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Shreyas Retreat is an initiative of inner challenges, a life coaching company that looks to bring the wisdom of Indian spiritual tradition into our daily existence. The principal ethos of Shreyas is that spirituality and self-discovery do not just complement, but are essential in modern life and that yoga is the ideal means to achieve this.
This journey of self-discovery is what is referred to as yoga, which is a gamut of spiritual processes that harness and purify our mind/body system and allow us to look within ourselves. Yoga processes positively affect the physical, physiological, emotional, intellectual, and spiritual facets of our personality. During the retreat, we will follow the principles of yoga as our formal training and will also learn from the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali, which is the codified philosophy that is a must for all who are interested in or are practicing yoga.
Shreyas is a boutique retreat situated about 35 km from the center of Bangalore. In design, aesthetics, service, and comfort levels, we have modeled Shreyas on some of the more exclusive and luxurious small hotels in southeast Asia. Spread over 25 acres of landscaped gardens, the architecture, and interiors are a seamless confluence of traditional and the modern tiled roofs, antique doorways, and stone pillars give way to contemporary interiors and state of the art facilities. The principal architect is Pratap Malik & Associates, based in Delhi. We have just 12 rooms spread across 25 acres of coconut plantation, gardens, and paddy fields. A maximum of 25 people are unobtrusively tended to by our carefully trained staff as they go about their daily agendas in complete privacy and quiet.
The poolside cottages with ensuite bathrooms overlook the signature antique pillared entrance, infinity pool and Jacuzzi and the central courtyard of the retreat. The poolside cottages are large, simple but elegantly designed. Open your door and step out to an infinity pool surrounded by flowering frangipani trees, a Jacuzzi, and the central courtyard of the retreat. The one bedroom poolside cottages do not offer twin share
The 3-bedroom cottage enables families and groups of friends travelling together, to spend quality time communing with each other whilst enjoying the luxuries of Shreyas. The cottage has 5 persons in 2 double/twin rooms and 1 single occupancy room, and a large living room, all with ensuite bathrooms. The living room is spacious and airy, with large windows that offer sweeping views of the surrounding greenery.
Yoga classes at Shreyas are based on classical Hatha and Ashtanga asanas, combined with pranayama and pratyahara (internalization) processes. At Shreyas, we aim to demonstrate that yoga can be learnt and practiced by all, irrespective of age, health, and faith. Guests of all levels of experience from beginner to advanced are welcome at Shreyas and yoga classes are customized to suit their requirements.
A day at Shreyas dawns with guests waking to the gentle rustling of the coconut trees, bird song, and the crisp cool breeze. Stepping out of your garden cottages with tented canopies or the poolside cottages, the curving pathways lead to the open air yoga pavilion for your morning group yoga session. The Hatha yoga and Ashtanga Vinyasa sessions, deep relaxation, meditation, and breathing processes practiced at Shreyas are customized to your level of experience, interest, and competence, taking into account the physical ailments. This session is concluded with a morning meditation.
After the morning session, head for the dining room by the pool for breakfast, which includes freshly squeezed juices and fruits, mostly handpicked from our gardens. On cooler days, breakfast is served in the gardens. If you are on a diet recommended by our therapists or one of your own, please do let us know, and we will be glad to be of service.
After breakfast, you are free to follow your own agenda. For those of you who have opted for one of our various packages and retreats, your personalized agenda will guide you to the next activity of the day. If you like to run or walk instead, we have a shady 3 km pathway that meanders through Shreyas sprawling 25 acres.
We offer Ashtanga Vinyasa yoga sessions for experienced practitioners. Ashtanga Vinyasa is a set sequence of postures, practiced in a precise flow (Vinyasa) linked by the breath. The series is mastered one asana at a time, with the student only moving to the next more advanced asana once the last asana has been mastered. Every movement in the series is clearly defined and has been practiced this way for generations. Students are discouraged from making any changes to this sequence, as this set sequence becomes a tool to analyze the body and the mind as we come to the mat and practice the same sequence day after day.
Hatha yoga sees the body as an instrument to master the mind and enable us to attain higher states of consciousness. In Sanskrit, the word "Hatha" is formed from two syllables:
"Ha" means the sun aspect that denotes the active masculine principle.
Tha means the moon aspect that denotes the passive intuitive feminine principle.
