Yoga & Meditation Weekend Retreat // GOZO // March 13th – 15th 2015

If you’re feeling like you need to break away from it all and indulge in a bit of self care & peace then this weekend has your name all over it.

Our Schedule:

*3pm onwards ARRIVALS
*6.30pm Vegetarian dinner
*8.30-9pm Guided meditation

*9-10.30am Yoga (Vinyasa & Kriya practice)
*11am Healthy Breakfast
(massages can be booked if interested)
*5-6.30pm Yoga & 30 min meditation
*7.30pm Healthy vegetarian dinner

*9-10.30am Yoga
*11am Healthy Breakfast
*3-3.30pm Guided Meditation
*Check out 4pm

*300euros/ sharing
*350euros/ single

Our accommodation is simply stunning. Set in the quiet village of Gharb, overlooking the sea, sunset and a lovely garden. If the weather permits we can do our yoga outdoors by the pool.

Yoga mats and blocks are provided. The accommodation also provides towels and bathrobes which is all included in the fee.

*If you have any special dietary requirements please advise me upon booking.

This retreat is kept intimate with a maximum number of 8 guests. Full payment secures your space.

For bookings and/or further information contact:

Shanti Shanti

108 Sun Salutations / Spring Solstice / Saturday March 21st @ 13.00

Why 108 Sun Salutations?

* To find FLUIDITY in repetitive movement without having to pay too much attention to instruction which allows us to draw inwards more
*MENTALLY you will feel more focused, disciplined, resilient, and committed to your yoga practice & self development
*PHYSICALLY you will feel stronger, more capable, more fluid and the connection to your body & mind will be much stronger
*ANAHATA (HEART) CHAKRA: The chakras are the intersections of energy lines, and there are said to be a total of 108 energy lines converging to form the heart chakra. One of them, sushumna leads to the crown chakra, and is said to be the path to Self-realization.
*DANCE: There are 108 forms of dance in the Indian traditions.

( for more information read this article: )

Myself and Dini Martinez will be guiding the sun salutes and keeping count as we all tune into the same rhythm. We will begin with a warmup and then dive into the salutes. The ‘class’ will end with a bit of a cool down and a restorative meditation session.


********DAY 1*****2 **** 3 **** 4 *** 5******6

WK 1: *4sets*****8 *****12****16 ***20****24

WK 2: *24 ******24 ****24 ***24****24 ***24

WK 3: *36 ******36 ****36 ***36 ***36 ***36

WK 4: *48******48 **REST **4 ****54 ***54

***DAY 7 : REST WEEK 1, 2 & 3. WEEK 4 do *54 Salutes.
( I can’t seem to get the chart straight so hope you can make it out ok!)

This event will be donation based and 50% of funds will be donated to a charity ( we are still deciding on which one!)

*To be announced

*Saturday March 20th

*13.00 – 15.00

*Please bring your own mat. If you don’t have one please let us know and we will bring one for you.
*This event is best suitable for those with an intermediate level of practice, not suitable for beginners.

Be sure to bring some cosy clothes to relax and feel warm in. Once we start moving the heat will build up. Keep in mind that we will be in a glass structure so nature is in view all around us. As is the colour GREEN, the heart chakra’s colour, inviting in all that LOVE for 2015.

1 = Higher Truth
0 = emptiness or completeness in spiritual practice,
8 = infinity or eternity

2015 – WE SALUTE YOU 🙂 Hope you can all join us. Please spread the word! We have a very large venue in high hopes to get lots of practitioners together to welcome Malta’s first 108 Sun Salutes!

An interview by Dini Martinez @ The Sailing Yoga Family

11TuesdayNov 2014

 Wowza! What a weekend. First, survived another 50 knots past our mast during a cozy hot chocolate and movie night with the boys down below. Then productive morning (last spurt of internet before it left us) handing in my final exam of a five year spectacular Ayurveda course and finished editing another fantastic Happy Dancer video (next post… watch out!). Featured in a local video shootage. Fullmoon promenade walk en famille. Sunday morning, lectured 70 psychology students on mindfulness at the University of Malta, followed by a beautiful Yin Yoga class at the Gallery, as usual, on a Sunday after-noon. Couldn’t ask for more.

