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Tuesday, July 23, 2024

Zen Getaways: Discover the Ultimate Yoga Retreats

This is how Kristin Okelmann of Hotel Okelmann’s in Lower Saxony, Germany, describes the connection between yoga and sustainability. Yoga philosophies teach that everything is connected and that all actions have an impact on the world. Those who practice yoga automatically become more conscious consumers because they take mindfulness off the mat and into their everyday lives. In addition, many yoga studios and yoga hotels already pay attention to sustainable facilities. Water is served in glass bottles and organic teas are available. Even when it comes to mats, cushions, and blocks, there is now a wide selection of models made from recycled or renewable materials.
Yoga retreats in sustainable hotels
A retreat is a few days of yoga, mindfulness, and sustainability. In addition to daily sessions, there is usually plenty of time and space for personal practice, walks, and meditation. Healthy food and a comfortable room are also provided. If you choose a sustainable hotel for your retreat, you can be sure that the positive impacts on the environment and other people outweigh the negative.
Yoga retreats at the family-run Hotel Okelmann’s
Surrounded by forests and fields lies the family-run Hotel Okelmann’s. The two sisters, Maren and Kristin, who run the hotel, have created a space for arriving and letting go. Several times a year, retreats are held with different instructors, each with their own focus. With its own yoga room, a large garden, and the surrounding countryside, Okelmann’s offers ideal conditions. The hotel also houses Café Heimatliebe, where you can enjoy fresh organic products and homemade cakes.
By the way: Even if you don’t want to take part in a retreat, you can still get your money’s worth as a yogi. For example, in a private class with Maren. Yoga with your dog or a singing bowl therapy session are also available. Or enjoy the sauna in the converted shepherd’s wagon. In the small concept store, guests will also find some hand-picked, sustainable, and fair products for yogis, dog owners and lovers of beautiful (and fair) things. “We are trying to set a good example and not promote one particular lifestyle as the right one,” the sisters explain, adding with a laugh, “Anyone who is interested [in sustainability] and open-minded will definitely get a lot of input and inspiration. But it doesn’t have to be, and we don’t force anything on anyone.”
Yoga retreat in Nepal at Pavilions Himalayas – The Farm
A handful of villas built in the traditional Nepalese style, a main house with a pool, surrounded by the fields of an organic farm that not only supplies the resort, but also offers the local people a real alternative to conventional agriculture – that’s Pavilions Himalayas – The Farm. Beneath the highest mountains in the world, guests can arrive and relax far away from big cities and everyday life in nature. A 4-day yoga retreat, for example, is offered in the spirit of mindfulness and conscious experience. In addition to daily yoga practice, the daily schedule includes meditation, chanting, short hikes around the resort, and a healthy diet.
Yoga and mountain air at Biohotel Grafenast
This yoga hotel on a Tyrolean alpine pasture regularly hosts retreats with different focuses. This fall, for example, a yoga teacher and dancer offers a special retreat that combines yoga and dance. In general, the Biohotel Grafenast emphasizes the teaching of not only the asanas (i.e. the movements of the body), but also the other components of yoga. Most classes take place in the Red Hall, the hotel’s yoga room. Of course, guests can also take their practice outside and enjoy the mountain air and panoramic view.
Sustainable Hotels Offering Yoga
Many Green Pearls® partners offer their guests the opportunity to practice yoga. Either under guidance in a private or group class, or privately in yoga rooms and spaces. But some hotels offer something even more special.
Yoga in the Enchanted Forest of Thailand
The various villas of the luxury resort Keemala nestle into the Phuket jungle as if they belonged there. During construction, the natural landscape was barely touched, allowing guests to immerse themselves in an ancient forest. Part of the jungle is called the Enchanted Forest, a place where time seems to stand still. “All guests must be barefoot during activities to touch the true nature,” Keemala wrote to us about this special place. Although the entire resort is designed and managed as a mindful retreat, the Enchanted Forest is where guests can most clearly feel Keemala’s philosophy: mindfulness and respect in their interaction with nature.
Listening to waves and seeing the ocean while practicing
“Because of our hotel’s location in the midst of unspoiled nature with a view of the vast ocean, a deeper level of awareness comes naturally. Ideal for daily yoga practice and building a routine to take home. From the rooftop terrace of the OCÉANO Health Spa Hotel, Tenerife, you can see the Atlantic Ocean. Here, as well as in the new yoga room in the Center of Healthy Motion, daily yoga sessions are offered to all guests (at an additional charge unless a program or spa treatment is booked). Included is an “Awakening by the Sea” each morning. It’s a sporty and active way to start the day. For a deeper immersion, private lessons are also available.
Paradise Garden for your Flow
The yoga room at Casa León Royal Retreat in Gran Canaria opens completely onto the garden. The large windows allow warm air and the scent of native plants to flow in, enveloping the students and carrying them through the flow. In addition to yoga classes with an experienced instructor, guests can also book Pilates and meditation classes. Afterward, enjoy breakfast in the garden overlooking the distant sea.
Yoga on the Beach in Sicily
At the ADLER Spa Resort SICILIA, guests will experience the sensation of well-being. Located on the edge of the Torre Salsa nature reserve, the nearly untouched beaches and rugged landscape are the perfect backdrop for a few days of complete relaxation. The luxury spa hotel offers daily yoga sessions, and twice a week, trainers take guests on a sunset session.
The hotel was built with sustainability in mind. For example, the buildings were designed to blend into the landscape. In between are vegetable gardens, which shall provide much of the food for the kitchen in the future. A place made for a personal yoga retreat.
Yoga on vacation as a (new) beginning
«The mindful treatment of our own body also frees the mind and allows us to take a new position to value things that we take for granted in everyday life.»
OCÉANO Health Spa Hotel
On vacation, when the routines of everyday life are left behind, you have the time and space to create new routines. A yoga retreat or taking regular yoga classes while on vacation can be the foundation for a change in your daily life. Not only in terms of physical activity, but also in terms of your own (sustainable) lifestyle. And what better place to start than in a sustainable hotel?

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