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Boozy boxers muscling into Flatiron District bar scene

The gym will serve cocktails and offer inspiration workouts

By Sabina Mollot

Flatiron, which has become so well-known as a hub for hip gyms that the neighborhood BID organizes an annual “sweatfest” exercise event on the street, will be welcoming one more gym soon — and this one comes with a bar.

GRIT BXNG is a celebrity-backed boxing club backed by rapper Pitbull and Tony Robbins that will open at 9 East 16th Street on August 8.

Run by Bill Zanker, founder of the Learning Annex, and his adult children Ediva and Dylan Zanker, the 5,500 s/f ground floor club will include a bar with indoor and outdoor seating that will serve cocktails and mocktails such as cucumber kale juice with Pitbull’s Poli vodka.

The business has also partnered with Dr. Mushroom, a new “energy recovery” tea for late night workouts and there are plans to have champagne brunches on the weekends.

James Famularo, president of New York retail leasing with Meridian Capital, represented landlord AD Real Estate Investors in the transaction.

Famularo said he’s already booked for a class at GRIT. “I’m really excited,” he said. “They wanted their first place to be amazing.”

The Zankers have outfitted the space — formerly occupied by Mexican restaurant Campeon — with art by street muralist Kelsey Montague and a pair of Swarovski crystal-covered boxing gloves.

The owners insist the gym, which accepts payment in bitcoin, is more about working out than hanging out.

“The fitness industry is headed towards being a trillion-dollar industry,” said Dylan Zanker. “Millennials want to get fit and not have to sacrifice on fun. GRIT is giving people a space where they can have an intense full body workout and socialize afterwards with a drink.”

When announcing the plans for the gym this spring, the owners said they’d be doing a global search for training talent, and would be willing to pay “fitness superstars” $1,000 an hour with gym members also able to tip them via a BXNG app.

The owners also have two additional spaces in the pipeline.

Workouts, which will naturally be boxing-focused with punching bags as well as treadmills and benches, will feature “high intensity interval training” or HIIT.” Classes will also include motivational content from Robbins on giant screens as well as music playlists that have been curated by Pitbull.

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