PADI instructor Bob Henry dove in the Caribbean, South America, and other tropical locales, but he always returned to his home base—B & W Dive Co., a scuba shop he founded in 1991. Since the ‘90s, his children Amber and Warren have taken the reins, carrying on their dad’s legacy by organizing dive trips and helping students earn their PADI certifications. The shop’s classes cover topics beyond open-water diving, though; they can introduce pupils to scuba basics, such as breathing underwater without trading in their ability to breathe on land, or focus on snorkeling and swimming. Visitors can also outfit themselves for solo underwater journeys with dependable aquatic gear, culled from makers such as Oceanic, Tusa, and Sealife.
Clean By Design's professional cleaners scour the greater Houston area's residential messes with comprehensive cleaning services. During each two-hour session, cleaners stage a coup on grime, ridding homes of dust and cobwebs, vacuuming carpets, and wiping down the secret passage doors that lead to barracks filled with replacement butlers. Once bathroom tubs, showers, and latrines have been sanitized, cleaners progress into kitchens, where they scrub the outsides of appliances and the ice-cream stains inside microwaves. All countertops, kitchen-cabinet facings, and glass surfaces sparkle as cleaning crews drive off into the sunset, never to return until two weeks later to maintain the homes of guests who opted for three or five cleaning sessions. Clean By Design will not use bleach to clean any surface unless specifically requested, in which case the bleach must be supplied.
Jennifer Buergermeister is very flexible. She not only moves from job to job?she's an entrepreneur, independent filmmaker, and spiritual healer?but also from pose to pose while teaching yoga. She teaches three undergraduate courses and yoga classes at Rice University and is the founder and director of the Texas Yoga Conference and the Texas Yoga Association. Jenny has created two yoga DVDs and has a third coming out in November. She's also the owner of Jennyoga, where she works with a deep bench of fellow yoga teachers, offering a variety of classes for all levels. These include Sunrise and Awakening, Hatha Flow, and Deep Relaxation and Restorative yoga classes.
The team at Jennyoga strives to make coming to the studio easy. They built a Jennyoga app for mobile devices that allows students to schedule classes on the fly. And they run an in-house store, where visitors can pick up any yoga gear they might need before heading into one of the studios. They even made a short film to inspire attendance, a sort of narrative commercial about the beneficial effects of yoga in our noisy, modern world where neighbors rev motorcycle engines and fire alarms scream in delight whenever you get home.
Dance shouldn?t be formulaic. That?s why at Studio Tropa, owner Jerry Maese leads a dynamic, multi-cultural team of dance instructors that help students build better bodies. Six days a week students rock and rollick to sultry Tropa international sessions and the Latin-inspired grooves of Zumba classes. Instructors also get pulses racing with Tropa funk, their self-devised take on hip-hop. Students are encouraged to bring water, wear comfortable clothing, and sport athletic shoes that have good arch support and aren?t covered in Vaseline. Studio Tropa was recently selected to be a part of a promotional video release in conjunction with the release of the film, The Great Gatsby and was also part of the Galleria Mall flashmob for the release of the Zumba Rush Xbox Kinect video game.
At trendy Soma on Houston’s Washington Avenue by Durham Drive, sushi meets haute cuisine with a flourish. An extensive sake list starts the show, while cocktails are prepared sous-vide inside a vacuum-sealed bag to intensify their flavors. The food, of course, receives much of the same treatment. This is Japanese-French fusion, mixing traditional and signature sushi rolls, ramen noodles and assorted entrées, but each with perked-up ingredients and a showy presentation. There’s grass-fed beef slices, shiitake and fish cake inside that bowl of ramen, while shareable plates conquer Korean bo saam, bourbon smoked pork, with kimchi and red spicy paste. The interior is just as modern, with sleek taupe grey walls, hanging lanterns and touches of flashy red throughout.
You name it, and the staff at MBM Cleaning will probably clean it, and they’ll do so using nontoxic chemicals and state-of-the-art techniques such as negative air pressure and HEPA filtration. In addition to tidying up carpets, air ducts, vents, and chimneys, the NADCA- and VSMR-certified technicians also offer handyman services to repair HVAC systems and install insulation. Their efforts have improved the air quality of homes across the Houston area and garnered an A+ rating from the BBB, the younger, cooler brother of auto organization AAA.