In 2013 CrossFit Belltown landed at its third location since opening in Seattle, Washington. At the new establishment, the Affiliate was welcomed by more space than it had at its previous two settings — and a mission of making that space a home.
“While our mission has always been to help increase peoples’ fitness, the community aspect of our gym is very important to us,” said Nadia Shatila, the owner of the Box. “We finally had the space to add a nook where athletes could kick their feet up, pre- or post-workout.”
And Shatila’s team was not going to waste the opportunity to take advantage of the potential of the space. CrossFit Belltown boasts a unique lounge area centered on an early 20th century vibe.
“The idea to have an area where our members could sit and chat was inspired by the old gentlemen’s clubs of the early 1900’s, at a time when physical culture was just coming into vogue … a time when men and women were still figuring out how to pick up heavy objects,” explained Shatila of the amount of detail that went into designing the area.
In addition to brick walls, hardwood floors and leather furniture, the space features a dart board, vintage poker chips and playing cards, bourbon-filled crystal decanters, an antique ice box, a library of old-world gymnastics and strongman books, and an espresso maker.
Shatila said her team also constructed a hardwood bay of lockers and benches, reminiscent of something one would find in an old gymnasium.
The Affiliate added that having such an intimate setting as part of the Box has added to the overall culture of the establishment as the space lessens the intimidation factor some newcomers may feel on their initial and early visits to the gym.
“Having a place where everyone can simply sit and be themselves has really permeated all aspects of our gym in a way that the culture it breeds is one of having a ton of fun without taking ourselves too seriously,” she said.
Shatila suggested other Box owners should consider the level of comfort they aim to provide members and clients.
“The work that we all do as CrossFitters is really tough on our bodies, as well as our minds. Offering our members a few of the creature comforts that they themselves would normally only find at home can surely help,” she said.