Why Are Astana’s Fitness Clubs Premium? Are They Worth the Money They Charge?

ASTANA – People need to have a choice between essential and overly-luxurious that adds up to the value. By trying to draw the line among luxury, comfort and the basics, The Astana Times will try helping readers choose the right premium fitness club for leisure and workout sessions.

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Fitness clubs in the city can be costly, or rather less-than-flexible in price. Annual fees for the least expensive membership cards start around 300,000 tenge (~ US$870).

Clubs mostly offer one-year memberships and often are not very accommodating with short-term travellers, although they constantly offer various discounts.

The six-month membership prices are typically not a good deal, in most cases amounting to more than half of the yearly price. Yet when there is no choice, people take them. Some clubs don’t even offer monthly options and those that do ratchet up the prices to over US$100.

Winox

Winox offers the only RealRyder indoor cycling bikes in the city. The yearly membership card gives full access to the gym and over 60 group programmes with famous instructors in belly dancing, combat, kinesis, Pilates, swimming, yoga, Zumba and many other activities. The membership card is also loaded with discounts from 10-20 percent at restaurants such as La Belle, Rabiya and Uzbekistan, access to Hoist, Paramount and Technogym, Legend Fitness gear, a dry cleaning service and spa, fitness café and sports boutique.

The club is near Astana Mall, at the intersection of Mailin Street and Tauelsizdyk Avenue, about a 15-minute taxi ride from the centre of the left bank.

It focuses on all levels of possible goers and especially on kids, who have the fifth floor to themselves.


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Special features: The club currently offers the only RealRyder bikes in the city.

Verdict: Yes, only if you have the money. Overall, Winox has a lively vibe with its modern high-tech environment. It has a professional staff, high-quality and well-maintained simulators and gear that’s all new, saunas and a perfectly-maintained, crystal-clear 9-by-25 metre swimming pool. The club is a good fit for professional athletes, as it offers a huge variety of simulators that could satisfy almost anyone’s needs. Parking is not too problematic, as Astana Mall is just a minute away.

Address: 32 Tauelsyzdyk Ave. (near Astana Mall, intersection of Mailin Street and Tauelsyzdyk Avenue).

Price table:

One-year membership: 440,000 tenge (~ US$1,270).

Six-month membership: 286,000 (~ US$827).

There are numerous discounts available for holidays and seasons – call for special offers.

 

World Class

World Class is a Russian-based outlet with numerous clubs scattered throughout most of the Commonwealth of the Independent States (CIS) countries. The five clubs in Kazakhstan are in Aktobe, Almaty, Astana, Atyrau and Karaganda. World Class would be perfect for business people who frequently travel around the CIS on short-term trips and who want to stay fit.

A one-year membership gives holders the privilege of four visits a month at any club in its CIS chain. Card holders also receive a 10-15 percent discount at various partner stores and restaurants like Japanese Restaurant Yakitoriya, Mega Sport, Shokoladnitsa and Tutti Frutti Frozen Yogurt.

The club basically has the works, offering group programmes, employing professional instructors and outfitted with world-famous simulators and tread mills, different types of saunas, a spa and 8.5-by-25 metre swimming pool.

Special features: flexibility to travel. World Class needs to keep up with the times and stay on par with its gear to fend off its competitors. Other than that, it is perfect for business travellers and anyone who wants to stay fit.

Verdict: World Class is definitely worth the money. During rush hour, however, it might be a challenge to reach. It is located near the Radisson Hotel, along Sary Arka Avenue, which gets packed from 5:30 p.m. until about 7 p.m. and even later on Fridays. Parking might also be a problem.

Address: 1 Zhenis Ave.

Price table:

One-year membership: 280,000 tenge (~ US$ 809).

Six-month membership: 246,000 (~ US$ 711).

The club offers up to 20-percent discounts, but deals may be random. Call for prices and instant discounts.

 

Fitness Palace

While Fitness Palace might be the largest and swankiest club in the city, it certainly has a lot of competition in terms of the price-quality margin difference.

In terms of special features, it has the capital’s third-largest swimming pool at 15-by-25 metres and the largest, 1,500 square metres, in terms of total area of the aqua zone. The club is 10,000 square metres and boasts a 200-space parking area and somewhat-convenient location across from Khan Shatyr Mall. Fitness Palace also offers the only two squash courts in the city. As for the rest of gear, be sure it is all new, well-maintained and up-to-date. With more than 50 group programmes, four different types of saunas and 11 shower cabins (also the largest in the city), it is spacious. If you like comfort and space, this is for you.

Verdict: The right question would be – are you thinking about working out or are you just looking for the status and prestige of the club. Holders of this premium card are also entitled to regular discounts up to 10 percent at its spa and restaurants like Arnau, Brewery, Grammy and Kiku Matsuri. The problem is – they’re all in one complex in Fitness Palace.

Address: 3 Turan Ave. (across from the Khan Shatyr Mall).

Price table:

One-year membership: 550,000 tenge (~ US$ 1,590).

Six-month membership: 350,000 (~ US$ 1,012).

There are numerous discounts available for holidays and seasons – call for special offers.

 

Life Fitness

Life Fitness offers group programmes similar to the other clubs. It is also well-maintained, which is anticipated from a premium club, has new gear and a long swimming pool, which is a bit tight at 7-by-25 metres.

Although the management positions the club as a family getaway in the city, it doesn’t offer a flexible pricing policy. It is located right in front of Abu Dhabi Plaza, which is under construction on the left bank.

The membership card also gives a 7-percent discount at Luxury House, a boutique with designer names such as Armani and Versace, and a 10-percent discount to its spa.

Verdict: Maybe. Because in the price range, there may be better options.

Address: 2 Turkestan Street (across from Abu Dhabi Plaza, close to Nazarbayev Intellectual School).

Price table:

One-year membership: 430,000 tenge (~ US$ 1,265).

No 6-month membership cards.

There are numerous discounts available for holidays and seasons – call for special offers.

 

Fit Nation

Fit Nation is located in the central park, which is a bonus in the summer, as an evening promenade wouldn’t hurt after a workout. It also offers a variety of group programmes and has a 12-by-25 metre swimming pool.

Special features: It is probably the only club that gifts five free visits with a yearly membership. The others offer three visits.

Verdict: A good swimming pool, friendly staff, good variety of group programmes and low price compared with other premium clubs. Yes, it is worth the money.

Address: 4 Turan Ave. (inside the central park).

Price table:

One-year membership: 280,000 tenge (~ US$ 809).

Six-month membership: 182,000 tenge (~ US$ 526).

There are numerous discounts available for holidays and seasons – call for special offers.

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