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Join Playa Viva in a rejuvenating Valentine’s day retreat. Explore somatic connection through yoga, improvised movement, and therapeutic touch. The activities and exercises are with partners or in groups in order to create more joy, flexibility, and heightened awareness in the way you share touch.
The accommodation options are on private and double room basis. The rooms have an unobstructed ocean view, in-room safes, large porches, private bathrooms, and free W-Fi on common areas.
Playa Viva’s nearly 200-acre property includes an estuary, an Aztec archeological site, a turtle sanctuary, and a coastal forest and mangrove ecosystem, which supports an array of stunning wildlife. Playa Viva is close enough to the trappings of modernity, yet providing immersion into the wonders of nature and escape to utter private relaxation.
The natural landscape and luxurious setting provides an escape from it all while providing a jumping off point to a host of adventures and experiences. From hiking to scuba diving to deep-sea fishing to bird watching and kayaking, it is all waiting for you, doing everything or nothing at all.
During this retreat, you will learn deeply nourishing elemental practices that are great for any level. No prior experience is necessary. You will explore creative ways to stretch with a partner, receive and give Thai massages, and find freedom in your movement through contact dance.
You will be going home with useful skills that will broaden your capacity to relate to yourself, partner, and community. This amazing retreat has delicious meals, a chocolate making workshop, a fire ceremony on the beach, releasing baby turtles, and unlimited beach exploration.
You may also engage in a permaculture hike, a cooking class, and singing or chanting. You will also explore the four sublime states, namely, loving-kindness, vicarious joy, compassion, and equanimity. These are derived from Buddhist tradition, including practices to integrate the four states into your daily life.
You will start the mornings with pranayama or breathing, meditation, and asana practice before breakfast. In the early evening before dinner, you will be offered a contact yoga practice tailored to the level and interest of the students. On the second day, you will be sharing a cacao ceremony to open up your heart and senses.
Through this retreat, you have many optional activities to choose from, including earth medicine hikes, chanting, singing, improvisational movement, and meditation. You will also have plenty of unstructured time to enjoy the beautiful surroundings, journal, book a massage, or take an excursion.
Contact yoga is a unique blend of partner stretching, contact improvisation, acrobatics, and Thai massage that will help you develop trust, strength, and flexibility. Practices will include deep partner stretching and balancing, therapeutic touch, and improvisational movement, all so that you can open up to greater levels of joy, freedom, and presence.
You will have an onsite hiking excursion and the chance to visit the turtle sanctuary and lagoon.
Anjuli Mahendra is a multi-modality healer, teacher, and founder of Shakticura Healing Lounge. Her Berkeley-based private practice, Embodied Resonance includes integrated bodywork, coaching, and workshops that focus on opening the body to it’s highest potential.
Alok is the founder of Rock Water Healing Arts which focuses on wellness in all aspects of life. Providing massage, yoga, dance, mindfulness, wellness coaching, and nature experiences, Alok’s passion is to inspire people to find a healthy balance in their lives through honest connection with themselves and others.
This retreat will be held in Playa Viva, Mexico. Combining simple elegance with natural beauty and a commitment to improving the environment and the local community, Playa Viva is a sustainable boutique hotel located on the western coast of Mexico. It is nestled between the sparkling waters of the Pacific Ocean and the majestic Sierra Madre Mountains near the village of Juluchuca. Playa Viva is situated on a mile of pristine and private beach.
All meals are included in the retreat. The food are home-cooked, deliciously healthy, and mostly vegetarian with fish options. You will also have a chocolate-making workshop and a cacao ceremony during this retreat. Playa Viva food is what you could describe as healthy Mexican.
Playa Viva focuses on traditional Mexican meals but cooked with minimal oil and healthy and local ingredients trying to get as many organic ingredients as possible and growing as much food on site as they can. When booking your reservation please let them know of any dietary concerns. Playa Viva is able to accommodate a wide variety of allergies, vegans, vegetarians, fishetarians, omnivores, and even Koshers.
Examples of a day's menu might be breakfast with oatmeal, local fruit such as papaya, melon, watermelon, pineapple with yogurt, either store bought and homemade, tortillas, fresh eggs, fresh orange juice, tea from local herbs like mint, limon, etc., and local and organic coffee.
