TOYKO + KYOTO, JAPAN – Mar 26 – Apr 1, 2017
About This Event
FORM+FOCUS *LUXURY* – We are so happy to announce our newest location of Japan! Explore the land of the “sun origin” in style – visiting gorgeous temples, exploring the art of details and mindfulness, as well as luxuriating in spas, tours, creativity + yoga lessons, and viewing the famous cherry blossoms!
FORM + FOCUS
This is our continued special collaboration with Julian Hyzler from EASEL&LENS to combine a look at creative focus with travel-journal creation classes throughout the week. Yoga and meditation classes will be held daily to prepare our bodies and minds for our travel experience – and the creative projects will help us find new ways of seeing – both yoga and art working together to find FOCUS in the many layers of senses that abound in beautiful Japan. *NO PREVIOUS ART OR YOGA BACKGROUND REQUIRED. All levels are welcome, and participation is voluntary. Projects and classes will be offered as a completely exploratory, non-intimidating and personal experience.
Come away with us for a week in the incredible and culturally-rich country of Japan. We’ll be experiencing a bit of the new and old – starting our week off in Tokyo at the historic Tokyo Station Hotel, an iconic landmark in the heart of this bustling and modern city – before continuing on to the ancient city of Kyoto where we’ll enjoy a stay at a minimalistic Zen-design hotel in the center.
Our home in the capital city for the first two nights will be the famous Tokyo Station Hotel, who’s majestic red-brick building exudes a timeless elegance befitting its deep rooted heritage. The luxuriously appointed rooms with panoramic views of the Imperial Palace Gardens and the Marunouchi cityscape, raise the bar for exclusivity and sophistication. Guests are well-connected as this Central Tokyo hotel is primely located right inside Tokyo Station building and is enticingly-close to a bevy of the most popular attractions and places of interest in and around Tokyo. Above all, it is the impeccable service at The Tokyo Station Hotel that makes our stay extraordinary – first hand experience of ‘Omotenashi’ – genuine Japanese hospitality at its finest.
Then we will venture by bullet train to Kyoto for a stay in the city of over 2000 temples and shrines, where we’ll spend the majority of the retreat. We’ll enjoy a stay at a beautiful hotel and example of modern “Machiya Style” design which contains natural material such as woods, stone, iron, and greens made with traditional skill and technique in Kyoto. The hotel has spacious rooms which feature a Japanese-style living area with tatami-mat floors and private bathrooms with a wooden cedar bathtub, glass-walled showers with rock gardens, and artisanal toiletries. These long rooms are drenched in stylish comfort, from the extra-wide beds and cushiony sofas to the selection of local teas and the white paper-hangings that accent the walls.
Healthful, vegetarian food is part of the retreat experience, including breakfast and dinner daily, and select lunches, either hosted at the hotels or out and about in town. Some meals will have an option for seafood as we’re in the land of some of the freshest fish on the planet. Ingredients are local and seasonal, and our meals will be inspired by the Japanese traditions. We’ll enjoy a traditional coursed “kaiseki” menu, bento box lunch, some modern selections at newer restaurants, a tea-ceremony, and even a sake-tasting!
Not only will we take advantage of the amenities and beauty of our hotels for the week, this retreat will also be full of culturally-rich experiences that will give guests a full taste of the offerings of Japan. By starting out the week in Tokyo, we’ll have the chance to shake off the jet lag by setting off into the sensorial city – a day tour around temple visits, modern buildings, Japanese design, and markets. Then a bullet-train ride to Kyoto will allow us time to reset and feel the bustle of the city fall behind us as we get ready for the calm and spiritual side of Kyoto and the neighboring countryside. Here guests will feel as if they’ve stepped through a Japanese painting – with cherry blossoms, bonsai trees, wooden pagodas, and rock gardens. We’ll take a tour outside the city to the famous “Golden Pavilion” Kinkakuji and walk the way of the “Thousand Torii Gates” at the Fushimi Inari Shrine. Our days in the center will include a visit to the famous market, participation in a traditional tea ceremony, temple visits with on-site travel journal creation lessons, evening walk through the Gion district where we’ll keep our eyes open for passing Geisha, and even a spa day at Kyoto’s premier luxury spa – complete with treatments and relaxation time fit for a Zen master.
Daily meditation and yoga classes will be offered 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. Depending on each retreat location, classes will be held in a dedicated indoor yoga space and some also offer outdoor options as well for us to use if the weather is agreeable.
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!