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Spend your weekend at a hidden treasure, set deep in the beautiful countryside of south Oxfordshire. You will be surrounded by in nature less than two hours from London. This weekend retreat is an opportunity to revitalize and enjoy reconnecting with yourself and others. There will be delicious vegetarian food and plenty of time just to hang out and chat, meet new people, read, relax, and enjoy being in the community in natural surroundings.
All rooms are comfortable and charming at Braziers Park. All bathrooms are shared. Single rooms are subject availability.
During this retreat, you will be practicing classical Hatha yoga which will naturally open the heart and nurture you to a space of surrender and stillness. A typical class will include asana (postures), pranayama (breathing exercises), hands-on adjustments, guided relaxation, chanting, and a taste of philosophy. Typically, each class will last for two hours.
The day will begin with silent meditation and a little mantra chanting. This will be followed by the morning yoga class. You will then have breakfast followed by free time, massages, and the afternoon yoga practice. In the evenings, there will be other activities that may include meditation, inspiring cinema, bonfires, and chanting.
Raquel Alves started teaching in 1992. She is qualified with Para yoga (Rod Stryker), BWY, and Sivannanda. Originally from Africa, she now lives in the UK. She also practiced Ashtanga yoga for years under John Scott and spent four months in Mysore with Sri Pathabi Jois, previously she did Iyengar yoga. Her personal practice draws on her current teacher's teachings, she also assists him when he is teaching in Europe. She is also a mentor for the Life Center on their teacher diploma course.
Your retreat will take place in Braziers Park, a warm country manor house (formally home to 007), set deep in beautiful countryside and the rolling Chiltern Hills of South Oxfordshire, an area of outstanding natural beauty. The location is perfect for a deeply relaxing and rejuvenating retreat. The old manor is Grade II listed in the strawberry gothic style and it has so much character and beauty.
There are real log fires, plentiful sofas, and a grand piano among its charms. All set in 57 acres of land with beautiful gardens, Braziers is a working eco-community with sheep, chickens, a walled vegetable garden, and an ancient orchard.
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You will be served daily organic and vegetarian breakfast meals during this retreat.
Braziers Park is very quaint and quirky with plenty of space to nestle down with a book. There's the library, the study, dining room, and an informal space by the log fire and grand piano. There is a lovely woodland walk, which is a great opportunity to experience some of the wildlife beauties of the estate. There will be plenty of time just to hang out and chat, meet new people, read, relax, and enjoy being in the community in natural surroundings.
You can book a massage on site with a reservation for an extra cost.
Please book your flight to arrive at Heathrow Airport (LHR) or Gatwick Airport (LGW).
From Reading, the Braziers Park stop is not listed on timetables. It is between Woodcote and Wallingford and is known as Ipsden Turn by the bus drivers but you should also ask for Braziers Park as there are two stops called Ipsden turn. It is the first one if you are coming from Reading and the second if you are coming from Oxford.
From Oxford, go to bus stop H5 on St Aldates to catch the X39 or X40. The journey will take approximately 55 minutes on either bus, passing through Wallingford where it may stop for a while or change driver or bus. After leaving Wallingford, it is approximately six minutes before reaching Braziers stop.
You will pass two roundabouts and turn right onto the main road (A4074), travelling straight for a few more minutes when you will see large black and gold gates on your left, followed by a small wooden bus shelter. This is the stop immediately before Braziers stop but don’t get off there or you could get very lost as Braziers Park is not in Ipsden itself.
Ring the bell as you pass this stop, Braziers stop approximately 30 seconds later at the bottom of hill. If you’re unsure, ask the drivers. It is the second Ipsden Turn stop. After getting off the bus, follow the lane on the same side of the road (signposted Braziers Park) and it will lead you directly to the main entrance of Braziers five minutes or so away just behind the trees you can see at the end of the lane.
Visitors travelling by train are advised to go to Reading central railway station and then catch the X39 / X40 bus to Braziers Park, as these buses run from just outside the station. Goring and Streatley Station is about 60-minutes walk with steep hills, no buses but occasionally taxis.
Once you are at Reading station, leave the station at the main entrance, cross the road opposite and you will see some bus stands, make your way to bus stop SB. The X39 takes approximately 25 minutes. The X40 turns off for a loop of Woodcote before rejoining the X39 route, so it will take ten minutes longer.