Lunch might be sopes, which is a thick hand-made tortilla filled with beans and topped with lettuce, tomato, onion, etc., with a fresh salad of tomatoes, nopalitos, verdolaga, purslane, maybe a vegetable soup, and aguas frescas to drink. Dinner might include a tortilla soup, ceasar salad, fresh red snapper, a variety of vegetarian dishes, and maybe some chicken taquitos.
Snacks during the day might include frozen grapes, paletas or fresh fruit popsicles, organic popcorn, jicama or carrot or cucumber slices with lemon or salt or chile, or a margarita pizza with fresh tomatoes. These are sample menus only, items will vary each day.
The estuary, wetlands, and ocean-side provide nesting and feeding grounds for thousands of birds. You will be able to identify and observe more than 200 species that call Playa Viva their home. Playa Viva regularly has guest a guest biologist that catalogs many of the bird species on site.
Hop in a flat-bottom boat and tour the estuary, gliding past mangroves, nests of cranes, and native wildlife. You can also rent a kayak and venture off to explore the wonders of this tropical paradise on your own.
Whether it's surfing, shopping, or seeking arts and entertainment, Playa Viva have lots of transport and guide options to host you on whatever tour you fancy. The focus of excursions is to find local operators and promote activities that will engage you with the local community.
One of the most popular is the Sierra excursions. Ride a 4x4 up the watershed to visit a family that lives off-grid in the mountains growing all they need including coffee and cacao. The lovely family will provide a tour of their farm and then invite you to join them for a late breakfast.
Playa Viva offers many opportunities for fishing. These include taking a deep sea excursion from Ixtapa to catch marlin, tuna, and other deep sea fish. For those who want to stay closer to shore, Johnny, the head of activities, has been fishing these shores since he was a small boy and he will teach you how to line fish or how to toss a perfect spiral net. Shore fish include the much prized rooster fish. Another option is taking a panga on the lagoon to fish in the estuary.
The 160-acre private reserve has trails to take you from the beach, through dunes, into wetlands, and up rocky knolls. The permaculture team is restoring a network of paths to allow visitors to fully enjoy the biodiversity that Playa Viva has to offer. Playa Viva has built relationships with other landowners to open up hiking trails nearby. They provide a complimentary field guide of Playa Viva for all guests to identify the various trails, zones, flora, and fauna.
Horses are available for riding at Playa Viva. The horses are clean, well fed, and tame with western saddles and bridles. Playa Viva partnered with local farmers who provide their horses for riding, including a pony available for kids. Playa Viva has a horse on site as well that, is used for plowing and riding. The best part of riding at Playa Viva is the pure joy of letting go at full gallop on the beach or ride with your horse into the ocean.
Immerse yourself in nature by taking a small group or a private kayak tour in the many lagoons near Playa Viva. The state of Guerrero, Mexico, is home to thousands of waterfowl and migratory birds. Playa Viva works with local fisherman who can take you out on their panga for a tour of the estuary, which is a great way to see birds, amphibians, mangrove, and gain a new perspective on Playa Viva.
Snorkeling and scuba diving is available through a local tour operator in Zihuatanejo which is a very nice morning excursion. You can try snorkeling in the ocean right in front of Playa Viva and see lots of sea life, however it is an open ocean so swim with a buddy.
The Playa Viva activities team offers some of the best surfing experiences in Mexico's Pacific Coast for novice, intermediate, and top surfers. Local surfing instructors welcome all skill levels. Playa Viva is adjacent to Loma Bonita, one of the only locations in the country where top surfers can catch one of the few pipelines in all of Mexico.
When it comes to relaxing and pampering yourself, what could be better than a massage right on the beach? Playa Viva is always staffed with a masseuse, some of whom can provide additional spa services such as facials and specialty scrubs using locally harvested materials. Services vary based on the provider, so make sure to inquire about the spa when you arrive.
Please book your flight to arrive at Ixtapa-Zihuatanejo International Airport (ZIH). Transfer from and to the airport is included. Playa Viva will pick you up from the airport.
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