Cliffs climbing gym opens huge venue in New York

At 42,000 square feet with over 100 climbing routes through walls reaching up to 45 feet, Gowanus Cliffs has the tallest walls and largest climbing space in New York – and it’s opening this weekend!

Located at 242 Butler Street, the gym kicks off its grand opening on Saturday, May 14 with free rock climbing, all-day introductory classes, competitions, local food trucks, live rooftop music, and even shows. circus performers at an after-party with free beer.

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Photography: Joshua Pestka

Gowanus Cliffs
Photography: Joshua Pestka

Gowanus Cliffs has three rock climbing floors, a full fitness center, a sunny yoga studio, saunas, and even a large rooftop with views of downtown Manhattan and Brooklyn. It also has a wide range of training equipment, including an entire room dedicated to training and even 10-meter double speed walls, like those featured at the Olympics. On top of that there is a climbing gear store in case you need to upgrade your kit.

It’s also inclusive, with climbing routes from beginner to advanced as good as bilingual education, courses for adaptive climbers and guided outdoor instruction. Of course, time slots will be available for group events, birthdays and corporate team building, competitive and recreational youth programs, and programs providing access to underserved youth.

“There’s a version of rock climbing for everyone. Our job is to help you understand what it can be for you,” said Harrison Rhodes, Managing Director of The Cliffs at Gowanus. “My goal is to share this space with the community and create a welcoming environment for all.”

A restaurant is also on the way.

Gowanus Cliffs
Photography: Courtesy of Joshua Pestka

Gowanus Cliffs
Photography: Joshua Pestka

This is the sixth location for The Cliffs Climbing + Fitness following The Cliffs at LIC, The Cliffs at Harlem, The Cliffs at DUMBO (an outdoor bouldering facility under the Manhattan Bridge), The Cliffs at Valhalla in Westchester, NY , and The Cliffs at Callowhill in Philadelphia.

“I have never seen anything like what we built here,” said Mike Wolfert, CEO and Founder of The Cliffs. “We hope this global facility will inspire new climbers and welcome existing ones to join a diverse, inclusive and passionate community. Let’s have fun together!”

A discounted “Learn to Climb” package is available for newcomers to the sport, and an all-access subscription is available for $125/month. The previously mentioned locations are included in the membership. Right now, there is a limited time waived initiation fee where you can save $99 if you sign up to become a member.

For more information on the opening night, visit

Virginia F. Goins