More than a year after New York City closed several homosexual bathhouses because of ''unsafe'' sexual practices that it said occurred in them, four others remain open, and health officials say they have found no violations to warrant their closing. At the same time, however, the officials acknowledge that despite regular inspections, they do not know whether men are practicing safe sex in the privacy of the small rooms of the bathhouses. In late , health officials said they feared that the baths might increase the spread of AIDS because unsafe sex occurred in them. In December , after provisions were added to the Health Code that defined anal or oral sex as ''high risk'' sexual activities, health officials closed the New St.
9 New York Bathhouses to Soak the Cold Right Out of You
Russian Baths | United States | Russian and Turkish Baths
By Doug Hubley — Published on March 16, But not all government takings are followed by recompense, nor are they even acknowledged as a taking. They argued that the bathhouses were hot spots for transmission of the disease. Whether or not the closures were defensible from a public health standpoint, fair compensation never entered the equation. Instead, the closures not only deprived bathhouse owners of their business income, but also deprived clients of a sociocultural milieu that was important and irreplaceable. Engel and Lyle presented their recent research as part of an interpretive series accompanying the college production of Angels in America: Millennium Approaches.
BATHHOUSES REFLECT AIDS CONCERNS
For a New Age atmosphere — with an Amit Greenberg mural and a flotation tank — go to Bathhouse in Williamsburg, which opened in November. Bathers on Boris weeks use a paper punch card; those who go on David weeks use a digitized swipe pass and can often find a Groupon deal. Regulars say the rooms are significantly hotter on Boris weeks. Brooklyn Banya and the Mermaid Spa , located in Kensington and Sea Gate, respectively, are filled with locals looking to get warm and catch up with friends — not so much for a lush afternoon at the spa. The oak leaves contain a natural astringent said to remove toxins from the skin; the thwacking boosts circulation.
New York was once littered with public bathhouses. The last of them closed in the s. But one can still find many of the buildings they used to occupy in plain sight. The old bathhouse on E.