While honouring its rich history and intriguing culture, Malta feels so alive and contemporary. I’m keen to share it’s aliveness with you, not only through our own experiences, but also by portraying inspirational local people and businesses of the kind that follow their hearts, dreams and passions. The kind of people you meet who make you have hope in the world. The kind who make you feel warm in the heart. The kind who make you go home and pursue your passion also because the sparkle in their eyes is a living prove that life doesn’t need to be mediocre. Life can be ANYTHING you want it to be.

Every Monday when I feel it, I will be asking someone the same seven questions from this i-spot of civilisation in the midst of the sparkling blue Mediterranean Sea. What a better person to start this series off with than beautiful Michelle Bartolo, my yogini in crime who I will be running next week’s booked out blissful Yoga retreat on Gozo with.


You in a few words
I’m have been an active type of person most of my
life. I’ve always enjoyed working in health & fitness and then that led
into yoga very naturally. It was time to find some peace in my life. Yoga
has taught me more than my years off the mat has. I’m so glad I followed
that path.

Your business in a few words

I host classes, workshops & retreats on Malta & Gozo and have been
teaching now for 10 years. I don’t feel like I’m ‘working’ as such and that
is something I’ve always wished for. There is never a day that passes
where I feel like I’m doing something that I really don’t want to do. My
passion for this ‘work’ has lasted more than other job I’ve had in the
past. You work on a very personable level with people and it can be
incredibly intimate, energising and somewhat overwhelming at times. That’s
the reason why I love it so much.

Your greatest inspiration

My greatest inspiration is humans themselves. We are amazing creatures
and so different in many ways. Through the retreats I meet many people
from all over the world and it never seizes to amaze me all of the
different things people do. I feed off my clients as much as they get from
me, it really is a two way road. I have always ‘felt’ a lot, and somehow
the connections in classes turn into this pretty magical jam session where
we are all involved creating a song as we learn to move to different
beats. Watching how everyone does the same move different and how they
flow in different ways always amazes me. Without them I couldn’t do what I

Your biggest dream

Dreams, ah yes I have lots of those. To pinpoint which is the biggest
dream is the hard part 🙂 I really want to take my teaching to another
level, and am currently trying to get it implemented into the kids
physical education system here in Malta. I just imagine what it would have
been like to grow up with all of this mind & body awareness. That’s top of
my dream’s list as well as taking it to troubled countries where the
people could really use the techniques to find some peace on the inside.

Your favourite quote

My favourite quote…ohhh again, I’m full of clichés. But I think this
one lies very close to the top
idea who’s words they are though)

Milestone moments on the path to get where you are today

My first yoga class. It connected me to something I hadn’t connected to
before. I was 27 years old at the time. Once I found the teacher who
really resonated with me I knew it was what I wanted to be doing. It was
more clear than anything in my life has ever been. There was no question
about it. That meant a lot to me cause I was always so unsure of what I
was going to do. I just floated with lots of freelance gigs but there was
no focus. The practice really made me feel grounded and that for me was a
milestone I had been searching for. Yoga has always been my answer since

And the future?

Ahh the dreaded question of the future….
I’m very much a here and now kinda gal. I just want my health on a
physical and mental level. To have close friends whom I can trust and
family that I love around me. To continue doing what sets my soul on fire
no matter what.



320953_10152400814565321_1918325699_n 1620842_10153797277300321_1180889131_n 10338261_723688980999909_670377382682964760_n

More on Michelle and her yoga at


Vegetarian Retreat Recipes November 2014


Sweet Potato Coconut Curry Soup:

  • 2 x sweet potatoes (peeled, washed and chopped into cubes)
  • 1 x squash (peeled, washed and cut into cubes)
  • 1 x small piece of ginger (finely sliced)
  • 2 x cups vegetable broth
  • 1 x can coconut milk
  • 1 x tablespoon Thai Curry paste
  • 1 x teaspoon turmeric
  • 1 x teaspoon garam masala
  • 1 x tablespoon coconut oil
  1. Place sweet potato,squash and ginger in a large soup pot with just a tiny bit of water at the bottom
  2. Add coconut oil and let the veg simmer for about 10 minutes.
  3. Add in all spices
  4. Fill up the pot with water until the veg are just covered
  5. Add in vegetable stock & thai curry paste
  6. Place on medium boil until veg are soft.
  7. I like my soup a bit chunky so I use a potato masher to mash them up just a bit, you can blend it all as well if you prefer something smooth and creamy
  8. Add in coconut milk
  9. Dry pan fry a handful of both sunflower & pumpkin seeds, sprinkle in a bit of tamari and stir. Toast for 3-5min and use as a garnish on your zupa!

