Multi-talented husband-and-wife team Chris and Tracie Vlaun, founders of the V Art of Wellness health and wellness group, have turned Miami Beach into an outdoor gym as part of lifestyle hotel The Confidante’s new fitness and wellness programming. Last December, the power couple, along with other staff, began kicking guests’ workouts into high gear with once-daily 60-minute classes hosted beachside or on the spa’s open-air rooftop deck at 10 a.m.

Last Friday morning, I had the opportunity to challenge myself with a hybrid beach bootcamp/yoga tutorial taught by the couple, who introduced the class to what the couple has coined “Aeroga.”

“The first version [we experienced] was off the mat, it’s called Aeroga method—a blend of body weight fitness and yoga,” says Chris. “In the beginning we warm up with a lot of Tai Chi breathing for breath alignment. Throughout the class it will escalate to a body weight boot camp,” he went on to say.

It’s intense, but Chris modeled modified exercises to accommodate the group’s varied fitness levels. “It’s for all levels, for hotel guests and locals who would like to participate.”

Power couple Chris and Tracie Vlaun, founders of the V Art of Wellness health and wellness group, teach outdoor fitness classes as part of The Confidante’s new wellness programming.
Power couple Chris and Tracie Vlaun, founders of the V Art of Wellness health and wellness group, teach outdoor fitness classes as part of The Confidante’s new wellness programming.

Next, we moved onto the mat for Tracie’s Aeroga Flow class, which Chris describes as “nonstop continuous flow to [Tracie’s] choreography and designed playlists or DJ set.” As an avid lover of music, Tracie kept the class upbeat with a range of fitting selections—everything from The Black Eyed Peas to Jack Johnson—that had us laughing, dancing and, of course, sweating. “Where in a lot of yoga classes music is the ambient, in Tracy’s it is the driver of the movement and flow,” says Chris.

Tracie made sure to walk around our mats, correcting form for some, helping others get a deeper stretch, or for some one-on-one motivation. As for me, while finding my balance in the sand, looking out over the crashing waves, I began to see why the couple prefers training outdoors.

“Anything that’s in a natural setting brings us closer to our core primal self,” says Chris. “You can get off your mat and put your feet in the sand to connect more with negative ions, which have a healing aspect,” Tracie adds. “That’s why we really love to do things in nature, although we teach in studios.” “The senses are enhanced when you are outside,” Chris says.

The Confidante Miami Beach is offering fitness and wellness programming beachside and on the spa’s open-air rooftop deck.
The Confidante Miami Beach is offering fitness and wellness programming beachside and on the spa’s open-air rooftop deck.

V Art of Wellness classes are offered complimentary to hotel guests as an amenity, while non-hotel guests pay $20 per class. Classes include a high-calorie Body Circuit Bootcamp, integrating interval aerobic and functional strength conditioning, core training and TRX; a Beach Bliss Yoga class, focused on the balance between movement and presence of the mind; and the Aeroga class we sampled, incorporating a mastery of movement derived from yoga, Pilates and a collection of progressive bodyweight exercises.

The Confidante Miami Beach, which made its debut last April as part of The Unbound Collection by Hyatt, features 363 guestrooms and 16 suites with a 1950s-inspired design; Nina’s House, an eclectic, laid-back beach bungalow hangout; and Bird & Bone, a new restaurant concept from Miami chef Richard Hales that opened last November. Check the C’s website theconfidantemiamibeach.hyatt.com/en/hotel/activities/hotel-happenings/v-art-of-wellness-classes.html for the class schedule, which changes month to month. Information on packages combining V Art of Wellness classes with spa discounts or pool time can also be found there. For more information, call (305) 424-1234 or visit theconfidantehotel.com.