Frequently Asked Questions

What is included in the price of the retreat?

morning Vinyasa Flow yoga class with Shari
afternoon Yin/Restorative yoga class with Shari
guided meditation with special guest instructor Sarah Taylor
use of blocks & straps
delicious box lunch from Panera Bread plus fresh fruit & dessert
rose quartz crystal (to help activate your heart chakra)
fun exercises designed to bring you increased clarity
the opportunity to deepen your practice & recharge your spirit!

What is NOT included in the price of the retreat?

transportation to the venue

Where will this retreat take place?

The retreat will take place at The Mountain Mermaid, a private property nestled in the Santa Monica Mountains.  Built in the 1930's and painstakingly restored, this estate is an architectural gem surrounded by lush gardens, meandering pathways and tranquil fountains.  Specific directions will be provided upon registration.

Is there parking available? 

Yes.  There is a dirt parking lot on the property which will be staffed by a parking attendant to assist you upon arrival.  Carpooling is strongly recommended whenever possible.

I would like to participate, but I don't know anyone else going.

Absolutely not a problem!  “Yoga people” are some of the nicest people on the planet.  It will be no time at all before you find yourself swept up in the energy of the group.  Friendships I have made while on yoga retreats are among the dearest of my life and my guess is the same will hold true for you.

Where will we practice? 

Both yoga practices as well as the guided meditation will take place indoors.  We are blessed to have the beautiful and cavernous great room at our disposal, which features shining antique wood floors.  It's a dream to practice in this space...  believe me, I speak from experience!  Windows line the perimeter of the great room with views onto picturesque patio gardens as well as the pool below.

What should I bring?

yoga mat
2 yoga blankets (or 2 beach towels)
towel for sweat
your favorite journal or writing implements
reusable water bottle
your own blocks & strap if you have them
your positive energy


layered clothing and/or a change of clothing

My spouse or friend is interested in joining me, but he/she has no previous yoga experience.

Again, absolutely not a problem!  As the instructor, my job is to cater this retreat to the needs of the individuals attending.  Any practitioner at any level is welcome.  No matter your age, fitness level, experience with yoga, or degree of flexibility, you will find something to suit you and allow you to progress along your very personal yogic path.

As always, modifications will be offered during practice so that individuals newer to yoga can still join the larger group while continuing to work at an appropriate level.  Those of you who already have a strong practice will find options designed to challenge you.  With all of that being said, however, please know that you have my blessing should you choose to forgo either of the classes for any reason.  Instead, curl up in a quiet corner with that book you've been meaning to read then simply rejoin us when you're ready.

What is Vinyasa Flow yoga?

Vinyasa Flow is a style of yoga that generates heat by linking dynamic movement together with the breath.  Expect to push the envelope of what you thought possible as you work to develop strength and increase flexibility.

What is Yin/Restorative yoga?

Yin yoga is characterized by supported stretches with longer holds.  It aims to open the fascia, or the body's connective tissue.  Restorative yoga seeks to trigger the parasympathetic nervous system, sending practitioners into a place of deep relaxation and release.

What is guided meditation and who is Sarah Taylor?

Guided meditation is a style of meditation in which participants are verbally directed along an internal journey while reclined in a comfortable, relaxed position.  The healing energy of Reiki will also be included in this session. 

Sarah Taylor is a Master level Reiki practitioner and meditation teacher with almost two decades in the holistic healing field.  In her classes, Sarah expertly blends Reiki and other energy modalities along with her intuition and compassion.  Personally, I have had the pleasure of working with Sarah not only in a group but one-on-one for spiritual coaching as well.  Let me tell you, she is something special.  l am BEYOND thrilled that she will be joining us for this retreat!

What if I have additional questions?

I am more than happy to answer any further questions you might have!  Feel free to send me an email by clicking on the “contact” tab at the top of this page.  I will do my best to respond to you within 24 hours.


Student Testimonials

"I just wanted to let you know what an amazing experience I had at the retreat.  I had no idea what to expect and I was blown away by how I felt at the end of the day.  Being able to teach to a variety of skills and ages (16 - 93) shows that you are an amazing teacher.  I pushed myself in ways mentally and physically that I have not done in a long time.  At the end of the retreat I felt at total peace yet am excited about the dreams/goals that I have set for myself.  I really enjoyed the company of all of the other participants and felt a connection that I was not expecting.  I would fly back down here for another retreat!  Thank you again!"

~ Cindy E.

"I had the pleasure of being part of Shari's day retreat held at the beautiful setting of the Buddha House.  Since Shari is such an outstanding yoga instructor, I had high hopes and expectations for the retreat and I can honestly say the experience was amazing and far surpassed my expectations.

It was apparent that Shari devoted an incredible amount of time, thoughtfulness and creativity in planning every detail of the retreat.  The venue was tranquil and I felt like I was transported to a magical getaway.  The morning flow class and afternoon yin class made for an ideal combination of physical challenges and restorative practice.  Moreover, Shari provided a caring environment that allowed for sharing amongst the yogis, personal exploration and plenty of fun and laughter.

Throughout the day, Shari encouraged us to disconnect from the stress and routines of our everyday life and embrace the surroundings, our yoga practice and the overall retreat experience.  She inspired us with her words and teachings of sankalpas.  By the end of the day, I felt stronger and more energized, my heart and well-being felt nourished and my soul was awakened.

Shari, thank you for sharing your extraordinary gift of teaching."

~ Christine C.

"I was so impressed with the amount of preparation and thought that went into your retreat.  Your knowledge, dedication and thoughtfulness were very inspirational.  The time was productive and flexible enough to allow us to adjust from our busy schedules... to reflect and evaluate our own lives and provide helpful tools to reach for our dreams.  Thank you so much for enriching my life."

~ Michael P.

"Shari's one day yoga retreat at the Buddha House in Topanga exceeded my expectations.  It was my first yoga retreat so there was some apprehension on my part about keeping up with the more advanced yogis.  Shari was able to conduct the classes so that everyone from beginner to advanced level could enjoy both the flow class in the morning and the yin/restorative class in the afternoon.  I look forward to her next yoga retreat."

~ Liz H.

"Thank you so much for giving me the opportunity to participate in the Mountain Mermaid retreat during a time in my life when I really needed it.  It helped restore my body and my mind during a difficult time, and spending time with you and the other yogis was absolutely wonderful.  I'll never be able to fully express my gratitude for your caring demeanor, yoga expertise, and generosity of spirit!

~ Molly M.