Vivre accommodates each guest's exercise preferences and cardio curiosities with a range of fitness classes and high-quality cardio and strength-training equipment. Membership benefits give runners, Pilates buffs, and karate children full access to the gym’s class schedule of quadriceps-building kickboxing classes, aorta-pumping spin classes, and chi-harnessing yoga classes. Patrons looking to fly solo can commit flagrant arson on innocent fat cells with treadmills, stationary bikes, and elliptical machines—many of which are equipped with personal TV screens. Vivre’s intimate studio spaces make it easy for sweat donors to chat and socialize with one another, and its certified fitness trainers are more than happy to explain the difference between a dumbbell and a Liberty Bell to bewildered eighteenth-century time-warp victims. Chill out after a hard day’s muscle blasting with complimentary coffee and water before wicking off with a provided towel in Vivre’s clean and fully equipped locker room. Childcare services are also available to members for $7 per hour.
Color Me Mine puts paintbrushes and pottery in the mitts of customers old and young. Budding Toyozo Arakawas will follow six easy steps to craft eye-pleasing objects, first choosing a ceramic piece ($10–$25 for most) from Color Me Mine's selection of hundreds of seasonally changing options, such as plates, mugs, molded animals, and mystically materialized emotions. After charting out the desired design from individual imagination or one of Color Me Mine's helpful technique sheets, painters will select an underglaze from a collection of more than 60 colors, then gently beautify their objets d'art with the focus and ingenuity of a peregrine falcon possessed by Norman Rockwell.
Though their guests aren't human, the staff at Good Dog Day Care still treat them like they are. They spend time learning each dog's individual quirks and personality traits to determine the best way to care for them. Under supervision, pups roam free, sniff, and socialize at an indoor play space padded with clean rubber floors. Vinyl fencing dampens upsetting noise, and it can also be used to separate dogs who are embroiled in a bitter chew-toy custody dispute. Additionally, an area of antimicrobial turf grass, designed especially for dogs, serves as the bathroom suite.
Canine guests can also get to know each other during training classes, which range from obedience training to puppy socials. Though socialization is encouraged, Good Dog Day Care realizes that sometimes dogs need time to themselves. This is why when dogs are kept overnight, they board their overnight guests in private sleeping spaces outfitted with custom flooring and dog beds. Staffers even follow the owner's feeding schedule to ensure that every dog maintains its routine.
Having shot more than 30,000 subjects throughout his career as a photographer, including many Silicon Valley business figures, Eric Gould understands how to create a good photo in any setting. His adeptness at communicating with subjects carries into his photography workshops, where he conveys difficult concepts clearly and methodically, saving students from such rookie mistakes as shooting with the lens cap on or turning the flash on while taking pictures of your imaginary friend's third grade graduation. In his own photo sessions, he frames professional clients in business portraits and headshots, high-school seniors in youthful poses, athletes in midaction, and a wide spectrum of people and places encountered on international travels.
A native of Paris, Executive Chef Christian Nam-Hee sharpened his knife skills and his palate at l'Ecole de Paris des Métiers de la Table. Today he lets his know-how blossom and wander in the kitchen of Bijou Restaurant & Bar, blending the culinary traditions of his homeland with the flavors found in northern California's seasonal organic ingredients. From his pans and cutting boards spring forth sweet-potato frites, quail stuffed with napa cabbage, and other dishes that embody the menu's inventive fusion spirit. To complement such an aesthetically poignant dining experience, the space itself—designed by DesignPlus's Pia Thomas—remains sleek and focused. The centerpiece is the bar, which glows a dreamy, iridescent amber that's complemented by ring chandeliers and absorbed by Italian leather chairs, a lounge area's plush velvet cushions, and tabletop black holes.