With Kim Wolff & Meredith Klein
April 25th – May 2nd, 2014
“Our starting point was Fes, undoubtedly Morocco’s greatest jewel. Walking through the labyrinth of streets that make up the vast medina is like stepping into 'A Thousand and One Nights.' The smells, sights and sounds bombard the senses. Its houses reflect a confidence in architecture almost never seen elsewhere, their decor profiting from a line of apprentices unbroken for a thousand years.” - The Caliph’s House, Tahir Shah
Update 3/7/2014: This retreat is nearly fully booked. We are very happy to announce the availability of the Pacha suite, newly-constructed and described by the owners as "the jewel of the house." One spot remains in Pacha, with one other spot available in the Qamar suite.
Join Kim Wolff & Meredith Klein on this epic, once-in-a-lifetime journey to the imperial city of Fes- the world’s oldest living medieval city. Often referred to as the “gem” of Morocco, Fes was long ago designated as a UNESCO world heritage site and is widely considered to be the spiritual, culinary and musical soul of Morocco. The Fes medina is a veiled, self-contained city marked by a maze of 9,400 meandering alleyways that spark the imagination and reveal hidden charms at every turn. A feast for the senses, Fes embodies the aromas, flavors, sights and sounds of an entire nation- a place where life moves to the rhythm of centuries old traditions- a rarity in today’s fast paced world.
”I will always remember your retreat weekend as being one of the true highlights of my life.” Read more retreat testimonials.
During our stay, we’ll reside in two spacious, riads (traditional Moroccan houses) that epitomize the style and craftsmanship of Moroccan architecture and hospitality. Both riads feature roof-top terraces with stunning views of the medina and surrounding countryside, central courtyards and plunge pools with ample space to lounge and relax. All guestrooms are unique, well appointed and comfortable. Each room features its own bathroom, en suite. The beds and bathrooms are outfitted with high quality linens. Some of the rooms feature balconies with views of either the courtyard or garden.
Yoga & Meditation
Daily yoga classes led by Kim are designed to help students explore and deepen their practice in a safe and sacred setting. Classes are geared towards all levels, and can range from gentle and therapeutic, to more challenging vinyasa flow style sessions. Modifications will be given in an effort to accommodate students with physical limitations. Yoga testimonials
Morning meditations led by Meredith will offer participants the opportunity to explore a range of basic mindfulness and insight meditation techniques. Meditations led by Kim will be more dynamic in nature and can range from stream of consciousness writing exercises to reciting mantra. All meditations will be guided and suitable for beginners, with an emphasis on simple practices that can be integrated into daily life.
Classes will be held in the lovely central courtyard of our own gorgeous riad with the occasional class being held on the roof top terrace (weather permitting) and one session held in the stunning mountains of Zalagh.
During this leg of our adventure, we’ll explore the myriad flavors of Morocco’s food capital through a broad range of experiences: We’ll feast on traditional Moroccan favorites prepared by a private chef in the comfort and intimacy of our riad; we’ll learn how to prepare and cook a modern Moroccan meal at one of Fes’ favorite cooking schools and we’ll dine out in some of the best restaurants in the medina. Meredith will lead us on a tour of the souks (market stalls) to purchase ingredients which we’ll later use to prepare dinner and partake of as a group; we’ll visit an ancient communal olive press and have an olive oil tasting accompanied by fresh local bread and indulge in a sumptuous lunch with local wine pairing while taking in the extraordinary views of the sacred Moulay Idriss valley. Each of our meals will be delicious, flavorful, fresh and healthy. Both vegetarian and non-vegetarian options will be offered to nourish both body and soul. *Most special dietary needs/restrictions can be accommodated.
Included In Your Package
- Riad accommodation
- Use of both riad premises and amenities
- All yoga and meditation sessions, ceremony and rituals
- Welcome reception with tea and hors d’oeuvres
- Daily breakfast
- Six lunches- enjoyed either in house, dining out in the medina or on excursions
- Five dinners- enjoyed either in house, dining out in the medina or on excursions
- Coffee, tea and water service provided throughout the day at the main house
- Excursion to a traditional medina hammam (bathouse similar to Korean day spa where you receive steam, exfoliating/purifying/moisturizing body treatment, conditioning hair treatment, etc.)
