Women-only clubs used to be a norm in the United States — a hundred years ago, in fact, there were already more than 5,000 women’s clubs nationwide. Membership in these organizations has been on the decline since the 1950s, but a new wave of women-only co-working spaces and social clubs appear primed to reverse that trend.
In the historic Ladies’ Mile of Manhattan, where women were first allowed to shop without a male escort in the late 19th century, 29-year-old Audrey Gelman founded the Wing – a women-only communal workspace where even the library is stocked expressly with female authors. Gelman, a former Hillary Clinton press-aide and longtime friend of Lena Dunham’s, said that subscriptions to the club had doubled since the Wing opened in October. Interest online is booming too — the Wing’s Instagram account already has more than 45,000 followers.
As demand for co-working spots increases worldwide, spaces for women similar to the Wing are popping up across the country. “Women are craving community, connection, and confidence, and that’s what we’re going to give them,” explained Stacy Taubman, 38, founder of Rise Collaborative, a female focused coworking community set to open in St. Louis next month.
Hera Hub founder Felena Hanson, who has set up women’s co-working spaces in Phoenix, Southern California, Washington D.C., and Stockholm, had a more streamlined explanation for the increase in demand for all-women spaces. “It’s a good idea. Period,” said Hanson.
Read the full story at Bloomberg.