Est Viola!  A nice warming, satisfying & slightly spicy comfort soup.


Healthy Breakfast Cookies:

  • 1/2 bag of plain oatmeal
  • 2 x ripe banana’s
  • 1/2 cup of soft (melted) coconut oil
  • 1 x teaspoon honey
  • Get creative by adding in any of the following: nuts, seeds, raisin’s, dark chocolate, goji berries, cinnamon, orange and/or lemon rind.
  1. Preheat oven to medium heat
  2. Mix the coconut oil & the honey together.
  3. Add the banana and mash it up
  4. Add in the oatmeal and stir it up
  5. All other ingredients can then go in.
  6. Grease a baking sheet and spoon out your cookies. Flatten them with a fork just a wee bit before you pop them in to bake for 15-20 minutes, until desired crunchiness is achieved 🙂



Vegetarian Frittata

  •  6 x eggs
  •  1/2 cup of milk (of your choice)
  •  pinch of garam masala, salt & pepper
  •  bunch of finely chopped parsley
  • 3 x  finely chopped tomatoes
  1. Beat the eggs & add in the milk
  2. Add in all other ingredients and spices
  3. Pour into a frying pan over medium heat until the top starts bubbling.
  4. Place the frying pan under the grill until the top turns a golden brown

A nice eggy like pizza 🙂



Bliss Balls

  • 1 x packet (500grams) ground almonds ( or you can grind up any nuts which you prefer)
  •  2-3 tablespoons melted coconut oil
  •  2 x tablespoons raw cocoa powder
  •  1 x teaspoon honey (optional)
  •  Play with any additives you please, here’s some ideas: grated ginger, grated lemon or orange rind, chillies, goji berries, sea salt, dates, figs ….
  1. Place ground nuts into a bowl and fork out any lumps
  2. Add coconut oil & stir.
  3. Add in cocoa powder
  4. Add in any other ingredients.
  5. Shape into balls.
  6. Sprinkle of cinnamon & refrigerate
















Release & Restore Yoga Workshop / Sunday November 30th – Malta

Dini Martinez & I will be hosting a workshop infusing hip opening sequences for releasing and long held seated yin poses for restoring. This workshop is suitable for all levels.

I will be leading a warmup followed by hip opening sequences. Here is some information on the hips:

*Most often a place for a woman’s centre of gravity, this reflects a deeper connection to this area and the emotions it can hold. For men, the pelvis is the seat of directive movement in the human body, imperative to proper alignment, balance and posture. Our peripheral nervous system, involved in the stimulation of emotional response in addition to other functions, establishes connections in the hip area to promote survival in times of emotional stress.

In Yoga we often refer to the HIPS as the ‘junk drawer’ of the body, whatever we don’t want to deal with goes there. Through deep opening hip postures we can find some release which initiates a calming effect.

Dini will be leading the YIN practice. If you’ve never heard of YIN yoga here is further information:

In Yin Yoga we reach out to the lunar, feminine, cooler and passive side of our beings – countering and balancing the hectic activity of every-day life.
During the session seated poses are held for up to five minutes, letting go of any muscular tensions and alignment issues. This allows the body to release traumas in different koshas, or layers, which have possibly been stored there for years or even decades. As the yin areas of the body like
our connective tissue, ligaments and bones, are accessed in the serene stillness of a yin practice, we open our whole selves up to boundless opportunities and endless possibilities.

Letting go of old stresses and sorrows you no longer need, be prepared to leave this practice feeling profoundly relaxed and at peace on a physical,mental and emotional level.

Right in time for the Christmas hussle!! :))

Date: Sunday November 30th
Time: 15.00 – 18.00
Cost: 30 euros
Location: 54 Cathedral St, Lily Agius Gallery (Exposed Art)

For bookings contact Michelle Bartolo:
mob: 99280664

To find out more about us:

Dini Martinez

Michelle Bartolo Yoga

Full Moon Yoga Tune / Wednesday October 8th

Hello moonbeamers!

