Hi there, this is Andrew, MDC’s tech guy. Starting today I’ll be doing a series of blog posts on the best places to do stuff in Davao City. Be it eating, having fun, taking pictures or hanging out with friends, I’m gonna give you the best that Davao has to offer.
I’m kicking off this series with one of my favorite pastimes — working out. Yeah I work out a lot. I’ve tried several gyms already, but only a few stand out. Here they are:
3. Smashville – You may find Smashville’s location quite odd. When you enter the building, a flurry of Chinese immigrants are busy selling their wares to bargain hunters. The gym is fortunately on the second floor, where it’s more quiet and conducive to exercising. You’ll find out why it’s called Smashville upon seeing the eight badminton courts near the lobby. The courts are usually full on Wednesdays and the weekends. The cardio area is quite spacious, replete of treadmills of different sorts and sizes, even a mini-theater that helps you burn calories without minding the time. The workout machines are on a higher floor. Going up the stairs itself is an exercise. Once you’re up, you can’t help but notice how big the place is. There’s ample space for doing stretches, abdominal exercises and aerobics. It isn’t crammed like other gyms in the city. The instructor named Eric is very helpful and courteous. The downside to Smashville is its location. It’s on Magsaysay Avenue, not the most accessible address there is. Parking is a chore. Sometimes I’d have to do 3-4 rounds before I can park my car. A few occasions I’m forced to go to another gym out of frustration. But if you take public transportation, that wouldn’t be a problem.
Pros: Ridiculously spacious. Free Internet access. Friendly staff. Cheap at about P500/month.
Cons: Little to no parking space. Televisions in cardio area have no earphone jacks and takes a while before you find the one and only remote to switch channels. You can hear what the other 15 people people are watching. Some equipments are noticeably old. Locker rooms are so-so. Monthly fees are cheap but not for credit card holders. I found it annoying to hear about promos but never availed coz they apply only to cash. Isn’t that against the law?
Smashville is located at AGL Building, R. Magsaysay Avenue, Davao City. Call 082-305-5999. Visit their Facebook profile.
2. MetroLifestyle – I’ve heard of “Metro” from friends who’ve been bugging me to try the gym because, they say, it’s where all the attractive, “sosyal” people work out. Ok. So I tried it last week. I first noticed how big the gym had become after expanding to the new annex building. It’s nice, it even has a second floor lounge area that doubles as a running track. My only complaint is the gym equipment aren’t as nice as that of Holiday’s where I work out. Holiday uses those sexy Lifestyle Fitness machines, Metro uses Cybex Eagle, which I find kind of clunky. Their free weights are kind of rusty too. But I guess that’s alright for Metro’s regular gym goers. And admittedly I haven’t gone to that gym long enough to appreciate it. Monthly fee is relatively high at P1,200, but no membership fee required.
Pros: New expansive cardio and workout areas plus running track. Several nice establishments to hangout after exercising. There’s enough parking for everyone. Has lots of potential for improvement.
Cons: Cardio has only three televisions with no earphone jacks. Free weights are old and rusty. Locker rooms are shared with spa clients.
MetroLifestyle is located at F. Torres Street, Davao City. Call 082-228-6180 to 82. Visit their Facebook page.
1. Holiday Spa and Fitness Center – Holiday Spa is tops for me because I don’t have to worry about where to park and don’t have to climb two flights of stairs to do what I want. Holiday upgraded all their machines last year which makes the whole experience a pleasure. They’ve got a nice 225-meter running track, a pool, a boxing ring and badminton courts. Payments are not as flexible as the other two. It costs P1,500 for a month’s membership, but that goes down if you pay 2, 3 or 6 months in advance. I got a lifetime membership, which is great because I only have to pay P900 a month and don’t have to pay anything else. Not all gym instructors are as helpful as you’d want them to be. You have to call them to give you the attention you need. Nevertheless, Holiday easily stands out as the best place to work out in Davao City.
Pros: Ample parking. New, clean machines that are well-maintained. Outdoor running track is a big, big plus. Full day schedule for yoga, aerobics, pilates and dance sessions available for members at no extra cost. No preference for cash or card payments!
Cons: Workout, cardio, boxing areas are crammed in one mid-sized gym. Too many staff that sit around. Little to no space to do ab exercises. No stretching machines.
Holiday Spa and Fitness Center is located at F. Torres Street, Davao City. Call 082-222-3041. Visit their Facebook profile.
UPDATE: Here are more fitness centers in Davao City:
Planet Infinity – The new gym on the block. Boasts sleek, modern equipment plus a health bar. Located in East West Centrum, J1 Jomat Bldg, Km 6 Lanang, Davao City. It’s quite hard to find at first but it’s right after Damosa IT Park. Call 082-233-0770 or visit their Facebook page.
Marco Polo Fitness Center – One word: Expensive. Located in Marco Polo Hotel, CM Recto Street, Davao City. Call 082-221-0888.