Paseo Domino circuito artistico

*Paseo Domino circuito artistico. Zona Colonial
*Lugares interesantes para visitar en Santo Domingo durante el mes de Mayo
*Arte y Naturaleza
Empezaré por decir que ayer fue un grandioso dia. Fue mejor de lo que esperaba.
La fundación Domino ONG de Santiago de la cual soy miembro desde hace ya un buen tiempo, nos organizó un paseo a Santo Domingo el Sabado 21 de Mayo.

Este viaje tenía como propósito principal empaparnos con información artística y contemporánea sobre algunos punto claves de la Zona colonial.

La fundación Domino ONG está enfocada en lo que es el arte y la Eco-forestación del país. Su ideal va muy de la mano con el propósito socio- ecologico que tenemos en Extreme Hotel, Cabarete.
Uno de los lugares que visitamos fue el Centro de la imagen donde se está presentando la Exposición fotográfica llamada “Historias de Medio Ambiente”. Esta cuenta con piezas de mas de 10 diferentes artistas fotógrafos dominicanos los cuales se enfocaron en resaltar la belleza natural de República Dominicana y también la deforestación agresiva que hay un muchos lugares importantes de la isla.
A Través de esta propuesta, se pretende educar y concientizar a los visitantes del Centro de la imagen de como cuidar la naturaleza y sus recursos.

Otro increíble lugar que visitamos fue El Centro Cultural de España donde tienen la Exposición “Cervantes: Este que veis aquí”, en conmemorativa del 400 aniversario de la muerte de Miguel de Cervantes. Con exposición de pinturas de 21 artistas Dominicanos.

Cervantes: Este que veis aqui

Cervantes: Este que veis aqui

Cervantes: Este que veis aqui

Cervantes: Este que veis aqui

También, la Exposición “Guano”, de Engel Leonardo. Artista Dominicano.

Mientras íbamos en recorrido por la Zona Colonial, nuestro ‘Tourist guide’ Miguel Piccini (quien se conoce el lugar con todo y historia como si fuese la palma de su mano) nos mostraba los diferentes tipos de arquitecturas de los edificios y calles de la ciudad Colonial.

Finalmente, llegamos a Casa Quién para la exposición “Gloria”. La cual reúne narrativas sobre experiencias que enfrenta la mujer dominicana desde temprana edad, desde la perspectiva de un grupo de talentosas mujeres artistas. Y “Botánica”: Exposición y bazar con propuesta naturalista y alternativa.

Para los amantes del arte y la naturaleza, si están buscando deleitarse con buenas propuestas artísticas y conocer más sobre obras dominicanas mientras se recrean caminando por ‘La zona’, les recomiendo estos magníficos lugares mencionados. Estaran disponibles todo el mes de Mayo. Vale toda la pena… o la felicidad ir.

Gracias a la Fundación Domino por la maravillosa experiencia! 🙂 <3

Recipe: Vegetarian Pastelón

pastelon-4

It’s Harvest Time at Taino Organic Farm! Twice a week the eXtreme team gets their hands on a whole bunch of fresh, organic greens and veggies to cook up or eat raw at the hotel!

The latest harvest brought us a beautiful basket of tomatoes; avocados; cilantro; plátanos; peppers; and leafy, spicy greens. I love cooking for and sharing Dominican food with my fellow eXtremers so I decided to challenge myself by making a traditional Dominican dish using mostly the food we had harvested and little else. Dominican food is traditionally meat heavy so it was a bit of a challenge but I finally decided on one of my favorite dishes—pastelón de plátano maduro. A cross between a shepherd’s pie and lasagna, pastelón combines sweet, ripe plantains with savory ground meat and melted cheese. Mmmm! This is a vegetarian version I put together on the fly using some veggies we had on hand. It’s not quite how my Abuela makes it, but it’s still pretty good!

VEGETARIAN PASTELÓN

serves 6

10 ripe, yellow plantains
1 small head of broccoli, cut into florets
1 medium sized carrot, julienned
1½ medium sized green peppers, julienned
1 small cubanelle pepper, diced
6 large garlic cloves, minced
1 small white onion, minced
1½ chicken bouillon cubes, crushed
12 slices of cheddar cheese
¾ of a stick of butter
a healthy fistful of cilantro
a healthy pinch of dried oregano
olive oil
salt and pepper to taste

Peel and cut plantains into chunks. Fill a large saucepan with water, a pinch of salt, and put over high heat. Add the plantain chunks to the water and bring to a boil.

