The Paez family have always had dancing in their veins. Born and raised in Ecuador, Raquel and Andrea learnt to dance almost before they knew how to walk, and it was this background that brought the whole Paez family together under Raquel’s direction to grow Salsabor into what it is today.
Raquel Paez Riccardo began Salsabor, which means ‘salsa with style’, in 2005 as a hobby business between her work and life commitments, but her passion for the dance kept drawing her back to the desire of doing it fulltime.
A trip around the world to build on her dance knowledge and experience, with an extended stay in London where she met her husband, saw Raquel decide that dancing was what she wanted to do full time and upon her return jumped into growing Salsabor into what it is today.
Salsabor moved into its own studio on East Row in Civic in Canberra in 2010, when her sister Andrea came on a business partner and her brother Alejandro started as a teacher. It soon expanded to two studios and offered classes in multiple disciplines and locations around Canberra, growing quickly from 70 students to approx. 400 and 25 instructors.
It became known as the friendliest, most inclusive and supportive Latin dance school in Canberra and catered classes to absolute beginners through to experienced dancers. Along with the classes, Salsabor held regular socials and dances for their students and the dancers of Canberra to build a thriving dancing community.
In 2011, Raquel and Andrea, collaborated to realise their dream of the Canberra Latin Dance Festival, putting Canberra well and truly on the international Latin dancing stage.
When the Salsabor studios in East Row burnt down in 2013 due to a fire in an adjoining restaurant, the sisters became uncertain about the future of the company. However, their passion, determination and the overwhelming support from the community bolstered the sisters to open new studios in 2014.
They are now excited to take Salsabor to even greater heights with a new website, new classes and new projects.