September 23, 2019

Are you on the waiting list yet? This week sees the long-anticipated opening of The Well, a first-of-its-kind members-only wellness destination in Manhattan’s Flatiron District. The brainchild of Rebecca Parekh, former COO for Deepak Chopra, Kane Sarhan, former Head of Brand for Starwood Capital Group and 1 Hotels, and Sarrah Hallock, a former executive at VitaminWater, the club brings together Western medicine with Eastern healing in an 18,000-square foot space meticulously designed by Rose Ink Workshop’s Liubasha Rose to offer a calming respite from the rigors of city life.

Stepping in from the street, visitors are greeted by a curated wellness boutique stocking clean beauty brands and accessories such as jade rollers and singing bowls; just beyond, the open-to-all The Well Kitchen & Table restaurant, from the team behind Cafe Clover and Clover Grocery, will serve organic food and wine beginning in October. From here, members can pass into the inner sanctum, at the heart of which is an actual well—a symbolic nod to the notion of going deeper into oneself, and also the guiding principle behind Rose’s design concept. “The idea of a literal well was really interesting,” she says. “It’s the absolute source of human survival and civilization; it’s also cylindrical and deep, and has curves and rounded shapes and long perspectives. Our starting point was to translate that into the architecture.”

The serene splendor of the lower level attests to the power of this inspiration. Walls are white and curved, lined with parcels of lavender and studded with glittering pyrite stones; in the relaxation room, drawn from the idea of Superman’s crystal cave, light glows ethereally from selenite sconces custom-made by Stone & Rose, a collaboration between Liubasha and jewelry designer Joanne Stone. “The upstairs space is very open and social, but as you go downstairs it’s mostly areas where you want to be inward-looking and private,” Rose says. “The space kind of meanders—we wanted it to feel like a journey where you make discoveries along the way.”

Certainly the most astounding discovery—beyond the 10-room spa (each equipped with an infrared-emitting bed), fitness studios, steam and sauna facilities, and wellness consultation areas—is the dome-shaped Meditation Room. Inspired by a James Turrell light installation as well as by Mexican temazcal huts, the room is like a cocoon, plushly carpeted and lined with low cushions. Beneath the flooring, a bedrock of crystals and stones ensures energetic equilibrium. “The intent was for this to be like an oasis of calm,” says Rose. “The city is so vibrant and loud and hard and chaotic–we wanted to make a place where the minute you walk through the door all of that melts away.” Twenty-minute guided meditation classes will be offered throughout the day, making it easy to pop in for a bit of “ohhhmmm” on the go.

What else do you get for your $375/month membership fee beyond good vibes and beautiful design? Monthly one-on-one sessions with a dedicated health coach, including access to an elite team of practitioners in integrative medicine, sports medicine, and Ayurveda, led by Chief Medical Officer Frank Lipman, M.D., Head of Sports Medicine Keith Pyne, D.C., and Head of Traditional Chinese Medicine Aimee Raupp, M.S., L.Ac. You’ll also enjoy unlimited yoga, meditation and Mindful Movement classes, as well as access to the private training gym and all other facilities, including a beauty and grooming bar in the locker rooms featuring products by Caudalie, Purequosa, Caldera + Lab, LXMI and Snowfox. Although membership will be capped at less than 2,000 members, there’s good news for those who fail to nab a coveted spot: Interest has been so keen that plans for a second location in New York and a Well L.A. are already in the works.