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Living Art Swims on Walls

Robert Bray freely admits that he’s obsessed with fish. Not so much the fish you and your buddies might spend the day trying to catch, but the extraordinarily diverse and brightly colored fish you can only find in an aquarium.

“I used to hang around the store when I was a little kid until the owner finally gave me a broom and told me to get busy,” Bray says, laughing at the memory. “I got my first fish when I was five, and by the time I went to college I had eleven aquariums in my room,” he adds.  “I worked in this same store throughout high school and I even went to a local college so that I could come and work here on weekends.”

The store is The House of Fins in Greenwich and it has been in business for 53 years. Bray bought the store the year he graduated from college – “and I got married that year, too,” he adds. Over the past twenty years, Bray has grown the business, expanding the lines of tanks and fish, and building a team of knowledgeable biologists, service technicians and designers.

The House of Fins designs both fresh and saltwater installations. “We specialize in fish from the Amazon River and from the African Rift lakes, but nowadays nearly all the fish you find for sale are aquacultured.  This is a very responsible industry,” he says. Coral is also mostly tank-raised. The United States government requires a permit for anyone wanting to import coral because so many species are endangered.

The House of Fins offers pretty much anything from a $5 fish bowl to built-in aquarium walls, most often found in corporate offices or high end residences.  “A wall aquarium is like a piece of living art,” says Bray, “you never tire of looking at it.”

THe House of Fins is having a special 53rd Anniversary Splash Event on October 2nd and 3rd with speakers and vendor demonstrations, and if you're in the market for a whole installation or just a couple of new fish, take advantage of their 25% to 50% off sale.  The House of Fins is located at 99 Bruce Park Avenue in Greenwich.

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