In a sauté pan over medium-high heat, melt a small pat of butter and a small drizzle of olive oil. Sauté the oregano, cilantro, chicken bouillon cubes, onions, and garlic for one minute until the onions become semitransparent. Add carrots, broccoli, and peppers and sauté for ten to twelve minutes. Lower the flame and cover with a loosely fitting lid for five minutes. Remove from heat and set aside.

When the plantains have turned a golden yellow color and are easily pierced by a fork (approx. 25-30 mins), drain the saucepan and reserve a quarter cup of the cooking liquid. In a bowl combine the plantains, the cooking liquid, and the remaining butter and mash until the plantains are a soft, consistent texture.

In a baking pan, spoon half of the mashed plantains and spread it into a thick, uniform layer. Spoon the veggies onto the layer of plantains and spread. Cover in six slices of cheese. Spoon the second half of the plantains and spread evenly. Cover the pastelón with the last six pieces of cheese.

Set your oven to broil and put the pastelón in for five minutes or until the cheese on top has melted.

We suggest you serve your pastelón with a salad of avocado, tomato, diced red onion, and a drizzle of olive oil over some spicy, mustard greens just like we did!

Bon Apétit, or as we say in the Dominican Republic: ¡Buen Provecho!

 

pastelon8

Notes:

-We used broccoli and carrots but you can use cherry tomatoes, corn, or any veggies that don’t release too much liquid or your pastelón will bubble up around the edges.
-We also used the stalks and leafy bits of the broccoli but you can discard these if you don’t like them.
-You can use any kind of cheese you like; we especially like cheddar and Swiss but a bag of grated cheese works, too!
-For a healthier version, nix the butter and chicken bouillon cubes and replace with a drizzle of olive oil and a pinch of sea salt.

Kite soaring high during a sunset on kite beach.

Oceanside Livin’

There is something to be said about life next to the ocean. You don’t even have to be doing water activities or be explicitly dependent upon it in some way for it to have a profound effect. At the Extreme Hotel, everything you do is next to the ocean. You eat next to the ocean, sleep next to the ocean, trapeze next to the ocean, work out next to the ocean, read next to the ocean, talk on the phone next to the ocean. I could keep going – and those aren’t even the activities that you actually do in the ocean (i.e. kiteboard, surf, scuba, snorkel, stand up paddleboard, swim).

Kite soaring high during a sunset on kite beach.

Kite Beach.

 

A lot of the time when I am doing something next to the ocean, I am highly aware of it. It is hard to ignore a beauty so strong, the scent of salt in the air and the feeling of the ocean breeze on your skin. However, even after just being here for over a week as an intern, it is easy to slip into routine and forget that the ordinary was once extraordinary not so long ago. That being said, the amazing thing about living next to the ocean is that it constantly provides perspective – whether or not the rhythm of its crashing waves has become background noise. Something so great, so loud and so vibrant as the ocean is constantly telling you that you are merely a single, tiny human in a much greater universe.

#1Samana view

Don’t worry, it is not insulting. If anything, it’s humbling and inspiring. The ocean makes me feel small and unimportant. And once I feel small and unimportant, I start to take things less seriously. I think that I can try anything, do anything (maybe learn to kitesurf!) because in the end, I am just one small creature in this massive world.

Cabarete – A Runner’s Dream

Running in Cabarete is magical. The trick is to wake up before the heat sets in – which is not that early, only 6:15 or so. I don’t think there exists a more ideal temperature to run in. Warm enough that you don’t have to start with a long sleeve on but also hot and humid enough that when you sweat, you feel like you are working. At 6:15, Cabarete is still waking up–motorcycles and cars aren’t yet flying down the road. That wouldn’t matter anyway though because the eXtreme hotel, where I am living on Kite Beach, is located next to a somewhat hidden running path – a runner’s dream!

The path is a dirt road that is located 10-20 meters past the bus station where people wait to go to work west towards Sosua. The path rarely has any traffic–I have only seen a moto a couple of the many times I have run it. As someone coming from the northeast of America, it almost feels cliché how perfectly tropical it is. The path runs parallel to the ocean shore so as you run, the entire time you  see flashes of the picturesque crashing turquoise waves. At this time of day, around 6:30am or so, the sunrise makes silhouettes of the palm trees. Even if you are not a runner, it is worth waking up, just to walk it once.

