In 2004?on a mission to bolster its community?s wellspring of creativity and education?the nonprofit Bergen Performing Arts Center took over the former John Harms Center, an art-deco-style movie and vaudeville palace built in 1922. Today, in the same antique theater where Frank Capra screened his first car chase, the venue hosts 150 yearly events that bring dance, music, and theatrical productions to an estimated 250,000 annual audience members. Networks such as HBO, PBS, and MTV all have filmed international broadcasts on the stage, which has seen the likes of Diana Krall, Heart, and ZZ Top.
New York Sports Clubs, part of Town Sports International's network of fitness loci, opens up a number of equipment-stocked facilities across New York to exercisers. Strength-training gear, such as circuit machines, free weights, and medicine balls, molds muscles into chiseled depictions of physical might. Sessions on cardio machines, ranging from treadmills and ellipticals to upright and recumbent stationary bicycles, inspire burnt calories to pack up and move to cooler climates. Each club offers a schedule of group classes that draws from more than 100 fitness styles, including Pilates, yoga, and boxing, ensuring that no member has to jazzercise without a spotter. Each location rewards exercisers for sweating in its vicinity with special features such as babysitting, saunas, and steam rooms.
While Pilates is corrective, The Bar Method is transformative—much like those cars that transform into miniature weasels. You’ll burn fat, sculpt muscles, refine your figure, and improve your strength and endurance. After a brief warm-up, you’ll tackle the upper body with weights and bar exercises. The workout continues with challenging lower-body positions and floor exercises designed to firm up abs and glutes. This diverse and challenging workout gives you the long, lean muscles and elegant posture of a ballet dancer without the discomfort and inconvenience of being heckled by ballet hooligans.
The Gym of Armonk’s body-sculpting bastion boasts more than 100 scheduled classes per week and a refined range of gym equipment. A one-month membership (a $140 value) includes unlimited access to group gatherings of cross-training and strength-building sessions that bolster biological burning capabilities while lessening guilt stemming from recent Hot Fries binges. Sage yoga gatherings strengthen cores to steel, and spinning classes challenge participants to maintain a target heart rate while grinding their gears on stationary bikes. Sweat stars looking to explore more solitary fitness regimes have full rein over a range of gym equipment, including elliptical machines, treadmills, weights, and basketball courts for schooling retired astronauts during games of moon ball.
Gotham Dream Cars lets drivers grip the throttle of exotic speed machines such as the Ferrari F430, Lamborghini Gallardo, and Bentley Continental GT for personal rental or specialized thrill experiences. During the Dream Car Sprint, auto enthusiasts slip into a Ferrari or Lamborghini on a closed course and whip their more than 500-horsepower drive three times around the autocross track, learning how to tame their power with the aid of an instructor before coming out of the third lap on a straightaway to open the engine up to its full potential. Drivers conduct an orchestra of firing pistons and camshafts for three laps before crossing the finish line and parking to the pianissimo of the softly purring V8 engine. Gotham Dream Cars snaps pictures of the sprint, so drivers are sent home with hands they will never wash and a CD of images to parade before jealous coworkers and humbled shopping carts.
Le Gourmet Factory is a 6,000-square-foot culinary haven, encompassing seven new professional-grade kitchens?some of which are decked out in chrome, and some cloaked in electric yellow. Though they look flashy, their main purpose is function, as they are designed with input from renowned chefs and stocked with top-of-the-line tools and Wolf and Sub-Zero appliances. Here, a team of top-notch professional chefs teaches fledgling cooks their trade in a variety of cooking classes. They lead guests in making pasta, whisking stellar sauces, and creating truffles without ever venturing into a dark and scary chocolate forest. Many classes focus on creating healthy or gluten-free eats, or cover themes such as Girls Night Out and Cooking with Dad. In addition to classes, the school hosts parties and corporate events, and the facility has an IKEA-designed lounge for relaxing before or after classes and events.