Big Shell Bikes bestows coastal riders with maintained bicycles for self-propelled adventures through the scenic area. Riders can climb atop cruiser-style bikes such as women’s medium Huntington Beach bike or men’s large Electra Cruisers to propel themselves around Port Aransas’ awe-inducing views of sandy shores, rolling waves, and heavily guarded sand castles. Big Shell maintains its fleet of pedal-powered transports with only industry-known cruiser-brand parts, such as Schwinn and Huffy, to ensure smooth, solid rides. Additionally, Grouponers can opt to apply their vouchers toward the rental of a sand bike ($53 a day), an eight-speed steed equipped with thick tires designed to glide through sandy shores without bogging down or accumulating itchy grains between bike crevices.
The BoardHouse Surf & Skate’s knowledgeable staff helps wave riders and rail sliders stand out in the extreme-sport crowd with stylish clothing items and accessories. Warm chilled craniums or hide comical cartoon head bumps with a black Neff Love beanie ($17). A pair of sky-blue Billabong board shorts ($44.50) blazes a soggy path through oceanic surroundings, and an Electric Jackson T-shirt ($19) sports a trendy homage to famous lightning bolts. Not content to merely swaddle thrill-seekers' torsos, The BoardHouse also houses a cache of Channel Islands surf boards, VonZipper sunglasses, Freestyle watches, and an adoring gaggle of merfolk from a variety of name-brand labels.
In both its physical and virtual incarnations, Enchantments Scrapbooking & More carries a massive collection of supplies for the crafty memory keeper. An array of albums opens up the creative arena, ranging from the Victorian elegance of the 6"x6" Artisan design with its black and white floral pattern ($12.99), to the impressionistic naturalism of the Susan Winget Botanical 12"x12" album ($19.99). For an expansion of the artistic space, Enchantments stocks row upon row of paper, great for plastering with pictures or folding into elegant headwear.
Port Aransas Beach stretches for six miles along Mustang Island, one of Texas's largest barrier islands. Island Hotel Port Aransas sits just a mile from the beach, and you can sense it in the hotel's decor: palm trees stand sentinel outside, and guest rooms feature bright colors and decorative starfish. It's a quick stroll to get to Port Aransas Beach, where fishing boats bob in the water and colorful boutiques line the boardwalk. You can also use the hotel's outdoor pool if you want to take a swim or make a large batch of Kool-Aid. In the morning, guests are treated to a complimentary breakfast. There are also barbecue pits and a picnic area outside if you want to have an impromptu cookout.
Results Personal Training enlists certified male and female trainers to piece together personalized fitness and nutrition plans that target time-specific fitness goals and allow for anytime onsite access. When paired with a client, each trainer crafts a program geared toward desired results—such as muscle gain or weight loss—and an ultimate end date, which can correspond with upcoming weddings or long-awaited preschool reunions. One-hour workout sessions then draw on an armory of free weights and Pilates balls to activate different muscle groups and prevent bodies from adapting to the routine. With trainers always on standby, clients can walk in on the hour to start a training program without an appointment and report to the center an unlimited number of times per week.
Before each patron’s first workout, an on-staff nutritionist outlines a healthy meal plan customized to his or her needs. Each menu includes the amount of calories that they should consume per meal and day, a list of foods that rev up metabolisms, and arguments to convince tomatoes that they are vegetables. Clients can visit their nutritionists at any point during their membership, and weekly analyses of their progress ensure that they are staying well on track to meet their health objectives.
Trainer Ian Andracchio developed RowZone's unique blend of rowing exercises and full-body toning techniques to help students of all ages and abilities stave off the boredom and plateaus of other fitness regimens. During RZ Core workouts, instructors provide helpful pointers and encouragement to students as they shape up with body-toning ergometers.
Each structured session presents a total-body workout that incorporates rowing, resistance training, and fitness techniques that solidify cores and improve flexibility. Students learn proper rowing technique so that they can explode during the drive, stretch out during the reach, tighten the core during the finish, and flip through an issue of National Geographic during the recovery. Additionally, free-weight curls, crunches, lunges, and other rowing exercises work to provide an effective strength-endurance workout.