Monday, February 14, 2011

Goddess Retreat - Zamzam Riad - Marrakech

We have just finished a fabulous 3 day Goddess Retreat at Zamzam. We had a good turnout of fabulous ladies who were already on their own journey's. They were a mix of abilities regarding yoga and reiki and were also a mix of ages, but it made no difference to the group. The best thing was that they all arrived ready to get stuck in and enjoyed being in a calm environment with the support of other women.

The group were straight from Europe, 3 brokers, a Dr in Endocrology, various business women, a Post Mistress (who is going to give us the secrets to fast post in and out of Morocco). This retreat was busy, we had daily yoga with the wonderful Aisha, Reiki with Rebecca, cooking with Ilam and numerous spa treatments. The Hammam which I always try to get in early always amazes guests. They cannot believe how new and fresh they feel from a hot scrub. It's amazing the effect the hammam has just by getting your circulation going. Its also a symbolic act of scrubbing off the old and starting afresh. I can tell in a guests eyes who has had a hammam and who hasn't.

I wanted to arm these Goddesses with information that they could take forward into their lives after the retreat. This was taken to a new depth by visiting speakers, Kasia- Traditional Chinese Dr specialising in womens health and Lin Ducker a nutritionalist who gave a really interesting talk on the importance of gut health and how it impacts many areas including immune, emotional and hormonal.

The group spent many an evening discussing what had come out of the day and sharing their own experiences; one of the most important parts of a good retreat is the knowledge sharing and support that comes out of it.

Having been on my own nutritional journey recently with great results I provided special menus including Moroccan and European dishes but without the gluten, dairy or deadly nightshades. This was just to give their livers and systems a break and to also show them how delcious food didn't need to include these ingredients if they wanted to continue the detox for a while after.

For more information or reading on our retreats please have a look at our retreat blog Morocco Retreats or contact Emma - zamzamriad@gmail.com


 
 
 
 
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As-Salaam-Alaikum

Hi, i'm writing this blog page to share information with all you wanderlust souls out there. Living in Morocco comes with lots of bizarre and unexpected events, which i thought you may enjoy reading about and sharing in the laughter.

My family and I moved to Marrakech 11 years ago from London. The beginning of a huge adventure for us. Choosing which country was right for us to live in had been an extremely long and tiring process. Having made a choice to move to MarrakeSh, was in itself a big box ticked. We had two criteria lists, one for our business (opening and running a guesthouse) and one for personal.

Phase two of our journey then began. Setting up home in Morocco, also a non English speaking country with a very different culture to ours. Marrakech is a real melting pot of; languages, tribes, rich, poor, city slickers, country peasants. It sometimes reminds me of that place Luke Skywalker went to, to buy that space ship, with all those different intergalactic aliens. (Any one know what it was called?) After months of beauroctratic paperwork, rendez vous with people who don't turn up and renting from an unpleasant woman for a large amount of money, we bought ourselves a villa. This was not in the plan as we didn't want to tie up our capital in a home. I now realise it is one of the best things we could have done. When you've had a really difficult day here to be able to close the door and relax in your own place really balances you.

Zamzam Riad & Spa was eventually created out of love and we hope you will come and stay and be pampered in our luxury boutique riad.



Creating the Guest House

We had decided to buy land and build a country guesthouse as per our business plan, about 10 double rooms and suites. The dream was to create a holistic retreat and build our house on the same plot. We were going to have an organic vegetable garden and provide a Moroccan Spa.

Land in Marrakech at that time, went mad. Prices going up daily, lots of people fishing but not really wanting to sell. There is also a problem here of title. ie not much land is titled and to buy land without a title is very difficult, unless you have a lot of time on your hands and like a gamble. We looked at more land than you can shake a stick at, drank more mint tea than you can imagine and got totally no where. It can take weeks to even get a price. You may be being shown a piece of land that isn't for sale or has already been sold. After a year of this we said 'that is it!, we are buying a riad!'

I had a total nervous breakdown and couldn't talk to anyone for three days. He then said this doesn't have to be the end....... It wasn't I have now built an Ecological Camp Adounia in the Sahara Desert!