Chances to become Julius Caesar is rare, but at least one has a satisfying bath
Somewhere in the outskirts of Williamsburg stands a brick-red revelation, decked with archaic—perhaps even rusty—balconies and unruly wires creeping through its exterior. Beauty lies skin deep. The door to the Bathhouse opens into a relaxing spa and a restaurant, glimmering with visuals none could imagine if it was to be judged by the facade. This New York essential is designed co-founders Travis Talmadge and Jason Goodman in collaboration with Jennifer Carpenter of Verona Carpenter Architects.
The reception, a quaintly tiled block of wonder standing with a minimalist aesthetic, greets with a cheerful vibrancy, thanks to the cluster of vines that seem to crawl out of nowhere. Surely, one would take the place for its name, a hidden joint for luxurious dips in the water when one’s very own tub could not satisfy. But it is much more than a good soak.
Ways to bathe beautifully
There are no aqueducts to stream freshwater from likes to the city capital; that is old-fashioned. Instead, Bathhouse carves in well-lit pools in various temperatures, then fashioned one of their walls with a Roman fresco, because bathing needs a good old inspiration. Further down its vaults are dry and tropical saunas, a perfect way to let off steam—no pun intended—and a starlit steam room that lets one enjoy astronomical wonders that move around the walls without baring themselves naked into the open sky.
A few more steps reveals two grandiose marble hammams, and when there are joints to be healed, its secret rooms lead to a mystical treatment corner, completely embellished with towels and the brand’s swanky treatments, scrubs, and body massages. If one needs to take their healing hydrotherapy better, there’s a custom, state of the art float tank made by Float Lab, that blocks out all the senses and perhaps cleanses one from all the unwanted physical and emotional stress.
Water is healing—the Romans must have known this secret and has insisted on keeping refreshed. But other than its effects on hygiene, bathhouses are also a way of socializing. This one in New York is no exception. The site opens the door to the bath-loving crowd—athletes, yoga gurus, influencers, or just simply enthusiasts of the indulgent lifestyle.
When the dips are done, the bar welcomes with shelf fully stocked with bottles of wine for the drinking, paired with plates of Northern and Eastern European meals. Both regions can be alluded to as the inspiration for the crisp sophistication of the place; plants abound, stools aplenty, and lounges nothing less than cosy, with the kitchen serving brunch, lunch, and dinner for its audience. www.abathhouse.com ◼
© This article was first published online in Jan 2020 – World Travel Magazine.