TUSCANY, ITALY
July 1-7, 2018

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14652860816_4e8e228ee0_o 2.jpg

TUSCANY, ITALY
July 1-7, 2018

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FORM+FLAVORS - Join us for our newest themed retreat in the heart of Italy - staying in form with mindful yoga and scenic walks, plus exploring the highlights of the area with a food-focused itinerary in the land of mouth-watering cuisine + wine!

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OVERVIEW

FORM+FLAVORS

Join us for our newest addition of a YOGA + FOOD retreat. "FORM" - Besides a daily yoga class, we will also enjoy walks around the scenic Tuscan hills, and a meditation walk will be included in the week as well. "FLAVORS" - We'll not only balance the week with the healthy "form" part of the retreat, but also with learning about and experiencing firsthand the amazing flavors of this region. Each day, we'll be able to enjoy mouth-watering cuisine and take part in tastings, from wine and olive oil, to cheeses, gelato, and, of course, the Italian espresso. From award-winning restaurants to family farms and kitchens, learning and enjoying the food will be an added bonus to working up an appetite during our classes and walks!

LODGING

This magnificent yoga retreat will take place in the picturesque Italian countryside, along the border of Tuscany and Umbria. A beautifully restored farmhouse awaits your arrival, complete with sprawling vistas over the rolling hills in all directions. Former cantinas and stables on the ground floor have been transformed into apartments that are works of art. One can immediately see the careful attention that went into restoring, decorating, and preparing these rooms. Two large apartments are divided into different rooms of various size accommodations, each complete with private bathroom and linens.

A large and open art studio awaits those interested in exploring various creative mediums while visiting, and it can also serve as location for an "art as meditation" course or a journaling room. The grounds are spacious with plenty of outdoor space to sit alone, relax on the outside terrace overlooking the meadows, or enjoying an open-air lunch. Also, the house is located on a large estate ground with plenty of hiking available and even a pool to cool you down in the warmer summer months.

Host and villa owner Julian (from EASEL&LENS Art Courses) and his team will spoil guests with their hospitality, mouth-watering cuisine, and fun-packed side trips. Julian's extensive knowledge of Italian cities and art history will allow for a special and unique look into the surrounding areas. Also, this art instructor will share his love of the medium in his session of "art as meditation". Don't be surprised when you leave feeling as if you have made friends for life. You'll almost feel part of the family when you stay at their lovely property.

CUISINE

Healthful, vegetarian food is part of the retreat experience, including breakfasts and dinners daily, as well as some selected lunches. The cuisine is simple, delicious and Italian, using fresh ingredients from the onsite garden or local market in Chiusi, much of which is organically grown. Dishes may include seasonal tastes like pumpkin risotto, pasta al forno, slow roasted fennel with red onions, salads with wild rocket, pecorino and fresh figs, and more. Selection is seasonal, and you can guarantee to love and appreciate each bite. 

Our dinners will include a range from Italian family-style to multi-course tasting menus as well as tastings of the regional specialties throughout the week. We'll experience tastings from where certain local delicacies are produced, like vineyards, cheese farms, small family kitchens and traditional trattorie overlooking a bustling piazza. And while on-site we'll dine with the villa's breath-taking scenery overlooking the Tuscan countryside.

SURROUNDING AREA

Guests will not only enjoy the villa and encompassing estate, but also the richness of the Italian cities in nearby regions. Day trips will allow students to add arts, culture, adventure, and natural beauty to their retreat experience. Trips include visits to small villages, large cities, and outdoor activities, even a day at a beautiful thermal spa where guests will enjoy a treatment through thermal waters, as well as a body treatment with the area's olive oil. See smaller villages that few tourists visit, and get a true education and taste of Italy with an olive oil, cheese, and wine tasting.

Besides visiting the lovely town of Chiusi, other nearby villages and visits to some of Italy's most prized "food capitals" will be explored, including Pienza, the wine town of Montepulciano, and even a day in Siena - one of Tuscany's most beautiful and famous cities. We'll get a full experience of the flavors around us and how they work together to create one of the world's most sought-after culinary hot-spots.

