Elizabeth Monson

Obstacle Advice

Advice on purchasing a building to turn into a retreat center


We purchased a building that was over 100 years old and zoned as a primary residence. After fours years we were told that we needed to do significant upgrades to the building in order to be compliant to the zoning we required to continue operating as a center.


Before you make the purchase, look into the zoning bylaws in detail so that you know what will be required once you start having paying guests stay overnight. And, if you will be serving food, that is another thing to consider carefully because you will need to have a commercial kitchen, and to know the details of food safety. There is also wheelchair accessibility to consider. All of this can be quite an undertaking, and its better to know up-front with you’re dealing with, instead of being surprised by the requirements after you’ve already committed to buying the place (as we did).

Why Retreat?

We asked people why they go on retreat, here's what they said:

Watching the sun come over the mountain in the morning inspires me! Holly

Retreat Guru's Vision

We believe human beings are innately wise, strong and kind. This wisdom, although not always experienced, is always present. Going on retreat is a beautiful way to reconnect to our basic sanity and health. Our aspiration at Retreat Guru is to inspire people to experience authentic retreats and reconnect with their innate wisdom, strength and kindness.