There aren't many restaurants anymore where you can sit in the same booth your parents might have dined in 40 years ago. But such is the case at Beggar's Banquet. The self-proclaimed restaurant and saloon took root in 1973, founded by Bob Adler and named after his favorite Rolling Stones album. The pub-like main dining area remains down-to-earth and casual, welcoming guests with wood-paneled walls and stained-glass windows. The names of "beggulars" are etched on gold plates above the bar, and local families celebrate milestones in an elegant room dedicated to private parties. All of this, coupled with the nostalgic atmosphere and tasty, homestyle dishes, has helped Beggar’s Banquet earn praise as one of Lansing's best restaurants by 10Best.
Twenty ever-changing craft beers on tap and a wine list that ranges from malbecs to piesporters fuel the jovial ambiance. Cooks innovate creative spins on classic comfort food, adding muenster, havarti, and gouda to their baked mac 'n’ cheese and a blueberry compote to char-grilled pork chops. They also serve breakfast until 2 p.m., the time each day when orange juice magically transforms into soda pop.
In 2006, the founders of Dublin Square Irish Pub & Restaurant followed through on their longtime vision of bringing a small piece of their homeland to East Lansing?literally. Much of the pub's interior decor was gathered or built in Ireland then transported some 4,000 miles to its new home in Michigan. That includes the hand-carved mahogany bar, which was reassembled on-site by the same craftsmen who built it across the pond, where the wood would otherwise have toiled in obscurity as an ornate armoire.
Surrounded by these Irish relics, the pub's visitors can truly celebrate the craic?a term for the camaraderie and good cheer that abounds in a welcoming pub. They can also dig into classic Irish dishes, such as bangers and mash, a dish consisting of locally made Irish sausage, crispy haystack onions, and a side of Guinness mustard. The menu honors American favorites, too, including New York strip steaks and pizza. All of these meals come together over rounds of drinks that range from draft beers to international wines.
Professional dancer Tiffany Russell's early career saw her gliding across some of the world's most prestigious stages, winning applause with her nimble footwork in productions of My Fair Lady, Guys and Dolls, and The Wizard of Oz. When Tiffany and her family settled in Lansing, she had trouble finding a dance studio with the scheduling flexibility she needed as a parent and the challenge she craved as an artist who trained with the Russian Ballet Academy and the Broadway Dance Center.
She subsequently founded Spartan dance and Fit Center in 2010, where adults with hectic work schedules can shimmy in anytime for drop-in ballroom classes, and kids can find plenty of opportunity to study pirouettes and greco-roman swan wrestling in after-school ballet classes. The center's esteemed chorus line of dance teachers is well-versed in a multitude of performance styles, enabling wide-ranging instruction in dance varieties that include hip-hop, contemporary, and lyrical.
More than 30 years ago, a neighborhood gas station reopened as Harrison Roadhouse—though it took years of work to transform the building into the popular neighborhood joint it is today. Service-bay doors became towering windows, barstools and tabletops replaced docks, and auto mechanics were swapped for wait staff. Exposed brick surrounds the now-unrecognizable interior, where glasses and silverware clink beneath Spartans sports flags and the hundreds of license plates that checker the walls. In the kitchen, grills sizzle with burgers, seafood, and steaks, and behind the bar, glasses brim with 24 different types of draft beer and cocktails. The bar offers drink and food specials throughout the week, including a weekly Friday fish fry, where unlimited seafood draws ravenous diners and walruses alike.
Polished hardwood floors and full-length mirrors line the interior of East Lansing Hot Yoga, where a furnace warms the air to a humid temperature of 105 degrees. The sultry heat, similar to that of a tropical rainforest or Ricky Martin music video, catalyzes a variety of health benefits as yoga students break a healthy sweat. The elevated temperature loosens exercisers’ limbs, allowing for deeper execution of poses that lengthen and strengthen muscles.
The studio's instructors welcome students of all experience levels to classes that range from energetic hot vinyasa sessions to hot yin, which emphasizes meditative poses that are held for longer amounts of time. They also teach participants to breath slower and deeper, which can lower blood pressure and relieve physical tension. After class, students can cool off with a refreshing shower in the locker rooms.
At each of its seven locations across Michigan, Seung-Ni Fit Club helps clients of all ability reach peak physical condition through kickboxing, bootcamps, and the studio's proprietary body-sculpting and slimming regimens. Core workouts build strong abdominal and lower-back muscles with targeted movements, while kickboxing sessions burn up to 1,000 calories per hour as participants fight against the resistance of heavy bags and invisible bad guys. Zumba classes get bodies moving to infectious Latin rhythms, and BodySculpt classes build dense, well-defined musculature through high-intensity dumbbell workouts.
For a more defense-based workout, exercisers can turn to Seung Ni's comprehensive martial arts program. Classes include Brazilian jiu-jitsu, taekwondo, and kids' programs for children as young as three.