Monday, June 21, 2010

Another City Place Fail: Gold's Gym

This happened a few days ago, but for those of you unaware, the Gold's Gym in City Place has permanently closed.



I'm not sure what the attraction of Gold's was when compared to WSC and LA Fitness, other than perhaps a cheaper (?) membership fee. The complaint I always heard about the City Place Gold's was that it was a franchised location and the membership wasn't good at any other area Gold's locations.

Thanks to reader GC for submitting the photo.




31 comments:

WheatonCalling said...

Oh, that sucks. I'm a member there, and I was afraid that this was coming. Two months ago, the automatic payment for my account stopped, and the billing company called me to say that the owner was stopping all billing activity. When I asked someone at the desk about it, they said the owner was just changing billing companies, but it still seemed weird. In addition to that, they stopped their towel service a few months ago, and also were scaling back all of their fitness classes. I live in Wheaton now, but the Bally's here is always packed so I'm hesistant to join it. Sorry to hear that they closed!

Clancy said...

I was a member, too. The appeal, when I joined, was that it was the only gym in downtown SS. After that, I would say that I stuck with it simply because I developed good relationships with the staff and genuinely liked them.

It's been obvious for some time that Gold's SS was having problems. Some were obvious, like vendor reliability. The towel service became less reliable, the drink coolers were removed, shower mats disappeared, cleaning service was less frequent, etc. Most telling, sometimes there would only be one person working while the gym was open. All were indications that they were having trouble paying bills.

Rumors spread amongst the patrons that ownership had trouble with another business and "took money out" of the gym to help prop it up. I'm not sure how accurate that is, or even what it means, but it's still sad that Gold's closed. City Place has enough problems attracting people, a (well run) gym is actually a pretty good base operation for it.

The WSC on Fenton & Wayne is now offering former Gold's members a fairly good deal if they join. It's likely that LA Fitness is doing something similar.

Anonymous said...

If anyone is willing to share, I'd love to know what people pay for initiation fees and monthly dues at WSC or LA Fitness.

Clancy said...

Anon, with Gold's closing, I just joined WSC for a $20 "processing fee" and $39/month (with a one year membership). I think they were offering $49/month for a month to month membership. This was supposed to be a deal to get Gold's members to join.

Before Gold's closed, I was informed at WSC's front desk that their rate was $59/month (one year membership) or $69/month (month to month). I'm not sure what the regular initiation fees are.

Lnw80050 said...

I had been a member of Gold's before WSC club opened and liked the trainers and classes. When WSC opened my trainer informed me that he was leaving Gold's for WSC and that this was common among the other "good" (his word, I have no idea about any other trainer then the one I went to) trainers in Gold's. I stayed for a few more months and then moved, and have been so happy at WSC even though I left Gold's when it wasn't near the end. Move to WSC you will be happier.

Anonymous said...

I go to LA Fitness. I signed up before they actually opened supposedly making my membership cheaper. However, I've heard people who've joined recently that pay the same. $34.99 month-to-month. I believe the initiation fee was somewhere in the $125 range. Only issues are no towel service and no water cooler. Other than that I'm happy.

Anonymous said...

I just went to work out there only to find out that it had closed. The attraction for me when I joined 18 months ago was that it was $20 a month less than WSC. There were generally so few people that that I didn't know how the place stayed in business. While I can understand it closing the lack of advance notice was disappointing.

Dumbek said...

I think my initiation fee at WSC was about $100, but that was years ago. I'm paying about $80/month, but that's the any-gym/any-time/any-city/no restrictions/month-to-month membership. I should probably scale that back at some point. There are definitely cheaper memberships available.

I love WSC though.

Anonymous said...

How do you people have time to go to the gym? Get back to work!

Anonymous said...

