- New York Sports Clubs
125 Seventh Ave. S., at 10th St.; 212-206-1500
One of the club’s two 24-hour locales; about $40 a month grants access from 11 p.m. until 5 a.m.
For Tight Budgets
- Blink Fitness
16 E. 4th St., at Broadway; 212-228-7000
With only basic cardio and strength equipment, a stretching area, and a small locker room, Equinox’s David Rockwell–designed spinoff isn’t fancy. But it costs just $20 per month.
- The Sports Center at Chelsea Piers
Pier 60, 23rd St. and West Side Hwy.; 212-336-6000
About $105 a month (after a $100 initiation fee) grants full access to the swank facility, including its indoor track, 25-yard pool, Hudson River sundeck, and classes, starting Friday afternoons at 5 p.m. through Sunday.
- The Sports Club/LA
330 E. 61st St., nr. First Ave.; 212-355-5100
The Sports Club’s glossy uptown facility charges the under-30 crowd $145 per month (down from the full-price fee of $175).
- Dolphin Fitness Club
94 E. 4th St., nr. Second Ave.; 212-387-9500
For a crazily low $149 per year, cardio hounds and weightlifters can get full access to the club three days out of the week. Choose between the Tuesday-Thursday-Saturday or Wednesday-Friday-Sunday plans.
For the Committed
- Ludlow Fitness
100 Delancey St., nr. Ludlow St.; 212-260-9222
A lump $450 payment buys twelve months of unlimited access to this full-service gym and substantial class schedule. (For the noncommittal, it’s $99 up front, then $49 per month.)
For Just a Pool
- Asphalt Green
555 E. 90th St., nr. York Ave.; 212-369-8890
Swim-only memberships to the Olympic-size deepwater pool at Asphalt Green’s state-of-the-art sports complex cost $99 per month, which also includes classes taught in the adjacent warm-water exercise pool.
For Squash or Nighttime Tennis
- CitiView Racquet Club
43-34 32nd Pl., Skillman Ave., Long Island City; 718-389-6252
This shiny LIC club offers a squash-specific membership for $140 per month (no court or initiation fees). Also available: limited-access tennis passes, effective 1 to 4 p.m. on weekdays or 9 p.m. to midnight daily, for $100 per month (plus court and guest fees).
For Indoor Basketball
- Jackie Robinson Recreation Center
85 Bradhurst Ave., nr. 146th St.; 212-234-9607
A slim $25 gets you six months of access to the full-size indoor basketball court, as well as the center’s weight and fitness classes. But the hours are tricky: Monday through Friday 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. and 5:30 to 8:45 p.m.; Saturday, 9 a.m. to 4:45 p.m.
Sweat As You Wish
Nontraditional gym memberships for highly particular workout fiends.
From the 2011 Best of New York issue of New York Magazine
So what exactly does “best” mean in a city with thousands of pizza joints, hundreds of celebrity masseuses, and museum-worthy concept shops on every corner? Well, in the case of this, our annual “Best of New York” roundup, there’s a heavy emphasis on what’s new or what has somehow remained virtually unheard of (until now, of course).