- Lifestyle & Sports
- 28 Jul 19
Ben Dunne Gyms are Dublin’s ‘best in class’, offering a brilliant environment in which to realise your fitness goals – as Best of Dublin discovers on a visit to the thriving newly refurbished Lucan branch.
Dublin is getting even fitter! That’s the word from Ben Dunne Gyms – and if anyone is in a position to know, it is the king of Irish gyms. Having opened new outlets in far-flung places like Waterford and Portlaoise over the past 12 months, bringing to ten the number of Ben Dunne Gyms in Ireland, the long-time market leader is now planning further expansion in the capital.
Ben Dunne Gyms are already well-established all over the greater Dublin area: from Jervis Street in the city centre, out to Sandyford in the south; to Blanchardstown in the west; and to Santry in the north, each one is as successful as the next. Some, like the long-established Carlisle in Terenure, Northwood in Santry, and Westpoint in Blanchardstown, have 25-metre swimming pools, as well as Jacuzzis and steam rooms. It is a thriving, and highly successful business – the best in Dublin by some measure and a benchmark for everyone else. Locations are generally chosen where there’s lots of parking and the reaction has been phenomenal, with locals flocking to what are state of the art premises.
Next on the development agenda are a new Ben Dunne Gym in Clearwater Shopping Centre in Finglas, which is just off the R135, before you reach Finglas village; and one in Parnell Street, in Dublin city centre, which will appeal to the increasing number of people who live snd work in what is a newly flourishing part of the city centre. The bottom line is that, if you want great value in top quality gym membership, Ben Dunne Gyms is the place to go.
Making improvements to meet customers needs is a central part of the philosophy. Ben Dunne Gyms in Lucan has recently undergone a major refurbishment. When Best Of Dublin visits for a photo-shoot, it is humming with activity. The sight of people working out on treadmills, horizontal seated presses, cable biceps bars, rowing machines and a host of other contraptions that are designed to help enthusiasts and newbies alike to sculpt a stronger, fitter, leaner and longer-lasting body is mighty impressive. That, after all, is what the fitness game is all about: looking good and staying fit and healthy.
There are hundreds here, shedding pounds and adding muscle. And there will be every day of the week, from early in the morning until late in the evening. Like all Ben Dunne Gyms, the place is thoroughly spick and span. There’s an atmosphere of quiet determination that speaks of self-improvement through hard graft.
Ben Dunne Gyms are the ultimate egalitarian spaces. There is a very simple requirement that you obey the rules; no form of discrimination is contemplated or allowed. It is an ethos that makes sense in the new, open, inclusive, multi-cultural Ireland. We all aspire to being better. Well, this is a very good place to start.
In every Ben Dunne Gym, there’s a timetable of free classes in pilates, yoga, spinning, zumba and lots more. You can also hook up with a personal trainer, who – for an agreed extra fee, from €25 a session – will guide you through an individual exercise programme. It’s all about shaping-up in exactly the way that you want to.
And then there’s the price. You’d have to take out a mortgage to afford the membership in some gyms. Not here. Depending on the location, membership of a Ben Dunne Gym in Dublin is €19 a month, or €200 for 12 months (with renewals €190). Where swimming facilities are available, the all-in fee is €29.95 a month, but even here the annual fee drops to €250 (with renewals just €230). And you can get a 12 month membership for three people, with swimming, for €690. There’s also special discounts for over-65s.
“Irish businesses that are well-run are thriving,” says Ben Dunne. “Our membership keeps on climbing, so we know that we are doing things the right way. Dublin is such a great city. It is important for us to continue our expansion in the capital, to cater for all the people that want to go to Ben Dunne Gyms. But we will keep doing it in a way that allows us to offer the best possible value to our customers. That’s something everyone on the team here believes in passionately.”