Brought to you by OMNI Wellness Group, a trio of expert individuals that have created a space which encompasses all areas of health and wellness. The key pillars to OMNI Wellness are:
- Regular movement
- Fuelling the body through the right nutrition
- Allowing the body time to rest and recharge
It is these fundamentals on which their retreats are formed, making holistic health and wellbeing a part of your everyday reality.
Aimee Victoria Long is a celebrity PT with a focus on Pilates and Barre. Expect to be put through your paces with intense workouts that focus on your primary and smaller muscle groups designed to redefine your body.
Lucy Raetz-O’Connell is a registered nutritionist and PT with a focus on Pilates, functional training and mobility. She believes in the importance of fuelling the body through the principles of healthy eating, alongside regular and consistent movement.
Josh Davies is a PT with a focus on strength and conditioning. As an ex-professional rugby player, he continues to apply his in-depth knowledge to his coaching philosophy. Josh seeks to help people improve their longevity to lead happier and healthier lives.
OMNI Wellness Retreats are held in the most idyllic of locations from Jamaica to Kenya, but Team Coco were invited to try out their luxury retreat in the charming Cotswolds.
Held in the stunning surroundings of The Lakes by YOO in the heart of the Cotswolds, this UK retreat has you feeling as though you’ve boarded a plane to somewhere sublime.
The 850-acre sustainable estate is a mere 90 minutes from London and features vast lakes of crystal-clear waters, lush greenery, bewitching woodland, a farm for rescued animals and endless rewilding areas. In the style of ‘Swallows and Amazons’ it really is the ultimate natural playground.
There’s the choice to stay in the magnificent Manor House where lakeside luxury meets countryside chic and is brimming with swoon-worthy interiors. For those who prefer to have a place to themselves, book into one of the private lakeside cabins for the ultimate Cotswolds escape.
Each day includes two fitness classes, as well as the option to take advantage of personalised PT sessions with any of the coaches and a range of activities throughout The Lakes.
We warmed up for the retreat with a bike tour of The Lakes not long after we arrived. This was the perfect way to get our bodies moving and ready for a fitness retreat while checking out our surroundings.
Aimee kicked things off the next day with an hour-long Barre class, and boy, did we feel the burn!! We all gathered in the living room of The Manor as the sun rose and worked on those smaller muscle groups that don’t usually get activated.
Afterwards, we headed to one of the freshwater lakes for a morning swim and some breathwork with Josh which was the perfect way to cool down (literally!) after feeling the burn of Barre.
In the afternoon we headed out with Amber (one of The Lakes instructors) for a stand-up paddle boarding session on another of the lakes. Whether you’re new to SUP or a seasoned pro, Amber will guide you through a fantastic session that proves to not only be a full body workout, but also a great tonic for the soul.
Before we devoured dinner, Josh took us through a strength and conditioning session in a HIIT style format out on the decked area by the swimming pool. It was a great way to end the day, leaving us feeling strong and reenergised.
The third day began with a Pilates and mobility session led by Lucy. Not only did this help us to loosen off sore muscles from the previous day, but it placed us in the right headspace for another day full of activity.
We met with Amber again, but this time to learn how to rock climb! Learning a new activity is not only great for the body, but it will do wonders for your mindset when you tackle a skill you haven’t tried before.
Each workout that OMNI provide are discussed in detail before in order to be able to tailor it to the group and get the most out of a session. Should you feel like you want to go one step further, all of the coaches are on hand to provide personal training sessions in whatever style of workout you fancy. If you don’t feel like working out that day, that’s fine – the retreat is for you to do as you please.
As per OMNI’s philosophy, it’s important to fuel the body through correct nutrition, which is why you’ll be fed a rainbow of local produce during your stay.
Before the retreat you’ll be sent an in-depth questionnaire all about your dietary requirements, including specific likes and dislikes meaning they can tailor the foodie fare to you.
During the retreat, expect breakfast feasts, long lunches, and delicious dinners of delectable dishes all carefully prepared by an expert chef and specialist nutritionists.
It’s hard to recall what we had without instantly salivating and wishing desperately to devour it all over again.
Breakfast was a buffet style affair set upon the credenza of options such as fresh tortilla, banana pancakes, bowls of berries and stacks of pastries served with local preserves.
Lunch always included lots of colours in a bounty of salads to keep things light and nutritional ahead of an afternoon of activity.
Dinners were a set three courses including dishes such as delicately made haddock fishcakes, the most delicious aubergine ‘meatballs’ I’ve ever tasted and a dark chocolate mousse so heavenly it could have been sent by the gods.
Expect a cooking class on one of the days where you can then tuck into your culinary creations in a scenic setting by the lakeside.
It’s sometimes the expectation that fitness retreats are going to be jampacked, leaving you very little time to catch your breath. But not this one. As OMNI’s philosophy is all about wellness, the team have made sure that there are multiple opportunities throughout each day for some time to do as you please.
What this looks like is up to you. You could take a dip in the jacuzzi, find a hidden nook to cosy up with a good book, or sink into one of the sofas as you challenge someone to a game of chess. Like us, you may prefer to get to know your fellow retreaters better or take a nap in your beautifully designed bedroom.
If you can’t rest, there’s plenty to explore at The Lakes and multiple ways to do so, whether you go for a ramble, jump on a bike, call for a chauffeured car or even take to the lake in a boat. Guests can visit the on-site spa, have a wiz on the zip line, say hello to the farm animals or sneak over to elsa’s for a cheeky glass of wine. The options are endless.
The retreat left us with one qualm, and that’s that we didn’t get to stay here longer. Really, it’s an ideal amount of time, but as the place is so perfect, and the programme designed so well, we could have quite happily done a week or more here.
As like most people, thanks to the fast-paced, modern age we live in, we entered the retreat feeling frazzled and frantic from our everyday lives, but quickly came to feel recharged and reenergised, leaving with a desire to rethink our normal routines.
We left (albeit resultantly) feeling as though all aspects of ourselves had been well-tended to. The workouts left us feeling stronger, the food made us feel nourished and the natural surroundings had us feeling grounded.
And that’s the beauty of an OMNI Wellness Retreat – it stays with you far after you’ve left it behind.
Cotswolds, UK 1st-4th November, 2022
Montego Bay, Jamacia 20th-27th April, 2023
Laikipia, Kenya 7th-14th October, 2023
For more information visit omni-wellnessgroup.co.uk or @omniwellness_group on Instagram