Like the guys say, it's a franchise, so there can be a wide variation, but in general, I've been in 20-30 different Gold's all over the world, and they were all uniformly well managed and equipped.
One easy call tho is to compare the "average" Gold's franchise versus the "average" 24 Fitness. It's no contest. Gold's trumps 24 hour almost every time. I started my "working-out life" about 11 years ago at 24 hour because I mistakenly assumed they actually stayed open 24 hours -- NOT.
About 3 years later I switched to Gold's and it was like getting into heaven. I actually made immediate gains, I was so happy to be in a nice gym. And no more mildewy smelling pink/turquoise/gray carpet anymore either. Sadly, that original San Jose Gold's was bulldozed during the dot-com boom to be converted into a new office park, which finished just in time for the dot-com crash. Any other fellow SJ Gold's-On-Meridian-Ave mourners out there?
I actually know some of the executive management of 24 Fitness, and let's just say I'm not surprised at the level of slimyness in the management of that chain. Company culture flows down from the top. * shudder *