Xinalani Retreat | Yoga. Magic. Mexico.
Xinalani (she-nah-lah-knee) Retreat is an eco-resort based in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico right off the ocean. The perfect destination for active conscious travelers! Even more amazing, Xinalani is only accessible by water, making the resort secluded and the perfect place to breathe.
Travelers come to Xinalani to disconnect and reconnect with themselves, while staying active. Xinalani offers the most beautiful and breathtaking surroundings from the jungle, the most amazing pristine beach you’ll ever see and it’s breathtaking architecture. Every single room is the definition of zen, and the open air palm-thatched cabins floating on stilts with oceanfront views makes you connect with your surroundings inevitable.
If you’re looking to experience a healthy vacation filled with adventure, zen and mind-body-soul experience Xinalani is the place to be. You will not only connect with its preserved natural surroundings, you will also have access to mindful meditation, yoga practice, and SPA dates! You can choose from deep tissue, swedish, therapeutic, aromatherapy, reflexology and prenatal massages. For fun why not go surf, or try stand-up paddle boarding, kayaking, snorkeling or maybe go on a scuba diving trip! Xinalani is such an amazing place. I wanted to know more about its creation and purpose. I was really excited to interview Jean-Baptiste Bellendent an amazing French yogipreneur! He the co-founder and the managing partner of Xinalani.
What made you decide to locate Xinalani in Puerto Vallarta?
The area around PV (Banderas Bay) is wild and lush, we adore this landscape: the steep terrains at the south of the bay allow for dramatic views and then we found a 600 ft pristine beach only accessible by boat with a surf break right in front. It was love at first sight, we couldn’t dream of a better place to build our eco retreat center.
Why did you want to launch Xinalani?
We needed to create a place that provides people with opportunities of transformation in a magnificent preserved environment. We are part of that new generation of active conscious travelers, deeply aware of their mind-body-soul balance, just searching for a haven to retreat, rejuvenate, and have fun. The world needs places like Xinalani, that take you on an adventure, right up to the edge of your comfort zone and open your eyes on the breathtaking beauty of life.
What is the ultimate experience you want your guests to leave with?
The quality of a lasting smile all over your body and mind.
The ultimate goal of Xinalani is to help you plant the seeds of true wellness (that’s actually the meaning of the word Xinalani)
Will you use 3 to 5 words to describe Xinalani?
Yoga. Magic. Mexico.
While at Xinalani you’ll be active, yet relaxed throughout your stay. Xinalani offers the most amazing yoga practice and mediation trainings! Just knowing Xinalani has resident yoga teachers that will make your yoga practice and meditation training all that much more attainable, is very exciting to me! Adriana Garcia, is one of Xinalani’s resident yoga instructors, she is a Hatha Yoga Instructor with many years of practice. Adriana practices various styles of yoga which offers every single guest the opportunity to use their breath, body and spirit to renew themselves. She also uses mediation to assist every single guest to restore their health; mind, body and soul. I was also very excited and grateful to interview Adriana to learn more about her practice and teachings at Xinalani.
How do you feel the training you’ve received in yoga practice benefit Xinalani?
My wide and varied training benefits Xinalani in two ways. First, I teach students of all levels, different body types, ages and gender. The students tell me that they feel safe and able to be comfortable right away in their practice. So guests give credit to Xinalani for that. Second, my training makes it possible for the mind to rest and deepens the mind-body connection easily. This allows guests to enjoy the practice right away regardless of their experience level or spiritual path.
Which yoga style/flow do you utilize the most at Xinalani?
The first class I teach at the resort is a Hatha flow style after introducing myself and having asked my guests about their experience in yoga and any specific injuries they might have. I share a yoga practice that includes, Iyengar, Vinyasa and Meditation Pranayama, which means working with different breath patterns.
How do you tailor your yoga sessions?
There are new guests every week at Xinalani, from different countries who speak different languages and of course, with different yoga experience and practice. For the first class I observe them, their bodies, their faces, I hear the way they breath and that helps me understand what “level” they are at. So I adjust the class for everybody to enjoy it, giving a lot of options so that everybody can experience each pose according to their body limitations, age, injuries, and time practicing. I would affirm that my class is a multi level one.
Can you describe a meditation class at Xinalani? What do you believe guests obtain from this session?
Usually I teach mindful breath meditation at the beginning, so that guests are aware of the way they are breathing. This is very important for them when they are doing their asanas (poses) so that they are aware of the way they are practicing.
Can you describe a yoga session, what should guests expect?
I always start with a meditation (breathing, elements, awareness of the body-yoga-nidra-, etc.), then I ask my beautiful guests to set an intention for the practice, or the day. Then I guide them through some stretching at the beginning of the class, and continue increasing the flow throughout the class. There are also yoga groups that bring their own yoga teachers. In these instances I have been asked to share my practice with them so I talk to their teachers and if they want me to teach anything specific I will do that for them as well. Although I do have a “program” I developed to teach at Xinalani (restorative, yin, twists, backbends, etc.), I really never know what classes I will teach until I know my new guests every Saturday–Sunday.
Are your yoga and meditation session in English, Spanish or both?
Most of the time in English and sometimes in both languages. I have never shared a practice in Spanish only at Xinalani.
Do you feel guests need to have some yoga and meditation practice beforehand, to be able to practice at Xinalani?
No, as I mentioned before, my classes are for everybody. I have been practicing with people who have never been in a yoga class before to long time experienced yoga instructors.
What yoga/meditation experience do you ultimately want your guests to leave with?
Mindfulness in body, mind and spirit.
Do you offer one on one yoga and meditation sessions with guests at Xinalani?
Yes I do, upon request.
Are guests able to contact you after their stay at Xinalani?
Yes! They can send me emails or contact me via Facebook. Past guests ask me questions and usually share with me their “after-Xinalani” practice and how they are adapting what they learned with me in their daily lives. And sometimes they invite me to visit as I am doing now in Minnesota!
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