Inside David Barton's Raucous, Stefon-Ready Gym for Club Kids
David Barton opened a new gym Tuesday night. No, it's not 1992 and the gym is not in Chelsea. It's called TMPL (pronounced: Temple) and it's in the heart of Hell's Kitchen, the new, new Chelsea. All the Barton staples were there: loud decor, lighting meant for clubs, a raucous party thrown by his wife, the Swiss '90s nightlife queen Susanne Bartsch, whose usual cult of costumed club kids showed up to test the treadmills in sky-high heels. The 40,000-square-foot "vortex of fitness," as he called it, is a place where everyone knows your name, especially if you're a regular at Bartsch's parties — yes, they do still happen. There's a saltwater pool and a juice bar and a spinning studio, though Barton's take is a touch different: Riders face a giant screen, onto which "immersive" animations are projected that make you feel like you're in a club version of Tron. Let's call it Circuit Cycle. In other words, Stefon from Saturday Night Live would feel at home here. Bartsch, by the way, is mad for the spot, even if, as she claimed, she only works out when she "feels like it," and doesn't like to SoulCycle because she's "too skinny already."