Our next full moon class:

Date: Wednesday October 8th @ 19.30

Location: Chalet Pier, Sliema

*Donation based class

*Please reserve a mat if you need one


Yoga & Wellness Weekend Retreat / November 7-9th, GOZO

I’m happy to announce a weekend retreat up and coming November 7-9th by popular demand.

Your weekend will include yoga, meditation, healthy meals & tranquility. The aim of the weekend is to help you ground again after the summer and set the body up for the winter season ahead.

There will also be plenty of free time for you to book a massage, hike and/or explore the island. Groups are small to ensure proper instruction through the classes, focusing on alignment and safety as well as breath & presence.

Your wellness weekend will include:
* accommodation
* welcome meal
* meditation session upon arrival ( 30 min)
* 4 x Yoga classes of 1.5hrs each, which also include meditation (Blend of Vinyasa & Kundalini Yoga)
* energising breakfasts & healthy light vegetarian dinners (all meals prepared by )

* 300euros / single occupancy
* 250euros / shared occupancy

*Full payment is required to secure your space

A wellness retreat will help you impliment some healthy ways of being into your daily life. Through the meditation sessions you will learn how to relate to your mind and notice how your thoughts leave you feeling. Always teaching ourselves that what we put inside through what we say, think and eat all have an effect.

I will also send you home with some healthy recipes that are easy for anyone to make and some simple yoga techniques to help you develop a regular practice.

We can achieve what we wish on the inside, just as we have on the outside.

Building strength, clarity & peace from the Inside Out

Tune In

*For bookings email:

Photos of our weekend retreat home:

Michelle Bartolo's photo.
Michelle Bartolo's photo.
Michelle Bartolo's photo.
Michelle Bartolo's photo.
Michelle Bartolo's photo.

Full Moon Yoga Tune / Tuesday September 9th

The moon is full again Tuesday September 9th and we’ll be beaming in.

Location: Chalet Pier/Sliema

Time: 20.30

*Class is donation based

*Please bring your own mat & if you need one please let me know

Making waves, opening up & letting go.


Think BIG, ACT small : The Art of Cleansing

The words cleanse, detox and rejuvenate are all consistently being thrown our way, and for a very valid reason as well. Cleansing helps us clean the body from the inside and gives the body the boost you feel it may be needing.

You know the body is due for a cleanse if any of the following symptoms arise:



*Feeling ‘heavy’ in the body & mind

*Lack of positivity

*Lots of illness/dis-ease

*Lack of feeling at ease

There are all sorts of cleanses and detox’s out there so take your time and experiment with the one that works for you. It’s of utmost importance to set your mind strong before you get started. Feeding your body thought’s like ‘I’ll give it a try’, ‘I’ll never be able to do this for a whole week’, ‘It’s going to be so difficult’, is not going to make the cleanse any easier for yourself. Remember that the body listens to what you say and think. Lie to it if need be to make things easier for yourself. This is called the placebo effect. Whatever you believe will work. Your ‘internal pharmacy’ is incredibly powerful!

If you feel you need the support, ask a friend to join in on the cleanse or have a nutritionist guide you through one. Be aware of spending time with people who are NOT supportive of your goal, this will only make things harder. There are also many books and videos you can use to keep you on track (recommended list below).

I’ve experimented with all sorts of cleanses. The intensity of the cleanse really depends on what your diet is like in your everyday life. In my opinion going from eating meat & processed foods regularly to just raw veg could be a bit too drastic on the system. I would advise to gradually cut down on your meat, fish & processed food intake (alcohol,diary products coffee, sweet & savoury snacks) before you do the cleanse. This allows your body to slowly adjust and it won’t feel like you’re letting go of too much all at once, which the body doesn’t respond all that well to.

Slow n Steady wins the race.

Once you feel you’ve taken a week or two to ween the body off of meat, fish & processed foods, begin to search for some recipes on salads and soups. Take a trip down to your local health food store and veg shop to stock up.

I personally found that raw food worked best for me, but I have experimented with all sorts so choose something that isn’t too drastic, that you can imagine yourself following. There are HEAPS of great healthy cookbooks, recipes and even youtube videos to help you out, it’s so attainable that there really is no excuse for not finding what you need right at your fingertips.

