De-soiling apparel while sparing Mother Earth, this eco-friendly dry cleaner welcomes customers to pick up and drop off orders 24/7 using unique, ATM-style receptacles. Ranked as one of the 500 top franchises in 2009 by Entrepreneur magazine, Oxxo Care eschews harsh chemicals in favor of environmentally safe solvents that high-five endangered pandas. Oxxo’s cleansters rely on recyclable and biodegradable plastics, and they pamper garments with new, European-style equipment. Renew the usual dry-cleaning suspects—pants, blouses, silk or linen shirts, blazers, skirts, and wearable pastrami—starting at $6.55. Polish up a dress starting at $8.95 or a two-piece suit for $13.10. Dust off that winter wool coat for $14–$18 or a long down chill defender for $20 in anticipation of weekend camping trips in the fridge. Resident garment specialists tend to the details of all jobs with hand ironing and personal, emotionally probing inspections.
The Canine Cure, LLC owner and trainer Mary Jean Alsina has spent years educating students. Her career began in a traditional classroom as a public-school teacher, honing her ability to relate to students and write the alphabet in perfect order. Eventually, she left the bells of public school behind to focus her teaching talents on furrier students, showing both pets and owners how to curb unwanted habits. Mary Jean prefers to keep both pup and parent comfortable during her sessions by hosting lessons in owners’ homes, where they feel relaxed.
Riverside Manor’s cooks craft a menu of upscale Italian dishes, each served to diners in a renovated nineteenth-century silk mill. Just as a trip to the bookie precedes little-league baseball games, so too must first courses such as chicken wings ($7) or clams oreganata ($8 lunch, $10 dinner) clear the way for a festive entrée. Classic dishes such as rigatoni alla vodka ($10 lunch, $12 dinner) and fettuccini carbonara ($12 lunch, $14 dinner) share space with more exotic fare, including a 10-oz. raw filet mignon served on a 750-degree volcanic stone ($24). A lineup of brick-oven pizzas teaches guests that, unlike pi, pies end, and libations such as red ($5–$13) and white ($5–$12) wines, domestic ($4) and imported ($5) beers, and martinis ($7–$11) accompany the succulent eats.
Mandy Grant is an expert at working up a sweat; she’s been a fitness enthusiast for decades. So it’s no surprise that the avid exerciser went on to open her personal yoga studio, which she lovingly named after the Zulu word for sweat. Students will also be pleasantly surprised to learn that Mandy donates 15% off all profits from this studio’s classes to assist AIDS orphans in South Africa and all donations from community classes to other charities.
Mandy’s passion to help others doesn’t stop there. At the Bergen County studio, students of all levels are given ample attention during 75-minute yoga classes, which are rooted in Hatha but also incorporate elements of Vinyasa flow, pranayama, and meditation. This style of teaching encourages yogis to connect their breathing with their postures and calming thoughts. Mandy and her dedicated instructors also spice up workout routines with heated Vinyasa sessions and mat Pilates.
Though the expression holds that “a picture is worth a thousand words,” the photographers at Magique Studios aim to take photos that can replace verbal wedding stories altogether. Since 2000, they’ve captured clients’ true emotions at hundreds of nuptial celebrations, centered on diverse religious and cultural traditions. The shutterbugs' versatility extends to other photo-shoot types as well, such as family portraits and boudoir sessions. During the planning process, Magique’s staff members pride themselves on their open lines of communication—they’re readily accessible by phone, e-mail, and carrier pigeon. After everything has concluded, clients may receive black-and-white, sepia, or color prints ready for inclusion in scrapbooks.