Premium Partners

Hilton's Members Experience the Difference

The Hilton Athletic Club offers members services and amenities not found in typical hotel fitness centers.

The Hilton Athletic Club, part of Hilton Portland and Executive Tower in downtown Portland, Ore., is a full-service fitness center that offers personalized attention, a private club experience and exceptional service, according to Athletic Club Manager Beth Higgin. Facility users include hotel guests, local business employees and individual members who live nearby. What makes it unique among hotel fitness centers is its "private club" feel - only Silver, Gold and Diamond Hilton Honors guests receive complimentary daily use. Other hotel guests must pay a fee. There is another, smaller facility that all hotel guests can use free of charge. This allows users who have paid memberships in the larger facility to receive more personalized attention.

Most of the members work downtown, so before 8 a.m., the lunch hour, and 5 to 7 p.m. are the busiest times. To help ease crowding during these times, the facility offers a reduced-cost "flex time membership" for those members who come in outside of those busy times.

Members receive exclusive membership benefits, including 20 percent off massages and tanning, 20 percent off dining in the Hilton's restaurants, 20 percent off Hilton Athletic Club merchandise, two complimentary guest passes per month and a complimentary personal training session. In addition to traditional sessions, personal trainers offer group sessions in weight training, yoga, Pilates and swimming. These groups create "many small community groups within the club," says Higgin.

Hilton Athletic Club

Hilton Portland & Executive TowerPortland, Ore.503 220-2672 www.hiltonathleticclub.com Fitness facility size: 12,322 square feet Number of members: 475 Unique features/offerings: A Green Seal Certified Hotel (www.greenseal.org); core/stretching room; DVD Exercise Theatre Room; 18-foot heated pool; whirlpool spa; eucalyptus steam bath; sauna; tanning and massage rooms; lounge; locker room facilities with towel service, hair dryers, day use lockers, shampoo and body wash
Another member perk is the yearly Member Appreciation Day. All members who work out on that day are registered for prizes, which include a complimentary massage, a Hilton logo shirt and a complimentary month membership. For the entire day, tanning is free; coffee, tea and healthy snacks are offered; trainers are available for free consultations; all retail items are 30 percent off; and guests of members receive complimentary access plus a three-day pass to the facility. Says Higgin, "Members anxiously await this day, a high volume of purchases and friendships are made, and it is extremely well-attended." This year, the facility is adding various workshops throughout the day that tie in to some of the hotel's departments, such as cooking demonstrations to promote the hotel's restaurants and nutrition workshops to promote personal training.

The Portland Marathon is another yearly event for the Hilton Athletic Club. The Hilton is the headquarter hotel for the Portland Marathon, the Sports & Fitness Expo sponsor, and the location for registration and packet pick-up. The Hilton Athletic Club creates a weekend massage event for marathon runners two days before and two days after the run. Several convention rooms are turned into private massage rooms, and as many as 15 massage treatments are provided per hour. The Athletic Club is overflowing with marathoners during this time, and the event provides revenue to the facility and acquaints many people to the fitness center and its services. Several new members and regular massage guests result from this event each year, says Higgin.

To keep the facility up-to-date, it will undergo a remodel project that will be consistent with the "Hilton Hotels Corp. - Fitness by Precor USA" brand standards, says Higgin. The remodel project will include new flooring, paint, furniture, ceilings, core and balance fitness accessories, and several pieces of exercise equipment with LCD monitors. Cardio and strength equipment by Precor will be rotated at least every three years. Members were consulted during the planning phase, "so their needs will be considered first when we choose the new equipment for our remodel," Higgin says. The survey has also helped to determine what new programs to offer.

Special events, facility upgrades and a private club experience come together to offer members and guests of the Hilton Athletic Club a truly unique workout experience.

To have your fitness center featured, send an email describing your facility to anne@fitnessmanagement.com
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