Alentejo Handcraft, Culinary & Creativity Retreat
May 5-9, 2019
You know the friend you have who seems to really have her shit together?
The one who has a job she enjoys showing up for. A closet full of clothes that look good on her. An un-cluttered home decorated with objects that spark joy, free of towering piles of unpaid bills and dust bunnies. The woman with the confidence to try new things—from street food in Beijing to starting her own business.
Let’s think of her as a spiritual guru for the modern era. Instead of just hoping for a change, she’s been putting in the effort to create a beautiful life. And we’re not talking about a life that looks good on paper—full of 80-hour workweeks and shopping binges. We’re talking about really living. Finding fulfilling work. Fostering meaningful relationships. Knowing what matters and what doesn’t. That person can be you.
What does all this have to do with a trip to Portugal? Everything, actually. Our retreats provide the perfect opportunity to dive deep into your interior life and return home with a clear mind, an inspired heart and the motivation of a person who knows what she’s here for.
Space is now open for our next retreat to Alentejo, Portugal
I’m teaming back up with my friend Filipe Frazão—a super talented Portuguese food and lifestyle photographer—to bring you 5 days of magic in one of the most beautiful places we’ve ever been. A place so special that its natural beauty must be experienced to be believed.
Exploration of the unfamiliar is a powerful tool for self discovery, and the rolling hills of Alentejo with its ancient culture of wine and food and boundless opportunity for connection and communion is the perfect balm for the harried modern soul. We’ve seen travel change lives, and there is hardly anywhere more beautiful to build your chrysalis than the rugged Portuguese countryside.
Make space for what’s next. Leave your comfort zone at home and join us for the trip of a lifetime!
We can't wait to share the secrets of this sun-soaked region with you. Here's a glimpse at what you’ll experience:
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 historical tour of the property.
On the following days, you'll stroll the streets of a medieval village perched on a hilltop, watch local potters at work in their studio 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 garden and cook traditional Portuguese dishes alongside a local chef.
You'll taste amazing local cheeses, old-vine wines, gold-green olive oil and the region's famous black pork.
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 photos, hit the spa or go for a dip in the beautiful outdoor pool.
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 country 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.
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 more like yourself than you have in ages.
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 refresh. 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.
We’ve seen people who travel with us 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 the time to slow down and explore 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.
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 archaeological walking tours
A visit to a traditional weaving mill using 150-year-old looms
A trip to a medieval village with stunning 360-degree views over the region
Tastings of local cheeses, charcuterie and olive oil. (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
4 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 our favorite places to stay in the world. It's amazing.)
Enough free time each day for you to rest, swim, hit the spa, journal, walk and explore on your own
The joy 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, Apple Pay or PayPal. Once we receive your deposit, you’ll 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!
May 5-9, 2019
5 days of cooking, eating, drinking and exploring your way through the Alentejo countryside
Max. number of guests:
$3595 for double accommodation/ $3995 for single accommodation
*A deposit of $995 is required to reserve your spot. The balance can be paid in one or two additional payments. Payment details can be found here.
Please be sure you can attend before booking. All payments are non-refundable.
• All meals during the retreat
• Four 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
What's not included:
• Your airline tickets, taxes & baggage fees
• Transportation to the farm
• Travel insurance (which we highly advise)