Freshly back from vacation, a customer walks expectantly into the room. A golden retriever bounds clumsily up, its tongue flapping a rosy greeting and mouth stretched far back into a smile. When the dog’s owner takes up the leash, thanks the staff for caring for her energetic pup, and turns to leave, she feels a tug on the leash. Her dog has planted his feet firmly, trying to back into a sitting position—clearly, he wants them both to stay put.
According to proprietor Lisa Schettino, this is an everyday occurrence at Camp Canine. After a difficult experience finding pet care for her own dog, Lisa set out to create an environment that would not only keep critters safe, but make them want to stay. Now, each Camp Canine location has a resort-style atmosphere sprawled over 9,000–15,000 square feet.
Stressed four-legged friends wiggle with glee during massages, shedding stress from squeaky toys giving them the silent treatment. Against a bass rumble of purring, punctuated by canine yips, green-tea and chamomile facials drive dirt from wrinkled faces and soften wiry fur. As they wait for their next spa appointment, dogs can roam freely in a fenced-in play lot. After tearing through a maze of tunnels and obstacles, they splash into the pool and emerge to toss their cool, wet fur, bejeweling the air with spray. An air-conditioned indoor play area shelters pets from extreme heat and teenagers listening to vacuums at high volume..
Owners too can rest at ease during their pets’ vacation, knowing their animals lounge in private rooms with plush bedding and staff watching 24 hours a day. They check up on their furry friends via scheduled Skype sessions and various webcams set up throughout the Boca Raton and Fort Lauderdale facilities. Those locations also pick up and drop off pets that haven’t yet learned how to operate a manual transmission.
In a small 900-square-foot space, a group of dedicated wrestlers forged a signature method of Brazilian jujitsu training in the heat of Boca Raton. They called themselves simply the American Top Team. They conquered regional tournaments, dominated state showdowns, and ultimately sent team member after team member to the UFC to show off their stuff. Their students won accolades—and fights—and the school grew. Now, the organization provides advanced martial-arts training in Brazilian jujitsu, MMA, muay thai, and more from 60 different martial-arts academies.
Riverside Market's menu abounds with breakfast omelettes, savory sandwiches, flatbread pizzas, fresh salads, specialty sodas, and a selection of more than 250 craft beers, all served in an easygoing, neighborhood atmosphere. Morning munchers can select from eight oversized omelettes ($8), all whipped up fresh to order without butter or oil and paired with a potato and breakfast bread. Complete the morning fuel stop with a steaming cup of freshly ground, organic espresso, or coffee. Noontime and evening diners tantalize taste buds with a caprese salad, a fresh mozzarella, tomato, pesto, and basil blend drizzled with balsamic and olive oil ($6). Specialty sandwiches ($7–$9) piled with fresh fixings on a variety of bread options, such as flaky croissants or grilled panini bread. Feast on one of Riverside's 12-inch crispy flatbread pizzas, ranging from traditional pepperoni ($12) to barbeque chicken ($12), which is topped with gouda cheese, onions, and cilantro. Parched patrons can pick from more than 250 craft beers, a brewed bounty so vast that if the staff places all the bottles in a row, the lineup would stretch from Fort Lauderdale to Atlantis.
The Museum of Discovery and Science ensures that adults as well as children have opportunities to explore diverse fields in the natural and physical sciences. Museum visitors who prefer to experience action on the big screen can drop into the AutoNation IMAX 3D Theater, which boasts a 15,000 watt, 42-speaker digital surround sound system. Opened in 1992, the 300-seat theater dazzles audiences via a five-story screen that features both 2-D and 3-D films. Crowds view the latter using lightweight XR 3-D glasses for highly evolved thrills.
Any taxi can get you from point A to point B. But the Water Taxi makes it interesting in a way no land vehicle can, affording unique views of Birch State Park's natural landscapes and the bustling Fort Lauderdale Riverwalk along the way. The destinations tend to be equally scenic. As it travels throughout Fort Lauderdale and Hollywood, the Water Taxi makes 19 stops at places ranging from beautiful beaches to acclaimed restaurants.
Hitting them all is easy with hop-on, hop-off service, which makes it convenient for waterfront residents and visitors to get around. Riders can pick up tickets on board, online, or at several area hotels. In addition to the regular schedule, captains guide Water Taxi's vessels for private chartered voyages, such as moonlight cruises and scavenger hunts.
For aesthetician Vicki, clear skin isn't just about outer beauty—it's also about inner confidence. At Skin by Vicki, her goal is to help clients determine what they want for their skin, at which point she can help them overcome acne, signs of age, or other issues with custom skincare regimens. She uses products derived from fruits and plants in all of her treatments, which range from deluxe facials with chemical peels to mini facials designed to maintain skin from week to week.