New gym B U Fitness on FM 365 offers private, 24-hour access

Published 12:36 am Thursday, September 22, 2022

Through her work as an occupational therapist, Valorie Hare has a unique perspective when it comes to weight lifting.

“I have a general interest in fitness — I guess more from the rehab aspect, making the body move how it is supposed to,” she said. “Aesthetics is a plus, but a lot of it is making sure nothing hurts when you move around.”

As a longtime athlete and now a competitive body builder, Dwayne Carlile understands weight lifting from a different side.

Subscribe to our free email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox

But with their individual knowledge, the two have come together to create a new gym in the area that focuses on physical fitness from all aspects.

Dwayne Curtis and Valorie Hare recently opened Port Arthur’s newest gym. (Courtesy photo)

Recently obtaining their Certificate of Occupancy, B U Fitness on FM 365 in Port Arthur is a closed-access gym.

“Once you become a member, you get a keyfob,” Hare said. “You can scan it and it unlocks the door for you. Other than that, the door remains locked all the time.”

This model works for the business owners and the members.

“It helps us as a small business because we don’t have to immediately worry about hiring an employee,” she said. “And for our members, it allows them to come and go as they please. They don’t have to worry about anybody. We have a very strong community that we’re growing, and we always preach it to our members — yes, this gym is ours but it’s there’s.”

The atmosphere is structured to be relaxed, with members having control of the Bluetooth music availability and a less conservative (but reasonable) dress code.

“We understand if you’re in here and you’re feeling yourself, you want to look good, feel good and enjoy that,” Hare said. “But please be respectful to the people that are around you.”

B U Fitness is located on FM 365 next to Tuscany Italian Restaurant. (Monique Batson/The News)

The gym, which offers unique equipment not found anywhere else in Port Arthur and beyond, offers one-on-one training, and help from a few additional experts.

Competitive body builders Joshua Cooper and Jeremy Brandon are often found in the gym to assist members when needed.

“They’re all so knowledgeable, and they’re so friendly,” Hare said. “They’re so welcoming. If someone doesn’t know, they’ll go over and ask, ‘hey, can I help you?’ And if someone says ‘no,’ that’s fine. But if you say, ‘sure,’ they’re willing to share all of the knowledge they have learned through their years.”

Still somewhat under construction, the facility will soon have a studio room to offer finesses classes.

Currently enrollment fees are being waived for the first 100 customers. And memberships are available for $30 per month with a one-year contract, or month-by-month at $35.

While the doors are locked, B U Fitness can be reached by calling 409-332-7465. If for some reason one of the owners is not in the building, Hare said one can be there within five minutes.