Name of company
Orange Tree Yoga, Loulé
What type of activity is it?
Residential yoga retreats, plus ongoing classes for those who live in the Algarve, taught by experienced yoga instructor Rachel Lovegrove.
What makes it special?
Total relaxation for the mind, body and spirit. A chance to improve your technique (or try something totally new) in tranquil surroundings, and get to meet new people.
Where do you participate in this activity?
Rachel runs a series of week-long residential retreats, alternating between two delightful rural centres near Loulé: Quinta Mimosa and Monte na Luz. She also teaches a range of weekly classes, as well as offering one-to-one and private group tuition.
See the website for details of dates and times.
The retreats/classes take place in purpose-built yoga ‘temples’ which are light and airy. Mats, blocks, pads and webbing are provided, but you are also free to bring your own if you prefer.
The accommodation at Quinta Mimosa is in three converted farmhouses; there are three ensuite rooms in each house with lounge, fully equipped kitchen, terrace and barbeque area, plus two swimming pools. Also available is a dormitory area accommodating up to five people, in a mezzanine gallery integrated above the yoga studio, or a separate twin room which shares the bathroom with the dormitory area.
At Monte na Luz there are single and double rooms arranged in small cottages and the main building. It's set in lovely gardens, and has a great swimming pool.
Accommodation at both venues is simple rather than luxurious, but you’ll find yourself spending most of the time outdoors in any case.
The retreats/classes are aimed at all levels, from beginners to experts, and Rachel will take each individual through the exercises at whatever pace they feel comfortable with. Novices will soon find themselves adopting poses they didn’t think their bodies were capable of! The more experienced will learn from Rachel and from their fellow classmates.
The retreats usually involve a programme of posture (asana) work in the mornings, with more meditative and restorative/relaxing practice in the afternoons.
Why do you like it?
Peaceful surroundings in the hills above Loulé, coaching that alternates between gentle/firm as required, and a real bonding experience. Many people come for the relaxation first, and the yoga second - it’s the perfect ‘peg’ on which to hang a holiday that involves doing something other than lying by a pool.
Plenty of time is scheduled between classes to allow for other activities, quiet time, excursions, sunbathing/swimming or massage treatments.
The price of the retreats includes brunch and dinner. Tea, coffee and water is also available at all times.
Rachel is also an experienced massage therapist and provides holistic relaxing and deep-tissue massage treatments.
Size of place or limit of numbers
The total limit on numbers relates to the number of beds available at the respective centres, but the ideal size for classes is up to about 16, which ensures more time for personal tuition.
Prices from €599 to €875 include 7 nights accommodation, 10 yoga classes, 6 brunch meals and 5 evening dinners.
Flights and transfers not included.