Carolanne Leone is the owner and operator of The Studio, a Pilates/movement training studio on Wilmington’s West Side. She is also this week’s #PeopleOfWilmDE. She was nominated by Josie Harper. Read her story below.
“I was born in Queens, NY and raised in Wilmington. My father was Italian and my mother was Irish. Yes, everything that you have heard about this combination is ALL TRUE!
Some interesting facts about me:
- I am the oldest of 7 and we are a close knit family. I am Aunt Carol to family and even friends.
- I love entertaining and putting together a large plate of antipasto and cheese board along with my signature caprese salad.
- I can still recite the announcements from when I was a flight attendant (kind of funny!)
- I still take contemporary dance classes in Philadelphia to keep me out of my comfort zone.
I began competitive swimming at age 7 and swam all the way through college. When I graduated from the University of Delaware with a Marketing degree I opened up my own aerobic/dance studio in Wilmington with guts, courage and determination. I never looked back, even when I had to sell my car for rent. I developed a following and grew the business. Throughout the years, the industry evolved and I transitioned into personal training and then Pilates. With my love for swimming, contemporary dance and physical movement, I have learned to train not just a person’s body, but the whole person. I have touched so many lives throughout the years, and those lives have also touched me. I have deep rooted relationships in Wilmington as well as around the world. I receive personal joy helping clients learn and grow in healthy ways. From Olympic skater Johnny Weir to young athletes, professionals, and (those with) unique backgrounds and needs, it has been the reason I have stayed in Wilmington.
(I feel fortunate that I’m) a small business owner that has been around since before small businesses were fashionable in Wilmington, and I’m still thriving! As a woman, success has not been about what I have, but the process in which I have grown.
Whether I’m performing a dance routine, choreographing, running, or spinning, there have been countless organizations that I have volunteered for throughout Wilmington. A few include the American Heart Association, American Lung Association, Multiple Sclerosis, fundraising Mike Purzycki for Mayor and even the Delaware Children’s Theater, and the food drive on Front Street.
I live on the Brandywine River and absolutely love sitting in my window taking in the beauty of mother nature; I love a good storm! I like nice runs around Rockford Tower, Brandywine Zoo and the bridges. These are just the tip of some of the beautiful attractions in Wilmington.
A perfect evening out in Wilmington is to have a wonderful and eclectic meal at Bardea, La Fia or Banks’ Seafood. Supporting the arts and attending shows at The Grand, Queen, and more are all so stimulating! Wilmington has become so creative with festivals, also.
During the week, I have my favorite places to visit. Wild salmon at Sansone’s, groceries at Papa’s, and Flowers by Yukie are a few of my favorites. Frank’s Wine has given us such smiles as his wine tastings/live music alfresco style in his parking lot.
Even though my business is in the health profession, I have enjoyed fusing all kinds of professionals, practitioners and individuals in Wilmington while supporting local businesses.
Wilmington has become a little gem that is surrounded and now recognized by Philadelphia and New York. It’s nice to be close enough to also enjoy these cities.
In years to come, let’s see Wilmington develop more shops and restaurants, continuing to make our city grow and become a destination!”