YOGA

A daily meditation and yoga class will be offered at the start of the day in a way to relax, stimulate, and help guests grow in their own personal practice. Classes are open to all levels, beginner to practiced, and can range from gentle, restorative, and more vigorous vinyasa flow and ashtanga styles.* Style and class levels will be determined and moulded to fit participating students' needs, and with a small intimate retreat class size, students will be able to get personalized attention and comfortability to deeply explore their practice. On this FORM+FLAVORS retreat, the other time of the day we'll enjoy various walks around the area, and focus on classes and experiences to learn about the region and the cuisine/wine - this combines with the asana practice to deepen our mindful experience during the week in a balanced way.

Certified yoga instructor and EPM founder, Erin Lewis, will facilitate the classes, helping each student focus on improving their practice and gaining new insights into their bodies and movements. She's studied various types of yoga disciplines since 1998, concentrating on the Ashtanga discipline since 2008. She received her teacher certification in Florence, Italy and has continued her education with various specialty certifications throughout the years. She now combines powerful movements with more anatomical-based core vinyasa flow and restorative movement in her personal practice and teaching style.

* Participation in classes and activities is optional throughout the retreat. All levels welcome!

 

DETAILS / PRICING

  • 7 days / 6 nights (July 1-7, 2018)
    • Inclusive Retreat Price = $2,395 base price 
  • Deposit to hold space = $950
  • Max # Guests = 7
    * Guests traveling alone can choose the shared room and we match up based on guest profile. Rooms are spacious with separate beds and private bathrooms.
    ** Final balance due 45 days before retreat start date.
    Read full cancellation policy in our Terms & Conditions.

INCLUDED *:

  • Villa accommodation (spacious bedrooms each with private bathrooms, linens)
  • Daily Breakfast at villa
  • Select lunches and dinner on day-trips or villa
  • Transportation to/from day trips
  • Meditation and yoga classes
  • Use of estate premises 
  • Tour guide on various day trips
  • Cheese, Olive Oil, and Wine Tasting
  • Thermal Spa day with olive oil treatment experience
  • Truffle hunt +  tasting
  • Day trip to Siena 
  • Lake visit with ferry ride and meditation walk on island
  • Visit to local Etruscan town of Chiusi with tour, pizza lunch, and Italian espresso demo
  • Farm visit with cheese tour and tasting lunch near Pienza
  • Cooking class
  • Use of yoga mats
  • Tips & taxes

* airfare not included ** all meals are vegetarian. special dietary restrictions can be accommodated

DAY TRIPS:

  • Each day will be a curated experience to combine a yoga class, experiential walk, and food tasting - all combining to provide a sensorial and culturally rich mindfulness practice
  • Tuscan Tasting Tour (explore the special nuances to different cheeses and oils in the Italian diet)
  • Luxury Thermal Spa Day (healthful visit to a Tuscan thermal spa with 'olive oil' body treatments and thermal circuit)
  • Countryside tour (various village visits, historic museums and churches)
  • Siena (explore this Medieval city with a guided visit and free time to explore)

LOCATION:

  • Countryside on border of Tuscany and Umbria
  • Nearest town: Chiusi, Tuscany
  • Nearest major airports: Leonardo da Vinci-Fiumicino Airport (FCO - Rome), Galileo Galilei Airpot (PSA - Pisa)
  • Nearest local airports: Sant'Egidio Airport (PEG - Perugia), Florence Amerigo Vespucci Airport (FLR - Florence)
  • Nearest train station: Chiusi-Chianciano Terme

SUGGESTED PACKING:

Besides the basic packing and travel needs, here are a few things to think about bringing with you.

  • Bathing suit (on-site pool, thermal spa)
  • Comfortable shoes (walking tours)
  • Yoga clothes
  • Personal yoga props (mats and straps will be provided, but if you have a prop you prefer, feel free to bring it along)
  • Plug adaptors / converters