Looking for an escape at busy O’Hare — try yoga
BY TINA SFONDELES Staff Reporter December 10, 2013 4:38PM
Yoga instructor Becki Richards of TriBalance in Schaumburg practices a stance in the new yoga and meditation room in O'hare Airport Terminal 3. | Tina Sfondeles/Sun-Times
Updated: January 12, 2014 6:31AM
Travelers hoping to find inner peace — an escape from the constant motion at O’Hare Airport — can downward dog their way into some restfulness in a brand new yoga and meditation room in the airport’s Terminal 3.
The tiny mirrored studio — open 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily — is tucked away in a mezzanine corner room outside the airport’s lush indoor urban gardens.
At a media preview Tuesday, five local yoga teachers showed off their best moves.
Free yoga mats are provided, and those wanting to stretch or meditate in the room are blocked from public view by a frosted window. There are no showers, but travelers can change into workout clothes in several bathrooms nearby. And a small area inside the yoga room is meant to place luggage and personal belongings.
San Francisco International Airport was the first airport to debut a yoga-meditation room, but other airports have followed suit, including Dallas-Fort Worth and Burlington International Airport in Vermont.
“We’re always looking for opportunities throughout the airport to again create little respites like this where people can come and find a sense of peace and balance during their hectic, or what could be a hectic journey,” Chicago Dept. of Aviation Commissioner Rosemarie Andolino said at O’Hare Tuesday.
Andolino said there are plans to create a yoga room at Midway, as well. And new spas are soon coming into O’Hare’s Terminal 1 and 3.
O’Hare has already seen some major changes this year, including the redevelopment of the international terminal, which now features 15 dining and retail shops and 25 restaurants. The City Council in 2011 approved a 25-year, $26.2 million contract with Westfield Concession Management to run concessions at the terminal. The deal guarantees a minimum of $7.8 million annually in rent.