The bustle of urban life can get pretty overwhelming, to say the least. Manhattanites who need a respite can turn their attention inward to Inscape, a studio that creates “immersive experiences for guided meditation and relaxation” in New York City’s Flatiron District. Patrick Sisson of Curbed, who paid the 5,000-square-foot luxury space a visit, describes Inscape as a “mental fitness studio [of] sorts.” Inscape founder Khajak Keledjian, who sold his Intermix fashion empire to Gap in 2013, characterizes its atmosphere as “somewhere between 4th century monasteries, the mood in the temple at Burning Man, and the feeling you get when you look at the infinite horizon line.”
Curbed toured the space, which was constructed in partnership with Winka Dubbeldam, founder of architectural practice Archi-Tectonics and a meditation aficionado herself:
The studio’s space, which opened in November, is subdivided into a pair of noise-resistant, surround-sound rooms, as well as quiet spaces, community areas and a retail section. Shades of white and subtle curves dominate. Keledjian wanted the space to reflect sensory touch points and and accessibility, making it simple and unobtrusive to navigate, and more importantly, approachable to those unfamiliar with the practice.
There are natural linen seats, natural bamboo shelves, floating ceiling lights, piped-in aromatherapy, and the “subtle sound of soft gongs throughout,” Sisson adds. All the better to get your om on.
The room is as enveloping as you’d want a soundproof space near the clamorous Manhattan streets to be, with a signature scent wafting throughout the room, colored light shining through the sail cloth ceiling, dimming down as the session progresses, and the steady, soothing (recorded) voice of a meditation guide wafting through the speaker system.
Sure, it sounds a bit whoo-whoo, but we live in a surreal, destabilizing time; whoo-whoo just might offer us a way to transcend it.