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Review of California Fitness at Sunway Pyramid

December 1st, 2007 · 20 Comments ·
 
 

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Finally, went to California Fitness at Sunway Pyramid for a free trial. This club is California Fitness third outlet in Malaysia. It is located at the lowest floor of Sunway Pyramid which is one of the most popular shopping malls in Klang Valley. The outlet is at the same level with the ice skating rink which is also a level below McDonald. Once at the right level, one could see the signboards from far.

Who would miss that big Jackie Chan’s poster?

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Registered myself at the front desk. Was then ushered to the waiting area to fill up a questionnaire asking bout my fitness goals and health history. Before I finished it, a sales person came and started to introduce about the fitness center.

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She did a pretty good homework in differentiating this place from other clubs. When she told me that her big boss has paid much attention to the place layout design as well as machines placement, I stopped and looked at her.

“Who is your boss?”

“Him,” she smile and pointed his boss to me.

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Yes, Jackie Chan has probably really done that. I was quite impressed with the placement of the machines in the gym. From lower body to upper body resistance machines, they are placed according to the muscle groups. It is such a simple idea but I wonder why so many gyms have missed this important point by scattering machines in different areas, worse in different levels.

In addition to that, Jackie Chan actually created this special zone called Express Zone, dedicated to busy city folks who are rushing, even when they work out in the gym. It is the zone where only less than eight to nine resistance machines are placed. These machines are just like other normal machines and not special made. So, you hop on to the first machine, exercise, done, then move on to the next one – 2 sets with 10 repetitions at each station and you will take less than half an hour to get a whole body workout. One may think that this Express Zone is just another marketing gimmick, but for busy people or even beginner, the machines here may meant a lot for them. We all know instant noodles are not nutritious after all, but many still enjoy eating them. So, consumers’ behavior sometimes is hard to know.

Before ending the tour, I was introduced to a personal trainer. He took my height, weight and body fat percentage. Thinking the trainer would use skinfold caliper to get the body fat measurement, I was instead amazed when he told me that he has got the figures with the digital weighing scale. The scale works based on the Bioelectrical Impedance concept which I mentioned in my article – 4 Ways to Measure Body Fat.

The trainer showed me a chart telling me that my body fat is considered normal. In order to get six pack, I need to be at the “Fit” category. He shared with me what need to be done – cardiovascular exercise, weight training, nutrition as well as personal training. Good advice to serve as reminder.

Before letting me to work out, the sales person dragged me to the waiting area and showed me the membership packages which I shall elaborate at the end of this post.

Next, I proceed to the towel counter and then went to the male changing room.

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California Fitness has stern warning to its members not to use combination locks or small locks because they are easier to be broken. Yes, you have to bring your own pad locks if you want to store your belongings in the locker.

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The shower room has modern design. Sorry, no door. Just like most other gyms, only curtain. With the complimentary shower gel from the container stuck , you do not have to worry about them because you no longer need to bend to pick up any soap.

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I then went to the free weight area. Mirrors are here and there with rows of dumbbells and weights. Squat rack as well as benches (flat, incline and decline) can be found there too.

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At the side of the free weight area, I saw this machine which I have not seen in other gyms. It is called AbCoaster. It is used to work out not only the upper abs, but also the lower abs. Without second thought, I gave it a try. At the end of upward position, when I hold the position for about 3 seconds, I could feel the squeeze at my abs.

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Close to the AbCoaster is the Kick Fit boxing area. Was told it is a place meant for kick boxing personal training.

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Another new machine which worth mentioned is HOIST ROC IT series – chest press, pull down, biceps curl, leg extension and others. May be it is just me, but I found that these machines gave more natural feel when I worked out. Probably it is due to the continuous alignment of the seat with the exercise arm. Also, the head and neck support make the isolation exercise easier for me to focus on the target muscle group.

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The club has rows of treadmills, Cardio Wave machines, bikes, cross trainers and rowing machines too.

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A pretty huge dance studio and RPM studio are located at the ground floor. It is closed to the staircase leading to the first floor.

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After trying most of the machines at the ground floor, I proceed to the first floor. Saw another studio, but mainly used for yoga and pilates classes. Female changing room is located at this floor too.

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At the other side of first floor, the decoration is slightly different. It is darker with funky lightings. More treadmills can be found here. Just like ground floor, the plasma TVs are hung on the wall.

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At the corner of first floor is the ladies workout area.

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The club is currently having promotions for its personal training package.

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What I like about California Fitness at Sunway Pyramid:

  • Fantastic placement of machines according to muscle groups.
  • Similar to the outlet at Mid Valley Mega Mall, this place has high ceiling. Good air ventilation.
  • Instead of located at the top floor of the building, it is actually at the lowest level of Sunway Pyramid. You will not feel the afternoon heat.
  • I have to give credit to its design. Being a person who likes natural sunlight, together with the sufficient lighting, this place is well lit. Moreover, through the glass window, you have good view of Sunway Lagoon when you are running on the treadmill at ground floor.
  • In case you want to check your e-mails, surf the Net or check on messages at your Facebook, you will find few desktops useful. No additional charge.

