When I think of a bathhouse opening in the former "skid row" area of any city, nothing positive comes to mind. But, times have changed and a developer in Illinois is hoping to do just that.

What is a Bathhouse?

According to the Oxford Language Dictionary, a bathhouse is "a building containing baths for communal use."

Historically they have been places where "visitors could sweat off a few pounds while maybe making business deals of various respectability." Some were known as "gay places for hookups," according to the Chicago Sun-Times.

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In the Sun-Times article, they describe today's bathhouse as "scrubbed and refined for the health-conscious, suitable for friends and family,"

40,000 Square Foot, 2 1/2 Story Bathhouse Coming to "Skid Row"

West Madison Street in Chicago was once home to a "12-block stretch of flophouses, gin joints, and battered dreams" that was called Skid Row, according to the Chicago Tribune.

In the early part of the 20th century "hobos, bums, and tramps were the names given to the homeless, the jobless and the hopeless" who lived on West Madison Street, which has now been transformed from "seedy old buildings" to "hipster hangouts," according to the Sun-Times.

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Back in the 1920's the bathhouse was a public facility "that served the indigent," but the operation from Brooklyn, New York opening their high-end Bathhouse on the near West Side of Chicago promises their facility will offer "professional massages and scrubs, pools and saunas with different temperatures and a place to dine."

According to the Sun-Times, The Bathhouse "is co-ed and advises people that while it’s OK to talk to strangers, it’s not a place for speed dating.”

When Will the Bathhouse Open?

If all goes as planned, the opening of The Bathhouse Chicago will be sometime in 2025.

READ ON: See the States Where People Live the Longest

Stacker used data from the 2020 County Health Rankings to rank every state's average life expectancy from lowest to highest. The 2020 County Health Rankings values were calculated using mortality counts from the 2016-2018 National Center for Health Statistics. The U.S. Census 2019 American Community Survey and America's Health Rankings Senior Report 2019 data were also used to provide demographics on the senior population of each state and the state's rank on senior health care, respectively.

Read on to learn the average life expectancy in each state.

Gallery Credit: Hannah Lang

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