This is not me.

I had a weird experience last week. If it weren’t for positive word-of-mouth from a trusted friend, I never would have received this particular service. But M was effusive enough about it that I decided to give it a try.

The lead-up to the event was as intriguing as the adventure itself.

I’d heard about sensory deprivation experiences and wanted to try it out for myself. I’d floated with friends and family members at AIRE baths in TriBeCa (awesome), but never had a full-on one hour suspension in water completely alone. At this new facility I’d be trying, you basically lie in a special tub for one hour in a completely dark tank, no sound, no light, no cool air chilling exposed body parts. You are weightless and can hear the sound of your heart beating. For moments, it was pure heaven.

Why all the mystery? Because, basically, I took a bath in a strange man’s apartment!! That’ll give you a taste of what comes next.

What was so odd for me, as a business owner, was how hard it was to find this facility. There is a website (which I’ll give on request, but don’t want to make link-able), but no way on it to find out availability or to make a reservation. You have to email and call the proprietor (who accepts only cash or checks) to make your appointment.

He gave me a thorough description of how to find the location and what the process would be like. No awnings or lettered windows with the business name. You can imagine how quickly he has to establish trust to further the prospect’s interest. That’s because his location is not in a business district but in his apartment.

As my friend described, the proprietor is kind of an oldish hippie who has this cool area in his 4th floor home that he charges money for so others can have the experience. As you’re seated in his living room, he explains the process to you for about 15 minutes before he escorts you to the bathroom where you’ll strip down and shower. He places a wooden tri-fold screen between the living area and the bathing area so the guest can proceed from the bathroom to the tank area wrapped only in a towel.

Having been instructed on how to enter the chamber, you’re all set for the hour of floating. Parts of it were divine – totally weightless, unaware of anything else going on in the world. Pure peace and quiet. Happy to go deeper with anyone interested.

I left feeling relaxed, at peace and more curious than ever about this man’s business model. Another reason for me to love NYC as much as I do. Anything goes!

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