High-End ‘Hardcore’ Gym, Iron Culture, Opens in Cedar Knolls, NJ

NY Waterway Exec Arthur Imperatore Jr. launches latest venture, N.J.’s foremost high-end ‘hardcore’ gym


A prominent New Jersey businessman and mental health advocate, Arthur Imperatore Jr., is opening the state’s first and only high-end “hardcore” gym, Iron Culture, a 7,500-square-foot facility with top-of-the-line equipment. Since its soft opening this spring, Iron Culture has attracted visits from the fitness community across the tri-state area, including 2018 Mr. Olympia Shaun Rhoden and other top bodybuilders like Guy Cisternino, Steve Laureus and Shaun Clarida.

Imperatore, vice chairman of NY Waterway and president of Romulus Development Corp., and a bodybuilder himself, is the visionary behind Iron Culture, along with partners Sergio Granados and Charles Addessi. Imperatore and his team pumped $250,000 into the facility’s “makeover,” while an additional $250,000 went into leading equipment from brands like Arsenal Strength, Life Fitness, Matrix and Rogue.

Photo courtesy of Iron Culture
Arthur Imperatore (center) is the visionary behind Iron Culture, along with partners Sergio Granados (left) and Charles Addessi (right). (Photo courtesy of Iron Culture.)

“Here at Iron Culture, we’re striving to recruit and build an entire community of like-minded fitness enthusiasts, and our exquisite facility reflects our commitment to grow in New Jersey,” said Imperatore. “Our equipment is state-of-the-art and largely unseen in New Jersey. While some gyms have limited Arsenal Strength pieces, a majority of the Iron Culture facility has been outfitted with it.”

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The gym’s founders went as far as to visit the Arsenal Strength headquarters in Tennessee to test out and hand-pick every piece of equipment.

Photo courtesy of Iron Culture.
Top equipment brands are on display at the new Iron Culture Gym in Cedar Knolls, N.J. (Photo courtesy of Iron Culture.)

Since its soft opening earlier this spring, the gym has attracted over 300 members and over 6,700 Instagram followers, where staffers frequently post images of its results-oriented members and first-class equipment and setup.

“Our members and guests are coming from across the tri-state area – from as far away as Philadelphia, the Jersey Shore, Rockland County, NY and beyond – to get the essential Iron Culture ‘experience,’” said Charles Addessi, one of three partners at the gym. “With unrivaled bodybuilding programming and competitions, customized workout and nutrition plans and other draws, Iron Culture will continue to make waves in the fitness community.”

Photo courtesy of Iron Culture.
Iron Culture is creating a “new fitness community” in northern New Jersey. (Photo courtesy of Iron Culture.)

From concept to renovation and a spring 2019 launch, the project took less than one year to complete. Iron Culture was born out of Imperatore’s personal mission to foster hope and healing through fitness.

After tragically losing his son Justin, a former college lacrosse goalie, in the fall of 2018, Imperatore grew motivated to create a new fitness community that emphasizes personal transformation through weight training and strength conditioning. Iron Culture is the realization of that goal.

Photo courtesy of Iron Culture.
The Iron Culture leadership team, from left: Sergio Granados, Arthur Imperatore and Charles Addessi, shown in early 2019. (Photo courtesy of Iron Culture.)

Imperatore now aims to assist those who struggle with addiction and mental illness by creating a total wellness community that emphasizes strength and weight training.

Imperatore will be dedicating a plaque to his late son at the gym during the public grand opening event on Thursday, June 6, 2019.

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Dan has a knack for in-depth news coverage and storytelling and comes from a journalistic and creative background. He is a former staff writer and critic for the New York Daily News, where he covered entertainment, politics, lifestyle and hard news. He is also the former editor of the Cyber Security Hub, a B2B media site covering the enterprise security vertical. Dan holds an MFA in Creative Writing from Fairfield University, where he focused in historical fiction. He also holds a BA in Communication (Journalism/Public Relations) and a Minor in History from Monmouth University. He has also worked as a municipal reporter and freelance writer/critic for numerous outlets, including NorthJersey.com, The Cheat Sheet, Critical Movie Critics and more.