Imagine walking through New York City feeling the weight of the world on your chest, your shoulders, your head. In a city that thrives on high energy and “the grind,” losing your way and your sense of self is as easy as getting lost in the city’s grid.
When Rodrigo Niño was diagnosed with stage-3 Metastatic Melanoma at 41, he felt that weight more than anyone on the planet. The Columbian-born real-estate developer and economist had to reevaluate.
Death has a way of speeding up a reassessment of what is truly important, and, to Niño that was helping others in an unexpected way. Out of a frightening, personal experience was born the idea for The Assemblage, a co-working space complete with daily wellness programming, Ayurvedic and plant-based meals from onsite restaurants and cafes, an elixir bar to address your woes, meeting and meditation rooms, and so much more.
Sure, there are plenty of workspaces throughout the city, but what makes The Assemblage so special is its focus on intention. You’ll hear it and feel if from the second you enter until the time you leave.
It’s woven throughout every inch of the three locations: the flagship in NoMad, the John Street building that also features hotel rooms and extended-stay apartment suites, and the Park Avenue spot, which is still in progress.
Depending on your needs, The Assemblage has options for everyone — from those who like a bit of company, to teams who want a private oasis to work together in harmony. Each building has a different layout, but the idea is the same when it comes to narrowing down what your ideal setting and intention entails. Packages come in different shapes and sizes, but all give access to desks — some in open spaces amongst your fellow wellness seekers and some that are yours to decorate as you please, resident offices are available for you and your team, and there are even options for those traveling through who want a sanctuary while away. Throw in free printing, a projection room, flat screens for video conferencing and you have just about every element pertaining to your success at hand. Members can even take a call or soak in some rays on the rooftop!
Community programming —
Having somewhere other than your sofa or your corner desk at home to slam out projects or tackle side hustles helps to broaden your vision and provides room to breathe and think clearly. But The Assemblage takes things about a million steps further. Sure, the meeting rooms are epic. (In fact, one of the stunning wooden conference tables was one of Niño’s own pieces from his home.) But what really sets them apart from the rest are their daily programming and meditation and wellness-focused rooms. You can pop in if you need 10 minutes to quietly recharge, or you can join others for guided meditation (in some cases involving the use of sound through gongs and other soothing techniques). Their cacao and tea ceremonies are a favorite amongst members who want to feed off good vibes and sip on specially selected teas to bring intention back into focus. Daily yoga and tai chi classes are also on deck.
A mocha-choco-frappa-whatever can only do so much to keep you going, and a sugar-loaded muffin or carb-heavy sandwich is going to be great for about 10 minutes before you start to crash. Communal breakfast and lunches are available, with an Ayurvedic menu that adheres to the belief that food is medicine. This extends to the Elixir Bar, which serves non-alcoholic tonics such as the “Release” made from rhodiola, skullcap, St. John’s herb, kave, jasmine, passionflower, and passionfruit. Depending on what your intention may be, there’s an elixir to serve it.
In the details —
From the petrified mushrooms that look as though they are actually growing from the columns to the endless incorporation of live greenery and plants, every inch of The Assemblage speaks to Niño’s intention of creating a dedicated center for wellness and community in New York City. The tapestries are handmade from Peru. The color scheme is soft, yet energizing. Feng shui experts have crafted a setup that optimizes flow. Even the rooms, suites, and extended stay apartments at the John Street location carry the same meaningful mindset so you can have a more permanent feeling of retreat. Candles are lit after sunset. The stairwell dons multiple one-of-a-kind murals. The list of details aiding towards The Assemblage’s mission never ends… nor do you want it to.
I’ve said the word “intention” more times writing this than what I am usually comfortable with — but it’s on purpose. It’s in the fabric of each building and is the soul of its creation and foundation. As you exit The Assemblage, you have the option of continuing to carry that intention with you out into the world by pressing a button that triggers an attached golden gong, sending vibrations through your body and spirit, readying you for reality.
Whether or not you install one in your apartment is another thing.
Charlotte Farrell is a freelance writer and editor who loves nothing more than a piping hot matcha latte — with almond milk, of course — and subjects like wellness, fashion, self-care, food, climate change, feminism, beauty, fitness, and travel. She graduated with honors in Communications and English Literature from the University of California, San Diego, and is now based in NYC where she enjoys reading, writing, exploring, and dreaming about gluten-free croissants.