Equinox’s colonization of the Bedford + Bowery zone continues. The gym chain opened locations in the Williamsburg and the East Village in 2016, with the East Village opening being accompanied by signage declaring “There goes the neighborhood.” Today the chain opened its “much anticipated” (or so says the press release) Lower East Side location inside the new luxury building that killed beloved late-night spot Bereket and other East Houston Street mom-and-pops.
The Equinox, at 200 Orchard Street, will offer personal training; studios dedicated to pilates, cycling, group fitness, and yoga; an outpost of Juice Press; and a spa. The gym “establishes the Lower East Side as a hub for fitness and high-performance living,” according to a spokesperson.
That’s right: “High-performance living.” Do you even lift, bro?
The gym’s “boutique” feel is “symbolic of the new wave of ‘members only’ clubs.” But it’s down-to-earth, too, thanks to “artwork that brings to mind the guerrilla murals plastered along the Lower East Side’s dusty streets,” the spokesperson’s email assures us. Let’s hope this place has some self-awareness and those “dusty streets” are a reference to the dust Ben “Sledgehammer” Shaoul kicked up while demolishing nearly every storefront that stood on the south side of East Houston Street, between Ludlow and Orchard. In May, Georgia’s Eastside BBQ closed after 11 years on Orchard Street, with the owner citing the adjacent construction as one of the reasons.