• Fitness centers with a view provide an added amenity to apartment buildings.
  • Fifty Third & Eighth in Hell's Kitchen has sold 50 percent of more than 200 units.
  • Oceana Bal Harbour in Bal Harbour, Florida takes the next step and adds fine art to the view from its fitness room.

Beautiful irony is sweating profusely while running on a treadmill gazing upon Jeff Koons’ tranquil Seated Ballerina statue with an oceanic horizon as the backdrop. Or pedaling a stationary bicycle to your heart’s content in the middle of Hell’s Kitchen — the satisfaction of fatigue in the city that never sleeps.

Some luxury developments are finding the value in fitness centers with a view, and the residents do, too.

Sun fills the fitness center at Fifty Third & Eighth

Sun fills the fitness center at Fifty Third & Eighth

Take Fifty Third & Eighth, for example — a newly renovated doorman rental building at 301 W. 53rd St. that decided the fitness center should truly be an amenity.

“Especially in the city, we’ve come across so many places where the fitness room is shoved in the basement,” said Jordan Feldman, associate in acquisitions at HFZ Capital Group, the company that recently took over the building. “It’s marketed as an amenity, but when you get there it’s a depressing place to work out.”

When the group took over the building, the fitness center was already located on the second floor adjacent to an outdoor area. HFZ enlisted Terrain NYC landscape architects to create an atmosphere unlike the hustle of New York streets.

“We are using native grasses, tons of different evergreen-type trees to keep it green year-round, and then we have an entire row of amenities on the second floor that face out onto the second deck,” Feldman said. The steam and sauna rooms receive natural light, as well, but tempered glass prevents outsiders from looking in.

Fifty Third & Eighth has approximately 251 units (combined units may provide a different total) and is currently 50 percent sold. Feldman said the opportunity cost for the space and fitness center consideration — what could have potentially been used for four or five more units — adds value to the other units.

Like a dangling carrot, Jeff Koons' sculpture awaits.

Like a dangling carrot, Jeff Koons’ sculpture awaits in Bal Harbour.

Oceana Bal Harbour in Bal Harbour, Florida takes the next step and adds fine art to the view from its fitness room. Through floor-to-ceiling windows, residents of the dual-pillared Bal Harbour property can rest their gaze on Seated Ballerina, a Jeff Koons original sculpture.

“We definitely debated, originally, over how we could put cabanas and sell them for $500,000 each, but you take away from the lifestyle,” said Ernesto Cohan, sales director at Oceana Bal Harbour.

Seated Ballerina isn’t the only Koons piece, as there is also his Pluto and Proserpina, the artist’s take on the abduction of Proserpina to the underworld. For obvious reasons, the tranquil ballerina sits in view of the fitness center.

For both buildings and others like them, the opportunity cost was outweighed by the lifestyle expected for their target demographic by foregoing the idea that the fitness area should be shuttered away in a windowless corner, basement, or for that matter, residents.

Email Britt Chester

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