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8 Days Meditation and Yoga Retreat in Taranto, Italy

  • La Rosa dei Quattro Venti, Via Monti del Duca 302, 74015 Martina Franca, Taranto, Apulia, Italy

8 Days Meditation and Yoga Retreat in Taranto, Italy

  • La Rosa dei Quattro Venti, Via Monti del Duca 302, 74015 Martina Franca, Taranto, Apulia, Italy

Italy Yoga Retreat with Marianne Jacuzzi

Come to Puglia, Italy, the land of olive trees, vineyards, and the sunshine for this transformational yoga retreat. Under the vast blue sky and close to the cycles of nature, you can let go of ordinary life and tune your heart to the still voice at the center of your being. This retreat provides strong asana, pranayama, meditation, and chanting - all contributing to the spiritual alchemy. It is for serious students of yoga (and that does not necessarily mean advanced asana practitioners).


  • 2 daily strong asana practices
  • 2 daily silent and chanting meditation sessions
  • Pranayama, Jyotish, and Vedic astrological chart reading
  • Daily vegetarian meals with tea and snacks
  • Use of the swimming pool and amenities
  • 7 nights accommodation
  • Airport transfers
  • 8 days with instruction
  • English
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Set on 15 hectares of land, La Rosa dei Quattro Venti was created from the ruins of an 18th-century Masseria (a traditional Puglian farm). Recently named one of the top 50 health resorts in the world by the British Times and one of the best retreat centers in the world by Taschen Books, it delivers quality.

The main house, beautifully restored in an elegant yet rustic style, belongs to the small residential community, which provides for your needs with genuine care and love. Guest accommodation extends beyond the main house, sometimes in the restored trulli (the vernacular architecture of Puglia). The white tones throughout all rooms create an atmosphere of peace and spaciousness, highly conducive to spiritual work.


The grounds include a tiny chapel with old frescos on the walls, lovingly restored and set aside as a sanctuary. The traditional Catholic artwork, meditation cushion against an old stone, and roses upon the little altar provide an ideal place for encountering the sacred.

Surrounding the Masseria, fields and woods spread out in all directions. Paths have been cut into the forest, so you can spend your free time wandering into the wilderness, discovering the many varieties of trees and wildflowers of La Rosa, or out onto the country roads to explore the countryside and neighboring farms.

A swimming pool for the use of guests, complete with lounge chairs for sunbathing, is set behind the guest accommodation. For restful moments, a reading room has a beautiful selection of spiritual books and cozy places to curl up and read.

Yoga studio

La Rosa has a stunning yoga studio. Once the masseria stable, its ancient stone walls create a serene space for practice and sacred ritual, while its hardwood floors and modern heating system will ensure your comfort during practice. It has an ample supply of mats, bolsters, blocks, belts, and blankets. All you need to bring for practice is your own cotton mat (if you use one), an eye pad, and a shawl for savasana.

On this retreat, deep yoga provides the tools for profound inner work. The classics of Tantra and Hatha speak of the physical body dissolving into light. This is more than a metaphor. You are not separate containers but intrinsically interconnected to a vast vibrating whole. Practice brings you to an encounter with that truth.

La Rosa dei Quattro Venti, the retreat center, offers the perfect setting for this experience. The deep blue of the Mediterranean sky; the autumnal color of woods and fields; the fragrance of harvest time, olives, and grapes and sun-ripened figs - all contributes to the serenity and peace of this retreat. With light fading at the end of the growing season, nature moves inwards.

It is an ideal time for retreat and reflection. Time and space open up here, time to dream, space to wander - everything you need to restore and revitalize, to gain fresh insight, and to arrive at a deeper place of tranquility in your heart.


This retreat will also introduce you to Jyotish, the ancient Vedic science of light. You will learn how Jyotish can empower you with self-understanding, self-acceptance, and self-love. While yoga practices serve to deconstruct self-identity, Jyotish serves to illuminate it. It provides insight into the “who, what, and why” of your life and becomes a powerful beacon for navigating your way through daily experience with greater joy and freedom.