Yoga comes from the Sanskrit word "yug" which means to "yoke" or to "join". In this context, the sustained practice of Hatha yoga enables the harmonious joining of the sun and moon aspects of our being.
The practice of Hatha yoga aims to purify and harmonize the body by following these processes asana. These postures have been evolved over centuries so that they exercise every muscle, nerve, and gland in the body. Asana brings steadiness and lightness to the body, whilst soothing and calming the nerves. But the most significant purpose of asana practice is to train and discipline the mind.
"Prana" means breath or energy and "Ayama" meaning to lengthen. Pranayama is the science of the breath and connotes extension and control of the breath. These practices will strengthen the respiratory system, soothe the nervous system, and reduce craving. "Dhyana" or meditation refers to the steady flow of concentration where the body, breath, senses, mind, reason, and ego are all integrated.
Almost all psychosomatic disorders are caused by "stress" which is an inability of the body/mind system to cope with the demands made on it, both professionally and in personal life. Whilst western medicine and psychiatry deals with stress with medicine that induces the release of "feel good" hormones, this does not eliminate the problem. Yoga encourages us to deal with stress at the physical (with proper diet and asanas), physiological (with pranayama), mental and intellectual level (with meditation), and is therefore referred to as a holistic healing science.
The root cause of stress lies in our inability to see the world as one unbroken stream of consciousness flowing through everything and everyone. Mistaking ourselves as being separate from the world, we compete with the world for our happiness. We feel that there is a limited pot of happiness and someone else's happiness limits ours and vice versa. Finding that so much of what we seek lies out of our control causes the system to suffer stress disorders.
At Shreyas, we aim to encourage guests to commune with nature (and experience its qualities of generosity, forbearance, patience, and ability to nurture life), eat healthy vegetarian food, practice various yoga processes, and also interact with local school children. All of this makes us connect with nature, both nature outside and within, also put our so called problems in perspective.
The massages at Shreyas are also designed to remove knots of stress out of your muscles. We do not claim that you will be cured of your ailments but can promise you that you will leave with a mindset well on its way to recovery. We have qualified yoga therapists at Shreyas who can tailor the yoga for you. We simply aim to bring you in touch with your forgotten self. There are also classes on yoga philosophy and sessions to see how this can be integrated into your life.
Insomnia can be tackled with Yoga Nidra or deep yogic sleep practices, light meals at night, avoiding intoxicants, and meditation. Back pain can be helped with various yoga postures that help stretch, relax, and strengthen the spine as well breathing and meditation practices.
Shreyas Retreat is situated on the outskirts of Bangalore near Nelamangala. There are many historical and spiritual sites in the surrounding areas.
Meals served at Shreyas are vegetarian and thoughtfully planned to complement the lifestyle you will be experiencing at Shreyas. Indian, European, Mexican, and Oriental cuisine is served at Shreyas. Shreyas is the only member of Relais and Chateaux in the world that serves a purely vegetarian menu and operates on a no alcohol policy.
Guests at Shreyas get a unique opportunity to experience living a yogic lifestyle along with the Shreyas staff, who are all trained in every aspect of yoga. If you choose to, you can learn to cook, work in our organic agricultural garden, and interact with local village school children learning from and teaching to them.
Shreyas offers a wonderful opportunity for guests to get a glimpse into the simple, hardworking lives of the local villagers. And, for those who are interested, exercises in community service and volunteering are arranged at the local village, schools, and orphanages. This may include procuring or collecting vegetables from Shreyas farm, preparing, and serving a meal to children at a local school or orphanage, planting saplings in the village, contributing towards the village school's requirements such as uniforms, stationery, and infrastructure for villages needs like rain water harvesting projects, etc.
If you have booked a massage, scrub, or any beauty treatment, head towards the Rejuvenation Massage Center for our range of massages (Ayurveda, Thai, Balinese, Swedish, or Aromatherapy massages), exotic scrubs (made from ingredients like chocolate, coffee, spices, coconut, and honey) or beauty treatments (like facial, pedicure, or manicure). A qualified Naturopath is available to discuss and choose the massages and scrubs/masks that suit you. You can speak with our qualified therapists for cures for all kinds of physical battle scars you may have picked up over the years, such as back and neck pain, losing or gaining weight, skin related problems, etc. You can end your massage session with a visit to the steam room.
You can opt to swim in the infinity edge 25 meter lap pool or simply sun bathe around it with a book from our extensive library. Those wanting to do something energetic can test your batting skills at our cricket nets against Bola, our professional bowling machine.
