Blazing a Trail for Champions in Oakland Park

They are young, vibrant and energetic. You see them around the city with their two sons Dominic and Thomas. You see them promoting their business Champions World Boxing and Fitness at events hosted by the City of Oakland Park. But who is this young dynamic duo that is blazing a trail for champions in Oakland Park?

A Match Made In Oakland Park

Travis and Desiree Castellon, both native Oakland Parkers, met at Floranada Elementary School. According to Desiree their friendship really bloomed in 7th grade reading class. “He always used to pick on me” Desiree relates while Travis smiles knowingly. Throughout high school they remained best friends but after high school their friendship bloomed into love.  A few years later, in 2014, they had their first son Dominic and in 2018 Thomas, their youngest son, was born.

Travis and Desiree met in elementary school. Photo courtesy of Desiree and Travis Castellon.

Dynamic Duo

The Castellons always knew they were going to open a gym but the path was not always clear. Before they opened Champions in Oakland Park, they were going to rent a space in a martial arts gym near Commercial and 441. When they were about to move in the owner of the gym told them he was shutting down.

Not to be deterred, they changed course and moved to Orlando for a few years.  Travis worked for a martial arts gym as a manger and instructor. While he enjoyed his job and was gaining valuable experience,  the desire to open their own gym continued to nag at both of them. So, they worked and saved until one day they just decided to do it.  “We woke up one morning after we had a lump sum saved up and said you know what ,how about we try our goals again and re-open this gym?” Travis recounted.

Travis, a lifelong boxer, practices his boxing skills in the gym.

Between Desiree’s business acumen and Travis’s martial arts and boxing experience they knew they made a dynamic duo and that they could make their dream of owning a gym come true. So without a second thought, they just did it!

Making Champions

They opened the doors to their gym in Oakland Park, Champions World Boxing and Fitness one year ago on June 1, 2018. Ever since then they having been making champions. According to both Travis and Desiree, it is not just the kinds of champions that win awards but the kinds of champions that are winners in life.

One year ago Champions World Boxing and Fitness opened its doors in downtown Oakland Park.

They have helped people reach weight loss goals, but Desiree says that the most satisfying achievement has been helping kids gain self-confidence. “Mentally it gives them something to feel good about… their parents tell me, ‘ I can’t even believe that now he is walking with his head up’. These are not traditional champions, but they are champions nonetheless. Desiree and Travis could not be more proud of what they have achieved so far.

Travis who has been a martial artist and boxer his whole life, loves inspiring kids to be champions. Photo courtesy of Champions World Boxing and Fitness.

The Future Of Champions World Boxing and Fitness

Through teaching and infusing Martial Arts mindset into Boxing, Travis and Desiree hope to expand their business to include several locations and kids after school programs. They want to continue to inspire people and blaze a trail for champions of all ages to be the best version of themselves.

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* is an independent publication, not affiliated with the City of Oakland Park.

Desiree Avila


Désirée Ávila has called Oakland Park her home for over 33 years. In addition to publishing, Désirée has been featured in print publications, locally and abroad. Désirée was an award winning teacher for 10 years and has a doctoral level education in Educational Technology. She is currently a licensed Florida Realtor® and is committed to a high-level of professionalism.

Désirée consistently professionally develops herself and has earned several different professional designations and certifications in real estate including the PSA, e-Pro, AHWD, SRS, ABR, and SFR. She was also awarded the C2EX, Commitment to Excellence award by the National Association for Realtors (NAR). This award is given to Realtors® that distinguish themselves for their commitment to excellence in the real estate industry.

She is esteemed by her real estate colleagues and has consistently received 5 star reviews from her clients. Her philosophy about real estate is that being a Realtor® is a way of teaching and helping people, and in the process a real estate transaction may occur, that is to say her foremost priority is and has always been about helping others.

She is dedicated to her hometown of Oakland Park and works consistently on building and fostering a strong community. She is passionate about photography and loves to read books about history ; the more detail the better! In addition to English, Désirée is fluent in Portuguese, Spanish, French and Italian.

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