Art for a peaceful and flourishing world

Yoga and Art Retreat In France : FAQ



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village st savinien2

When is the retreat?

We are hosting 2  5-day retreats in May 2016:

  • The first one from May 10th to May 15th will be in English.
  • The second one in French is from May 17th to May 22nd. If you wish to be  immersed in French culture and even its language, then sign up for this one!

Where is it in France?

In Saint Savinien which is a small touristic village in the south-west of France. It is easily accessible by train about 4 1/2 hours from Paris.

Where will we be staying?


The retreat is located on the family property and castle which Gaia visited during holidays while growing up. It is inside the village and minutes away from fields and walking trails. You can connect to nature in the countryside and, as well, enjoy shopping and exploring in a quaint, centuries old village… all at your doorstep!

Who are the hosts?

Gaia Orion and Julie Lelièvre are both  originally from France, but currently live in Canada. During this retreat they will be offering a combination of their various skills to enhance your health and well-being.

Who is Julie Lelièvre?

Julie is a certified yoga and Nia teacher.

She graduated from DevaTree school of Yoga 200hr Yoga Teacher Training and added 100hr training from the same school focused on Anatomy and Therapeutics.

In 3 years of full time teaching she has more than 1000hrs of classes taught. She is now running 6 classes out of her hOMe studio downtown Owen Sound.

She got her White Belt Nia teacher training certification with Black Belt trainer Roberta Mohler and Black Belt master Wendy Roman. She is currently teaching Family Nia for expecting moms, moms with newborns and up to preschoolers.

She loves teaching workshops about alignment, the chakras and restorative and yin inspired yoga. She also collaborated in 2 workshops, one with Wendy Roman: The Sensational Body and the other with her partner Grant Bradley-Low RMT: Self-Care through Yoga and Massage.

She weekly leads yoga classes in English and French. For more info on Julie click here!

Gaia-Orion-reikiWho is Gaia Orion?

Gaia is a visionary artist. She has gained international recognition by receiving three awards from Manhattan Arts International and by participating in many worldwide projects that are working toward constructive world change. She has exhibited internationally in Spain, Mexico, Canada, the USA and France. Her artwork has been featured in over 50 publications in Canada, USA, France, UK, Taiwan and China and her greeting cards and art medallion jewelry are sold in over 80 stores across North America and in Europe.

In sharing the artwork and connecting with others she discovered that her transformational images are part of a larger visionary movement that is active in society today… as deep ecology, social justice, conscious politic, alternative economy, and so on… Uniting our vision and natural talents can become a catalyst for individual and collective change so that we can move together toward a healthier humanity.

For more information about Gaia’s art visit her site

What kind of Yoga will we do? How many hours a day?

During the Welcome Wellness Retreat Julie will lead you with cross disciplinary yoga inspired under the shape of Hatha yoga. Hatha yoga is a type of yoga that blends breath practices, poses and meditation. Julie is always inclusive in the classes she teaches. She likes to invite self-inquiry of sensations and offers multiple variations to one movement in order to help you find what best fits your body and your mood of the day.

Yoga will be taught once a day for about 1h30.

downloadWhat is Nia dance?

Nia is a dance that blends 3 martial arts, 3 type of dances and 3 healing movements in its choregraphy .

Nia dance suggests to move your body’s way and to tweak if necessary. Dancing Nia is fun and liberating. After you follow the teacher into the choregraphies, there is always room and time for free dancing. With a background of many years of ballet and afro-brazilian dance Julie found in Nia the perfect balance between following a set of movements and dancing freely. No previous experience in dance is needed! It’s about enjoying the different shapes and movements our bodies offer onto music, in a holistic way.

P1280984What kind of art will we do?

When Gaia teaches art she focuses on connecting to our creative centre. This is done by using visualisation and meditation in the process. Once our body and mind relax, it naturally opens up to infinite potential and creativity. This process is exactly what allows her to be an artist herself: By concentrating on softening stresses and mind clutter, magic happens. This process can be applied in many other areas of life. You don’t have to be an artist to make a good use of relaxing and creating!

