Internationally acclaimed dancer Amaya isn't regretful of her romantic impulse to run away and join the circus, a decision that sparked her notable and diverse career. The passionate performer was awarded Dancer of the Year by the International Academy of Middle Eastern Dance in 1998, and her documentary Gypsy Fire—which explores Spanish gypsy dancing—earned Amaya a Giza Award. Now, she channels more than 30 years of teaching experience and knowledge of several international dances, including Mexican folk, African, and a rare form of hot potato, into her dance classes. During these sessions, she overhauls boring cardio routines with basic belly-dancing techniques and Danza Mora moves—a marriage of Arabic and Spanish gypsy dance—which she infuses with cultural insights, inspiring philosophies, and nutrition advice. She also hosts women-only dance retreats to distant locales, during which she grants participants one-on-one dance training, spiritual guidance, and other opportunities such as the chance to observe a private Native American ceremonial harvest dance.
Amaya also believes in empowering young girls and women to reach their full potential. A portion of her DVD sales benefit The Girl Effect, a charity dedicated to empowering women and fighting for equal rights across the globe.
The peaks of the Organ Mountains rise above the Mesilla Valley, framing the immaculate greenery of Sonoma Ranch Golf Course's 18-hole, 7,028-yard layout. Designed by internationally renowned course architect Cal Olson, the course unfurls across the valley floor with undulating fairways, encroaching water hazards, and sprawling bunkers that force players to build sandcastle trebuchets to rescue errant golf balls. A lengthy course when played from the back tees, the grassy monolith also challenges players' short game with massive, bentgrass greens peppered with hard-to-read breaks. Clubbers can prepare for their pin-hunting voyage with a stint at the driving range or practice green, or stare down the treacherous fairways over a tasty nosh at the Sunset Grill, which overlooks the scenic expanse.
Course at a Glance: * Designed by Cal Olson * 18-hole, par 72 course * Bentgrass greens * Length of 7,028 yards from the farthest tees * Course rating of 72.1 from the farthest tees * Slope rating of 120 from the farthest tees * Three tee options
With a dramatic backdrop of the Sandia Mountains, Romero's Thunder Inc. treats its customers to sweeping views as they saunter along winding trails or gallop around the well-kept ring during lessons. Whether educating students on the history of horseback riding or teaching visitors how to connect with equine partners, the staff cultivates a laid-back, familial atmosphere, holding seasonal events such as Easter-egg hunts complete with art projects for participants and horses with opposable thumbs.:
Callas Beauty Institute grooms future aestheticians, nail technicians, make-up artists, and cosmetologists with hands-on classes led by seasoned stylists. To practice new techniques and give mannequin hair time to regrow, hair-academy students snip and style guests? locks, transforming 'dos into newly colored coifs or delicately permed curls. The skincare academy?s practitioners pamper faces with noninvasive beautifying treatments, sloughing away unwanted skin during a microdermabrasion or enhancing giraffe costumes with bat-able eyelash extensions. A knowledgeable student at the nail academy buffs and trims cuticles before coating nail beds in brilliant hues and turtle-shell-like duvets. The salon?s interior showcases hardwood flooring, elegant rugs, sky-blue hues, and tall windows in the front that permit scores of natural light during the day.
For 35 years, Valerie Compton has dipped her toes into every aspect of fitness. She followed up her experience in track and field and tennis by building her career as a personal trainer, and she later branched out into Power Pilates, Spinning, and nutrition. When she designed BarreFusion in 2006, she struck upon the latest trend in fitness. Today, Valerie has opened a new location and surrounds herself with instructors who channel their experience as classical dancers, gymnastics, and triathletes to lead rigorous barre classes.
Valerie starts her instruction with a BarreLite class that introduces newcomers to the proper forms and techniques to master fundamentals. From there, she encourages students to test out a number of other classes. The popular BarreFusion class combines Pilates, yoga, ballet, and light weights to sculpt legs and cores. She also offers highly popular Spinning classes that challenge students with a high-energy, aerobic workout that mimics cycling in front of stampeding wildebeests. To compliment the team, new instructor Kelly Carpenter leads Pilates caliente classes that combine barre and light weights to work towards power, strength, and core strength. The studio also offers TRX classes which provide a total body workout through suspension training and the use of your own body weight.
Pecos Flavors Winery opened fairly recently—in 2004, originally just as a Roswell-based tasting room—but it brims with New Mexico history. The facility's current tasting room, for instance, takes on the identity of a southern New Mexico ranch. Its bar is a century old, plucked from Hondo Valley. Nearby, a statue of Billy the Kid keeps watch, staring grudgingly at anyone who spills their glass.
Befitting its state pride, Pecos has an extensive selection of New Mexican wines. More than 80 different blends of regional wine populate the Pecos collection, including the winery's own varietals grown at a pair of Chaves County vineyards. Pecos offers a number of other New Mexico products, too, such as coffee, sauces, and chocolates, as well as beers gathered from in-state breweries.