Models' lives aren't as glamourous as we all think they are -- there are blisters from walking in sky high heels, constant pressure to stay fit and beautiful, somehow attracting creepy people incessantly and the exhaustion from non-stop travel. But I've found one place that would make me think twice about becoming a model (if, of course, I was a foot taller and coordinated enough to stomp down the runway in those monster heels) -- Modellounge x Microsoft. This place is kind of like a "loungey" paradise, tucked away just above 14th Street in Manhattan. It offers models of the top ten modeling agencies access to wifi, Microsoft tablets, snacks and beverages, massages, bumpin music and those runway classes I would so desperately need if I was allowed to join the industry.
"Modellounge is its own little world. You kind of forget what's outside," said supermodel extraordinaire Joan Smalls. "It balances you out and gets you through the day." And just like us, she likes that she often runs into her friends there, though her friends happen to be Daria Strokous and Arizona Muse. "We're always traveling so much and tend to miss each other. This is the place we can meet and know that no one is going to interrupt our little reunion." She uses Modellounge as a place where she can chill between castings and shows, maybe grabbing lunch or checking her email before jetting off to the next task of her day.
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Mick Szal, a veteran model, says that she always tells new models to go to Modellounge when they're in New York because "it's the easiest way to get in contact with other models." She was getting down on the Xbox dance floor when I spotted her in the lounge. "I love the dancing game. I sort of dance like an epileptic marionette... so I'm hoping that if I play this enough I'll gain some moves for the real dance floor. Plus, it's a great alternative to going for a run in the freezing cold."
There aren't only veteran models there -- three newbies discussed why they like Modellounge, "I love that new girls like us can hang out with Joan Smalls -- she's right there!" says Zoe Colidas about herself and pals Kelsey and Baylee Soles, who enjoy the social aspect of the space as well as it's privacy.
Alright, so maybe I was a little overzealous about becoming a model because of this place, but Modellounge has definitely made me wish there was a lounge like this for us desk-dwellers to go relax and shut out the world for a while. And because we don't have one, I'm going to suggest we all take Joan Smalls' advice, "I use laughter as a way to de-stress. During New York Fashion Week, it's not about the stress. It's about the experience. Surround yourself with friends and familiar faces -- it makes you feel joyful."