Things To Watch Out:

  • As this outlet is located at shopping complex, take parking fee into your consideration before you sign up the membership here. Here is the parking fee at Sunway Pyramid (as of November 2007).
First 4 Hours Next Hour Maximum
Weekdays RM 1 RM 1 RM 6
Weekends & Public Holidays RM 3 RM 1 RM 8
  • Parking can be difficult during weekends. As for weekdays, it is not an issue.

Membership Package (as of November 2007)

  • One Club Sport Gold Package – Home based package
    • 1 year contract – The published joining fee is RM329 and monthly fee is RM199.
  • All Clubs Platinum Package – Passport package for California Fitness outlets in Malaysia (Mid Valley, Menara Standard Chartered and Sunway Pyramid)
    • 1 year contract – Published joining fee is RM580 and monthly fee is RM219.
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  • How much you get depends on how hard you negotiate. After 30 minutes of lengthy negotiations with manager comes into picture, the best deal I was offered is average of RM95 monthly fee for 3-year passport package. I hope that it gives you a good idea how much the club is willing to go down if you are serious enough to sign up on the spot.
  • For those who have extra cash to burn and who will commit to work out for lifetime, the club has a package called Zenith for you. The price is RM18,000 for one time fee and RM380 for yearly renewal. Yes, you read it right. RM18,000 for access to California Fitness worldwide. Zenith is currently priced at RM11,400 during the promotion period. California Fitness has just terminated its previous Infinity lifetime package which is only RM5,800+ early November 2007. For those who signed up Infinity before this, congratulations, you got the best deal in town! The key difference between Infinity and Zenith is that the former is not transferable whereas the latter is allowed to do so.

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Final Words

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Location map of Sunway

After visiting so many gyms, California Fitness at Sunway Pyramid one of the best gyms in town. A total of 30,000 square feet of built up area, not too huge, not too small and just nice with mixed type of crowds – young and old. What is more important is the way the machines are arranged. High ceiling with good air ventilation too. Still, don’t take my words entirely. Go for a free trial and see whether the gym offers what you want.

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Category: California Fitness


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20 responses so far ↓
  • Angie Tan // Dec 3, 2007 at 4:48 PM

    If I had known that CF was going to open near my house, I would have reconsidered my membership with my current gym.

    However, the parking fee at Sunway is expensive not to mention creepy now because of the extensive renovation exercise going around.

    Did you tour to the basketball court and swimming pool? I heard that it was there, according to my friend who’s a member of another CF…

  • Mun // Dec 4, 2007 at 12:17 AM

    Hi Angie – The one at Sunway does not have pool or basketball court. Only the one at Mid Valley has it.

  • David // Dec 4, 2007 at 7:41 PM

    Parking expensive? I think about the same as Midvalley’s..

  • pegasus // Dec 13, 2007 at 1:13 PM

    I’m seriously thinking of switching my gym membership from Celebrity SJ over to California Sunway. what you guys think?
    And I’m really hope to get a cheaper deal here as I’m now paying normal RM149 monthly fees at Celebrity SJ.

  • GymRat // Feb 10, 2008 at 10:27 AM

    I agreed with Mun that California Sunway is one of the best gyms in town. I’ve recently switched from True Fitness as I found out it is very troublesome n frustrating for me to look for parking in the evening esp in Taipan. There were times I missed my workout as I’ve decided to turn back after failing to find a parking space. One plus point worth mentioning is the dressing table for ladies in California Sunway, comes with cotton pads n buds, hair gel n hand lotion.. Yipee! I dont have to bring my own. I’ve paid a hefty of RM185 per month in True Fitness n they dont even provide tissue for you ….

    So for those who is considering of joining of gym, simple things such as towel service, cotton buds, plastic bags, etc does make a difference in long term. I was actually unhappy with True Fitness as their service level is pretty bad lately. Not forgetting that they dont provide you anything including tissue paper .. At least in Fitness First, you get free plastic bags to put your dirty clothes .. LoL

    For those Les Mills classes fans, unfortunately you only have BodyBalance, BodyCombat, & BodyPump in California Fitness. They have their own Step and cycling classes. There were actually not bad. I have no problem with the classes as I can still attend my all time favorite BodyPump.

    Summary is, I am glad I’ve switched to California Fitness. This time, I really felt tat my it is worth my money =)

  • Hanizah // Apr 25, 2008 at 5:27 PM

    Hi

    This is such a good article, and the comments are good too, thank you! Now, I know where to get my work out!

    -From a middle aged woman who’s not interested in eye candy and only wants to work out quietly-

  • faeza // Jul 2, 2008 at 7:25 PM

    i student at uitm
    n want to join carlifornia fitness.
    i looked in website carlifornia fitness sunway about the fee for register n monthly fee.
    but why carlifornia fitness midvalley promote me register fee 3++ n monthly fee 129. please send me feedback the pakage at sunway carlifornia fitness…

  • big spender // Sep 13, 2008 at 9:02 PM

    well, as a member, i would say that cali fitness sunway is pretty good. I like the classes there because they are small…an average of 15 person per class…

    unfortunately, i had to leave the country to further my studies…so i am looking for someone who is willing to take over my membership..which is a contract till april 2009..

    anyone??

