Gyms in Melaka
Arriving in this historic world-heritage city was certainly a change from Kuala Lumpur. Cute and colourful buildings, UNESCO status and beautiful riverside walk make for a bustling city centre in this unique place. The gyms in Melaka are no exception – one of them was founded by a bodybuilder who achieved the titles of Mr Malaysia, Mr Asia and Mr Universe! Time to investigate my surroundings…
Due to a lack of transport, I’m sticking to central gyms here as I’m on foot. (Yes, Melaka does have Grab but it’s cars only and I’m gymming it alone and missing the budget-friendly Grab bikes of Vietnam!)
For full reviews of the gyms I used, please click on individual links here:
1. Boon Leong Gym – RM 5
Boon Leong Gym is a large well-equipped gym, however all the equipment is very old. It’s an honour to visit the place where such a significant figure in both bodybuilding and politics trained, and I almost see this place as a tribute to him, as much as it’s a gym. There’s no aircon here, but Boon Leong Gym fares well for weights, floor space and ageing cardio equipment. It lacks functional equipment.
Muscle House Fitness Centre is better ventilated with a good number of fans, which are fairly effective in cooling at least some parts of the gym (make sure you’re directly under one for cardio!). Equipment is overall a lot more modern and caters well for all types of workout, including functional training. You’ll find an area dedicated to this, as well as studio which offers a few Zumba classes.
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Gyms in Melaka – Which One?
Both of these gyms are a budget-friendly RM 5 and RM 7 respectively. They are also both large well-equipped gyms, although very different. Boon Leong Gym is quite an experience. The award winning bodybuilder Datuk Wira Dr. Gan Boon Leong started this gym and trained here back in the day. As I write this, he still lives close by to his gym, now in his 80s. Learning that he later became President of the Malaysian Bodybuilding Federation and a politician, it is said that he was key in Melaka achieving its world-heritage UNESCO status. Training in his gym was therefore something of an experience – well worth a visit for any weight trainer. Click on Boon Leong Gym above to learn more.
Muscle House Fitness Centre was in contrast a more “normal” modern gym in terms of its equipment. The facilities here are overall better in my opinion – more modern, operational fans and a good studio and functional training area. It doesn’t have the history, prestige or excitement of Boon Leong of course, but ultimately it has better cooling, which might be a factor.
Other Gyms in Melaka
Imperial Heritage Gym
Still in central Melaka, I stumbled across the Imperial Heritage Hotel when I searched for nearby gyms. This huge hotel certainly has one and it looked reasonably in the photos I found on its website. (Bear in mind, hotel gyms are often small with limited facilities.) However they informed me the gym is strictly only open to guests. Probably not an option to travellers on a budget then, but certainly very convenient if you’re staying here. Compare rates for Imperial Heritage Hotel here.
Fazil Group Fitness
Sadly I had no more success here than at the hotel. After failing to open the outside door twice and wondering what was wrong with me (it was a weekday lunchtime and I’d just seen someone exit!), someone came to put me out of my misery. Well, kind of. Staff opened the door and informed me that the gym here is only open to staff of Fazil group. Quite frustrating as the gym pics had looked quite nice online. Oh well, perhaps I’ll go for a run later.
Searched for Lean Fitness, found HerFitness!
I also attempted to find Lean Fitness, a gym that was marked on Google maps, a fair way west of town. Despite enjoying my walk out into rural Melaka, I couldn’t find any sign of Lean Fitness. However, when asking a local shop owner where the gym was, she directed me up a flight of stairs opposite where Lean Fitness was meant to be. Indeed I saw a big sign for a gym, but it wasn’t the one I’d set out to find! This one was called HerFitness, but sadly the club was closed (it was a Sunday). Another adventure in gym hunts! From the photos on its Facebook page, it appears to be a group fitness club for women.
From my online research it appears that there are plenty of other gyms further north of town. Ideally you’d have your own transport, or be more familiar with bus routes and times than I am. If you do venture to any, let me know how you get on! Happy training all….