New Year, New Adventures!
The Whole Experience started off 2019 in the Motherland! What an unforgettable experience it was. We hosted 9 incredible women from all different backgrounds and walks of life. As this was our first retreat outside of Southeast Asia we were so excited to grow the scope of our business to include some of our favorite regions in the world. We couldn’t have picked a better country to start off our 2019 retreat roster that includes 8 retreats on 4 different continents!
Our villa was located in Constantia, the oldest wine country in the Cape Town area and was the perfect location to focus on our wellness journeys, which included morning meditation and yoga while watching the sunrise over Table Mountain. We focused on internal wellness components by journaling daily, participating in sustainable healthy lifestyle workshops and giving ourselves time to truly rest and restore. Of course while we worked internally, we also worked out with some good old fashioned boot camps!
“Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food.” One of our favorite things about each retreat is that we are able to hire local chefs that each bring something unique to the table. This retreat was no exception! We were so fortunate to have had the opportunity to work with local South African Chef Tracey Younghusband (instagram @traceyyounghusband). Her gift and commitment to serving a healthy, whole foods based menu throughout the week had our Tribe Members feeling satiated, healthy and most importantly inspired to go home and incorporate more fresh, live, vegetarian foods into their diets. Each meal we were delighted to see what Tracey would come up with. Her wide use of exotic flavors like roasted strawberries with Za’atar and Cape Malay Curry were a delight to the senses. We are also excited to announce as part of the “We Gives Back” non-profit initiative that the Whole Experience runs. In which we donate a portion of each retreats proceeds to initiatives taking place regionally. We are allocating South Africa’s non-profit retreat funds to Tracey’s initiatives. We were so touched by her non-profits efforts to help to disadvantaged youth in the Townships of Cape Town gain access to life skills and practical knowledge of the service industry. This will help them secure jobs and help their families. We are excited to hear what the non-profit is able to do with the donation and look forward to updating the Tribe with what their funds supported.
In addition to working on our wellness journeys and fulfilling our minds, bodies and souls, we also got out to explore what South Africa has to offer. The week included a day at Robben Island where actual freedom fighters gave us a tour of the island’s prison and explained some of the political history behind South Africa's apartheid. Giving us insight to the continuing struggle both past and present to gain freedom for all citizens of their country. It was incredibly moving and special to be able to hear first hand accounts of this important part of history.
The week also included a cable car ride up Table Mountain, exploring the beautiful coastlines of the Cape of Good Hope where we went to the most Southwest point of Africa. We even got to see local penguins and the successful conservation efforts that have taken the colony from only 2 breeding pairs in 1982 up to the current population of over 3,000 penguins. They are still on the endangered species list but are on the road to recovery. Last but certainly not least, we did a tour of Stellenbosch. One of the world’s most famous wine regions. It was an incredible day enjoying some much needed girl time with spectacular wine tastings and a beautiful farewell dinner overlooking the vineyards. The area was absolutely breathtaking and we got to learn about how some of the regions most famous wines are produced.
This week was certainly a very special experience all around and we cannot thank our beautiful Tribe Members enough for joining us in Cape Town. We are so humbled to see how our tribe has grown already! We have officially finished our fourth retreat and now have almost 50 Tribe members around the world. We are beyond proud to call them our sisters and can’t wait to see where we all connect next.