During the spiritual talks, you will learn to read the basic themes of your Vedic chart. If you don't have a chart, Marianne will draw one up for you if you supply her with your birth details. This is included in the price of the retreat, though individual readings are not.

Through the talks, you will understand the patterns and archetypes that characterize your unique karmic imprint. With the illumination that flows from this ancient science, you experience a profound affirmation of who you are and a clearer understanding of how to go forward in life.

Yoga program

  • Morning and evening strong asana practice, more than two hours each, based upon the tradition of Krishnamacharya as transmitted through his disciples Pattabhi Jois, BKS Iyengar, and Srivatsa Ramaswami
  • Creative sequencing of poses including deep backbends, arm balances, hip openers, twists, inversions, and more
  • Combination of flowing-led, self-practice, and workshop-style classes, with restorative poses in the evening for deep relaxation
  • Dawn and dusk meditation, both silent and Japa (chanting)
  • Traditional pranayama as well as hybrid techniques including mudras, bandhas, and visualization
  • Spiritual talks at noon, weaving together various themes from yoga, Advaita Vedanta, and Jyotish, along with an introduction to the fundamental principles of Jyotish
  • Noon talks to include guidance in understanding your personal Vedic astrological chart, which reveals your path and purpose in life
  • Opportunities for both observed silence and convivial conversation with friends and fellow yogis

Daily schedule

  • 06:00 Meditation
  • 06:45 Kriyas and asana practice
  • 09:00 Breakfast
  • 10:00 Free time
  • 11:30 Spiritual talk, including the basics of Jyotish
  • 13:30 Lunch
  • 14:30 Free time
  • 16:00 Asana and pranayama practice
  • 18:45 Meditation
  • 19:30 Dinner
  • 21:00 Free time but early to bed recommended
  • Marianne Jacuzzi

    Marianne is a yoga teacher in California since 1986, and in Dublin since 2000. She was around 15 years old when she first read the words of Lao-Tzu in the Tao Te Ching. It was there that she first began to walk the path of yoga, then it became a daily reality in her life.

Set by the countryside at about nine kilometers from Martina Franca in Apulia, La Rosa dei Quattro Venti is immersed in the splendid nature of Valle d’Itria, which is very famous for its trulli (ancient buildings that have now been mostly turned into houses) and for its worth-visiting towns (Matrina Franca, Alberobello, Ostuni, and Cisternino). La Rosa dei Venti is an ancient 18th-century “Masseria” (farmhouse) restored and renovated by keeping its original structure intact, located on a hill at about 450 feet.

Set apart from the hectic pace of modern cities, it offers the peaceful tranquillity of the countryside, where the song of birds and gentle breezes rustling the leaves are all you will hear, where the open sky and rich earth will nourish your soul.

Nearby places

  • Martina Franca, 9 kilometers
  • Boating
  • Fishing
  • Fitness center
  • Health club
  • Swimming
  • Swimming pool
  • Air-conditioned rooms
  • Balcony
  • Beach
  • Dining area
  • Environmentally friendly
  • Garden
  • Lobby
  • Lounge
  • Restaurant
  • Yoga studio
  • Conference room
  • Internet access
  • Library
  • Medical assistance
  • Toiletries

You will be served a fantastic vegetarian meal a day, prepared with love and skill from the bounty of the on-site organic garden. Food is primary at La Rosa, and their exacting standards for alkalinizing the body with sattvic nourishment will provide a delicious detox for your body and soul.

For a minimal extra charge, La Rosa dei Quattro Venti can organize a day off excursion, either full or half day, to some local sights of interest, the beach, or traditional Puglian markets. Puglia protrudes into the Adriatic and Ionian Seas, so the coast is never far away. The Itria Valley has many charming towns and is rich in history and culture.

