The next time you come to town, be sure to visit the Greenwich YMCA! Built in 1916 in a style described as a mix of Colonial Revival and Georgian Revival with flourishes reflecting Beaux Arts features, this beautiful and historic building is in a prominent location in downtown Greenwich on the corner of East Putnam Avenue and Mason Street. At minimum, a walk by the outside to check-out its facade is worth the trip.
What’s Inside the Greenwich YMCA
But the inside of the Greenwich YMCA is what makes this such a valuable thing to have in town. Even passersby notice the huge Olympic-sized pool that extends from the main building towards Whole Foods. However, there’s so much more here. There are several rooms of aerobic machines from stationary bikes to treadmills, weight-lifting equipment including free weights, and several rooms for the various classes planned each day. Classes regularly on offer include: yoga, pilates, cardio boxing, total body conditioning, spin classes, even zumba.
While being fit is an important part of the culture of the Greenwich YMCA, there is plenty more on offer here. Other services on offer here are massage therapy for either relaxation, sports injury, or recovery from a strenuous workout; personal training for weight-lifting, cardio, or a mix for a healthier you; and of course access to that very impressive pool. You can explore all there is to offer at the YMCA here.
The pool and recent renovation of this historic building was actually a point of contention for the town for a few years. Before the Greenwich YMCA even broke ground on the new pool, some members of the town fought against it vociferously, arguing the traffic problem downtown would grow even worse. The plans were steamrolled through, however, and the renovation process appeared to be proceeding according to plan–until the money ran out.
The Board of the Greenwich YMCA had not properly planned their finances for this very extensive and expensive expansion of their facilities. The problem became so severe at one point that our local YMCA almost threatened bankruptcy, which could have led to this very prime piece of real estate being sold, likely to a bank.
During the court proceedings for the bankruptcy filing, however, the descendents of the family which initially donated the land to the Greenwich YMCA, the Witherells, interceded and demonstrated the agreement first settled almost a century before–namely, that the land had to revert back to the family if it was no longer the site of a YMCA.
Today, while the Greenwich YMCA appears to still have monetary issues (everyone who knows anything about it blames the previous CEO who directed the entire expansion), it still remains open and welcoming to anyone looking to take advantage of their amazing facilities.
Interested in seeing what all the fuss is about? Fortunately, the Greenwich YMCA has reciprocity agreements with over 1,000 YMCAs across the country, but non-members can use it too. A guest pass for a non-member for a day will only set you back $15.
Best of all, the Greenwich YMCA is an easy walk from us at the Stanton House Inn. So whether you need to work up a sweat or not, it’s on the way to any other point downtown from our place. Be sure to keep an eye open for this gorgeous and important part of town life!