Screen Shot 2015-06-14 at 8.35.59 PM
You can chose to end the run at Encuentro beach. It is roughly 2.5 miles. A quick turn around and return to eXtreme Hotel makes it a solid 5-mile run. However, if you’re feeling up for it, you can take off your running sneakers and go for a refreshing morning swim or early surf. It is ideal for surfing because the wind speed is typically the lowest it will be all day and the crowds haven’t yet arrived. The ocean is your oyster! After a surf, swim, body surf, SUP, or whatever ocean activity you decide upon, you can wash your feet off at one of the various surf sheds along Encuentro and run back! Alternatively, if your surfing left you too tired to finish, you can always take a motoconcho (motorcycle taxi) back for 100 pesos.

caribbean fitness camps

Cyr Wheel Balance at Rogue Fitness Cabarete

With great joy I would like to dedicate this blog to someone I recently met at Rogue Fitness Cabarete. At first glance she is a petite girl but it is soon clear that she has great strength and her gymnastic abilities can drive a chilling sensation throughout the body. Why? We all carry the potential for greatness, and if we truly desire something, incredible things can be achieved. Lea Toran Jenner is an excellent example of how with perseverance, effort and hard work incredible things can happen. Without hesitation, she stepped into a different world, not for money, but for a sense of inner contentment, fulfillment, and achievement. Testing our borders and waking up every day with a zest for life is what keeps us improving and finally enables us to inspire others and teach what we have learned.

Léa

Lea’s artistic life began in childhood, as a hyperactive 5 year old. She started with gymnastics, switched to aerobic gymnastics and eventually ended up on the German national team. At 18 years old, she represented her country at the World Championships and became part of the National Circus School of Montreal.There, she began to fulfill her lifetime dream of specializing in Cyr Wheel.

Léa balance

Here, in Cabarete, Lea is on holiday but even so she has her wheel with her. She has been training almost every day at Rogue, where she continues to practice and put us in awe. We are lucky to be getting a taste of her performance and if you would like to see what we are talking about, check out the video we took of her on youtube.

 

Not only is the Cyr Wheel incredibly fun for her, but it is also extremely strenuous and requires a lot of hard work. It is a functional training of weight shifting to keep the wheel in motion. It also combines core strength and deep stabilizing of the spinal muscles which are not seen but hold our bodies together. If you like what Lea does, don’t hesitate to visit us and we can arrange lessons for you. She is here for fourteen more days to be an inspiration for everyone. Lea teaches us to never give up and do what we love. See you guys at Rogue!

 

 

First Things First: Building a Foundation in the Yoga Loft

What is that saying…first things first? Well of course they are – it seems silly and redundant. But in a new place it can be surprisingly easy to get jumbled up and not put the right things first. I have a few weeks of adjusting to internship life under my belt and am trying to gain some traction on completing the “life” tasks (ya know…run errands, cook, do laundry, find the good coffee). Sometimes completing the smallest task in the Caribbean feels like camping, in a sauna, with one arm tied behind my back. Seemingly simple tasks take allllll day.

I know in my head that adjusting to life in a new country will take time but feeling ineffective is frustrating regardless of the situation. Heeding the many well meaning warnings from my Extreme family to “take it slow”, “don’t burn out”, and the pointed “get your butt to yoga”, I escaped to the Yoga Loft for a class with Claire. This class was exactly what I needed! Her meditative vinyasa flow class allowed me to clear my head and get back to basics. Claire’s style is perfect for beginners and infuses tidbits of yoga philosophy throughout to create a well rounded experience.

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The beautiful view of Kite Beach from the Yoga Loft at Extreme Hotel

This class made me realize how quickly I had forgotten the importance of having a self care practice. First things first, foundation first, put on your own oxygen mask … FIRST. Self care first. For me, yoga is an integral part of my self care routine and it can serve as the cornerstone for building a healthy and vibrant lifestyle in Cabarete. I decided to jump back into this practice with both feet.

Molly’s class was next, and traditional Ashtanga is my jam. I left with a big smile while feeling the “yoga high”. Her style is warm and inviting; she has many regular students that she connects with closely. This is a great class to deepen your asana practice, try some new tricks, and be social!

Molly's class

Molly’s class

 

A few days later I got to try Bronya’s class. Her style is a slow flow that focuses on technique and alignment. She blends in elements from many holistic healthcare practices including tai chi and chi gong. Bronya’s calming and meditative voice combined with nadi shodhan (alternate nostril breathing) and the sound of crashing waves allowed this class to take on a deep restorative vibe. It’s the yin to the yang of the Cabarete athletic lifestyle.

Bronya practicing yoga on the beach

Bronya practicing yoga by the ocean

Practicing in the Yoga Loft reminds me that all of the essential “things” I need are right at my fingertips. First things first, and finding the good coffee can wait-  at least until after class!