Today the much-buzzed about—and pretty controversial—SoulCycle Union Square location opened in the backyard of its competitor Flywheel.
Well+Good clipped into a bike and sussed out the brand-new spin studio.
Did SoulCycle bring it or was it a bust? Read on!
The (cramped) layout is more like SoulCycle’s uptown studios than the spacious Tribeca flagship. There’s one studio with 60 bikes; a slew of lockers that use a pin code (no lock needed); and change rooms with showers. Classes on the hour. Towels provided. Water and shoes extra. $32 per spin.
- The location is truly in Union Square, a two-minute sprint from the Farmer’s Market and subway
- There are five showers. FIVE!
- The vibe: SoulCycle feels like a place you want to be and it’s filled with a surprisingly passionate group of 20-somethings
- An awesome sound system, with lots of bass, which the guys in class were raving about after
- SoulCycle plants their flag in Union Square with these tanks and T-shirts
- The new studio is as packed as a flight on Southwest Airlines, a long-standing fault of the brand. SoulCycle, I will pay you to take five bikes out of that studio, so I can get to my bike without a lubricant, do the stretches correctly, and lift the weights without knocking my neighbor unconscious.
- No star teachers like Kym Perfetto or Stacey Griffith on the schedule
The temporarily ugly:
Every show has its opening-night jitters, so I don’t fault SoulCycle Union Square for these kinks (unless they’re still there a month from now).
- No waiting area—hopefully spacing the classes 15 mins apart will mean this is less of an issue when it’s not opening day. “I feel like I should be getting champagne when I get in,” said one spinner, whose patience was tested by the crowded stairwell where we all waited.
- The narrow locker corridor downstairs was as tight as the studio, and packed with people from two classes.
- The stairs: There needs to be a giant sign forbidding bike shoes on the glossy cement stairs down to the changing area to prevent wipeouts (which I witnessed).
- Um, no grapefruit candles?
SoulCycle Union Square, 12 E. 18th St., btwn Broadway and Fifth Ave., 212-208-1300, www.soul-cycle.com