I look for 2-3 benches, 2 squat machines, 2 FULL sets of free weights, at least 3-4 rows of 10 machines of cardio. 2-3 Row of Nautilus machines in case I am just in the mood. I also look for equipment that isn't rusty, the leather isn't worn out and most of all, NOTHING SMELLS. There is nothing that makes me want to puke more than the smell of funk by the free weights coming from compounding sweat from men using the machine and not wiping down.
I am spoiled though, I have two gyms on campus and one back in Cleveland that are all state-of-the-art. LUCKY
Plus the one in Cleveland is an Urban Active Fitness (used to be Gold's I guess before bought out), that one is nice especially since my father always pays since we go together as bonding time. The geezer goes for like 2-3 hrs. He is retired and has 0 hobbies aside from reading the newspaper and drinking Whole Foods coffee.
But I have put my time in with terrible gyms both in America and Europe. My I paid 800 € in France for a gym that had 5 cardio machines (2 treads, 2 bikes, 1 erg) like 5 or 6 nautilus machines of which 1-2 were always broken. It had a second floor with weights: one bench, one smith machine, one seated military press bench and a yoga mat....but it was something to do although I had to chase off all the racaille he would come and harass.
I am going to Belgium in January and got a membership at 1 of the 2 gyms they pretty much have there. Ugh, 50€ for the week and this place isn't bigger than maybe 800 sq feet, maybe 1000.
TLDR crowd: clean equipment, good hours, and lots of it.