WEAKENED FINANCES

Fitness chain permanently closes 12 Houston gyms due to COVID-19

24 Hour Fitness says its in bad shape due to the novel coronavirus. 24 Hour Fitness/Facebook

This article originally appeared on CultureMap.

Still reeling from the COVID-19 pandemic, the 24 Hour Fitness chain filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection June 15 and has permanently closed more than 130 locations in the U.S., including 12 in the Houston area.

The 12 Houston-area gyms that have shut down permanently are:

  • 25632 U.S. Hwy. 290, Cypress
  • 130 W. Parkwood Ave., Friendswood
  • 4425 FM 1960 West, Houston
  • 12708 Northwest Frwy., Houston
  • 19734 Saums Rd. Houston
  • 21614 Tomball Pkwy., Houston
  • 5721 Westheimer Rd., Houston
  • 7068 FM 1960 East, Humble
  • 1550 S. Mason Rd., Katy
  • 2765 Gulf Frwy. South, League City
  • 5946 Fairmont Pkwy., Pasadena
  • 10860 Kuykendahl Rd., The Woodlands

Twenty-two 24 Hour Fitness gyms in the Houston area have reopened or are in the process of reopening.

"If it were not for COVID-19 and its devastating effects, we would not be filing for Chapter 11. With that said, we intend to use the process to strengthen the future of 24 Hour Fitness for our team and club members, as well as our stakeholders," Tony Ueber, CEO of San Ramon, California-based 24 Hour Fitness, says in a release.

Continue on CultureMap to learn about 24 Hour Fitness' letter to customers.

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This is a tasty burger. Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images

If a person isn't a real Houstonian until they have favorite places for staple foods like burgers and Tex-Mex, then Astros pitcher Justin Verlander has officially embraced his new home.

In an interview that occurred during the Thursday, August 11 broadcast of the Astros game against the Texas Rangers, YouTube announcer Scott Braun asked Verlander if he found any food in Houston that he couldn't get in Detroit.

"I like Nancy's Hustle's burger," the pitching ace replied.

Indeed, what's not to like? The Nancy's burger — a double patty cheeseburger with chopped onions, pickles, and aioli on a housemade brioche English muffin — has been a staple since the restaurant opened in late 2017. Here it is, as captured by Houston food influencer Abbas Dhanani.

Beyond its deliciousness, Verlander's affection for the burger makes a certain amount of logistical sense. The EaDo restaurant is only about a mile from Minute Maid Park, and it stays open until 11 pm, making it a perfect post-game treat.

Nancy's co-owner Sean Jensen tells CultureMap that he and chef-owner Jason Vaughan consider Verlander and his wife, supermodel Kate Upton, to be regulars. "They have always been supporters and super nice when they visit," he writes in an email.

Continue on CultureMap to learn more.

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