I was an employee at the downtown SS golds from 2003-2006. The owner had 2 businesses that I was aware of, the other was another Golds in Waldorf MD. I'm not precisely certain what precipitated the rapid decline, but I believe that among other things, the real estate market bottom fell out in the Southern MD region and that gym was quite large and as a partial, albeit most visible owner, the owner (Scott Campbell) was responsible for payments to his partners. Those payments, again this is rumor, not verifiable fact, were late enough that the other gym was also lost/closed. In a typical snowball effect, what was bad got worse in SS and bills weren't being paid, nor employees.
LA. Fitness, where I currently work, doesn't have any special for GG members that I'm aware of, nor are they more then cursorily aware. They are a corporate managed gym as opposed to WSC which is locally owned and operated.
I personally find it a troubling vision to see what was once a robust business, with previously noted shortcomings, fall so quickly down the tubes with absolutely no notice whatsoever.
It's sobering from a business perspective.

WheatonCalling said...

Well, I checked out the deals at both WSC and LA Fitness on Friday. The deal noted below for WSC was still in effect. I ended up going with LA Fitness, just because it seemed like it had more equipment and a bigger pool. They had two options for ex-gold's gym members (you need to show them your keytag). I went with the more expensive option - $120 initiation fee, $35/mth, and I'm able to bring a guest with me any time for free. That means my boyfriend can come and work out with me anytime for free, so after talking about it with him, I decided to go with that deal. The other deal was a less expensive initiation fee and $30/mth.

Anonymous said...

Arnold Schwarzenegger was pumping iron at gold's gym...that's the appeal compared to the overpriced WSC.

Anonymous said...

I don't know if it was a gym or a front for some other business but it was a ghost town some days. Why they built both gyms so big is amazing to me as well- a business 101 class could help next time.

Anonymous said...

Well the Golds gym in Waldorf just closed last week. I was a member there and when to the one in SS when I was on that side of town. The gym in SS was much nicer that the one in Waldorf. He must have spent a lot of money there.

Anonymous said...

Re: MBH
Closed? VERY kind word for "Forcefully Evicted". Whatever the case, people please understand, it's hard running a gym. All of the wiping of the sweat from the equipment and cleaning of the toilets makes for long, hard days. Muscle-Beef-Head (MBH) tried everything. "80+ spin classes", "Curls for Crawlers" but nothing worked for the now punctured & deflated MBH.

Anonymous said...

Waldorf, MD Gold's Gym closed...I prepaid for my membership, and after 4 full months, (paid on august 1st) during the first week of December, it abruptly closed. The gym that took its place is not honoring my membership and I have been told to "contact the state of MD for any refund". From what I can tell, Scott Campbell is the owner, and it looks like the gym in Silver S[ring failed too. Is there anyone else out there who was left high and dry, had their money stolen from this franchise owner??? I am furious, and of course Gold's gym corporate "cannot" give me any money whatsoever since it was a franchise owner that operated the business.....It was over $400!!! I am not willing to take no for an answer!

Anonymous said...

Waldorf, MD Gold's Gym closed...I prepaid for my membership, and after 4 full months, (paid on august 1st) during the first week of December, it abruptly closed. The gym that took its place is not honoring my membership and I have been told to "contact the state of MD for any refund". From what I can tell, Scott Campbell is the owner, and it looks like the gym in Silver S[ring failed too. Is there anyone else out there who was left high and dry, had their money stolen from this franchise owner??? I am furious, and of course Gold's gym corporate "cannot" give me any money whatsoever since it was a franchise owner that operated the business.....It was over $400!!! I am not willing to take no for an answer!

Anonymous said...

Waldorf, MD Gold's Gym closed...I prepaid for my membership, and after 4 full months, (paid on august 1st) during the first week of December, it abruptly closed. The gym that took its place is not honoring my membership and I have been told to "contact the state of MD for any refund". From what I can tell, Scott Campbell is the owner, and it looks like the gym in Silver S[ring failed too. Is there anyone else out there who was left high and dry, had their money stolen from this franchise owner??? I am furious, and of course Gold's gym corporate "cannot" give me any money whatsoever since it was a franchise owner that operated the business.....It was over $400!!! I am not willing to take no for an answer!

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