CLAY Health Club + Spa: Trust Your Temple to Them

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David Mychajluk who commutes from the Westport area to CLAY, demonstrates a unique chair. “The first time you try it you have the sense that you will fall over. But you can’t fall over in this chair,” he said. Credit: Leslie Yager

By Leslie Yager

The countdown to the opening of CLAY Health Club + Spa’s Greenwich location is down to the single digits.

On Friday, Lance Root, CLAY’s general manager, said the club was 97% complete.

The unique fitness club, with its mantra, “from our temple to yours,” lives up to its promise with a luxurious array of amenities, professional staff and indulgent services.

Screen Shot 2014-08-24 at 11.48.28 AMThe vast expanses inside the bulky three-story building at 11 Riverdale Ave in Port Chester are filled with room after generous room. Indeed, the Sept. 2 opening of the 37,000 sq ft facility that was formerly an auto parts warehouse just over the state line from Greenwich was four years in the making.Screen Shot 2014-08-24 at 11.38.33 AM

Years of planning are evident on all three stories of the facility. And, while the wood floors of the warehouse have been restored, that is about the only reminder of the building’s previous incarnation.

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Koreen Elliott of Stamford is ready to greet members at CLAY, just over the state line in Port Chester, NY. Credit: Leslie Yager

According to Mr. Root, new hires include valet parking attendants, pilates instructors, spa employees, a golf pro, café staff, child care experts, sales staff and front desk personnel, to name a few. The varied list of staff serves as just one indication that CLAY is no ordinary health club.

“We’re not a muscle or body building facility,” said Root. “This is for regular people who want to get in shape.”

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No fewer than 8 CGI cameras allow the resident golf pro at CLAY Health Club + Spa Greenwich to evaluate a member’s swing. Credit: Leslie Yager

In addition to the vast array of equipment, unique amenities and services that range from child care in the “CLAY Play House,” to facials and massages, to one-on-one sessions with a pilates instructor or with Michael Manavian, the on-site golf pro, membership is capped.

Though Root said the hard number for membership cut-off has yet to be determined, he said staff would first get a feel for the ebb and flow of members on any given day and look for patterns.

And because so many Greenwich residents work in Manhattan, where CLAY has its original location near Union Square, it is possible to have a dual membership.

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A row of kettle weights atop the original floor of 11 Riverdale Ave, where once was an auto parts operation. Credit: Leslie Yager

On a tour of the facility, the list of special touches features a “Mother’s room,” where a little privacy comes in the form of a comfy upholstered chair and private phone.

Upstairs, a row of tatami mats lines a wall of picture windows overlooking the Byram River and its canopy of trees.

 

Screen Shot 2014-08-24 at 11.38.33 AMScreen Shot 2014-08-24 at 11.38.33 AMScreen Shot 2014-08-24 at 11.38.33 AM At the top of the stairs an organic café flanks a rooftop sundeck, where members can enjoy breakfast or lunch.Screen Shot 2014-08-24 at 11.38.51 AMScreen Shot 2014-08-24 at 11.38.51 AM

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Indeed, once inside the vast expanses that comprise CLAY, with its array of sky lights and picture windows overlooking the river, one quickly forgets she is across the street from the traffic Island at the state line and long-time home to Dougie’s Stand By and Carvel.

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Tatami mats along a bank of over sized windows that overlook a canopy of trees and the Byram River. Credit: Leslie Yager

And, rather than feeling like you’re walking into a night club, at CLAY the feel is more zen like and pampered. Root says the key difference between CLAY and other fitness clubs is the way wellness is integrated into the offerings. The operation features an organic café with menu prepared a local caterer and nutrition services.

Information about membership is available online, or call CLAY call (914) 937-5000.

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Inside a refrigerated cabinet, stacks of cool eucalyptus-infused towels await members after their workout. Credit: Leslie Yager

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Sound deadening panels float from the ceiling of CLAY’s yoga studio. Indeed the music in the main room went silent once the doors to the yoga studio closed. Credit: Leslie Yager

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Yoga mat inside the silent yoga room at CLAY. Credit: Leslie Yager

pilates

With five pieces of equipment, the pilates room at CLAY allows members to arrange a one-on-one session, or join a two-on-one session, or three-on-one session with an instructor. Credit: Leslie Yager

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Rowing machines in the foreground. A 10 ft by 50 ft section of turf where members can try sled-pulling or work with heavy ropes. Credit: Leslie Yager

guess the spot?

A wall of picture windows on the north side of CLAY benefits from the view of the Bryam River and its canopy of trees. Credit: Leslie Yager

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According to general manager Lance Root of CLAY Health Club + Spa Greenwich is the capped membership, which he described as a cornerstone of the brand. Credit: Leslie Yager

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CLAY’s spin studio boasts state-of-the-art Keiser equipment. The room has a dedicated sound system. Credit: Leslie Yager

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All that was missing from the fireplace lounge was the leather furniture and cocktail tables. The fireplace lounge is adjacent to the organic cafe and door to the roof deck. Credit: Leslie Yager

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The cardio section of CLAY features treadmills, ellipticals and bikes. Credit: Leslie Yager

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Spacious locker areas for women at CLAY. Credit: Leslie Yager

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The members lounge at CLAY Health Club + Spa features comfortable seating, a massive sky light, Wifi and a large screen TV. Credit: Leslie Yager

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There women’s saunas and steam room at CLAY are duplicated on the men’s side. Credit: Leslie Yager

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  • Ann Delancy

    Wonderful job with construction. Group fitness seems to be a who’s who of NYSC and Lifetime instructors though. Let’s bring up some management and instructors from NYC? Waiting for the $99/month rate with $0 initiation in January! Can’t wait.

  • Robert Martin

    I go to The Edge in Norwalk and Clay shares a few of our instructors. I think it’s great when instructors teach at different clubs. Cool when they’re in a $39 venue and then do the $150 gig as well. If people can’t get to an Edge, they do Clay and enjoy the amenities. Clay isn’t about group fitness it’s about the rooftop, fireplace and valet parking. Wishing them the best of luck for 2014 and beyond!

  • Amanda Stilo

    I definitely wish Clay a great grand opening and love that they’re revitalizing the State line traffic circle. I’m glad they hired some of our Fitness Edge instructors as it makes my $49/month membership feel even more valuable. I think the amenities are cool but all I care about is classes. I’m glad these comments were here as sampling a class with the same instructors I already pay for and going through valet parking may not be for everyone. I also heard they’re dropping the initiation and bringing rates to under $100. This sounds a little more in line with Port Chester and the level of instruction. Remember if they were to bring in EQX or NYC talent you’d see it reflected in the monthly rates, so be careful what you wish for. Best of luck Clay and thanks for restoring the area and making Port Chester beautiful and classy!