Open Squash, an NYC Nonprofit, Wants To Make the High-End Sport Accessible

Squash is typically reserved for country clubs and luxury gyms. Open Squash is looking to change that, opening a 21,000-square-foot facility in New York’s Financial District

It’s Open Squash’s mission to bring the sport of squash to the masses – regardless of color, sex, race and even income. The brand is doing so in a big way in a commercial high-rise in the heart of New York City.

Soaring 14 stories above the Financial District sits a new 21,000-square-foot state-of-the-art facility that offers an inclusive environment for amateur and veteran squash enthusiasts while serving as a vibrant and provoking way to reimagine commercial office space toward a new kind of community.

What truly sets Open Squash apart from other squash facilities in New York and elsewhere is the “open” aspect.

“Squash has often been a more niche, higher-end sport that is often included in country clubs and other exclusive gyms such as Equinox,” Ona Prokes, Director of Operations for Open Squash, tells Athletech News. “As a 501(c)(3), it’s in our nonprofit mission to make the game of squash more accessible, which is why we are proud to be a community center where we welcome everyone regardless of background.”

With memberships beginning at $149/month, the organization proudly offers sliding scale discounts based on income so that everyone has an equal opportunity to play the game.

credit: Open Squash

Open Squash launched its first facility in Bryant Park in 2020 and gained a foothold immediately with a varied audience.

One of the many beauties of Open Squash is that our members come from many different communities,” Prokes explains. “We have Juniors as young as 5 years old who are just learning to play and 85-year-olds who have retired and are looking to stay healthy and fit. We have members who have come from around the globe and members who have come from around the corner.”

With pickleball outpacing any other sport in terms of growth, it begs the question, will racket sports like squash experience a similar surge?

“Squash is surging in popularity, albeit in a different manner,” says Prokes. ”Squash has officially been named an Olympic sport and will be showcased during the LA 2028 Olympics for the first time. Also, students are now obtaining scholarships and are being recruited to Ivy League schools such as Harvard, Yale, Princeton, Columbia and more.”

The new facility located at 100 Pearl Street boasts modern amenities and a robust offering, including:

Eight top-tier courts imported from Germany with spectator areas

A glass show court equipped with advanced audio-visual technology for interactive training programs, coaching sessions and tournaments

A conditioning area with free weights and more

Locker rooms

A café that doubles as an additional amenity space

Lessons, clinics and rec camps.

Designed by Bricault Design in collaboration with TPG Architecture, the team worked closely with engineers and project partners to strategically conceal mechanical equipment and address acoustical challenges, ensuring that Open Squash will make for a respectful neighbor to the other businesses in the commercial building.

What does the future look like for Open Squash? Prokes says potentially more growth.

“We are open to expansion and finding unique spaces like unused office space where we can build beautiful courts and grow the community,” she said.

The post Open Squash, an NYC Nonprofit, Wants To Make the High-End Sport Accessible appeared first on Athletech News.


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