The white baroque architecture of the cities and the fairy-tale-like beauty of the traditional trulli make this truly a unique corner of Italy. Many traditional artisans still work the old-fashioned way, producing ceramics and lovely pieces from wood and cloth. Traditional production of olive oil and cheeses is another interesting feature. The retreat will include one excursion if interest is there, with the cost split among the participants.

Yet in spite of the many beautiful places to visit in the area, this is a yoga retreat, not a yoga holiday. Maintaining a spiritual focus and conserving energy for the strong practices will definitely enhance your experience of the retreat. For those of you who can’t resist the draw of this magical land, Seven Winds Yoga suggests you come a few days early or stay a few days afterward, staying in a hotel and seeing all the sights then.

  • 3 vegetarian meals
  • 7 nights’ accommodation
  • All yoga classes
  • Transfers from and to Bari Karol Wojtyła Airport (BRI) (minivan to be booked for one common arrival and departure time only)
  • Use of swimming pool and amenities in the common grounds
  • Wi-Fi connection (recommended only as necessary; it is good to unplug sometimes)
  • Yoga mats, blocks, bolsters, and blankets available for your use (bring your own cloth mat if you use one)
  • Extra excursions
  • Flights or trains
  • Gratuities
  • Individual chart readings
  • Meals and any extras out if you go on an excursion

Driving directions from Bari

  • Leaving Bari Airport, take the SS16 and continue for about 69 kilometers.
  • Take the Taranto exit toward Fasano / Locorotondo or Martina Franca, and then take the SS172dir for approximately 11.7 kilometers.
  • Once in Martina Franca, turn left into Strada Provinciale 70 for about 10 kilometers
  • Turn left into Strada Monti del Duca 302 Zona H.
  • Continue for 450 meters and turn right into Strada Monti del Duca 302 Zona H.
  • Then continue for another two and a half kilometers to your destination.

Driving directions from Brindisi

  • Leaving Brindisi Airport, follow the signs to Taranto / Lecce / Brindis Centro.
  • Take the SS16, and after two kilometers, take the Brindis Centro exit.
  • Take the SS7 and continue for 35.7 kilometers.
  • Take the Villa Castelli exit and turn left onto Strada Provinciale 50 for about six and a half kilometers.
  • Cross Villa Castelli and turn left onto Strada Provinciale 66.
  • Continue for seven kilometers and then turn left onto Strada Provinciale 67.
  • Continue for 4.3 kilometers.
  • Turn left and immediately right onto Strada Monti del Duca 302 Zona H.
  • Continue for 1.1 kilometers until you reach your destination.

Arrival by airplane

Please book your flights to arrive at Bari Karol Wojtyła Airport (BRI). Transfers from and to this airport are included in the price. Seven Winds Yoga will pick you up at the airport. Ryan Air has a direct flight to Bari from Dublin. The shuttle will be organized to leave Bari Airport for La Rosa on October 22, 2016, according to the arrival time of whoever is arriving last.

  • The deposit is non-refundable, if the booking is cancelled.
  • The rest of the payment should be paid on arrival.


  • Review by Rionach O'Flynn
    9 out of 10

    "There’s something magical about Marianne’s beautiful, warm and welcoming yoga space behind her home in Monkstown. As soon as you walk through the door, the outside world seems to drop away and an air of peace and calm prevails. When I first discovered Marianne, I was looking for a good teacher and a strong, weekly yoga class. I never imagined that within a few years, Ashtanga yoga would play such a huge role in my life. Marianne is an inspirational teacher with an impeccable yoga CV – we’re very lucky to have her here in Ireland. I fell in love with the practice under her expert, patient and loving guidance, slowly (very slowly!) developing a daily practice, then a meditation practice, and finally making the decision to train to teach Ashtanga yoga full time and leave my old career behind. In 2009, I also completed the Seven Winds Yoga Practice and Philosophy Intensive. Marianne’s passion for yogic philosophy shines through her teaching, and she somehow manages to make this vast and sometimes dense subject engaging and accessible to her students. I loved the way the course took me beyond the physical practice, and gave me a much deeper understanding of the true meaning of yoga."

