NOW HERE’S A great way to banish the winter blues, which seem to especially blue given the recent stranger than normal weather. How does a blissful break in the Waitakeres to rejuvenate body and soul sound? It sounds pretty good to us. Auckland’s Waitakere Estate and the Soul Center have combined to create the perfect winter retreat just 30 minutes drive from Auckland.
Included in the August weekend retreat package is comfortable hotel accommodation snuggled in serene rainforest, delicious nutritious meals, and a selection of activities including hatha and shin yoga, chi kung, movement and meditation sessions. Plus, the choice of an indulgent organic facial, relaxing massage or a cranio-sacral therapy session.
The director and founder of the Soul Center, Wilhemeena Isabella Monroe has created a weekend of gentle therapies, wellness practice, group sessions, and plenty of time to relax by the hotel’s open fire in between. “My aim is to create for guests a sense of wellness and awaken the inner glow and ignite the heart’s fire. Everyone should leave refreshed and armed with wellness and dietary tips to take home to use every day,” she says.
The price for the two and a half day package is $750 GST inc. share twin per person or $950 GST inc. single occupancy. (Vegan, vegetarian and gluten free dietary options available). To book email firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com
About Auckland’s Waitakere Estate – Heritage Boutique Collection
The Heritage Boutique Collection – Auckland’s Waitakere Estate is nestled in 30 hectares of pristine native rainforest in the Waitakere Ranges Heritage Park. The venue, one kilometre off Scenic Drive by private road, promises peace and tranquility where the only sounds are the serenade of Tuis.
From the Estate, visitors can enjoy views across the rainforest canopy to the distant Auckland city skyline and the sparkling Waitemata. The hotel, owned and operated by the Nevill-Jackson family for 75 years, provides comfortable hotel style accommodation, a large relaxing lounge with log fires in the winter months and restaurant facilities.
About Wilhemeena Isabella Monroe
BPSA, Dip CST, Cert SRT, Cert BIB, Cert Shin Somatics, Dip TMHST, RME
Wilhemeena Isabella Monroe is the founder and director of the Soul Center. She has worked in dance, holistic health and wellbeing for two decades. She is an established choreographer, director, filmmaker and dancer and has performed all over the world. She is also one of NZ’s top somatic (wellbeing) practitioners and has a current practice at Soul Center, combining biodynamic cranio-sacral therapy, massage, movement therapy, dance, yoga, chi kung and meditation. She is a Skinner Releasing certified facilitator, a Shin Somatics movement therapist and trainer, a certified Birth into Being instructor and a chi kung trainer through the School of Elemental Chi Kung. She has taught somatics, dance and body-mind therapeutics in many institutions, universities, training programs and communities world-wide. She teaches Chi Kung, Shin Yoga and Release Me classes at the Soul Center and facilitates private sessions and is a corporate wellness consultant.
The Soul Center is set 20 minutes from Auckland in Titirangi and is dedicated to providing a space of tranquility, nurture and expansion. The Soul Center is New Zealand’s only dedicated space for somatic and kinesthetic education and research.
The Centre provides weekly classes, weekend retreats, workshops and a wide range of personalised treatments and packages. The vision is to create a community of like-minded ‘souls’ who love and care for the planet for an integrated approach to well-being that aligns the body, mind and spirit.
Some of the Soul Center options on the Auckland’s Waitakere Estate Retreat:
Based on the founding principle of Yoga – to create balance – begin with balancing the nervous system and endocrine system, using asanas and pranayama inspired for healing and inner reflection. Help manage stress, learn to wind down and create a space to relax in the body. This is a transformative practice. Shin Yoga will move gently through the postures with a focus on healing, restoration and revitalisation.
Hatha Yoga is an ancient holistic system of health and self-development that begins with the body as a practical way to affect all aspects of ones being on both the physical, mental, emotional and spiritual levels. Hatha is a combination of dynamic, energising sequences of postures for strength and flexibility, rejuvenating flows for deep release and relaxation, moving into still postures for longer periods. Breath and movement are linked together to create flowing sequences of related asanas, which helps to rejuvenate the body and release mental and emotional tension, inducing deep relaxation as awareness of breath, body and mind becomes integrated.
Chi King (Qigong)
Elemental Chi Kung (Qigong) is an easy, gentle form of exercise that will keep you agile, flexible and in the flow of life. Encourage healthy qi (energy) flow throughout the body – leading to improved or enhanced health, the maintenance of good health and the healing of illness. A meditative body-mind class that encourages deeper connection to self.
Biodynamic Cranio-Sacral Therapy
Biodynamic cranio-sacral therapy is a gentle therapy where the practitioner’s hands “float” on the body. It is about accessing and reconnecting with the health of the body and introduces the client to a deeper, more still part of their being wherein resides our original intention for health.
A one-on-one yoga session is one of the most enlightening hours of any yoga practice. Individual sessions can focus on any difficulties in regular yoga practice, kick-start an old practice, or begin a new one. A perfect way to re-align with your yoga passion.
A guided meditation with focus on releasing tension in the body, calming the mind, and breathing with fullness and awareness. Learn techniques to help reduce anxiety and come to a deeper sense of self and stillness.
Massage and Organic Facials:
Using all organic oils and fresh ingredients, the organic facials and massage treatments are second to none! Incorporating long, flowing and kneading strokes to ease general muscle aches, promoting circulation, relaxation and a sense of well-being.