When travelers hit the road, sometimes their exercise routines go out the window. If hotel fitness centers can offer the same (or better) equipment as home gyms, however, guests may be more likely to stick to their usual workout regimens.
In order to provide guests with state-of-the-art fitness centers, Hilton aims to stay on top of what’s new or up and coming in the workout world.
“Really what we do is we match or exceed what the local gym offerings are to enable our guests to continue their workouts on the road,” says Jodi Sullivan, senior director of global fitness at Hilton Worldwide. “We want them to be comfortable, and to be motivated and want to stay fit on the road.”
After forming a partnership with fitness equipment manufacturer Precor in 2006, Hilton installed “Fitness by Precor” gyms at many of its full-service hotels. The centers include cardio machines with personal TV screens and headphones, free weights, water, courtesy towels, and space for stretching.
Travelers can be on the lookout for new, upgraded equipment at select U.S. properties when Hilton starts its “cardio refresh schedule” in 2012.
Staples for guest workouts include cardio equipment with the latest technology, such as personal viewing screens, iPod connections, touch screens, and TVs; core and balance equipment like stability balls; and stretch mats for Pilates and yoga routines. Sullivan researches the latest accessories—right now Bosu balls and Step360 step aerobics platforms are popular in the industry—so Hilton can provide these types of items when it launches its new gym concept.
“The goal is to provide a welcoming environment for our guests that entices them to come in and really see what’s new in the industry…,” Sullivan says. “Cardio workouts can be dull at times, but having the personal viewing screens and having that entertainment option can entice somebody who may otherwise say, ‘You know, I’m not going to do my cardio workout today.’”
Hilton also will be looking into additional ways to create a motivating experience for guests, from in-room exercise options and healthy food offerings to outdoor exercise alternatives on hotel grounds.