Our names are: Elisa White and Nanda Mortier.
We are known for being: co-founders of Body+Soul St. Barth.
EW: I’m a yoga teacher and hiking guide.
NM: I’m a yoga teacher, Thai masseuse and reiki and janzu therapist.
We’re hosting a retreat called: Body+Soul at Le Barth – June 8-15, 2019.
It’s located at: Le Barthélemy Hotel & Spa in St. Barth.
We were drawn to this spot because:
NM: I moved to St. Barths when I was 2 years old and have considered it home ever since. As a teenager, I left to study in the South of France and discovered that the world was much more than reggae, sun, sand and happy people. I vividly remember the cold winters and how difficult the short days were.
In my twenties, I moved to the island of Mallorca and, yet again, dreaded the cold, long winters. In 2010, I chose to move back to St Barths to enjoy a more peaceful way of life. I’m currently enjoying raising my two small children with a daily embrace from the warm Caribbean sun.
EW: I fell in love with St. Barths on my first visit in 1998 and, after repeated visits, moved permanently in 2002. Seventeen years later, I’m still here and as crazy in love with the island as ever. I embrace all the magic St. Barths has to offer: the local people and their unique Caribbean vibe, the secluded beaches and coves where I can take long swims and snorkel, the countless hidden walking trails, the French cuisine and the unique experiences and exchanges I encounter on such a small area of land—only eight square miles. Living in St. Barths indulges all of my senses, and I particularly love the relaxed island pace and kind locals.
This retreat is special because: Of the local hosts and its idyllic location, Le Barthélemy Hotel & Spa.
Le Barthélemy Hotel & Spa sits on a beautiful natural reserve surrounded by turquoise water, as far as the eye can see. Guests can enjoy the beautiful white sand beach or spot colorful fish and turtles while paddleboarding or kayaking in the crystal clear lagoon.
We bring passion to all that we do. We infuse our retreats with a sense of joy, light and laughter, but are mindful to always leave space for quiet self-reflection. In addition to yoga and meditation, they’ll be offering workshops in nutrition, shamanic art, psychology and salsa dancing to allow guests to feel happiness and peace. Pilates and fitness classes will also be offered daily, and sessions will be held in Villa Bleu with a spectacular lagoon backdrop.
The menu for the week is vegetarian-based with an extensive selection of healthy foods, as well as cold-pressed juices. To bring the retreat full circle, daily massages will be offered for each participant in the hotel’s luxurious center for holistic well-being, Le Spa.
EW: I’ll be leading hikes throughout the week that will expand mental awareness and allow guests to discover the natural, scenic beauty of the island. I try to bring a sense of wonder and excitement to each hike and love to challenge the body and awaken the senses. The week will incorporate a mix of off-trail and cardio hikes, as well as mindful, walking meditation practices, to help bring focus and attention to the present moment.
NM: My yoga classes are friendly and infused with a sense of humor and strong alignment. I believe in challenging boundaries, the power of a smile and anything that makes your eyes shine. Laugher is mandatory!
During the week, I’ll offer meditation and varied styles of yoga: vinyasa, yin, restorative, wall & chair etc. from beginner level to advanced. I’m so excited to teach at Villa Bleu, a truly stunning place to practice and contemplate.
One thing you can’t miss is: The Caribbean sunshine, the soothing island colors, the constant sound and smell of the sea, the friendly native goats and the warm island breezes—all of which will invigorate and balance the body while instilling a deep sense of relaxation. These elements will be infused throughout the retreat, leaving guests with an overall sense of well-being for the body and mind. Le Barthélemy’s tranquil oasis Le Spa is also provides the ultimate relaxation.
Our favorite secret detail is: The view from Villa Bleu, located on the edge of the sand with views of turquoise water at eye level. Also, swimming in the lagoon with the turtles! Le Barthélemy is located on a natural reserve bay, a calming spot where you can walk along the beach and enjoy a vibe found nowhere else in St. Barths.
Your body will thank you because: This retreat works on many levels (physical, mental and energetic). Digestive and respiratory functions will be improved, and guests will feel lighter, stronger, happier and more present in their bodies.
We never retreat without bringing:
NM: An intention.
EW: An open spirit.
Together, as a team, we work to bring lightness, laughter and a desire to push the boundaries of the norms that limit us. We aspire to push guests out of their comfort zones to discover new ways of being and navigating the world.
Retreating should be part of your process because: Just look at the word: reTREAT. It’s important to treat yourself, indulge your senses and open your body and soul to self-discovery and nourishment.
We all need to escape sometimes from our everyday lives and our obligations. Body+Soul at Le Barth is a wonderful opportunity to eat healthy, move, stretch, relax, let go, reflect, laugh, wonder, stop, slow down, learn, accept, discover, forgive and connect. By accepting that we are the sum of our parts and embracing ourselves, we can come to truly enjoy the present moment of our lives.