New Business: Planet Fitness to open ‘stress-free’ gym in Dover; LongHorn Steakhouse on its way


Planet Fitness is set to open at 1005 N. State St. in Dover.  (Delaware State News photo)

DOVER — Planet Fitness prides itself on offering a different kind of workout experience.

Officials within the company are most proud of what they call their Judgment Free Zone – a belief that anyone of any fitness level should feel accepted and respected when they walk into a gym.

Residents of Dover will get the opportunity to try out the signature purple- and yellow-colored gym when it opens its doors in three weeks at 1005 N. State St., the former site of Big Lots.

“If you are not familiar with Planet Fitness, we cater to first-time and casual gym goers who may have never belonged to a gym before,” said Becky Zirlen, public relations manager for Planet Fitness. “We always strive for a non-intimidating, judgment-free atmosphere where our members can feel comfortable working out at their own pace.

LongHorn Steakhouse is being built at Capital Commons in Dover. (Delaware State News photo)

“Our non-intimidating, welcoming environment fosters a sense of community among all members and encourages them to work toward their health and fitness goals — no matter how big or how small.”

Planet Fitness currently has 1,432 locations and more than 10 million members throughout 49 states, as well as Washington, Puerto Rico, the Dominican Republic and Canada.

The new gym in Dover will feature Planet Fitness staples such as Pizza Night on the first Monday of every month. On average, a club serves more than 5,500 slices of pizza per year, which is more than six million slices served at Planet Fitness a year.

Bagels are served on the second Tuesday of every month. Each club serves more than 2,600 bagels per year, which is more than three million bagels served at Planet Fitness a year

Another big selling point is that memberships are available for only $10 per month and include unlimited fitness instruction in small groups through the pe@pf program.

Upgraded PF Black Card memberships cost $21.99 a month and include the ability to bring a guest every day at no additional charge, access to all Planet Fitness locations and additional amenities such as massage beds and chairs.

The majority of clubs are open and staffed 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

“The 20,000-square-foot club will offer state-of-the art cardio and strength equipment, free fitness training and a Black Card Spa which will include HydroMassage beds, massage chairs and tanning beds/booths for PF Black Card members,” said Ms. Zirlen.

“We expect the Dover location to open in the next three weeks. We are looking forward to bringing the Judgment Free Zone to Dover, and yes, the very first Planet Fitness opened in Dover, New Hampshire in 1992.”

Now the ever-growing company will add another Dover location to its portfolio – this time in Delaware – with its 1,433rd gym.

A new steakhouse on its way to Dover

It won’t be long now until Dover unveils another new dining opportunity.

While no exact opening date has been released yet by company officials, the roof was being raised last week on the LongHorn Steakhouse.

The restaurant will be located on the south end of the old Kmart property that has been reinvented into the Capital Commons, which stores such as Burlington and Big Lots as well as a Panera Bread restaurant.

Headquartered in Orlando, Florida, LongHorn has more than 480 restaurants across 40 states and is a division of Darden Restaurants Inc., which owns and operates more than 1,500 restaurants that generate over $6.3 billion in annual sales.

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