Get Fired and Go to Spa Castle for Lunch

June 21, 2012 10:20 PM EDT | By Anthony Smith
Spa
A little bit of Ancient Rome in New York City. (Photo: Wikimedia Commons)

There are so many reasons to lose your job these days: you get to spend more time with your loved ones, who have been shedding cat hair and mewing for ice cubes in their water all day today; you finally have the time to get started on your memoir, which you think will sell because there's a market for your incisive voice; most importantly, it means you get to go to all those places that are packed with noisy children and too many adults on the weekend. In New York City, you have two choices: whatever beach targets your demographic and Spa Castle.

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What is Spa Castle? Its website describes it as "100,000 square feet of luxurious serenity." Most New Yorkers I know say they've never heard of it, or that they've always been meaning to go but it's just too far away. They're pretty much right. Located in College Point, Queens-- a free, first-come-first-serve shuttle bus ride away from the last stop on 7-Train (please, don't stop reading!), Spa Castle's five floors of mineral salt saunas, swimming pools, and truly spectacular jacuzzi pools are the perfect place for a day trip.

Unfortunately, the only time most people have for a day trip is the weekend or their day off, when Spa Castle notoriously sucks because of its overcrowding. That's why we're giving you two good reasons to be as incompetent at work as you possibly can, get fired, and find a day out of your schedule to really relax.

1. It's cheaper on the weekdays.

Like the New Jersey Transit and the Metro North, Spa Castle charges a full ten-dollars less for people to attend on off-peak hours. For a measly $35, you get to spend the entire day, morning-to-night, on the premises. And with five places to nap in peace and quiet, you can wake up after a wonderful dream and do it all over again.

2. The food and drink.

There's plenty of stuff to eat and plenty of stuff to drink but you shouldn't eat and drink all of it. Sure, you may be distracted by the second and third floor's offerings, which have all the American favorites like hot dogs and buffalo chicken for about as much as you'd pay for them at a baseball game (read: overpriced), but a trip to the very top floor uncovers a shocking culinary secret: there's a Korean restaurant.

And not just any Korean restaurant, a good one, perhaps even a great one. The food isn't overpriced, like the ones on the floor below, and your money goes a long way. My friend ordered the bulgogi ($15) which came perfectly seasoned in a quick barbecue of sweet soy sauce and onions. It was served with a seaweed soup and plenty of little plates of Korean appetizers-- an accompaniment I took for granted, considering how so many Korean restaurants I've been to lately no longer offer it for free.

While his bulgogi was quite good, I have to give so much credit to my sizzling plate of spicy tofu stew with seafood, or sundubu jigae. It came to my table fresh from the oven and was loaded with chunks of fresh shrimp and squid, delectable pieces of silken tofu, and a spicy broth that was flavored to sheer perfection.

The drinks, while overpriced considering the quality of the booze in them, were boozy and tasty. A reasonably big pina colada, though refreshing in every way it needed to be, set us back fourteen dollars. The more interesting drink there was one I had never heard of before: a pistachio colada. Get it. It's green and good and you'll want to look for it everywhere else.

To make a long story short, I expected to write an article about saving money here by focusing on the relaxation and avoiding the food. Now, I implore you to spend the day relaxing here just so you can find a seat at their table. Go forth and conquer!



 

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