Anyone who travels a lot, be it for work or for pleasure, is familiar with the struggle of exercising while on the road. Traveling typically leads to dining out, which can spiral into less-healthy meal options that are more easily avoided at home. Then the problem of “How do I ditch some of these calories when I’m stuck in this hotel room?” arises. Or, for the more motivated and regimented of us, daily fitness is a given, regardless of location.
The good news is for either side of that coin, Houston offers plenty of hotels that come with excellent fitness amenities.
The Houstonian Hotel and accompanying Houstonian Club is the ultimate of these options in town. Located just across the I-610 Loop from the Houston Arboretum & Nature Center near the I-610 Loop and I-10 juncture, the hotel and club have by far the most amenities and options in the city as far as its gym facilities go.
The hotel and club are nested within 18 wooded acres, despite being very much near the center of town. The Club has been open since 1980. Regular membership prices begin at $200/month, with sign-up fees of $7,500+, but all of its facilities are free for people staying at the hotel.
Amenities include indoor and outdoor basketball, racquetball and tennis courts, exercise spaces and classes, a lap pool, and locker room use. More than 300 exercise machines, free weights, and 200 group classes (including aquatic classes) are available in any given week, and all are complimentary to hotel guests. Yoga, boxing and cardio studios are on site, as well as indoor and outdoor running paths. Essentially, it is a country club available for free to hotel guests.
Free childcare is available in two tiers, an infant through five years area called “The Bungalow,” and a “Kids’ Gym” for children six through 12 years old. A note: childcare is only available at certain times, not at all open gym hours, so check the schedule before making firm plans.
Omni Hotels & Resorts are another upscale option in the city with great fitness amenities. Its Energy Corridor location has a fitness room open around the clock. At the fitness center, machines including stationary bikes, treadmills, ellipticals and free weights will be found. Towels and fresh fruit are provided at no cost. The hotel also has a heated pool and whirlpool outside. Additionally, in-room kits that include hand weights, a kettle ball, elastic band set and floor mat are provided.
Omni Houston’s second location is more centrally located (nearby the Houstonian Hotel and Club), just outside the west edge of I-610 a few miles south of I-10. Here there are two outdoor pools (though only one is heated year-round), as well as fitness and in-room amenities similar to the Energy Corridor location.
A more urban setting is the Hilton Americas-Houston. Located downtown near the Toyota Center and George R. Brown Convention Center, the Hilton Americas gives guests city views from the 23rd floor as they work out in the fitness center. A heated infinity pool and whirlpool are available to hotel guests through the Skyline Spa & Healthclub the next floor up, and complimentary steam rooms and sauna rooms are also offered. The Skyline Spa & Healthclub offers paid memberships to non-hotel guests on a monthly basis, starting at $75/month and a sign-up fee of $200.
In the Galleria area, Aloft Houston offers the Re:charge(SM) fitness center. The ultra-modern decorated space, which is open 24-hours, provides an atmosphere for working out that goes beyond many standard hotel gyms, including a spacious stretching area. Aloft offers a heated indoor pool that is open from 6 a.m. to 11 p.m. as well.
On the north edge of town, closer to Conroe and ExxonMobil’s Houston campus, the Hyatt Centric offers fairly comprehensive fitness services. The 24-hour center offers workout machines with flat-screen TVs, free weights and other workout equipment. An outdoor pool is available, but not heated.