The consortium of professional instructors at Fred Astaire Dance Studios, which was cofounded by the legendary toe tapper himself, shepherds students of all ages and skill levels through lessons that span the style spectrum. Low-pressure private sessions allow enthusiastic teachers to fine-tune individual students' techniques and form, using their expert eyes and mechanical dancing shoes preprogrammed to do the Charleston. Patrons can learn how to cavort through classic waltz and fox-trot romps or swivel through the modern steps of salsa, swing, or samba. For dancers hoping to hoof it up in a social setting, the group practice parties provide a one-night extravaganza of instruction, demonstrations, and amateur firewalking.
On the shores of Lake Boca, only 100 yards from the Atlantic Ocean, Ride-A-Wave doles out rentals from its fleet of WaveRunners and Sea Rays. Its entry-level WaveRunners, three-seat Yamaha VX 110s, can crest swells at up to 60 miles per hour. Alternatively, the open bows of 19-foot and 21-foot Sea Rays let up to eight passengers feel the wind in their chest hair as they steer through tropical waters while listening to the radio and grabbing drinks from the built-in cooler.
The instructors at American Dancesport Center are trained in 23 different styles of dance, from the elegant waltz to the lively merengue. Firmly believing that everyone has the potential to be a dancer, they welcome students of all ages and experience levels into their spacious, oak wood–floored studio. The seasoned instructors offer both private and group classes and host weekly practice parties with a live DJ.
Don't mistake JAZZIZ Nightlife for a nightclub. Don't mistake it for a restaurant or live-music venue, either, even though it's all of those things. The actual roots of JAZZIZ Nightlife are in print?JAZZIZ magazine, naturally?which founder Michael Fagien began back in 1983. Throughout the '80s and '90s, he built the publication into a heavily circulated titan of the jazz world. Then in the late '90s he met restaurateur Dickie Brennan, and the two combined their experience in the music and culinary fields to form the multifarious JAZZIZ Nightlife.
The 12,000 square-foot space is capable of catering evenings to whatever you're in the mood for. A smoke? Grab a plushy leather chair near the cigar bar. A quiet drink? Have champagne and caviar in a secluded area away from the stage. But the main events are the nightly live jazz performances paired with fine dining. Onstage, jazz luminaries?including the likes of bassist Kyle Eastwood, son of Clint?enliven dinner and drinks with spirited performances that rely on musical skills rather than showy pyrotechnics or the ability to swallow whole pumpkins.
As for the food, it hews to traditional upscale American. Dinnertime highlights include 10-ounce Colorado lamb chops and 8-ounce cuts of filet mignon, either of which can be paired with Maine lobster tail, scallops, or seared foie gras. Late night bites feature stone crabs and beef tartare with picked mushrooms and ponzu sauce.
The sound of little limbs cutting into clear water with increasing confidence fills Quality Swimming's facilities, where instructors keep class sizes small in order to give individual attention and encouragement to each student. All instructors bear Red Cross certifications in CPR, standard first aid, and general lifeguard skills, and some hold additional honors such as degrees in infant teaching from the United States Swim School or certifications in instruction for developmentally disabled students. The trainers also undergo extensive training in Quality Swimming's in-house program, which includes observational sessions, seminars, and shadowing with senior teachers. Despite this intensive program, they continue to hone their skills year-round with local and national workshops, regular in-house refresher training, and international Marco Polo tournaments.
Students of all experience levels slowly grow to revel in the dreamlike effortlessness of movement through water in outdoor pools at three locations. Instructors pass on basic water-safety skills and more advanced swimming techniques, always with the principal aim of teaching students to exist comfortably within water and respect the pool noodle's natural ecosystem.
Maxim Life is in the health business, offering wellness coaching, supplements, and nutrition screenings. But health isn't just a business plan for the company—it's also personal. When local teen Talia Bennardo was diagnosed with the incurable kidney disease FSGS and learned she'd need a risky double kidney transplant, a group of friends and local merchants banded together to create the Maxim Life Fair, with admission fees going to Bennardo's care. After the transplant was performed, the organizers decided to keep hosting monthly events to support research and care for young organ-transplant patients.
Attendees are benefitting their own bodies, too: the health-focused fairs share information on health and nutritious cooking through the expertise of doctors and other wellness pros. And it's not all about eating your vegetables. Past events have included boutique trunk shows, organic wine tastings, and other fun activities.