Club Insider

How to Design Spa-Like Locker Rooms For Less

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Bruce CarterBruce Carter

People come to health clubs for many reasons. One reason often overlooked is that it can be an escape from a person's normal day-to-day life. Studies show that lockers rooms are one of the most important areas that people respond to in a club, good or bad. Whether designing a new club or renovating an existing club, providing a beautiful upscale spa-like locker room can be a strong marketing asset to any club.

The term "spa-like" is used because spas were originally upscale points of destinations that people went to rejuvenate and "get away from it all." Everything about the better known spas was that they were special and different from normal environments, and this was true of the spa locker rooms.

A spa-like locker room is a "dream" locker room, something people would love to have in their home, but most do not. So, there should be two goals: (1) to provide locker rooms to get more people to join and more to stay as members and (2) to provide such a beautiful locker room without spending a large sum of dollars. Here are the design features to use for a "spa" locker room.

The flooring should mostly be tile with possibly some carpet (moisture resistance) areas for the locker section. It should be noted that more locker rooms are being built without any carpet. Carpet gives a "warm" and comfortable look and feel, but it does have to be continually replaced due to moisture, cleanliness and odor. Ceramic tile is more efficient, and if the right type is chosen, it can be equally effective in creating a clean upscale ambiance. The absolute must for floor tile is that it has an extra non-slip finish. Nothing can detract from a spa-like locker room more than having beautiful floors covered with boring mats so people won't slip. Therefore, you must shop around to find the non-slip tile that also looks good. Also, floor tile sizes must allow for the floor to be adequately pitched to the drains.

For the most part, the more wall tile used, the better, especially in any type of wet area. Rectangular shapes run horizontally are popular now. All types of color options are available (including low cost choices because walls do not have to be non-slip). It is important that the wall tile harmonize with the floor tile but have some type of contrast. In addition to the wall tile, it is also recommended to use glass mosaic accents or other type of accent pieces to add "personality' to the wall. However, if your budget is tight, glass mosaic is usually double or more the cost of regular tile, so therefore, even a 6' strip of accent tile makes an impression.

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