Alentejo Nature, Handcraft & Culinary Retreat
October 14-19, 2018
People! I am so excited to announce I’m teaming back up with Filipe Lucas Frazão to bring you another culinary & creativity retreat--this time in the beautiful Alentejo region of Portugal!
For those of you who don’t know him, Filipe is a Portuguese food and lifestyle photographer. In addition to shooting and styling for global clients, Filipe is also a ridiculously good cook (don’t get me started on his octopus rice!) and a fantastic local guide who loves to share the beauty of his country with others.
In Portuguese, Alentejo literally means "beyond" and it definitely is. Alentejo is a magical stretch of rolling golden hills, olive groves and vineyards--far beyond the hustle, noise and stress of city life.
In Alentejo, you feel the sun on your shoulders. You eat bread and olive oil and cheese made in a tiny village nearby. You bounce over hilly roads discovering castles and workshops where objects are made the way they have been for hundreds of years. When the afternoon gets hot, you stop at a taberna for a chilled glass of wine. At night, you sleep under a night sky brimming with stars.
In Alentejo, you can't help but slow down.
Alentejo is on of my favorite places on earth. I can't wait to share the secrets of this sun-soaked region with you! Here's a glimpse at what we have in store:
- When you arrive, you'll have some time to unwind and explore our accommodations--a 200-year old family farm that's been lovingly transformed into a luxury hotel & retreat. Once everyone arrives, we'll sit down to a picnic under the trees featuring local specialties and wines and get to know each other better before heading off on a botanical tour of the property.
- On the following days, we'll stroll the streets of a medieval village perched on a hilltop, watch local potters at work in their studios and visit a weaving mill using 150-year-old looms to create traditional Portuguese textiles.
- In our garden-to-table cooking class, you'll harvest produce from the farm and cook outdoors alongside a local chef.
- You'll taste loads of amazing local cheeses, wines, olive oil and the region's famous black pork.
- We'll go on an afternoon sailing excursion and enjoy a meal on board prepared by a local chef.
- At the end of each day, you’ll experience a delicious meal cooked by Filipe and I or at one of our favorite local restaurants.
- And of course, we'll leave you free time every day to nap, explore, draw, take photographs, hit the spa or go for a dip in the beautiful outdoor pool.
All you need to do is book your ticket, pack your bags and show up. We’ll take care of the rest. Meals, your lodging and all activities and transportation during the retreat. We’ve got it all covered. So you can relax, unwind and take in the stunning beauty of the region. You’ll leave feeling de-stressed, re-energized and ready to dive into new adventures.
Yes, travel can do that.
When you find yourself slogging home exhausted from the day, eating leftovers in front of the TV and scrolling mindlessly through social media--you need a vacation. If you feel totally fried at work and can't remember the last time you took a break to take care of yourself, this retreat is for you!
I’ve seen people who travel with me get inspired to leave dead-end relationships, cut back from 80-hour work weeks to spend more time with their families, score their perfect job and tackle creative projects they were too intimidated and stressed to take on before.
Taking a break from it all and exploring the unfamiliar shifts your perspective like nothing else can. It opens up space for you to remember who you are and what's important in your life.
Joining our Alentejo retreat will banish burn-out and inject creative inspiration back into your life.
- The trip for me was so much more than good food, history lessons, and walking tours. It was a measure of time that feels like a really good dream that I keep going back to in the midst of to-do lists and carpools.
- My favorite part of the workshop was seeing [the city] through Olaiya's eyes. She easily navigates through the streets sharing all of her favorite places whether they be patisseries, chocolatiers, restaurants, markets or shops. Many of the places she took us I had not been to before or were not on my "to-do" list. By traveling with Olaiya I was able to feel like a local.
There are only 10 spots for this retreat
$3995 for double accommodation
$4495 for single accommodation
It takes a lot of time and effort to plan the perfect trip. And it can feel like a gamble in terms of the actual experience lining up with your dreams.
Any tour or guide book can lead you to the typical tourist spots. But that's where everyone goes.
When you join us in Alentejo, you'll get a taste of the most amazing food, wine, crafts, nature and historic architecture the region has to offer. You'll meet local chefs, wine experts and artisans and see the authentic face of this beautiful region. You'll experience Portugal like a local, without wasting time or money trying to figure out which spots are worth your time and which are just tourist traps.
That, my friends, is priceless.
- I adored Olaiya’s vision! I feel privileged she took us to so many extraordinary places. I would highly recommend her workshop! It's prepared like a pro but still has this easy going feeling.
- It was so relaxing for me to have everything planned and know that we were going to have a great time, guaranteed wonderful food and fun experiences without having to do any of the research myself!
Here’s the full list of magic we have planned for you in Portugal:
- A hands-on farm-to-table cooking class with a local chef
- Lots of opportunities to taste Alentejo’s amazing wines and learn about how they’re made
- Historical and botanical walking tours
- A sailing excursion with a meal prepared by a local chef (who also happens to be the captain of the boat)
- A visit to a traditional weaving mill using 150-year-old looms
- A hands-on ceramics workshop with a master potter
- A trip to a medieval village with stunning 360-degree views over the region
- Tastings of local cheeses, charcuterie and olive oil. (So good. You’re going to want to fill your suitcases with this stuff.)
- A flower foraging walk through the rolling hills of the farm
- Delicious breakfasts featuring the bounty of the Alentejo (Wait until you taste the honey!)
- Lunch and dinner every day--delicious meals cooked by Filipe and I, picnics under the trees and meals at traditional restaurants and taverns
- 5 nights of accommodation at a 200-year-old family farm that's been transformed into a luxury nature retreat and spa (This is one of my favorite places to stay in the world. It's amazing.)
- Enough free time each day for you to rest, swim, hit the spa or explore on your own
- The fun of traveling with a small group of fellow lovers of food, beauty and nature
What happens next?
Click the button above and pay with credit card or PayPal. Once we receive your deposit, you receive a welcome email with details within 24 hours. As we get closer to the retreat, you’ll also get:
- Detailed instructions on how to get to the farm--you can drive from Lisbon or arrange for a shuttle to pick you up
- A packing list to take the stress out of deciding what to bring
- The full itinerary of our time together so you can plan any extra activities you’d like to fit in
- I enjoyed everything! The trip was so well thought out, organized, and relaxed. I cannot wait for the next Portugal trip and traveling with Olaiya!
October 14-19, 2018
6 days of cooking, eating, drinking and exploring your way through the Alentejo region of Portugal!
Max. number of guests:
$3995 for double accommodation
$4495 for single accommodation
*Payable in two installments: A 50% deposit is required to reserve your spot. The balance is due by September 1, 2018
Please be sure you can attend before booking. All payments are non-refundable.
• All meals during the retreat
• Five nights of accommodation at a luxury nature retreat and spa
• A cooking class with a local chef
• Multiple wine, cheese, charcuterie and olive oil tastings
• Workshop visits with local makers
• Guided walking tours
• All transportation during the retreat
• A sailing excursion with an on-board picnic
What's not included:
• Your airline tickets, taxes & baggage fees
• Transportation to the farm
• Travel insurance (which we highly advise)