5 Things to Keep In Mind When Building Your Own Custom Wellness Retreat
Updated: Mar 13, 2019
Spring is in the air. Don’t be shy, take a deep breath of it in. The welcoming of a new season is a transitional period for growth and change for both you and nature. A mindful way to explore your personal development possibilities is through attending a wellness retreat. An escape from everyday life where you’re granted the time to connect and hang out with a bunch of like-minded people. An inspiring and comfy space where you can dive into personal/business goals, exercise the mind and body through workshops and enjoy delicious meals while having a great time together.
Instead of attending a wellness retreat, have you thought about hosting your own? If you’ve been thinking about hosting a connection event or wellness retreat, the time is now! What are you really waiting for? The season to change again? No more excuses.
Intimate wellness events can be just as influential as elaborate week-long retreat getaways. From one day workshops to a weekend escape with close friends, the opportunities are truly endless.
To motivate you to start planning, here are 5 things you should consider when building your own custom retreat:
1. The Theme // Programs
Having an overarching theme for your wellness retreat will make planning all the details much more manageable. The theme can have influence over the type of programs, the location, the meals and the people.
If you need some inspiration, here are a few theme concepts to ignite some ideas:
Art & Writing Wellness Escape
Wellness Bachelorette Party
Healthy Cottage Weekend Getaway
Wilderness Weekend Adventure
Healthy Cooking Classes
Connecting Mindful Entrepreneurs
Once you’re set on a theme, it’s time to begin flushing out the details. Don’t get overwhelmed, this is the fun part. Create yourself an “ideal retreat scenario” document. Here you should list everything you wish to do at the retreat - think of it as an inspiration board.
Warning: many items on this list may change over time.
2. The Budget
Though the final numbers might not be concrete until you’re closer to the end of planning or the retreat itself, it’s always a good idea to set some budget benchmarks. For example, if you wish to have 5 guests attend the retreat, how much do you think each will feel comfortable paying to attend.
If the number is $1000 per person, this lets you know that you have $5000 available to plan for the cost of programming, location/accommodation and meals.
Once you have a rough idea of budget, it’s a good idea to revisit your retreat “inspiration board” to see if everything is still possible. Be prepared to make some changes.
3. The Location
Whether you’re escaping to a cottage or renting out a private event space, the atmosphere of the location will set the tone for the retreat. When selecting a location here are a few things to keep in mind (all items in the list below depend on the theme and programming of your retreat):
Distance for attendees: How long will it take for everyone to travel there? How will they get there? Is it a reasonable travel time?
Space size: Will the space accommodate everyone comfortably? Is there space to run workshops? Is there seating? Is there room for yoga mats?
Atmospheric features: Is it quiet or noisy? Does the style of the space match the event theme? Can you add your own flair to the space? I.e. play your own music, bring plants or add your own decor?
Accommodations: How many rooms? How many people total can the property sleep?
Kitchen amenities: Can you cook there or do they have an inhouse/recommended chef? Does it have the required appliances? Do you need to bring dining wear?
Outdoor area: Does the location have outdoor space?
Parking: Does the location have parking for guests? Is there enough for everyone attending? If not, what is the alternative?
Nearby attractions: What is in the area that is an added wellness benefit to attendees?
4. The Food
Time to let your taste buds guide the planning process! Based on your theme, what types of meals and dining experience match the overall aesthetic you’re going for? From hiring a chef to hosting a potluck, you must consider the dietary preferences and restrictions of all attendees.
Hosting a weekend wellness retreat? Perhaps offer your guests a few options before finalizing the meal plan. Weekend getaway dining experience ideas:
Find a healthy caterer
Group cooking (each meal is cooked by a different person or pair)
Go to a health-focused restaurant
Mix’n’Match (potluck for the first night, group cooking for breakfast/lunch, go out to a healthy restaurant for dinner).
Need some healthy recipe inspiration for your retreat? Here are 21 delicious detox recipes: https://wanderfulsoul.lpages.co/21-delicious-detox-recipes/
5. The Itinerary
Now that you see your retreat inspiration board coming to life, it’s time to map out all the details for your attendees.
When it comes to the itinerary, it does not matter the length of the wellness event, half day or three days, an hourly and daily schedule will help everyone stay focused, stay connected and stay on track.
See below for a sample itinerary from our Vino & Vinyasa Weekend Retreat at the One&Only Palmilla in Los Cabos Mexico.
It’s a good idea to send attendees the itinerary ahead of time so they can prepare themselves for each event. If the retreat is out of town, be sure to include directions and travel tips or at the very least a Google Maps address link. :)
There are many aspects to explore when planning a wellness retreat, big or small. We’re happy to help guide you in the right direction with our custom wellness and travel itinerary programs.
If hosting retreats is a career that you want to pursue check out our Co-Founder Cait’s Retreat Planning Mentorship! Use code WANDERWELL for 20% off!