ZYL Travel Deeper Retreats Mission:
Our mission is to invite our guests to travel deeper via the cultural immersion of getting to know a city or region, well beyond its surface layer. We unite forces with local residents to learn about and enjoy European cities and regions through their eyes. The idea is to awaken ourselves through travel, friendship, and yoga.
To ensure personal attention, a maximum of twelve voyagers shall be permitted per trip. All excursions have been chosen by our host and co-host, both certified Iyengar teachers, as the absolute best means by which to delight your senses and discover the rich history, food, wine, and culture of our destinations. To preview that which awaits, please be sure to feast your eyes on the pictures below. We are blessed to offer our 2nd annual ZOE Travel Deeper Verona Retreat!
Verona is a city in northern Italy, noted, in part, for its medieval, old town center. Built near the meandering Adige River, and at the foot of the Lessini mountains, it is the setting of Shakespeare’s, "Romeo and Juliet.” The historic city of Verona was founded in the 1st century B.C. It flourished, both under the rule of the Scaliger family in the 13th and 14th centuries, and as part of the Republic of Venice from the 15th to 18th centuries.The core of the city consists of the Roman town, nestled in the loop of the river containing one of the richest collections of archaeological ruins in northern Italy. Don’t forget to check out the rest of the pictures below!
The ZOE Experience:
We have chosen October because it’s prime wine making season and the fall weather is simply stunning! Our villa is just a fifteen minute walk go city center, and is known as one of the coolest neighborhoods in the town! Our villa acts as our home for eight days and seven nights in the charming city center of Verona.
Each morning, breakfast is served in your room, and a daily Iyengar yoga class for all levels is held in our co-host, Francesca’s Iyengar Yoga studio. Brand new beginners are welcome too! Verona is a perfectly proportioned city. One can see it on foot, and yet it’s large enough to still become wonderfully lost, meandering historic streets lined with boutique shopping and mom n’ pop restaurants.
Francesca, our native co-host, will be our personal guide to the very best of the city. Verona is known for its well preserved Roman ruins, music, and culture. And if you’re a theatre buff, any visit to this resplendent destination must surely include taking in a stage production! Each day will invite a new adventure, including, but not limited to, a private guided tour of the city complete to our insiders guide to Verona, a day trip to nearby Lake Garda town of Sirmione & half day at an award winning thermal spa, a day in at Lessina Nature Preserve near the Dolomite mountains, along with a special set menu dinner at a local lodge!
Lastly, we'll share a day with our co-host and her brother & family as they treat us to a local farm and tours of its wine cellar & wine making facility! We also get to see entire farm and frolic in the Olive gardens! On this day, we offer the experience of a regionally authentic lunch, enjoying the delicacies of the season. Local products will be available for purchase as well as wine! Francesca’s brother makes wine, honey and lavender oil! Our 2019 tribe could not get enough of their homemade goods!
Furthermore, two free days to play and discover neighboring picturesque cities of Venice, Bologna, Milan or Parma! All locations are 1-1.5 hours away by train and perfect for day trips.
We will provide you with our top recommendations, how to get tickets, and how to get there & back again.
ZOE retreats offer ample amounts of free/rest time for personal reflection and exploration. Expect to make new friends, with bonds that will last a lifetime! Incidentally, we will practice in an Iyengar studio, owned by Francesca. Her studio, Kala Yoga, is located just 3 km from the center of the city. All props are available to use, so no hauling of mats is necessary!
Our five bedroom villa is located in the heart of the old city center of Verona! It boasts spacious, colorful, and comfortable modern bedrooms & bathrooms. It is a multi level villa, with rooms on each floor, which lends a secluded feeling to each set of rooms.
Three of the bedrooms have large queen beds, ideal for couples or friends. I call these private rooms. (Maximum of two people) The two solo traveler’s shared rooms are much like a loft apartment on the top floor, adorned with gorgeous wood vaulted ceilings. Each room holds one double bed in the loft space upstairs and one single bed below, plus a shared bathroom. Maximum capacity will be 2 people for these shared rooms.
Each room has its own bathroom, shower, mini fridge, coffee machine, AC, & heat. Each morning, continental breakfast will be served directly to your room, along with a fresh pastry or crepe. Keep in mind, everything in Europe is smaller & more compact, yet the location is prime, as we have Shakespeare’s, “My Fair Verona,” at our fingertips. Travel light! The Verona Porta Nuevo train station is easily reached by taxi. Pictures of the rooms are below!
*If you are a solo traveler but desire a private room/bathroom, we have full apartments available right next door to our main villa. This could also be for couples who want more room and privacy. Full kitchen, bathroom, bedroom and sitting area in each apartment. Ask me for pictures. Cost is $2300 single person/2 people per apartment $2000 per person.
•8 days/7 nights in a villa in the center of the old city of Verona. Each room has its own bathroom, small fridge, coffee machine, stocked select snacks & AC/heat. Couples and friends can share the private rooms w/bathroom. Solo travelers will enjoy the split level loft room, with two separate beds in one room, plus a shared bathroom.
•Italian style breakfast is served in your room daily, including coffee, tea, fruit, yogurt, cereal, and a special savory or salty crepe sandwich. Please advise the host of your food allergies upon sign up.
•a group guided tour of Shakespeares my fair Verona, with our co-host
• Travel Deeper excursion to the town of Sirmione in Lake Garda & the thermal springs spa (entry ticket included)
•guided private walking tour about the history of Verona & where and how to eat like a local in the city from Francesca our native cohost!
