How Much Does the Detroit Athletic Club Membership Cost?

Written by: Staff

The Detroit Athletic Club (DAC), designed by Albert Kahn, is known to be one of America’s most expensive gyms.  However, it is not the same type of “gym” or “athletic club” that you normally envision.

The club is located in the heart of Detroit’s sports and entertainment district, across from the historic Music Hall.

Detroit Athletic Club, Detroit, Michigan by Ken Lund, on Flickr
Detroit Athletic Club, Detroit, Michigan” (CC BY-SA 2.0) by  Ken Lund

How much does a Detroit athletic club membership cost?

On average, the initial entrance fee for the Detroit Athletic Club is around $2,500, down from $5,000 before the economic downturn.  Aside from the entrance fee, Detroit Athletic Club members will have to pay up t0 $150 to $400 per month, depending on the type of membership you apply for.

In order to get into the club, however, a member will have to be recommended.  Once recommended, a member will need at least three recommendation letters from other members of the club.  If all goes well, an interview will follow to see if he would be a good fit.  If the board decides that the potential member is a good fit, they will allow the potential member to pay their dues and become active in the club. claims that this club is one of the most expensive gyms in America, costing upwards of $400 per month.  The same monthly membership was confirmed by

A member on this Reddit Detroit thread claimed the signup fee was $1,500 and the monthly dues were about $150.  As mentioned, you would need at least three letters of recommendations in order to be considered.

In this 2014 Detroit News article, it had mentioned the prices were increasing to $337 a month with a $3,500 entrance fee.

Detroit athletic club membership overview

The club offers state-of-the-art fitness equipment, classes, golf leagues, a professional sized swimming pool, basketball court, running track, weight room, gymnasium, squash/handball/racquetball courts and eight-lane bowling alley.

Aside from the traditional gym amenities, the club also offers a tranquility spa, on-site tailoring, shoe shining services, business center, a library, dining options, overnight hotel rooms, and personal training options.

What are the extra costs?

As with any gyms, taking advantage of a personal trainer and/or nutritional program can be an additional fee.

Leagues and tournament fees are often not included in the estimates provided above.

Some events, offered by the DAC, can charge additional fees to members and their guests.

Tips to know:

If you do not know anyone who attends the club, consider attending local events in the city where you know members may be attending.  At these events, talk with some members to see if they would be able to help you with a recommendation.  Members online have stated that it is actually fairly easy to get into the club.

To date, the club has more than 4,000 members.

The Detroit Athletic Club enforces a strict dress code.  No denim clothing or any color or flip-flops are allowed on the club’s property, for example.  Refer to the official dress code page for more details.

How can I save money?

Aside from the gym lowering their prices, they often do not offer special promotions or sales.  Their rates are generally set and will not change.

On occasion, they may have sponsorship opportunities that you can take advantage of.  If you donate to a particular charity, for example, they can cut the rates on your membership or entrance fee.

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