Lantana businessman and Chamber of Commerce president Dave Arm is bidding farewell to the small fishing village he and his wife, Renee, fell in love with in 2006. The couple recently bought a house in Vero Beach, another fishing village about 90 miles north.
“It’s actually very Lantana-ish with a fun little downtown,” said Arm, who turned 70 this year. “It’s time to sit back and relax. Renee deserves to retire, and we want to enjoy our time while we’re still fairly young.”
The Arms owned and managed a gym, Lantana Fitness at 700 W. Lantana Road, for 16 years and sold the property to Enterprise Property Group LLC of Delray Beach for $2 million on June 2.
The building will remain a gym managed by Sarah and Dawn Malega, owners of the Zoo Gym in Lake Worth Beach, where Sarah is also a city commissioner.
Lantana Fitness was to officially become Zoo Health Club of Lantana on Sept. 1.
Arm will also be retiring as president of the Lantana Chamber of Commerce, a post he has held for 10 years — and from being chairman of the fishing derby, the chamber’s biggest fundraiser, for 13 years.
Arm recalled several major highlights of his time with the Lantana chamber.
“One was being involved with our members who are developers who make such an impact on Lantana, from Water Tower Commons to the Related Group’s Water Tower Commons apartments to the 7-Eleven, the Dollar Tree and anything that’s been built recently in Lantana. We’ve tried to help guide them along.
“The other thing was just to be involved in this great community and especially running the fishing derby for so long.”
He has enjoyed working with the town. “The Town Council and the chamber have a great symbiotic relationship, we work so well together on events like the Fourth of July and Winterfest, and their support of the derby.”
No word yet on who will replace him at the chamber.
Before moving to Florida, Arm, who was born in New York City, spent 30 years working for investment firms on Wall Street.
Arm doesn’t plan to retire from his favorite pastime, though.
“Renee and I still enjoy fishing and are looking forward to exploring the Indian River Lagoon and the ocean off Vero,” he said.
— Mary Thurwachter