Power10 Fitness by Dubbeldam Architecture + Design

| |

Project Details:

Type: Educational & Sports

Architect: Dubbeldam Architecture + Design

Location: Canada

Address: Toronto

Program: Fitness Center

Year: 2021

Area: 4,210 sq. ft. / 391 sm

Photographer: Riley Snelling

For the first dedicated rowing studio in Toronto, Dubbeldam Architecture + Design was tasked to create an immersive interior that would motivate patrons to push themselves to their physical limits. The design brief called for a sleek, sexy, and raw interior bursting with the kind of intense energy associated with the rowing term “power 10” when a crew puts all its strength into 10 consecutive strokes that can make or break a win or a workout.

Power10 Fitness by Dubbeldam Architecture + Design
Located in the heart of Toronto’s busy Queen Street East retail area, Power10 Fitness’ storefront view offers passersby a glimpse into a rowing gym designed to accelerate adrenaline and enhance performance. | Photograph © Riley Snelling

To capture this kind of high-turbo energy, Dubbeldam Architecture + Design devised a fully immersive experiential interior to boost adrenalin and block out distractions that dilute performance. The focus of the raw, industrial-like interior is the rowing studio, fitted out with state-of-the-art Technogym rowing machines and dynamic colour-changing LED lighting on the charcoal-grey walls and ceilings. The large X-shaped programmable light fixtures pulsate in rhythm with the music, adding to the workout’s intensity. “The repeated X-shape not only serves as a graphic reminder for rowers to push toward that 10-stroke goal during workouts but is also a nod to the Roman numeral 10 and the iconic symbol of two crossed sculling oars,” says Principal Heather Dubbeldam.  

Power10 Fitness by Dubbeldam Architecture + Design
A shared branding scheme unifies various spaces throughout the fitness studio. Large diagonal lines used as accent graphics are a riff on the oars of a boat and suggest activation and forward movement | Photograph © Riley Snelling

The unvarnished aesthetic continues into a second workout area fully equipped with high-performance treadmills, free weights, kettlebells, and TRX training. The X-shaped lights are repeated here, suspended from the exposed ceiling and serving as a visual bridge to the rowing studio.  Connecting the two workout areas and the change rooms is a long corridor with a 3-foot high, three-dimensional POWER10 logo in a 25-foot-long opening in the wall that runs behind the reception area, providing a powerful visual connection between the spaces. Patrons catch glimpses of other gym-goers in adjacent areas through openings between each of the letters, creating visual intrigue. Throughout the studio spaces, areas of exposed concrete walls and mechanical systems lend to the raw industrial ethos. Strategically positioned angular-shaped acoustic panels on the walls and ceilings attenuate reverberation with an interplay of soft surfaces.  

Power10 Fitness by Dubbeldam Architecture + Design
Photograph © Riley Snelling

By contrast, the lounge area and change rooms are notably calmer, featuring natural wood finishes, terrazzo tiles, and colour-blocked walls in ‘power gold’. In the lounge, Normann Copenhagen bell pendants cast a warm light over custom-built white oak benches. The multipurpose reception desk in matching white oak features an integrated cooler with a display window to entice members to hydrate. Curated furniture pieces by Muuto provide a casual space for patrons to relax, refuel and recharge at the end of a challenging workout.

A strategic graphics scheme devised by Sali Tabacchi unifies the various spaces throughout the fitness studio and emphasizes the link to rowing. Inspired by the diagonal line through the number 10, large angled lines used as accent graphics are a riff on the oars of a boat and suggest activation and forward movement. Repeated in multiples on the Queen Street East storefront window, they create visual interest and offer passersby a glimpse into a rowing studio defined by a sophisticated interior, bold graphics, and top-of-the-line fitness equipment.

Project Credits:
Project Team: Heather Dubbeldam, Scott Sampson, Andrew Snow, Omkar Kulkarni, Jovana Randjelovic, Courtney Ho
Graphic Design: Sali Tabacchi

View the complete gallery


Union Wood Co, and designer Alyssa Lewis of Studio Block, create a new line of seating called the Slab Collection

Top Tips For Designing Your Own Off-Grid Cabin