Universe Gym Pattaya
Soi Welcome Town, Central Pattaya Road, Pattaya, 20150
Opening Hours: Mon – Fri: 8:00 – 22:00, Sat – Sun: 9:00 – 22:00
Cost: 140 baht per day, 1200 baht for 10 days, 1400 for a month
Note they also offer couples rates of 210 per day, 1800 for 10 days, 2100 for a month
So, here we are in Pattaya, just a couple of hours bus-ride away from Bangkok. It’s the Blackpool of Thailand(!) with just as many Brits in it, seemingly. Universe Gym is located 2km west of the beach, a little away from the main action here, which is not entirely a bad thing. It’s a straight walk up the main road, and you’ll find it at the end of a side street, unmissably obvious and correctly marked on Google maps. I arrived just as it opened at 9am on a Sunday morning, where a few keen exercisers were already eagerly awaiting its opening, which was on time.
The first thing that struck me was how big Universe Gym is! If you like space when you’re training, you’ve found your gym! Universe Gym Pattaya is divided into at least five main areas, two of which are on the ground floor and three are upstairs. The ground floor was well-airconditioned and it kicked in promptly after I arrived. The friendly staff informed me that upstairs is air-conditioned in the afternoons, but left open in the mornings. You’ll see lots of fans around and it was a comfortable workout temperature when I attended.
Downstairs hosts the most modern equipment, with resistance machines and cardio in the main room, and free weights / related equipment in the other. Head on upstairs where you’ll find further cardio equipment in the first room (and beyond), with floor space and functional equipment in the next room. Keep heading back and the last room contains a large rig for more functional work, along with miscellaneous equipment from other disciplines. All these rooms are pretty big and could comfortably accommodate a lot of people training – a good place to come in peak periods! They even have a small pool outside too.
Overall, gym equipment is of medium age, and decor varies. All in all, everything is in good condition and attractive. Of the three upstairs rooms, two are inside, whilst the third (back) room is open-air.
A gym towel is provided, but take your own water as I couldn’t see free refills, though you can certainly buy it. You’ll find key-operated lockers in the changing rooms and clean, modern showers and toilets.
You’ll find a huge number and variety of weight-training equipment here, both old and new. And it was certainly popular, even at 9:00 on a Sunday. It’s easy to see why too, with this generous range of equipment. I found dumbbell free weights up to 50kg – and a couple of even heavier ones. You’ll also find some duplicates to assist in busy times.
I discovered a set of wide cable crossovers with pull-up bars and multiple cable stations for pulldowns and rows. There are five here on the crossovers and 2 x 4 other cable sets to give you an idea of how much equipment Universe Gym Pattaya has.
If you’re into lifting heavy, you’ll be pleased to see some plate-loadable equipment here too. This includes a leg press, standing squat, shoulder press, inclined and declined bench press and several flat bench press racks.
You’ll also find a standard Smith machine, squat rack and further pull-up bars here.
If you’re after the standard pin-loaded resistance equipment, you’ll find a large number of upper and lower body machines, including an assisted pull-ups machine. A hip extension bench and several ab benches are also located here.
Note that although this area wasn’t airconditioned when I went, it was a comfortable temperature and staff informed me they switch the aircon on later here, when it heats up.
You’ll find a couple more racks of dumbbells upstairs, from 1 to 12.5kg and 25kg respectively.
I found several adjustable barbells including a landmine, as well as a squat rack, bench press racks and a few resistance machines, all in the back room (of three upstairs rooms). You’ll find a handful of resistance machines and a hanging leg raise here too. It’s pretty warm out here, as this part is open air, but I saw a few fans around.
If functional training is your thing, you’ve struck gold here in this super-spacious gym. Not one, but two significant areas are dedicated to functional training, including one astro-turfed area in the middle room upstairs. This room is almost entirely floor space and there’s plenty of it for both walking lunges, mat work or whatever takes your fancy. You’ll find hanging punchbags near one end, along with some battleropes.
The vast variety of gym toys includes Swiss balls, step boards, several lightweight kettlebells, hula hoops, press up bars and a big range of medicine balls. You’ll find a few mats here too, though if I’m being picky, I’d say I’ve seen thicker, better quality ones! However you will be using them on an astro-turfed floor in any case.
The majority of the cardio equipment at Universe Gym is located downstairs, which is where I’d recommend using it; certainly when I attended it was considerably cooler. Then again, if you use the upstairs machines, a lot of them look out into the gym where you can watch everyone else have a good sweat! I found 14 treadmills, five Spin bikes, three recumbents, two steppers, one ball bike, a stepper and one rower downstairs alone. The rower was the only notable old piece of equipment that didn’t quite flow as others do!
You’ll find most of these duplicated upstairs in different areas, except the rower and ball bike. There are also some upright bikes up here out the back. In case you’re wondering, here’s a ball bike – it was my first time.
Summary of Universe Gym Pattaya
Universe Gym is one of the largest gyms I’ve seen for a while! As it’s my first gym in Pattaya, I’m unsure of how it compares price-wise to other facilities here yet. But with my existing knowledge of gym pricing in Thailand, it seems a reasonable price given its size, especially considering Pattaya is a touristy area. The equipment here is of medium age, mostly in good condition and best of all, there’s plenty of it. The workout temperature was comfortable and aircon was very effective downstairs when I went. Additionally the club is clean with good changing facilities. All in all, well worth a visit.
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