The downtown 24 Hour Fitness location reopened Friday after a remodel that added approximately 31,000 square feet of floor space, a basketball court and new exercise machines.
“(We have) brand-new cardio (machines), strength training machines and free weights,” said downtown Club Manager Ben Ragsac.
He added that full-size basketball court and expanded kids’ club have been added, and a raquetball court is coming, which will be open by October.
The gym was closed from 8 p.m., June 17 until Friday at 6 a.m., when the second floor reopened. The full gym, including a lap pool, steam room, sauna, cycle room and other amenities will reopen around October, and more than 200 strength training and cardio machines will be available.
Ragasac said he is most excited about the increased square footage in the facility, located at 1020 Seventh St.
Samantha King, 25, works as a trainer at the club and said the equipment additions give a lot more space and opportunity to work out.
“We added a lot. (With) some of my favorite cardio equipment, we only had five (machines), and now we have 20,” she said, referring to a specific type of elliptical cardio machine.
Another addition was incline training machines, which she said are like treadmills, but mimick walking or running uphill.
“The Hoist (Fitness Systems) equipment is a big addition too,” she said. “On their Roc-It series, you’re moving your body weight and the weight you put on the machine. It’s really nice stuff.”
She added that the workout from that type of equipment is a better workout than more conventional equipment.
Response from members and staff has been positive, Ragasac said.
“Word was spread about the opening,” he said. “Existing members love it. The staff really loves it. It’s been overall pretty amazing.”
Frank Mecca, 46, said he is impressed with the expansion.
“It’s really nice,” he said. “The cardio and weight machines roughly doubled, and the facility itself is brighter and cleaner overall.”
Ruben Lopez, 24, said he is happy there is a basketball court on-site now, since it is more convenient to play at the gym than at a park in West Sacramento where he previously played.
“It’s brand-new, and it’s one of my best workouts,” he said. “There’s more space (at the gym), and now you can come anytime. Before, I used to have to wait until like 7 (p.m.) if I wanted to be able to work out, but now there’s space for everyone.”
A new coffee bar and cafe scheduled to open next month on the corner of Seventh and K streets fronting Saint Rose of Lima Park will benefit from the opening of the club, according to its owners.
“With the (24 Hour Fitness) club open, we’re going to see a lot of people in the area,” Plaza Cafe Lounge co-owner Zack Alemi told The Sacramento Press last week.
The fitness club’s expansion was a benefit to the Westfield Downtown Plaza space, which has been plagued by lackluster tenancy and repeated talks of selling over the past few years.
“We at Westfield Downtown Plaza along with local health and fitness buffs look forward to the opening of the brand new expanded 24 Hour Fitness featuring state-of-the art facilities and amenities,” Downtown Plaza Marketing Director Raelene Trumm said in a prepared statement.
24 Hour Fitness officials declined to comment on the cost of the expansion, but Ragasac said he is happy to see it.
“I was born and raised in Sacramento,” he said. “I take a lot of pride in the city of Sacramento. I’m glad I’m part of an organization that during these times is able to invest in downtown Sacramento.”
The club is open 24 Hours per day, seven days per week. A free visitor pass can be downloaded from the company website.
Brandon Darnell is a staff reporter for The Sacramento Press. Follow him on Twitter @Brandon_Darnell.