Personal Pursuits

Indulge your passions by traveling to the destinations that inspire local pros in design, theater, education, food and fitness



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Miami

Adam Colberg, Personal Trainer

His clients include television personalities, business moguls and even teenagers who want to build their self-esteem to ward off bullies. Westport native Adam Colberg’s been in the business of getting people into the shape of their lives for twenty years. Working out with Colberg is more than just strength training, hoisting kettlebells or boxing with him. It’s an hour of motivation from a high-energy former Marine who actually makes sweating fun, thanks to his relentless encouragement and great humor. So where does he go when he needs motivation? Not to a woods-shrouded wellness retreat for deep contemplation and Spartan cuisine. Colberg heads to Miami’s glitzy South Beach, “an international city,” he says, “that feels like an adult playground.”

1. Art-Deco Dream

That’s how Colberg describes the iconic Delano Hotel on Collins Avenue, his favorite place to stay. You might remember the splash this oceanfront hotel made when it opened in the 1990s under Studio 54 co-founder Ian Schrager. Last year, the hotel, now owned by the Morgans Hotel Group, got a facelift from designer Phillipe Starke, who created an indoor/outdoor lobby and assembled an international collection of furniture and art, but preserved the hotel’s famous infinity edge pool and its reputation for drawing celebrities. Colberg says once he checks in, the vacation feels “surreal,” as “life slows down.” He relishes Sunday nights on the patio, where you can hear “seductive sounds” spun by the city’s best DJs.

2. Best Workouts: Beach and Boardwalk

Dancing to a DJ might burn calories, but the beach at Ocean Drive and 9th Street is where Colberg heads for a quick workout on the boardwalk’s pull-up, dip and monkey bars. He also likes to run along the boardwalk from the Delano down to South Pointe Park in Miami Beach. “It’s a magnificent setting for a run.” Colberg recommends sunset as the best time, when “the lights on Ocean Drive light up the horizon in art-deco fashion.” He adds that it’s as if “the city breaths for you, as you focus on your run.” If you want to take your workout a step further, Colberg recommends a training appointment with his mentor, renowned boxing coach Luis Lagerman at the Sobekick Gym in Miami Beach. “He’s even better than me if you can imagine that!” he jokes, explaining he works out with Lagerman to “re-energize as a trainer.”

3. Churrasco!

While Colberg enjoys a healthy breakfast of granola, yogurt and fresh-cut Florida fruit at the bustling twenty-four-hour News Café on Ocean Drive, his dream dinner is at the Texas de Brasil Churrascaria on Alton Road in Miami Beach. “Because I’m a fan of Latin culture and my wife is Brazilian, there’s no better place than this steakhouse for a healthy and satisfying meal.” He says their churrasco is “the tastiest steak I’ve ever had.”

4. Getting There is No Workout

Another reason Colberg loves South Beach is its easy access. He usually visits between January and March, flying JetBlue out of Westchester.


American West

Michelle Weber, Chocolatier, Barista and Entrepreneur

“Life was like a box of chocolates, you never know what you’re gonna get.” This Gumpian maxim could apply to the business ventures of Michelle Weber, a.k.a. Cocoa Michelle. In 2006, she opened a gourmet chocolate shop on Main Street. She closed it in 2010 but this fall opened a new Riverside Avenue gourmet market with a casual but elegant bistro. If Westport was a box of chocolates, Weber understood that it was one short—there was no gourmet market in the revitalized Saugatuck Center. So what type of vacation does the woman who signs her name with “truffles and hugs” chose to embrace?

1. Go West, Young Foodies

Weber says she grew up in the restaurant industry, “with a gourmet mother,” and her husband is a chef and consultant in the business, “so our love for food and travel plays a large role in our lives and what we do.” Among her favorite destinations: Utah and Colorado. “When traveling, I try not to work,” says Weber, “but I’m always looking for new and different things I might be able to incorporate into my business, whether it’s food or décor.”

2. Mad About March

In Utah, Weber loves skiing “a truly amazing mountain with views to die for,” Alta, as well as Snowbird and Deer Valley, especially in March. “Spring skiing in God’s country!” she exclaims. Weber and her husband like to visit The Montage, which opened in Park City in December 2010. Guests to this mountain craftsman resort can enjoy a perch atop Empire Pass, with ski-in/ski-out access, just forty minutes from Salt Lake City International Airport. The resort is not only beautiful, says Weber, but also the service is “impeccable.”

3. Apres-Ski Cuisine

Weber’s favorite restaurant is located at the mouth of Little Cottonwood Canyon: La Caille in Sandy, Utah. It’s on a twenty-acre plot, which also boasts a pavilion, gardens, a chateau and a three-acre vineyard perfect for a post-meal stroll. Weber says the food is fabulous.

4. Aspen: Anytime

There’s no bad time to go to Aspen. When she’s not skiing, Weber also enjoys fly-fishing there, saying, “It’s a great feeling being in the river,” being one “with your surroundings.” Aspen offers the sport year-round, in waters, including the Roaring Fork River. If you’re throwing ’em back, no worries—first-class dining abounds in Aspen. Weber’s favorites: the Northern Italian cuisine of Casa Tua and Cache Cache Bistro, where Weber recommends the veal ossobuco.

5. I Love the St. Regis!

So says Weber of Aspen’s mountainside manor, which keeps adventure seekers and arbiters of food and wine enthralled in equal measure. Food & Wine’s Best New Chef award winners rotate the menu annually and the editors customize the wine and cocktails. Weber says the experience is “a real treat for the foodie.”

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