- Celebratory Moroccan Feast prepared in house by a local guest chef
- Guided shopping tour of the medina souks
- Day excursion to the ancient Roman ruins of Volubilis (a UNESCO World Heritage site), tea and biscuits upon arrival, entrance fee and guide included
- Tour of the picturesque pilgrimage village of Moulay Idriss, accompanied by ‘Lonely Planet’ travel writer and Morocco expert, Helen Ranger
- Visit to a communal olive press with olive oil tasting paired with local bread
- Modern Roman feast with wine pairing at a fabulous, hand-selected restaurant overlooking the stunning valley of Moulay Idriss
- Cooking lesson and group dinner at renowned Fes cooking school
- Sunset mountain excursion, yoga and picnic dinner in the gorgeous mountains of Zalagh
- Farewell dinner in the medina at a restaurant that is a favorite of Fes locals
- Transportation to/from excursions outside of the medina
- Taxes & gratuities for all lodging, meals and excursions
- Airfare and airport transfers not included
- Participation in classes and activities is encouraged, but optional and left to each guest's discretion
Pricing & Registration
We’re pleased to offer several levels of pricing- from budget and mid-range to luxury accommodations:
- Early bird pricing from $1495 – $1995- register and pay deposit on or before January 15th, 2014
- Regular pricing from $1695 – $2145- register and pay on or after January 16th, 2014
- $600 non refundable deposit due upon registration to guarantee your spot
- Balance due in full on or before March 15th, 2014
- Please email Kim and/or Meredith with inquiries, questions and to register at firstname.lastname@example.org and/or email@example.com
* Space is limited and reservations will be made on a first come, first served basis * All prices noted in USD
- Pay by check, bank transfer or debit/credit card via Paypal (add 3% processing fee for Paypal payments) through Kim or Meredith
- By credit or debit card through 3rd party retreat booking agency (details TBA)
- FINANCING AVAILABLE: Need more time to pay? When using Paypal’s “Bill Me Later” option, you can do so, interest free for up to 6 months. You can use this option when registering through Kim or Meredith for either paying in full at the time of registration or for paying the deposit and/or balance due individually
Room Options/Luxury & Mid-Range Accommodation
Experience Medina life in a traditional Fes Riad. This meticulously restored, 200 year old house embodies classic Moroccan architecture in a tranquil setting. It is a house built on a love of Africa, world music, Moroccan food and culture and offers a relaxed and stimulating environment that is both luxurious and laid back. *Click on images to view larger version of each room Sammarine: High painted ceilings, large cedar windows and some of the most beautiful examples of classic Fassi tiling on it’s floor, this twin room has a wonderful sense of space further enhanced by an elaborately hand carved cedar wood mezzanine lounge above, from which the view of the courtyard below is delightful. This room is now fully booked.
Guissa: Surrounded by a tumbling, flower filled garden opening onto a shared balcony, Guissa is large, light and luxurious. Its twin beds and Moroccan style sofas are designed and made locally to add to the contemporary feel of the room. Both spots in this room have been reserved.
Sbaa: Combining contemporary and traditional designs, Sbaa is both aesthetically pleasing and stylistically chic. The hand made designs of the sofa and double bed, completed by a master iron forger, are simply beautiful. We love the grace, fluidity and curves. The bathroom windows look onto the courtyard giving glorious views of detailed sculpted plaster and intricate paintwork that are some of the best in the house. 1 double bed available. This room has been reserved.
Ftouh: With a light and contemporary feel, this double room was designed with simplicity in mind. A hand crafted iron bed and Berber style carpets on the clay tiled floor continue the traditional Moroccan theme of the house but with a lighter, modern touch. An ever present blue sky and warming afternoon sun, streaming in through the colored glass windows amid the scented garden, Ftouh offers a refreshingly rural feel. With close access to the roof terraces and a secluded balcony, this is a perfect sanctuary to relax and recharge. 1 double bed available. This room has been reserved.
Rmila: This Messeria, a private apartment traditionally added to the main house to receive important guests, is one of our favorite rooms. We love the calm of the cedar wood against the white plaster and the curves of the door arches and windows. Late morning sun spills in through the stained glass from the balcony windows onto the walls to spectacular effect. The curves and coils of your handmade bed, forged by a master iron monger, perfectly matches the bedroom door arches, above which are centuries old painted wood paneling. The seating area opposite the bedroom and on the balcony over looking the garden and pool area, gives the suite a delightful sense of space and harmony. 1 double bed and 1 single bed available. This room is fully booked.
Pacha: This newly-constructed suite is the jewel of the riad, with an ornate hand painted domed ceiling, marble floors, carved wooden windows with stained glass and intricate carved plaster work. This third-floor suite features a traditional en-suite bathroom with a shower, as well as a private balcony that looks out onto the patio garden and plunge pool. Sleeps up to 2 people. 1 king bed and 1 single bed available. King bed - RESERVED/ single bed $1945. Please inquire about rates to book the Pacha suite as a private room. (As the suite is still under construction, photos will be available in March.)
Room Options/Mid-Range & Budget Accommodation
An ancient house lovingly and recently restored to its original splendor offers all the modern comforts. It is not known exactly how old it is (some think it may date from the Merenid era of the 13th/14th centuries), but we do know that it is a classic courtyard house, full of light, generous volumes and broad balconies. Although a spacious house, an intimate feel abounds. *Click on images to view larger version of each room
Qamar: This lovely upper level room features stately high ceilings, en suite bathroom with tub and air-conditioning. Sleeps up to 2 ppl. 1 king-size bed and 1 single bed available. King bed - RESERVED; single bed $1645/early bird, $1795/regular price.
Maghrib: Another gem on the upper level, this room also features stately high ceilings, en suite open-plan bathroom (shower only) and air-conditioning. 1 queen-size bed available. This room is booked and no longer available.
