Sprawling Italian spa opens in former New York army barracks

New York’s newest day spa is now open to the public on Governors Island – with a level of decadence its former residents could only dre...


New York’s newest day spa is now open to the public on Governors Island – with a level of decadence its former residents could only dream of.

The island’s abandoned military barracks have been transformed into a new spa, dubbed QC NY, by CEO Andrea Quadrio Curzio. His 74,000 square foot wellness palace cost $50 million to build.

“The goal is to make people feel pampered,” the dapper Italian native told the Post, pointing to a rotunda-shaped sauna constructed of wood sourced from the Alps and handcrafted by Italian artisans. “You should feel like a dream – you can get lost here.”

The expansive space features four floors of luxurious amenities ranging from infrared beds to various “relaxation rooms,” saunas galore, steam baths, Vichy showers, heated walkways and robe racks, a “facial gym” mirrored, a traditional Turkish bath, a “complete hydromassage”. district,” a bistro, full bar, outdoor pools with built-in lounge chairs, and stunning views of Brooklyn, Manhattan, and New Jersey.

governors island qc ny
An aerial view of the first phase of the building.
Courtesy QC NY
governors island qc ny
Sun loungers have been built in some of the outdoor pools.
Brian Dalthorp
governors island qc ny
Chairs in the outdoor part of the spa.
Brian Dalthorp
governors island qc ny
The establishment is open all year round.
Brian Dalthorp
governors island qc ny
The horizon, seen from an outdoor swimming pool.
Courtesy QC NY
governors island qc ny
The exterior of the former army barracks has been fully maintained.
Courtesy QC NY

Beneath the building is an exorbitantly expensive filtration system that Curzio proudly showcased in phone light during a recent tour. “We’re obsessed with filtration,” he said.

Most rooms have plenty of natural light and feature custom scents and music. The space elements were almost entirely designed and shipped from Italy.

Not only is Curzio committed to the craftsmanship of his native nation, but QC NY is replete with references to his personal family, depicted on the locker room walls. The men’s locker room is painted the same color as Curzio’s childhood bedroom at Lake Como. The sauna paradise So Close Yet So Far is dedicated to Curzio’s late sister. The eight massage rooms are all named after Italian operas, songs which Curzio is known by his staff to introduce accordingly as he passes by.

“The environment should remind of an Italian house,” he explained.

governors island qc ny
A hanging chair relaxation area.
Courtesy QC NY
governors island qc ny
Inside an installation on the “wet floor”.
Courtesy QC NY
governors island qc ny
The craftsmanship is almost entirely Italian.
Courtesy QC NY
governors island qc ny
An upside-down themed relaxation room.
Courtesy QC NY
governors island qc ny
A second phase will include even more massage cabins.
Courtesy QC NY
governors island qc ny
Personalized perfumes issued by the QC brand.
Courtesy QC NY
governors island qc ny
One of the many relaxation rooms.
Courtesy QC NY
governors island qc ny
The spa lobby.
Courtesy QC NY

Although built with Italian workmanship and sensibilities, QC NY also prioritizes the building’s history. Although the exterior of the ex-soldiers’ apartments is iconic, Curzio and his team decided to retain the original flooring, windows, layout and much of the original millwork. They received a tax break for the ordeal, which increased the restoration period to seven years.

Before moving into the barracks, Curzio and his brother, Saverio Quadrio Curzio – with whom he co-founded their now 11-location spa brand in 1982 – considered converting a Brooklyn church, a Red Hook warehouse and a factory upstate. The brothers enjoyed the story behind the location of Governors Island.

His team has now started work on the second phase of QC NY in an adjacent building. It will include additional massage cabins and more food and drink offerings.

governors island qc ny
The barracks under construction.
Courtesy QC NY
governors island qc ny
The building is a remnant of Governors Island’s military past.
Courtesy QC NY
governors island qc ny
The project took seven years to open to the public.
Courtesy QC NY
governors island qc ny
The original windows and much of the layout of the floors and joinery have been retained.
Courtesy QC NY

The spa, accessible by ferry, is open to the public. The only hard part left is convincing New Yorkers to take care of themselves. City dwellers “are slaves to stimulus” and far more resistant to leisure than its European customers, Curzio said. Still, he hopes many will choose to step away from the city mania, if only for a while, and lose themselves in his new castle of respite.

Half-day passes to QC NY on Governors Island are $88, $100 on weekends. Full-day passes are $110, $128 on weekends. All passes include a round-trip ferry ticket. Massages range from $100 to $250. It is open from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. every day and until 11 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays.

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Newsrust - US Top News: Sprawling Italian spa opens in former New York army barracks
Sprawling Italian spa opens in former New York army barracks
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