•excursion to Francesca’s brothers local farm, - learning about wine making, wine tasting, and local products, local lunch set menu.
•half day to roam in bucolic nature in the Lessina nature preserve at the foot of the Alps! Also a set menu dinner in a local lodge.
•transportation to yoga classes and excursions
•daily Iyengar yoga classes in an Iyengar studio
•all yoga props, mats, blocks, belts, so no need to carry accessories!
•24 hour host access
What’s NOT included:
•airplane ticket (cost will be $600-$1,000). Those who sign up will receive Dina’s best apps and tips to book a good flight at a great rate.
•travel insurance (highly recommended)
•lunch and dinner are not included. We will have plenty of places to recommend for all budgets. Estimated cost for food budget could be $300 USD or €250 Euro for the week. We also will have a set menu and price for our group dinners on the farm and in the mountain lodge.
•transportation to and from the retreat villa and airport. Estimated cost is $75 roundtrip, via train, the most desirable way to travel in Italy. Also, taxis are affordable.
•additional yoga classes, besides the morning class at Kala Yoga studio.
Cost & payment plans:
$1,550 per person
*note the $300 non refundable deposit is already deducted from the prices below.
A. Pay in full by on sign up and receive $50 off Example:
$1,550 becomes $1,500 per person
B. 2 payments, totaling $1250• 1st payment of $625 is due March 15, 2020/2nd payment of $625 is due June 1, 2020.
C. 3 payments, totaling $1,550 • 1st payment of $417 due March 15, 2020/2nd payment of $417 is due May 15, 2020/3rd payment of $415 due July 1, 2020.
A $300 non refundable deposit, per person, is due immediately to hold your spot after signing the waiver. All monies accrued, are NON REFUNDABLE. No transfers to other retreats regardless of why you cannot make it or change your mind. If not enough participants sign up, all monies, including the deposit will be refunded. See waiver for full disclosure. We are a small company and all funds received are sent directly to hold our villa and to cover collateral trip expenses.
Those interested to book from abroad, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
About Iyengar Yoga:
By paying close attention to anatomical details and the alignment of each posture, Iyengar Yoga is a practice of precision. Poses are held for long periods of time and often modified with props. This method is designed to systematically cultivate strength, flexibility, stability, and awareness. Moreover, it can be extremely therapeutic for specific conditions. Founder B.K.S. Iyengar's method was designed to safely and logically adapt yoga postures to fit each student’s specific needs, architecture, ability, and age. All ages, levels and abilities benefit from this practice. Yoga participation is optional.
About the Hosts:
Dina Georgoulis: Host
Dina Georgoulis is the owner of ZOE Yoga Lifestyle & Travel Deeper Yoga Retreats. Her boutique yoga studio is in historic Tampa Heights, Florida and specializes in Iyengar Yoga for alignment, rehabilitation, and movement re-education through personalized private sessions and classes. She is the only CIYT- Certified Iyengar Yoga Teacher in Tampa, and is an experienced 500 hour certified Yoga Teacher, and -ERYT- through Yoga Alliance. Dina has been practicing yoga for two decades and successfully teaching and healing for eleven years.
She specializes in yoga for scoliosis, general back pain, injury rehab, posture strengthening and the creation of a stronger, more mobile and injury resistant physique. It is through her own struggle with scoliosis and back pain that she found the path to helping others with unique needs through the Iyengar Yoga method.
Dina is also known for her skill in stress management through gentle, restorative yoga, meditation, breathwork and aromatherapy. Her goal is to enhance one’s quality of life by moving freely and living fully. She also leads retreats to her village in gorgeous Greece and Italy. To find out more about her work, go to www.zoeyogalifestyle.com.
Francesca Poli: Co-host
Francesca is the owner of Kala Yoga in Verona, Italy. Since childhood, she has expressed her need for movement, participating in classical and contemporary dance, volleyball, and swimming.
Her innate love of beauty and creativity prompted her attendance in art school. Francesca's admiration for drawings, painting, and sculpture, is only bested by her affinity for architecture. During high school, she attended her first yoga class. After graduation, she continued her studies in Interior Design.
In 2006, Francesca moved to Costa Rica, becoming dissatisfied with her life in the office, stationed always at a computer. That trip lasted three and a half years. There, in Central America, she found yoga, firstly as a student, then as a teacher at Interculura Language School in Playa Samara. At 26, looking for a scientific approach to the practice of yoga, she decided to return to Italy, enrolling in the University of Movement Sciences and Sports (Neuroscience and Biomedicine).
In her second year of university, she finally discovered the Iyengar Yoga method, falling in love with its geometric precision and brilliant employment of props.
In 2014, Francesca graduated with a thesis on the method and practice of yoga according to Iyengar. Subsequently, she taught at Yoga Studio Verona until 2018. Additionally, since 2016, she has taught yoga classes to children, ages 3 to 6, at two nursery schools in the city.
The following year, she began a teacher training course with Senior Teacher, David Meloni in Florence. Then, in October 2018, she was awarded her hard earned certificate at the Iyengar Introductory II level.
October in Italy is stunning! Lots of sunshine and perfect fall temperatures. Low 60-70’s in the day, and 50’s at night. And with our proximity to the Lessini Mountains, some rain is possible.
Our trips sell out very quickly so contact Dina ASAP to reserve your spot on this once in a lifetime adventure!
Love & Light, Dina & Francesca 💜🙏🏻✈️🇮🇹