If you think dancing is a workout or vice versa, the new Sophia's Dance Journey is for you.
Opened last week, the new Modesto dance studio at 711 10th St. offers dance and fitness classes. Owner and Manteca native Sophia Payan decided to start the studio after graduating last summer from the New York Conservatory of Dramatic Arts.
The 2005 Central Catholic High School graduate has six instructors including herself. The studio offers hip-hop dance classes as well as salsa cardio, pole dancing and yoga fitness classes.
She said the studio soon will expand the roster to include ballet, jazz, lyrical and modern dance classes as well Zumba fitness.
"I wanted to bring something different and edgy to our area," said the 22-year-old. "I love dance, but I also wanted to tie in fitness because that's something I'm passionate about, too. It's a fun way to keep fit."
Payan, who attended the Washington Academy of Performing Arts before switching to the New York school, previously danced with the Stockton Ballet Academy and Central Catholic cheer team.
Sophia's Dance Journey currently is open only to adults, but Payan said she hopes to add children's programs as well as classes for the disabled.
The 6,000-square-foot space consists of a large, open dance room and a smaller room for the pole-dancing sessions.
Membership is $45 a month, with varying per-class fees.
The studio is open from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Friday and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday.
"We want to bring a new way to enjoy dance and fitness and have a comfortable atmosphere to enjoy doing what we love," Payan said.
For more information call 408-0620 or go to www.sophiasdancejourney.com.
Elsewhere around the Business Beat:
Made-to-order stir-fry is on the menu at Fresh Grill Mongolian BBQ in Vintage Faire Mall.
The Mongolian barbecue-style restaurant lets customers fill a bowl with raw ingredients — meats, noodles, veggies, sauces. It's then prepared on the special round grill in front of them.
This is owner Benson Choi's second Fresh Grill Mongolian BBQ. His first opened eight months ago in the Sherwood Mall in Stockton.
The Vintage Faire location opened last month in the second-floor food court. Rice and noodle specials also are available.
Choi, who owned sushi restaurants in Fremont and Sacramento for almost 30 years, decided to switch to Mongolian barbecue for a change of pace.
"I wanted something different," he said. "People really like it, we are getting very busy."
Fresh Grill is open from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday to Saturday and 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Sunday. For more information, call 521-7288. ...
And finally, get your 31 flavors and then some at the newest Baskin-Robbins shop in Modesto.
The ice cream store opened earlier this year at 1717 Oakdale Road in the newly renovated Oakmore Plaza at Briggsmore Avenue and Oakdale Road. The shop seats about 24 and is open from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. everyday. For more information, call 521-3111.
Have an item for Business Beat? Contact Marijke Rowland at The Modesto Bee, P.O. Box 5256, Modesto 95352; 578-2284 or firstname.lastname@example.org.