Having taken over from the now defunct California Fitness, Goji Studios promises to redefine traditional fitness concepts, but does it live up to the claim?
Wellness and fitness have taken off in Hong Kong of late, with a range of workout stars on Instagram gaining huge followings. Alongside that, a whole host of yoga studios and independent gyms have popped up across the city, bringing healthy eating habits and designer activewear along with them. One of the newest groups on the Hong Kong fitness scene, Goji Studios aims to redefine traditional fitness concepts. All seven of its clubs stand in the very locations where the now-defunct gym chain California Fitness once stood, but Goji Studios appears to be quite unlike its predecessor, so we sent our fitness guru Stevie Tsui along to the Causeway Bay branch to get her squat on.
Goji Studios in Causeway Bay
It didn’t take long for me to receive a call from a Goji Studios representative after I booked my free trial at their Causeway Bay branch. I pictured myself trying to respond in the middle of a squat as a sales consultant ranted on about membership options, but that didn’t happen – thankfully. On the day of my trial, the consultant took me on a brief tour of the gym before leaving me to do my thing. It was only after I approached her at the reception that she sat me down and told me my options.
Goji Studios says it’s determined to redefine traditional fitness concepts, so it was no surprise that the personal trainers too, were non-pushy. What did surprise me was the availability of chalk stands: most commercial gyms in Hong Kong (including the one where I train) discourage the use of chalk.
Unlike many of its commercial counterparts, Goji’s equipment is conducive to functional and strength training: the Causeway Bay branch has three squat racks, two power racks, five benches, a weightlifting platform, plenty of 20kg barbells, a trap bar, rubber weight plates (1.25kg to 25kg), Bulgarian bags, a prowler – and more.
However, the noticeably smaller diameter of the plates could potentially cause problems for people who are particular about strength training. The barbells also leave something to be desired, with chipped coating and a hint of unevenness. Strength nerds may be better off lifting at CrossFit gyms like these.
If bodybuilding is more your thing, the branch boasts a rather impressive collection of machines, a reasonable range of dumbbells (up to 50kg) and a generous assortment of straight barbells and EZ curl bars. And of course, plenty of treadmills, elliptical trainers, stationary bikes and rowing machines for all you cardio bunnies.
Classes at Goji Studios
The branch also features a multipurpose studio and a spinning studio. The multipurpose studio is where hot yoga, aerial yoga, and Les Mills classics such as Pump, Attack and more are held. All classes can be booked via the Goji Studios app for iOS and Android phones. And, with a changing room featuring an ample number of spacious shower cubicles, and multiple hair dryers to go around, you won’t have to worry about shower queues after class.
Eat right with Youni
While classes vary from club to club, every branch comes with its own food outlet, Youni. All items on the menu are crafted by professional nutritionists, chefs and fitness experts, and are available for dining in, takeout, or even regular lunch delivery.
Membership plans at Goji, which start at HK$588 per month, will buy you a minimum of ten group classes, towel service and unrestricted access to one, or all branches, depending on your package. Unlike some gyms, members cannot borrow workout clothes from Goji—but who would want to anyway when you can rock your own? While membership fees are charged monthly via autopay, pulling out of a contract (which could last either 12 or 18 months) is not an option.
A membership at Goji Studios isn’t the most affordable, but it’s hard to argue against the price tag, considering how the gym’s facilities and equipment suit a variety of fitness interests. Check them out by booking a free three-day trial.
Goji Studios, 4/F, 250-254 Gloucester Road, Elizabeth House Block B, Causeway Bay, Hong Kong, p. 2530 3038, 銅鑼灣告士打道250號伊莉莎伯大廈4樓