Takeaways from Willka T’ika Garden Retreat

Marti Morenings

I just returned from a trip to Peru, where I had the opportunity to spend several days at Willka T’ika, an eco-retreat in the Sacred Valley of the Inca. The rooms and yoga studios are built around “Chakra Gardens”–seven gardens that correspond to the chakras of the energetic body. The gardens provide a bounty of fruits, vegetables, herbs and botanicals used in the cuisine, beverages and healing therapies.

My time at Willka T’ika was truly remarkable.  As I look back to what made the experience so special, I realize that there are many ways spas can be amazing and “Wow” their guests. Whether you operate a small day spa or an exotic destination spa in a faraway land, you have the opportunity to provide an authentic and transformational spa experience.  Here are some takeaways from my stay:

Behind Every Great Spa is a Visionary

When I spoke with Willka T’ika’s founder Carol Cumes, I was surprised to find out that she never visited other spas and retreats for inspiration. Carol had a vision.  She and her original staff members have worked together over the past 17 years to bring her vision to life. Her love of gardens, yoga and Incan art and culture are reflected in every detail of the property.

Harness the Healing Power of Nature

Upon arrival at Willka T’ika, you are greeted with an assortment of fresh herbs from the gardens. There are rosemary and muña (andean mint) plants, slices of fresh lime, and the infamous coca leaves. Signature “Solar Baths” incorporate the Inkan herbs grown throughout the grounds. Staff members are well versed in the healing properties of the Inkan medicinal plants growing in the gardens, and can provide herbal remedies for anything from altitude sickness to a cold.

Support Your Local Community

Carol is an active member of her community. Proceeds from her book, Chakra Gardens support the The Willka T’ika Children’s Fund. The fund supported the construction of two school buildings and a library, and provides school materials and over 300 hot lunches daily to the Andean children in remote areas of the Peruvian Andes.  

The subject of giving back is one near and dear to my heart, as you can see from my latest Pink Glove posts. Is your spa involved in charitable efforts?  Please share details in the comment field below. Your stories will inspire others to make a difference!

Carol Cumes, Wendy Bosalavage, Tara Grodjesk, Nancy Griffin, and Beth Caplan

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