

When the news broke via the New York Times Sunday evening that Equinox had reached an agreement to acquire six new locations “in five key, strategic U.S. markets,” which are New York, Boston, Miami, San Francisco, and Washington D.C., it was clear that the location attached to the Ritz Carlton, Boston Common will switch to an Equinox, giving the chain three locations in downtown Boston.

But the first question on our mind was, “What about Chestnut Hill?” We reached out to reps for Equinox on both the local and national level and we were told in an email:

Details specific to Chestnut Hill will be released later this afternoon.

So what are they going to do with the practically brand new Sports Club/LA Chestnut Hill location? Right now, there’s a sort of Dunkin vs. Starbucks vibe. You pick your side of the street and pick your poison. You see, there’s an uncrossable median that separates the east and west traffic on Route 9. You have to get off of the road—like a highway—and turn around in order to go to businesses on the other side of the street. This is probably why developers could build The Street and Chestnut Hill Square, two high end strip malls, across the road from one another and not worry too much about the competition. It’s practically impossible to walk from one shopping center to the other.

Still, it doesn’t make much sense to have two Equinoxes less than a half mile from one another. When we hear back from Equinox about their plans we’ll update this post. As for the rest of the Sports Club/LA locations, details were released via press release:

Equinox will take immediate operational control of the six properties and will begin work to transition the clubs to the Equinox brand. During a transition period, Signature Classes and Proprietary Personal Training program will be introduced to members, along with covetable amenities like Kiehl’s products and new strength and cardio equipment. Members will also have access to an elevated digital experience through Equinox’s new iOS mobile app, housing member fitness data in one place and providing a snapshot of fitness-related activity both inside and outside the club.

With the new acquisition, Equinox seems to be taking over the luxury gym market. The chain already owns SoulCycle, and this merger means that Equinox bought out its only real competition in Boston. But no need to fret if you aren’t into chain gyms but still want a luxury experience: the Gym by George Foreman III in Fort Point is also super luxe and the amenities and classes (and prices) rival Equinox. Or, you could try Barry’s Bootcamp, or one of the dozen or so high-end spin studios around town.