Following much anticipation about what would replace children’s clothing store Lester’s – which closed its location on 80th and Second Avenue in December – it’s been revealed by the New York Post that the space will soon be home to Goldfish Swim School, with renovations expected to begin in January.
Goldfish Swim School is a franchise with nearly 140 schools across the United States and Canada. The upcoming Upper East Side location will be the first in Manhattan. There are also three locations under construction in Queens (Astoria, Flushing, and Glen Oaks). The school offers lessons for children 4 months to 12 years using a holistic philosophy called “The Science of SwimPlay”; “our swimming lessons for kids are based on the philosophy that children learn through play.”
Manhattan’s Goldfish Swim School will be 70 by 22 feet and will be visible from the street. The water will be heated to 90 degrees and the air to 92 degrees, creating a “shiver-free” environment. With a depth of 4 ½ feet, the pool is designed specifically for teaching, not for laps or diving.
It’s expected to open at some point next year. Parents will be able to watch their little guppies learn to swim from behind a glass wall, known as the “dry side.” The school will also have showers and a private changing area.
According to the swim school’s website, the maximum student-teacher ratio is 4:1, and flexible class times and free makeup lessons are offered.