by John Egan

Looking to get in a 3-mile run before or after your meeting in Houston? Then you might want to check out - and check into - The Houstonian Hotel, Club & Spa.
Recently anointed by CNNMoney as one of the 12 coolest hotel gyms in the US, the fitness center at The Houstonian would suit even the likes of professional athletes.
"The gym at The Houstonian Hotel, Club & Spa is anything but ordinary, even by luxury standards," wrote Hayley Bosch, an editor for the Forbes Travel Guide. "This gym literally has it all - more than anyone could ask for in a fitness center, much less one in a hotel."

What makes The Houstonian's gym anything but ordinary? With 175,000 square feet of gym space (considerably bigger than the average Wal-Mart store), here are just 12 reasons.

  • More than 300 cardio and strength-training machines.
  • More than 250 fitness programs.
  • Coaching from certified wellness experts.
  • Two racquetball courts.
  • Nine tennis courts - four indoor and five outdoor.
  • Both an outdoor and an indoor running track.
  • Six studios, including two group-exercise studios and one each dedicated to cycling, yoga, Pilates and boxing.
  • Six pools, including a heated outdoor resort-style pool, a heated outdoor garden pool, a heated and cooled outdoor lap pool, a baby pool and a whirlpool.
  • A rock-climbing wall.
  • An outdoor children's play area.
 According to architecture firm Kirksey, The Club at The Houstonian opened in 1980. It was built to be converted into an office building if the fitness-club concept didn't work out. But, of course, that concept worked out quite well. In fact, WeightTraining.com lauds The Houstonian's fitness center as one of the eight best gyms - hotel or non-hotel - in the US.

"Essentially, if it has anything whatsoever to do with fitness, The Houstonian has professionals on-site to teach you how to do it and all the equipment you could possibly need," according to WeightTraining.com.
 
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