Many options abound for ways to reach Fes. The most cost-effective option is to arrange transport to Casablanca, Morocco’s main international port of entry. From Casablanca, private or shared cars can be hired at relatively inexpensive rates to transport you to Fes (approximately 3 hours driving time). Morocco’s easy-to-navigate and safe train system operates routes between Casablanca and Fes (4 hours approximately). Finally, a limited number of flights on Royal Air Maroc (Morocco’s state-run airline) can take you from Casablanca to the Fes airport, located approximately a 45-minute drive from the medina. With any of these options, we recommend trying to spend a day or two exploring the unique urban culture of Casablanca (a city rich in history and decidedly un-touristy) or perhaps stopping to visit Rabat, Morocco’s cosmopolitan capital along the coast.
For guests traveling from the U.S. or Europe, you may also choose to arrange flights through a major European hub (e.g., EasyJet via Paris Charles de Gaulle or RyanAir via London Stanstead) directly to Fes. This may require overnight layovers, which you can extend to enjoy a mini-vacation in Europe on your way to or from Morocco. If you wish to explore a multi-destination route to visit other cities on your way in or out of Morocco, our friend Glenn Talken at AirTreks (www.airtreks.com) is available to help you find budget-friendly, multi-stop routes: firstname.lastname@example.org
Visas are not required for touristic visits of fewer than 90 days for visitors from the United States, Canada, E.U nations, and many other countries. Your passport must be valid within 90 days following your scheduled departure date from Morocco. Please ensure you have at least two blank visas pages in your passport prior to travel (you may arrange extra pages in most countries for a slight fee).
Please provide your travel itineraries to Kim and Meredith upon purchase, so that we can help match up guests who may be arriving in Morocco at similar times and want to share ground transport or travel together by train.
What to Bring
Besides the standard packing and travel needs, here are a few additional suggestions of things to bring to make your journey comfortable and seamless:
- Yoga mat (required)
- Bathing suit
- Yoga clothes
- Personal yoga props
- Plug adaptors/converters (Morocco uses European-style 220-volt electrical plugs)
- Journal or notebook, pen or pencil
- Melatonin and/or holistic jet lag products to assist in aligning sleep and body with a different time zone
Terms & Conditions
Cancellation Policy: So that you are well informed, we ask that you please read our cancellation policy in its entirety
- Hold deposit is non-refundable
- Hold deposit is transferable to another attendee
- Full balance due 45 days before start date of retreat
- Cancellation requests submitted within 30 days of retreat date will receive a refund of 50% of total amount (less deposit)
- Within 14 days of the retreat: sorry but no refunds given. Exceptions cannot be made for any reason, including weather, injury/illness, or personal emergencies.
- No refunds or credits given for failure to attend or failure to complete the retreat, or for arriving late or leaving early
- We recommend that you purchase your own travel insurance and encourage you to purchase trip cancellation insurance in order that your trip fees are covered should unforeseen circumstances arise that would prevent you from traveling. Trip insurance can also be purchased to cover medical expenses if your current health insurance policy does not cover you when traveling. Most travel insurance must be purchased within 14 days of making your reservation. We recommend using Travel Guard for inexpensive, all-inclusive policies.
- We reserve the right to cancel the retreat in the highly unlikely case of low registration or other unforeseen circumstances, in which case all money paid by participants (including deposits) will be refunded in full
Kim Wolff and Meredith Klein (herein after referred to as “AGENTS”) act only in capacity as AGENTS for the participant in all matters connected with travel, sight-seeing journeys and transportation, and as AGENTS hold themselves free of responsibility for any damage occasioned by any cause. AGENTS will not be responsible for any damages or expenses or inconveniences caused by late departures or change of schedule, strikes or to their conditions, nor will be responsible for loss or damage to baggage or any of the participant’s belongings. All prices quoted are correct at time of printing, include the cost of operation of the journeys, and are subject to currency changes. AGENTS shall not be responsible for personal injury, death, accident, delay, loss, damage, irregularity or property damage as a result of force majeure or for any other losses or damages incurred by any person or journey participants caused by any delay or change of itinerary or arising out of any act, including, but not limited to, any act of negligence, any person acting for or on behalf of AGENTS for transportation, accommodation or sight-seeing provider or any other person or entity rendering any of these services or accommodations being offered in connection with this journey. This agreement supersedes all previous oral or written communications, representations, or agreements between the parties. Participants assume the risk involved when participating in yoga, foreign travel, and any and all activities and/or pursuits voluntarily undertaken while participating in the retreat. Participants agree that any and all disputes between Participants and AGENTS shall be governed by California law. Participants agree to mediate any and all disputes prior to the institution of any litigation. In the event of any litigation between the Parties to this agreement involving their respective rights or obligations, such litigation shall take place in Los Angeles County, California and the prevailing party shall be entitled to recovery of reasonable attorney’s fees and court costs of litigation. In regard to the stay during the yoga retreat, AGENTS will provide safe, careful instruction and safe premises, but ask that each participant to take personal responsibility for their own self-care and (in the unlikely case) for any injuries incurred during retreat. Modifications are given to students with specific needs. If participants are unsure of their physical ability due to previous injuries, they should seek the advise of a healthcare practitioner beforehand.