Laced with elements of yoga, Pilates, and gymnastics, the women-only classes at Aradia Fitness sculpt lean, toned physiques. And though physical fitness is a cornerstone of the studio, it's not the only one. Classes such as Striptease and Lap Dance foster a certain amount of unrestrained confidence that, as Aradia puts it, “teach[es] women to unapologetically love their body and themselves.” At 17 locations across the country, Aradia's staff of certified instructors, including world-record holder Amanda, lead women of all shapes, sizes, and experiences through sessions ranging from pole-dancing classes that teach aerial lifts and holds to Sexy Fit classes that forgo the pole for yoga fusion, boot camp, and lap dancing. No matter the class, the environment at Aradia is always light hearted, nurturing, and more supportive than a stainless-steel hammock.
Whether sinking into a lounge chair with a cup of joe or drinking in the sounds of live music, visitors to Electric Beanz Coffee Bar will discover freshly brewed, locally roasted coffee and pastries in a laid-back atmosphere. In addition to serving a selection of coffee standards, Electric Beanz's baristas also blend fresh-fruit smoothies, pour Italian sodas, and sling a variety of fresh-baked pastries, ranging from muffins to empanadas. Specialty single-origin coffees are also available, brewed in a French press, an appliance that famously gave Jean-Claude Van Damme all his muscles.
Primp Salonbar provides a complete escape from everyday stress by combining the environment of a relaxing day spa with that of a luxuriant cocktail lounge. While waiting for an appointment, clients have the opportunity to peruse a high-fashion magazine or purchase a beer, glass of wine, or specialty drink from the fully stocked bar. The spa and salon treatments strive to be similarly indulgent and attentive to visitors' needs. Using sulfate- and paraben-free Alterna haircare products, the stylists design flattering new hairdos by trimming wayward strands and using coloring or texturizing treatments to add dramatic depth and dimension. Additionally, Primp Salonbar's mani-pedis, waxing treatments, and Novalash eyelash extensions can help visitors reinvent their style and adopt a trendy new look.
Chef Conrad Johnston injects innovative twists into Krave's menu of modern American cuisine, topping Parisian-inspired flatbreads with caramelized shallots and dousing small plates of Cajun-style calamari with creole seasoning. With fresh meats, local fruits and veggies, and sauces made from scratch, Chef Conrad concocts tapas, entrees, and salads before diners' eyes in his show kitchen. Meals are savored on the outdoor patio or within Krave's sleekly decorated interior, which surrounds diners with chrome metallics and subtle kinetic lighting. On Friday and Saturday, night owls or owls in human disguise can sip handcrafted signature cocktails until 2 a.m., scarf down items from the full menu until 4 a.m., and groove to tunes spun by top area DJs.
Global Restaurant's Chef Bernard grew up along the sun-soaked shores of the southern French village of Nice, where his grandfather was a pastry chef and his father owned a fish shop. This rich familial and Francophilic culinary heritage inspired him to take chef apprenticeships in Paris, the United Kingdom, Russia, and upon globe-roving cruise ships. His travels infused an eclectic edge into his cooking, which still incorporates traditional meals, fusion concepts, and a French spirit. His journeys also yielded him more than recipes — during one of his cruises, he met his wife, Shannon, whose experience with the front end of the food-and-beverage industry led the pair to open their own restaurant in Charlotte.
Inside the duo's creation, Global Restaurant, electric blues and oranges brighten the space, and crisp tablecloths lay a canvas for dishes with inventive flavors and artistic presentations. Chef Bernard's specialties include cauliflower-goat-cheese sauce, boldly splashed across a seared sea bass, and date chutney and caramelized apples that dance across an all-natural duck.
The menu, which is in many ways a travelogue of Bernard and Shannon's journeys, has snagged the attention of the Charlotte Observer and of WCNC's Charlotte Today, which invited Bernard on air for a live cooking demo, where he seared some of his famous diver scallops atop the weatherman's greenscreen.
Savory small plates, including mac ?n? cheese and sliders made with locally farmed and organic Angus beef, pave the way to Crave Dessert Bar's main attraction?decadent desserts. The bar's sweet treats, which earned it Charlotte's best location for To Die For Desserts in 2012 by Elevate Lifestyle Magazine, include carrot and walnut cupcakes and chocolate fondue with seasonal fruits and marshmallows. Chocolate-swirled cheesecake rests atop a fudge-brown crust, and the red velvet cake, cream-cheese frosting, and toasted pecans of the Scarlet Letter layer cake pay homage to the only foods Nathaniel Hawthorne ate while writing The Scarlett Letter.
To complement the tapas and desserts? flavors, diners can puff on hookahs in more than 16 fruit varieties, including peach and watermelon. Bartenders craft more than 40 signature cocktails, which make the bar?s photographs and canvases by local artists more and more appealing as evenings progress. The loft's hardwood floors, exposed brick, and comfy chairs and couches accommodate guests until 2 a.m. Tuesday?Sunday, and after 8 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays, the bar transforms into a 21+ hot spot.