Recently Opened Bay Area Gym Focuses on “Quality over Quantity”

Benchmark climbing gym in San Francisco Bay Area
Benchmark Climbing gym in San Francisco was designed with “quality over quantity” in mind and brings a new boutique-style bouldering experience to the Bay Area. (All images courtesy of Benchmark Climbing)

Benchmark Climbing
San Francisco, California

Specs: 10,000-square-foot bouldering-focused facility features a large downstairs climbing area (with a 2,2661-square-foot footprint) and a smaller upstairs climbing-training area. Amenities include a campus board, a hangboard setup and a MoonBoard, as well as weights, general fitness equipment and coworking spaces. A pro shop is planned for the future.

Trango Holds Pardners


The San Francisco location is considered the flagship Benchmark location, as a Berkeley location is currently in the developmental stages as well. Other properties in the area are being evaluated by the owners too, according to a press release.

Benchmark lobby
“We don’t want the gym to be a “get in and get out” sort of experience; so we designed thoughtful spaces for you to relax, work and socialize,” reads Benchmark’s Instagram.

“Benchmark is by climbers for climbers,” the press release added. “Our executive team has decades of combined climbing experience and has an intimate understanding of how gyms should look and feel. Whether you’re a beginner or seasoned veteran, Benchmark is here to provide you with the best walls, the best setting and the best tools to help you progress to the next level.”

Walls: Vertical Solutions
Flooring: Flashed
CRM Software: RhinoFit
Design: Stromberg Architecture for the layout, SOBU Oakland for the furniture and coworking spaces, and One Hat One Hand for some custom furniture pieces
Instagram: @benchmarkclimbing

Bay Area Outdoor Women event at Benchmark gym
Climbers at a Bay Area Outdoor Women event held at the new Benchmark gym. Other Bay Area partners of the gym include Crush Crew and Queer Crush.

In Their Words: “As a company, Benchmark Climbing is focused on quality over quantity. We aren’t interested in opening ‘mega gyms,’ but rather thoughtfully curated spaces that encourage community, personal growth, relaxation and fun. These spaces are for everybody to enjoy. We understand that many folks—particularly BIPOC, the LGBTQIA+ community, and people with disabilities—continue to face barriers to outdoor access, are underrepresented in the climbing community, and don’t always feel welcome in climbing gyms. Combating these issues is central to who we are, and we’ve already forged relationships with numerous local organizations (Lady Crush Crew, Queer Crush, Bay Area Outdoor Women) and amplified the voices of community leaders. We also offer discounted memberships for individuals experiencing economic hardship, and will continue to break down barriers to entry for the folks who need it the most.”
Max Krimmer, General Manager