Anna Kaiser, founder of AKT in Motion and trainer to stars like Kelly Ripa and Sarah Jessica Parker, has built an underground dance cardio empire in New York, teaching her addictive, sculpting sweat sessions at rented spaces around town.
Today, she finally unveils her first homebase, at 244 East 84th Street (between Second and Third Avenues) on the Upper East Side. “I can’t even tell you how amazing it is to really have a home that represents who we are and everything we do,” Kaiser gushes.
And the years of experience she had building her brand made it easy for her to create a home that shines: The massive space, decorated to pay tribute to Andy Warhol’s Factory, has three workout studios, a huge lounge space, locker rooms with laundry service, and spaces where clients can see a nutritionist, acupuncturist, and massage therapist. “You’re going to get everything you need to support results,” Kaiser says.
We scored a sneak peek inside the gorgeous new digs you’ll be sweating in soon… —Lisa Elaine Held
Photo: Kelly Ripa and Anna Kaiser at the studio’s opening party. All photos courtesy of AKT in Motion
Kaiser wanted to create a space that catered to individual needs. So clients who purchase unlimited monthly memberships ($450) may want to hang out in the studio, where there will be food, coffee, tea, and WiFi for loungers, plus showers and large lockers that come with laundry service. Those who want to just stop by for a quick cardio-toning fix can pay a single class price ($35 for 60 minutes) and jet back to work.
The home-y feel continues throughout the space, in live-work homage to Warhol’s Factory. There will also be rotating artwork displayed on the hallway’s walls. For the launch, Blue Logan’s paintings were hung on the walls. Inspirational mantras and phrases are permanently etched on others.
The main workout studio, The Factory, is where the magic happens. The 800-square-foot room is equipped with a disco ball (a feature present in one of her previous rental studios) and special floors for jumping around. “They have twice as much cushion as a normal dance floor to absorb more impact,” Kaiser says.
A mid-size studio (500 square feet) is called The Loft, and it will host privates and Kaiser’s “Man Camp” for dudes. “There’s no dance involved, just movement,” she explains. “It’s a full-body circuit workout.”
The smallest studio, Studio 54, will hold private sessions and also performance assessments for clients who want to commit to a serious transformational program. “We take a client through to figure out everything from body composition to anaerobic threshold to how much extension you have in your hip, so that we can see three weeks later whether you’ve improved,” Kaiser explains.
And if your performance assessment determines you could use some serious bodywork, you won’t have to leave the premises to get it. AKT will have a massage therapist on-site six days a week, and an acupuncturist three days a week, both of whom Kaiser hand-picked. “These were the two that made a huge difference in my life and in the lives of my clients,” she says. There’s also an onsite nutritionist who customizes dietary advice to the needs of each individual.
When it comes to retail, the studio will sell its branded AKT in Motion line, created in collaboration with Phat Buddha, and will host trunk shows on an ongoing basis. The current trunk show introduces sweaty visitors to luxe London-based fitness fashion brand Lucas Hugh.