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“Really, really relaxing after exploring NYC!” 4 of 5 stars
Review of New York Spa Castle

New York Spa Castle
131-10 11th Ave CollegePoint, New York City, NY
718 939 6300
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Boston, Massachusetts
Senior Contributor
22 reviews 22 reviews
9 attraction reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
25 helpful votes 25 helpful votes
“Really, really relaxing after exploring NYC!”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 4, 2012

I went here for the first time on Jan. 2, 2012 after a total of 8 hours of standing for the New Year Ball Drop at Time Square. The saunas almost immediately relieved my aches! And just to let you know, I'm in my 20's. I paid $45 for general admission, which is pretty cheap for all the things you get to do there. But it gets pricey once you decide to drink or eat anything. The big towels are also for rent, so it helps to save if you bring your own. The little towels are free and you can get as many as you like. At the front desk in the locker room area, you can purchase face masks, sandals, head wear etc.
The spa comes with a lot of rules. No wearing any footwear (except the ones you buy from them). No outside food or drink (this is NOT strict at all, I brought my own water and no one even cared and don't be afraid of the threatening "We will check your bags if necessary" sign at the lobby. They don't do anything). Must wear uniform provided to you throughout the place (except nude only areas). Must be naked in nude only areas. It was totally awkward at first, but then you realize no one even cares to scan over your naked body so might as well join them.
I took the shuttle there on 39th Union St. Be warn, the shuttle apparently has various pick up/drop off locations depending on the driver. I went to 3 different locations (provided by 3 different poorly informed spa employees over the phone) before the I managed to catch a shuttle. It drives you to the entrance of the spa. Overall, it took me about 2 or more hours to get here from Manhattan, which is insane!!! It wouldn't take this long if you actual know where the shuttle is. It also took forever for any worker to pick up the phone, very bad customer service (which is why I minus a star)!!!!!!

HERE'S A TIP FOR YOU:
The watch they give you is for opening lockers and paying for any services within the facility so you wouldn't have to carry a wallet around. I knew it right away cause I'm a genius, but some people did have a hard time figuring out what it was for. To open the lockers, hold the watch over the scanner on the locker and wave it around a couple of times until it works. It is also water proof and heat proof (tested it myself).

Visited January 2012
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English first
Astoria, New York
Senior Contributor
30 reviews 30 reviews
9 attraction reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
19 helpful votes 19 helpful votes
“A genuine and unique New York experience!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 26, 2011

I heard about this place from a friend of mine a couple of years ago and was determined to go. I've visited on about 4 occasions now, and have been pleased every time. We just love it.

First off, you can spend a full day at the place for $35 on weekdays/$45 on weekends. If you have the flexibility, opt for a non-holiday weekday, when the crowds will be much smaller. If you choose to add services you can, but it is not necessary. I will say we opted for a 60 minute couples' massage in a private room and it was one of the best I have ever had had. The therapist was extremely strong and used amazing pressure to stretch out my muscles and joints. I've gotten many massages before, and had no idea what I had been missing!

When you arrive (either by free shuttle from Flushing, or by your own car), you walk into a main entryway where you are handed a plastic watch that acts as a key for lockers and a tracker of expenses. Your party is separated by sex, with small children (under 3 feet) going with whichever adults they wish. First stop is a large, immaculate locker room and nap area. You are handed a towel, toothbrush, pair of shorts and t-shirt. Ladies get pink and orange, fellas get blue and white, and kids are in yellow. Not sure how things are handled for folks who are not committed to either gender, as that has not been an issue in my party.

Once you have been separated by sex, you have access to a series of cleansing areas that are nude. There are saunas and steam rooms, as well as pools with jet streams from 50 degrees up to about 100 degrees. There are many open shower areas, as well as shampoo, conditioner and body wash. Behind screens, staff provide body scrubs to clients. There are also areas to the side with buckets and handheld showers where people largely scrub down their own skin and pumice their feet.

The 2nd floor is co-ed, and requires clothing. There are a series of saunas, napping areas, massage chairs (additional fee), glass enclosed and private massage rooms (additional fee), and a salon (additional fee). There is also a small coffee bar, and yogurt bar, and a low-key walk-up restaurant window with items like fruit, a pay-per-pound salad bar, burgers, pizza and sushi. We have always enjoyed the food, which is admittedly expensive. The saunas are varied, and go from extremely cold (my personal fave!) to 200 degrees. There are explanations available regarding the benefits of each one. Some hardcore folks will stay in for an hour at a time, but I learned my lesson early on and found a 20 minute total works best for me when it comes to the heat.

Up a half-level is an open air nap room with large reclining chairs outfitted with small personal televisions. The foot reflexology and hand massage services also have an enclosed area on this "almost" floor.

Next up, floor 3 has outdoor swim areas (the bade pools), whirlpools, and a swim up bar. There is a small food stall with asian dumplings, ice cream, corn, and some other nibbles. This floor requires a swimsuit, and is loads of fun for kids and adults. Even in cold weather, it is a pleasure! There is also a V.I.P spa for private treatments. I've never been, but it looks lovely.

Finally, the top floor has a gym area (additional fee) and a full-service Korean restaurant. I've never taken advantage of either of these, but I've looked around and they seem lovely.

