Women get a room of their own at female-focused, no-boys-allowed co-working spaces

Industry niche serves members who want to avoid fratty culture

Audrey Gelman and inside of a Wing co-working space (credit: The Wing)
Audrey Gelman and inside of a Wing co-working space (credit: The Wing)

Co-working spaces geared specifically toward women are on the rise, in part as a backlash to the frat house-like companies that boast kegs and ping pong.

She Works Collective at Union Square and new Women Space in Williamsburg a part of a niche industry that serve as modern-day women’s clubs that, 100 years ago, were places for self-improvement and social reform, according to Bloomberg.

Last year there were 180 co-working locations in the city totaling 6 million square feet, with another 400,000 square feet in the pipeline, The Real Deal reported in September.

At the Wing in the Flatiron District, co-founded by the 29-year-old publicist Audrey Gelman, members can take advantage of on-demand blowouts, lactation rooms and vanities kept full of chic beauty products from the likes of Glossier, Diptyque and Ouai Haircare.

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Membership costs $1,950 a year, or $185 a month, with a one-time registration fee of $100. The hair and makeup services are not included in the membership price.

“Women are craving community, connection, and confidence, and that’s what we’re going to give them,” said Stacy Taubman, 38, who founded Rise Collaborative, which is scheduled to open in St. Louis this month.

Original members of the Wing – as in, a separate wing of a house – include J.Crew president Jenna Lyons, rapper Remy Ma and Leandre Medine, who founded the fashion website Man Repeller.

The Wing is less expensive than the industry standard-bearer WeWork, where memberships start at $220 a month.

Gelman said she wants to make it more accessible. When asked if she would be offering scholarships, she replied, “I don’t think the CEO of WeWork is being asked if he’s giving out scholarships.” [Bloomberg]Rich Bockmann