Our first ever week in Seville was a massive success with our Pilates ladies and the lovely Ros Hoyes demonstrating the benefits of Pilates and Mindfulness. Everyone had lots of fun with cava flowing, tapas and Flamenco! Here are some highlights from Ros on the week:
Ros, you were teaching Pilates with Mindfulness in our new destination of Seville in September, can you tell us how you weave mindfulness into the Pilates retreat?
A vital component of any Mindfulness training is directing our experience away from the mental constructs of the mind (the ‘lens’ through which we view our lives) and towards the body. Pilates movements provide the perfect framework for this. I would begin the class with a short breath and body meditation and invite the class to maintain that particular sense of awareness as we gradually move into classic Pilates exercises. Throughout the lesson, I give gentle reminders to draw the attention back from wherever it might have strayed and into the physical sensations of movement. That way everyone gets to experience first hand, the release of the mind’s incessant chatter and the chance to fully be present. The result is a much richer experience of Pilates.
Tell us about the itinerary and what was different from our other destinations.
The itinerary was particularly varied and exciting. It worked well, to visit Seville twice, giving guests more than just a whistlestop overview of this stunning and fascinating city. Those who wished to could visit the cathedral on their second visit. The whole tone of the trip was Andalusian authenticity, and everyone loved the vibrant and exciting Flamenco evening followed by beautiful cuisine in the next door restaurant.
The gin tasting trip, just a 15-minute bus trip away, was a fascinating insight into this family-owned business, and the tasting afterwards was welcomed.
There was also a trip to the local town of Aracena where we wandered the streets, and felt really part of the life of this stunning little town, converging at a street bar at the time of day when families members of all ages were gathering for evening drinks. I enjoyed the extra trips involved while at the same time, felt everyone loved the time to hang out by the pool at the spacious and characterful villa
What about the villa itself? Where do you do Pilates? What should out guests expect?
The villa itself has a rustic simplicity to it, while at the same time has been beautifully renovated to make it comfortable and welcoming. The vast hall which was our base for Pilates, dining and general gathering worked brilliantly as there was never any short of space for any of those activities. We did Pilates in one corner of this main room, as there was no shortage of space and it gave us free range to spread out and we always had the huge oak doors open to hear the birdsong and let the sun in.
What would you say was the highlight of the week?
I think for sheer authenticity and impact it has to be the Flamenco night but the visit to the Palace the same day, will stay in my mind as being one of the most beautiful places I have visited!