In terms of the experience, it is very personal. The crowd is family friendly. When I've gone, I've seen every age group from babies to senior citizens. There were folks of every size, color and creed. For me, this makes an experience enjoyable. My Sweetie and I love people in general, and our "romantic time" is not necessarily diminished by the presence of little ones splashing the the pool beside us. That being said, I realize there are those who really seek an "adults only" type experience. As for the nudity, I was quite shy at first, but found the environment is very relaxing. In time, I realized I was the one bringing the anxiety--not the people at the spa! Now, the first floor is my favorite! I could almost spend the entire time there! Again, this is a very personal thing. But I will say this is NOT one of those places where you have to be a stick thin supermodel to feel at ease in your birthday suit--the variety is lovely and quite refreshing!

Overall, I give it a big thumbs up. If you want a SUPER unusual New York experience, go off the beaten path and have a relaxing adventure at Spa Castle!!

Visited July 2011
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NY
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
3 attraction reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
“Different and great all-day experience”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 23, 2011

Ok, let me say: If you are not familiar with the Korean style of bath spa, Spa Castle is going to be one of the more crazybananas things you'll ever encounter. Its not a zen place, nor is it some skeevy bathhouse. It's a totally wholesome, totally huge, water + heat extravaganza.

The facility consists of 4 floors.
On the first floor entrance you'll check in, they give you a watch-looking thing. Put it on. The watchy thing opens the lockers with the matching number and you can charge any purchases on it as well. Then, male & female will each go their separate ways to the locker rooms.

On entering the locker room, put your shoes in a little locker and the rest of your stuff in a big locker (tidy!) Pick up a uniform from the desk and book a salt scrub at the same desk if you want one (more on that later). Hey - did you notice that everyone's walking around buckass naked? I bet by now you did. That's because the single-sex hot tub room is adjacent to the locker room, and nakedness is not allowed - it's required. In the Naked Room you'll find standard showers as well as korean-style sit-down shower stations. All fairly open to the main room. Shampoo, conditioner, toothbrushes, toothpaste, body wash and moisturizer all provided, but the towels they give you are tiny - so bring your own. There are a number of hot tubs in different temps, a cold plunge pool and a separate hot tub with different jets you trigger with your watchy . All this time you are buckass naked in a room filled with people of all ages (babies to grandmas) and shapes and colors and states of pubic grooming, all them also buckass naked. Don;t be shy, just roll with it. It's a little freaky, but cool . once you get used to it. There's also a steam room.

Ok. Done with naked? Put on your bathing suit (that you brought) under your uniform and grab your nice big towel (that you brought) and your water bottle (that you brought) and head to the (coed) 3rd floor.

On the third floor is a much smaller and more private shower room you can use if the Naked Room Showers freaked you out too much. There are indoor jetted tubs and a swim-up bar (expensive). Outside there are two hot pools with different jets everywhere, a Japanese style wooden hot tub, and a sauna. All jets are triggered by your endlessly useful watchy thing. When you're done with the hot tubs, change back into your uniform. Whenever you're not naked or wearing a swimsuit, you must wear the uniform.

For lunch you can hit the salad/fruit bar on the second floor, or head up the the more inexpensive Korean food spot on the 4th floor. You pay with the watchy thing. I've also brought my lunch and no one cared. On the second floor is a water cooler where you can top up your water bottle (stay hydrated!)

Also on the 2nd floor are the different saunas. I like the Salt sauna and the Loess sauna.They're all set at different temps, displayed outside the door. There's an "Ice sauna" (a really cold room) you can stop in between sauna sessions for refreshment! Also on the 2nd floor you find food stands, loungers, a heated floor for napping on, and an artificial stream.providing atmosphere.

If you booked a salt scrub its down in the naked room. The tables are right in the shower room, pretty much. Just close your eyes and forget about it. A asian lady in weird black underwear will scrub you within an inch of your life, and just when you think you can't take it anymore, will throw a bucket of warm water over you which is AWESOME. They finish up by washing your hair. No need to tip.

By now you should be feeling pretty chill and have sampled all of Spa Castle's crazybananas wares. Hang out as long as you like! The entry fee is good for all the hours Spa Castle is open. I suggest at least 4-6 hours!

Spa Castle can be very busy on weekends with lots of families & small kids so, if at all possible you should go on a weekday, and get there before noon.

Visited February 2011
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Staten Island, New York
Top Contributor
103 reviews 103 reviews
34 attraction reviews
Reviews in 26 cities Reviews in 26 cities
22 helpful votes 22 helpful votes
“All-inclusive for a cheap price!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 23, 2011

It felt like that I was in a place where I could do whatever I wanted to do: sauna, take a dip into the pool, or to swim. There is extra fee for a massage, drinks, or nail-polishing. The experience was excellent and the staff kept it very clean for everyone. I never felt any dirtier and the stresses were gone when I left the building. It is highly recommend that you attend with a friend or a spouse.

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US
Senior Contributor
34 reviews 34 reviews
15 attraction reviews
Reviews in 24 cities Reviews in 24 cities
60 helpful votes 60 helpful votes
“disaster”
1 of 5 stars Reviewed December 4, 2011

Extremely poor service, unhelpful employees, dishonest people. Huge place, where you left to roam while being yelled at by personnel likely recruited from prison guards. Not a spa experience by any stretch.

Visited November 2011
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