Do I need to have artistic experience?

Actually Gaia often says that it can be an advantage if you are not an artist. If you are not a skilled artist, it will be easier for you to “play” as you will have no expectation for results…. expectation and control are from the mind, in this retreat we will be going to spaces of letting go and flow! Marrying mindful  movement of yoga and Nia will be an extraordinary complement to working with our art.

imagesHow about the massage? Who is Grant Bradley-Low?

Grant is a Registered Massage Therapist and for 5 years has worked in many different settings treating specific conditions and injuries in Physiotherapy Clinics and Gyms. He also provides relaxing and therapeutic Massage at retreats and spas.  The focus of this Massage will be on relaxation and getting to know your own body.  It’s an opportunity to connect with your physical-self and with expert assistance, release tension and reset your muscles to a more relaxed and healthy state.  With all the Dance, Yoga, Art and other wonderful activities, you may also have some specific areas to focus on.  Grant is able to blend relaxation with more specific techniques to help get to that deeper tension.  As a bonus, you may even learn some anatomy while he works!  Grant loves to share his understanding of the human body and in doing so help his clients to better understand themselves.

images (1)What will we eat?

We will have 3 meals a day.

There will be a specific kitchen just for the morning where everyone takes care of their own breakfast; fridges will be filled with food for that purpose. Before the retreat let us know what you would like to eat for breakfast and this will be available. We are in France so expect to see fresh bread and other goodies from the bakery on your table!

A light lunch will be served mid-day with salads, quiches, olive loaf, cheese etc…

Supper will be the main meal around 7pm.

What if I have food allergies?images (3)

Our cook will serve us traditional French full course meals. We are in France so also expect to see fresh bread and other goodies from the bakery on your table! Note that there will also be vegetarian options. If you have dietary concerns, this will be accommodated; let us know well in advance about your specific requirements and allergies.

Wine is included at supper time (:

 What will be the schedule?

  • 8 to 9am Breakfast in the annex
  • 9:30 to 10am Meditation
  • 10 to 10:30am Meditative movements
  • 10:30 to 12:30 Art
  • 1 to 2pm Lunch
  • 2 to 4:30pm Free time (option for an organized walk everyday)
  • 4:30 to 6pm Yoga and/or Nia
  • 6 to 7pm Free time
  • 7pm Supper
  • 9pm Sharing circle and meditation

How can I get my flight ticket?

Gaia just booked her flight for only $900. She used from Canadians, watch out, prices on these sites are in US$!

Otherwise she likes to use companies like The Flight Center or Payless Travels that have real people you can talk to when booking, but there are many other options online. Tickets are usually from $850 to $1,100, the earlier you get your ticket, the cheaper it will be. If you have any tips please share them with us by commenting on this post.

We would recommend paying a bit extra to make sure you have a direct flight as transit flight are extremely lengthy and exhausting.

How about for travelling from Paris to Saint Savinien?

You can catch a train from Montparnasse train station in Paris. With one transfer you will be right in the village of Saint Savinien.

Train tickets range from 36€ ($50) up to 85€($120) depending on when you book them and what kind of ticket you take (3 months in advance booking results in 50% discount)

We will come and get you at the train station when you arrive. Once you book your retreat, we will help you to buy your train ticket online and explain how to get from the airport to the train station. Remember, public transport in France is very easy and very cheap compared to North America.

What is the cost of the retreat? How do I pay to book my spot?
You can contact us personally or book online and pick your bedroom.

Price starts at $1,100 which includes:

  • 3 meals a day
  • accommodations
  • art supplies
  • yoga props
  • 1h massage by Grant Bradley Low RMT.

Non-refundable deposit is $360

Book your room

Who shall I contact if I have more questions?

For more information contact Gaia 705-812-7937 or Julie [email protected]


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