  • lotuz // Sep 17, 2008 at 1:47 PM

    hi big spender..

    can you send details .. i’m interested..
    was looking for gym but scared to commit 1yr membership

  • YPei // Sep 17, 2008 at 4:54 PM

    Hmmm the review seem good. Thye used to provide the similiar service in Cali Fit MV but after 2 yrs …everything seem like down the drain resulted of poor maintainance…

  • Fatty // Nov 3, 2008 at 1:04 AM

    What if I terminate my membership before the contract ends?

  • Mun // Nov 3, 2008 at 8:58 AM

    To Fatty: Legally, they can still go after your payment since you have already signed the contract.

    If you have paid the fee with your credit card, most likely the bank will go after the payment because the bank has already helped you pay the fee in advanced.

  • zhan // Jan 24, 2009 at 11:36 PM

    it seems much nicer than midvalley which i unfortunately go to now.

  • AL // Feb 20, 2009 at 2:27 PM

    darn..I should have found and read your reviews before I signed up at True Fitness(just yesterday!)…I had been a loyal member of California Fitness all these years even from Midvalley days. And had been with the one at Pyramid for last one year. I have to say the Pyramid one is just great. They are spacious and lots of natural light unlike TF at TAIPAN. TF is really dark and can make one feel chlostrophobic actually! :)

    Reason I changed to TF in taipan cos it’s just walking distance for me. Oh well, I think I’ll just quit later on if I really cannot tahan by then and then go back to CF at Pyramid. Hey, can just cancel off your credit card and they wont be able to continue charging your monthly fees rite??

    People in TF is not as committed or friendly as in CF> As a new members, I was hastily shown around in TF last night. The girl seems like she had to rush off ! I was in total blur and confused over the place. Also, the bathroom…they are so badly lighted up and cupboards are old..unlike those at CF. Nice and bright!

    The more i say it the more I feel like cancelling my TF tonite but I have paid the 1st month cost and processing fee already lah.

    OH yeah…NO TOWELS??! gee…..for the price they charge and no towels…saying its hygiene purpose…crap lah..

  • matthew // Apr 24, 2009 at 1:07 AM

    Dear all,

    I just join California fitness, its good & nice place. i can even join my lovely class such as body combat, JC boxiest & many class. that was so convenient all in one package center. i wish one day i can go v my gf, then we can exercise together. So, its really enjoy life. Honestly, my life is bored before that, now its so exciting with those class & my frens ST & his wife & others fren as well. We all join the class almost everyday at Sunway Pyramid California fitness. its was so fun, after the class we gym & competing each others. this is so tired & sweating me, But i like that, reduce my fat in my tummy….. haha…. even i m 34yrs old, but look me like 27….. haha… after fitness, we go dinner & movie together, That’s called ENJOY LIFE……….. Hopes you all enjoy the same as me. Money is not everything, But health & fitness, sport is everything.

    Ares Electric
    Rgds
    Matthew Chu

  • Steve // May 26, 2009 at 10:27 AM

    I’m an “Infinity” member of CF Lot 10 (formerly Menara Std Chartered) and I’m planning to sell the membership due to my other commitments. I know I know, Infinity membership supposed to be non transferable but mine comes with a special clause that allows it.
    The price will be less than the offer price of the current Zenith and the yearly fees is only RM88.00 compared to the current Zenith of RM380.00.
    e-mail me or call me at 012-5039818

  • philters // Jun 11, 2009 at 5:10 PM

    i there, i know this post (great post, btw) was written a long time ago, but i want to share an experience which i think is important for your readers.

    two lessons i learnt at california fitness sunway pyramid:

    1.
    i actually signed up for the 2-year contract, only to receive a call for promo less than 24 hours later. the ‘fitness trainer’ started by talking about promos but when i said i was not interested because i can work out on my own, he started to flirt and wanted to know what school i was from and if i would go out with him. he also said that he will be watching me at the gym. i was shocked and when i confronted the management, they took his side and said he just wanted to be nice. i also found out that my contact details is made available to all the staff members and they are all free to contact me anytime. this is an invasion of privacy.

    2.
    following that incident, i wanted to terminate my membership. here’s a tip for everyone, regardless of your contract, IT IS POSSIBLE to terminate your contract and get a FULL REFUND up to three days upon your purchase of the membership. this is a consumer right when you are not entirely happy with the product purchased. yes, i got my refund and membership terminated the very next day from the incident.

  • hii yuen // Mar 15, 2011 at 10:01 PM

    how much if i join the member per-entry?

  • Carlo // Jul 13, 2011 at 4:36 AM

    i would like to know the fees for two person and the cheaper rate.
    do have any student rate on here?

  • vidia // Jul 15, 2011 at 11:49 AM

    lol very exciting fitness entertaiment !

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