Perhaps you would prefer to work out in our gymnasium and follow it up with a swim, outdoor Jacuzzi, and steam. There are beautiful temples, lakes, and forests not too far from the boutique retreat and we can direct or even escort you to them. Picnic lunches can also be arranged on request.
If you would like to learn the sacred chants from our scriptures and delve into the Indian philosophical tradition, you can join the classes at one of the traditional huts by the lawns.
If you are interested in deepening your knowledge and practice of yoga, you are welcome to meet our wellness consultant who would then arrange for a private yoga session for your specific requirement and level of expertise. Depending on your choice of sessions, they can explain the various therapeutic as well as spiritual benefits of all physical postures, breathing techniques, and various meditations.
Some of you may prefer to visit the city of Bangalore and its chic shopping outlets to pick up gifts and other items for yourselves or your loved ones. We can provide the necessary transport with a guide, should you so require. We also offer a pickup service, should you have items sent for alterations, etc.
Abhayanga is the most common and important Ayurvedic spa massage. It is a combination of synchronized soothing and long strokes that help in restoring balance and re-establishing calmness and harmony in the body. The body is massaged in seven different positions. The principal benefit of Abhyanga is based on the application of oil on the entire body. The pressure, duration, and type of oil are carefully selected based on the prakriti (equilibrium state of body and mind) and vikriti (disturbed state of body and mind) of the person.
It promotes healing of the body at a micro-cellular level as the oils used are absorbed into the intra dermal and intra follicular layers of the skin.
It removes tiredness, increases immunity, and improves sleep.
It removes physiological imbalances and ensures the correct balance is maintained.
It makes joints and muscles more flexible as well as increasing the softness in glands of the skin.
This is an oil based massage that involves deep manipulation of the bodys soft tissue, concentrating primarily on the connective tissue of the muscles. The therapist uses smooth, but deep thumb pushes along each individual muscle, following the course of the bodys energy channels (meridians). It is an excellent therapy for treating stiff and painful muscles and is also used in the treatment of conditions of the abdominal organs. A one-hour session of this kind of massage is enough to leave you feeling relaxed, refreshed, rejuvenated, and re-energized.
Thai massage is a system of massage and assisted stretching developed in Thailand, and influenced by the traditional medicine systems of India, China, and Southeast Asia. A blend of yoga, acupressure, and reflexology, traditional Thai massage is designed to relax and open the bodys natural energy flow. Unlike the scooping and continuous strokes of western-style massage, traditional Thai massage uses point pressure, muscle stretching, and compression done in a rhythmic moment of gentle rocking. Thai massage has been called Lazy Mans yoga or yoga for two, because of the passive range of motion on the part of the receiver. The therapist helps stretch your body into a variety of yoga-like positions, while giving manual compression strokes on the muscles to further enhance the stretch and release tension. For your session, please wear loose and comfortable clothing. No oil is used in a traditional Thai massage session and it is performed on a floor mat or a low massage bed.
Swedish massage was developed in the 1700s by a Swedish doctor named Per Henrik Ling. The term Swedish massage refers to a variety of techniques specifically designed to relax muscles by applying pressure to them against deeper muscles and bones and rubbing in the same direction as the flow of blood returning to the heart. The main purpose of Swedish massage is to increase the oxygen flow in the blood and release toxins from the muscles. Stimulating the skin and nervous system as well as soothing the nerves, it reduces both emotional and physical stress.
Aromatherapy, as we know it today, is the revival of a branch of herbal medicine that has been honored and treasured for centuries by people throughout the world. Aromatherapy promotes healing and invokes a feeling of wellbeing. For this massage, the therapist chooses a blend of essential oils to either stimulate or relax your body.
It is good for chronic conditions such as stress, insomnia, menstrual problems, hypertension, and general stiffness of joints, low energy, and fatigue.
It boosts all the senses and stimulates the mind.
Please contact Shreya Retreat for further information regarding spa treatments.
Flights to Bangalore are available from the US, Europe, and from all major Indian cities. The newly opened Bengaluru International Airport is one hour away from Shreyas.
Airlines: Air France, British Airways, Gulf Air, Jetstar Asia Airways, KLM, Lufthansa, Malaysian Airlines, Royal Nepal Airlines, Singapore Airlines, Emirates, and Sri Lankan Airlines.