    Seven Winds Yoga website, edited

  • Review by Yvonne Treacy

    "It is said that the teacher appears when the student is ready. This is so the case with me finding Marianne. I had been practicing yoga for nine years prior to discovering Marianne, but my passion for it had somewhat diminished after the birth of two children very close together. Well, boy did Marianne reignite it - I have been practicing with her for three years now and have never been so in love with yoga. She is the genuine article. Her passion, her knowledge, and her belief and love for all aspects of yoga are so inspiring. Through Marianne, I have improved not only on the mat but also off the mat. I am now taking her intensive yoga year for the second time as she has so much knowledge inside her. I know I will always remain a truly faithful and dedicated student of hers. She is a true guru, an inspiration, and I cannot express how blessed I feel to have found her. Seven Winds is India in Monkstown!"

    Seven Winds Yoga website, edited

  • Review by Helen Fletcher

    "In 2009, I took the intensive yoga training course with Marianne in her beautiful studio. I can truly say that I have rarely come across a teacher who is so inspiring, knowledgeable, and willing to share that knowledge with students. I have no hesitation in recommending Marianne to anyone who wants to deepen their knowledge and practice of yoga."

    Seven Winds Yoga website, edited

  • Review by Alyanya Massey

    "Seven Winds Yoga is a special place. A nurturing space with wonderful healing energy. Having lived abroad on and off over the last decade, one of my favorite things about being home is being able to come to Marianne’s classes. Her teaching comes from a place of love and true understanding, and you can see and feel it in her and in her classes. Yoga has helped me in so many ways in my life. Opening, strengthening, and balancing on a spiritual, emotional, mental, and physical level, and having Marianne as a teacher have made it all the more powerful and transformative."

    Seven Winds Yoga website, edited

  • Review by Lara Dunlea

    "I’ve been attending Seven Winds for the past six years and it has served as a constant haven of serenity and renewal during a time of great change in my personal life such as buying a home, becoming a mother to two children, losing my job, and most recently, training to become a yoga teacher. Having attended Marianne’s Hatha and pregnancy classes, I embarked on the journey of Ashtanga yoga under her excellent tutelage and found that the rhythm, energy, and flow of the Mysore practice have so much to offer. The more yoga I did, the more I wanted to learn. And in 2008, I decided to participate in the intensive course, which allowed me to explore yoga philosophy, pranayama, and meditation techniques in great detail, along with furthering my knowledge of the primary and intermediate series. Marianne is a truly inspirational teacher who not only teaches yoga but embodies yoga in her own life. Although my schedule has become very busy now that I am teaching yoga classes, I continue to return to Seven Winds at every available opportunity as it is a unique sacred space that offers an authentic experience of yoga. This year, I’m looking forward to joining Marianne on a retreat in Puglia to indulge in a week of yoga, sunshine, and good food in the beautiful Italian countryside. The journey continues. Thank you, Marianne and Seven Winds!"

    Seven Winds Yoga website, edited

  • Review by Dee O'Rourke

    "I started going to Marianne’s Hatha yoga class about seven years ago. I always liked the small group, and the room had a healing quality. We formed a strong teachers’ group and worked very hard, but I was always glad I went. We used to go to Monkstown for lunch, and the wonderful chats we had over lunch after opening our bodies are very precious to me. Then about three years ago, after the birth of my fourth child and while I was still breast-feeding, I started Ashtanga yoga with Marianne. During those times, I found it really challenging, especially with a newborn. But I began to feel the benefits, and with more practice, it became less difficult. The encouragement I received from Marianne kept me coming back, and her room became my sanctuary from my busy schedule. It was an oasis in Monkstown. As a yoga teacher myself, I also loved being a student on the mat and needed the nourishment from yoga, which I would bring to my own teaching. I am currently taking a yoga philosophy course with Marianne. Again, the small group, the heat of the room, and the relaxed atmosphere all add to a very nurturing environment. I hope to keep coming for as long as I can. Thanks, Marianne!"

    Seven Winds Yoga website, edited