New York is a place that breeds ambition, and its residents are no strangers to the concept of self-improvement—an essential component of which is wellness. Put these venues on your NYC hit list to bio-hack your way to greatness, or add a calming balance to overly manic life phases.
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If you know where to look, you’ll find a modern bathhouse in south Brooklyn. CityWell’s focus is on hydrotherapy—alternating between hot and cold, to boost blood circulation and endorphin levels. The spa boasts a steam room, dry sauna, soaking tub and rain showers situated in a leafy back yard. Access for two hours is just $40, and if you fancy a massage, you can enjoy one under the private pergola from $115.
When she co-founded Chillhouse with her husband, Cyndi Ramirez’s goal was to create what she calls a “three-part hybrid”—a female-friendly venue that combined Instagramable nail art, affordable massages ($45–$115) and a healthy hang-out space. Pull up a seat, order a matcha latte and a turmeric energy ball, and tackle that project you’ve been putting off. Then reward yourself with a treatment afterwards.
In NoMad, on the 9th floor of a tall building, you’ll find a luxury wellness oasis with a completely holistic service menu. Book sessions that span foundational health services (nutrition and physical therapy) as well as more esoteric treatments, such as crystal light beds and alt room therapy. Filled with bricks and granules of mineral-rich Himalayan pink salt—plus a halo generator, which blows tiny particulates of salt into the air—a 30 minute chill session is said to be great for the respiratory system.
Tucked away on a residential street in Greenpoint, north Brooklyn, Maha Rose is a like a home away from home for the wellness community. The space plays host to a rotation of workshops, from breathwork and sound baths to a curious thing called “fairy school”, as well as private sessions in therapies including energy healing and hypnosis. After your session, stock up on crystals and sage in the retail area to bring the good vibes home with you.
A facial with Britta Plug is a transformative experience for your self-esteem, not just your complexion. Her signature treatment, Facial Attunement, targets the anatomy of the face as well as the skin with a combination of natural beauty products (some of them pure enough to eat, should you feel so inclined) and facial massage techniques rooted in the ancient traditions of Chinese medicine and Ayurveda. You’ll leave feeling cared for and confident enough to forgo your usual armory of makeup.
HigherDOSE is an absolutely dreamy place to be during the frigid New York winter. Infrared light penetrates your cells and warms up the body directly, unlike traditional saunas which heat the air around your skin. HigherDOSE uses near, far, and mid rays for a wide spectrum of health benefits, including detoxification, increased circulation, and skin rejuvenation. The owners also claim it gives you a “passive cardiovascular workout”, aiding weight loss without so much as a single burpee.
In New York, manicures and expensively highlighted hair are ubiquitous, but only in-the-know beauty junkies have experienced a head spa. Expect a thorough massage for your shoulders, neck and head, cooling gels to soothe any irritation on your scalp, a lather-y shampoo and incredibly gentle blow dry to finish. This facial for your scalp hails from Japan, but you can try it at Tomoko Shima’s salons in the West Village and Upper West Side.