Also, be sure to implement some yoga & light exercise which will propel your cleanse into an even better space. Be sure to get to sleep at a reasonable hour and wake up just after sunrise. Be supportive of yourself. The gains are well worth the ride. I always feel ‘electric’ during a cleanse, it’s like I can physically feel all the cells in my body booting around to some disco ;). I found that initially I went a bit mushy in the brain while my body was letting go of toxicity buildup, so hang tight. The courage comes in breaking through the barrier. Once that barrier is broken the mind is as sharp as that good knife you love so much. Your body & mind will soon be working at their optimus levelus. You’ll notice your eyes and days grow brighter as the haze fades away. Your friends will notice how awesome you look and how brainy you’ve become 😉

Remember how you feel is not only great for you, but great for everyone else you spend your time with. Energy is contagious.

Think BIG

ACT small

My suggested daily cleanse program:

*When you wake up, head to the kitchen for a nice glass of fresh lemon squeezed in room temperature water.

*Oil Pull (optional but so effective in aiding the release of toxicity)

1 tablespoon of coconut oil swooshing around in your mouth, pulling between your teeth for 20 mins. All the toxins are drawn out of the body, the bacteria is cleared from your mouth, your teeth will feel and look squeaky clean. DON’T SWALLOW! Once you spit out the white foam that’s built up from the ‘pulling’ be sure to rinse your sink with something antibacterial and give your mouth a good rinsing too. For more on oil pulling

*Meditation/ Yoga/Light exercise

*BREAKFAST smoothie (ideas for recipes in books below or just google away)

My favourite is:


*1/2 an avocado

*1 stalk celery

*bunch of parsley

*bunch of rucola

* 1/2 grapefruit

* 1 tsp coconut oil

*1 tsp wheatgrass

* 1 cup of water

*Whiz it up in your blender of choice and send it down the hatch. Be ready for a burst of GREEN

*Drink  PLENTY of water throughout the day. Feel free to add in lemon juice, a cucumber slice, a piece of parsley or basil to flavour it a wee bit. Sometimes I throw in some berries too.


*Salad with vegetables in season. You can choose to steam some of those veggies too. My favourite is steamed asparagus and broccoli set on a bed of crispy green leaves. Sprinkle on a bit of shredded coconut and add on this dressing…


1 x teaspoon TAHINI

1 x teaspoon coconut oil

1 x pinch of sea salt

a wee bit of chopped ginger

1 x squeezed lemon

*More and more water. Pamper yourself with a massage, or reflexology during your cleanse as well.


*Raw soup

Choose vegetables of your choice. Chop them up nice and small and place them in your blender with some water and spices. Easy peasy and very filling.


Let your creative side play around with different vegetable combinations for the salads & soups.

On the very last day of your cleanse I suggest preparing a litre of water with the juice of x 1 lemon squeezed into it and 1 x tablespoon of sea salt. Mix it up and drink it within an hour. Be sure to be beside a bathroom for the final release *wink*wink*

S H I N E     O N

Recommended list of videos, books & blogs:

* A documentary on the placebo effect and how important your thoughts are:

* A great book on the food systems and supper foods (this was like a bible for me):

* Healthy Recipe Book

* Healthy food blog with recipes

* CLEAN – a great book on cleansing and why we should do it. Incredibly supportive to read during your cleanse to keep you on track.








Full Moon Yoga Tune ~ Sunday August 10th @ 8pm

We hope you can join us this coming Sunday August 10th as Anchelique and I tune you in under the moonlight.

Location: Chalet, Sliema

Time: 20.00

*Class is donation based

*Please bring your own mat and if you need one please let us know in advance and we can bring one for you 😉

Here is this Augusts full moon forecast:


August’s Full Moon Forecast:

We have the opportunity to embrace the wisdom of knowing the difference between pushing the river and going with the flow. The former may be tempting right now but the latter is most definitely what’s called for!
The energies of this Moon strengthen our commitment and staying power to keep us on track. They’re not destined to make it all happen in the blink of an eye…It comes not as a magic wand but as a whole new tool box which we can open up to discover that extra strength we needed, that deeper insight which ensures our understanding, that extra information needed to complete the puzzle. Insights, information, people and experiences which come to us with this moon are influential and we would be wise not to overlook them!