Once upon a time, the airport was where you waited to take a plane to go somewhere. Now it's a place where you can make yourself at home, and live for years, if you're so inclined.
In the old days, you might be hungry or thirsty while you awaited your boarding call, and so you ate or drank. Sometimes you read, or chatted, or, eventually, listened to iPods, talked on the phone, worked on your computer, or watched TV. When you could smoke without being confined to a horrible little smoking room filled with a cloud of carcinogens, you smoked. A whole subset of businesses grew to take advantage of the ever-increasing time that you must wait for your flight to take you away from the airport to the place where you actually want to go. Those businesses have grown to include shopping for clothes, souvenirs, trinkets, perfume, alcohol, and, now, most amazingly, services.
Manicures and pedicures. Massages. Dry cleaners. Pet hotels. Churches, and/or meditation centers. Fancy VIP clubs for frequent travelers to meet and mingle. And, at San Francisco International, a 150-square-foot yoga room, open to ticketed passengers, that airport officials believe is the "world's first" airport yoga studio. The room used to be a storage area, reports the Associated Press' Terence Chea, and its conversion cost between $15,000 and $20,000.