Gym focuses on getting back to basics
By Carolyn Steber
Owners Joseph Pasquale and Peter Mercatanti have brought to their business an old school mentality with low pricing and hands-on managing styles.
The business partners became friends at the gym and spoke of opening one of their own. Mercatanti already owned the building that now houses Retro Fitness, so the decision was an easy one to make.
“I said I’d be into it,” Pasquale said. “We had the building, we had the property. Most are tucked away in strip malls, but this one is one of the only free standing Retro Fitness gyms.”
In December 2010, Retro Fitness opened up on U.S. 206 in Bordentown. The co-owners furnished the gym from the ground up, complete with classic black and white tiles and red leather stools at the smoothie bar.
At $19.99 a month, Retro Fitness is one of the most affordable gyms in the area. Pasquale is onsite every day to answer members’ questions and tend to problems. If a machine breaks, he’s the first to know about it and works to get it fixed quickly.
The gym features more than 200 pieces of machinery for its 3,900 members, including cardio equpiment, circuit training and free weights.
“We have everything that every other gym offers,” Pasquale said.
The gym also features small group training and personal training with in-house trainers. Pasquale oversees all of the trainers, unlike other gyms who hire people from outside sources, he said.
“People like them. They’re all certified,” Pasquale said. “We try to keep that top notch.”
Small group classes are available on Saturdays for $10. A punchcard gets members six classes for $50. Classes include body sculpture, aerobic kickboxing and TRX suspension training, a workout system that leverages gravity and an individual’s bodyweight to perform different exercises.
The gym has another stand-out feature: its movie theater cardio room. The lights are on low in the specialized room that features a big screen. A new movie is played every day. The room has rows of ellipiticals, treadmills and bikes to choose from.
“The idea there is you get into the movie and you don’t even realize you are on the treadmill,” Pasquale said. “You could be on there for an hour but you get into the movie. If you don’t have your mind occupied, you’re ready to jump off in 10, 15 minutes.”
Most members of Retro Fitness are from the surrounding areas including Chesterfield, Bordentown, Hamilton, Roebling and New Egypt.
“I think a lot of people work at the state offices, so it’s convenient for them, too,” Pasquale said.
Retro Fitness is open to members of all ages and fitness abilities.
The gym is located on 860 U.S. 206, Bordentown Township. Phone: (609) 372-4020.