Retreat at Smiths

October 3, 2020

PhotographyBobby Bense & Helen Janneson Bense

EditingHelen Janneson Bense

LocationSmiths Beach Resort | Yallingup | Castle Rock – Western Australia

Bare & Wilde Love & Light Wellness Retreat – Email HERE to find out about the next one

Outfits – Rihanna Maxi Dress | Salsa Leora Dress |Matching Hi Lo Skirt + Swimwear |Embroidered Paradise Dress | Seaside Long Dress

Picnic Setup – Namastay Tipi Picnics | Plant Based Food by Valerie Gamer and Jessica Lowe | Vegan platter Lamonts

A retreat at Smiths Beach was an idea that instantly felt right. Having spent so much time at this beach and this immaculate resort, it’s become a home away from home. It’s tranquillity and back to nature environment is something I’ve really needed this year, like so many of us.

The retreat was above and beyond everything we needed. We feasted, we shared, and we connected, with ourselves, with nature and one another. There is something so powerful about women sharing. When we create safe spaces, free of judgement, and find the courage to share, we instantly give permission for others to share. We begin a circle of hearing one another with compassion and empathy. The healing power of sharing in this way is immeasurable and incredibly profound. I always walk away from these experiences feeling empowered by the bonds of sisterhood, and awakened to my own inner courage to face my fears and step into discomfort. What I always discover is that on the other side of discomfort is absolute peace and joy. I’m learning how to make friends with my uncomfortable feelings, allowing and embracing my anxieties and fears. I loved being able to facilitate a safe sharing space and look forward to doing this more within our community.

Our days were filled with retreat activities from beach walks, meditation, aromatherapy, plant based cooking, abstract art, feasting, hiking, yoga, creative conversations, sharing sunsets and sound healing with the amazing Julian Silburn. Julian’s healing magic is something I hope everyone gets to experience. He truly is a modern day shaman.

I am so grateful to our amazing, talented chefs; Valerie and Jessica who created plant based deliciousness for us all, and shared their inspirational journeys. We enjoyed the most beautiful array of wholesome, real, soul foods, all presented so beautifully. It was nourishing and healing on all levels.

During our wonderful retreat we stayed in the amazing 3-bed ocean view villa with breathtaking ocean views overlooking the pool. Each evening I’d watch the sunset from the comfort of my villa, enjoy a long luxurious bath, sip on delicious tea by the fire, and melt into a deep sleep in the most peaceful bed. Smiths Beach Resort really is the perfect place for retreat and relaxation.

After the retreat my family and I stayed on for a few more days to explore some local spots. We hiked the Cape to Cape trail once again, though this time we had an entirely new experience. We encountered a colourful array of wildflowers, a very friendly echidna and a bobtail lizard. The trail hugs the coastline and all paths lead to turquoise water. We always stop at our favourite lagoon, the Aquarium, for a snorkel and to enjoy the views. All you need are good walking shoes, lots of water, some nutrient dense snacks, wetsuit, towel, warm clothes, snorkel gear and first aid is always important whenever you travel remote. And don’t forget your camera because there are so many spots to take photos along the walk and when you arrive at the beach.

Another amazing spot we enjoyed was Castle Rock in Dunsborough, a 20 minute drive from Smiths Beach Resort. The weather was in our favour this day. Calm seas, crystal clear water, and sunshine made for the perfect combination for some stand up paddle boarding. While I paddled and looked for whales, my family enjoyed climbing all the giant boulders. They are all really into bouldering, something they do multiple times per week at home, so this was such a happy spot for us all. And while I didn’t see any whales, the views, the warmth, and the family connection were all filling me with so much gratitude for this day.

In between sunsets, hikes, supping and climbing, were all the quieter moments; moments of connection like preparing food together as a family, playing cards by the fireplace, sharing jokes, and braiding each others hair. It was so wonderful to enjoy this slow time together in the luxurious ambience of Smiths Beach Resort.

I’m filled with the deepest gratitude as always to the wonderful Smiths Beach Resort for hosting us. It’s always a phenomenal experience staying with you and we love you! Thank you to the amazing Amy from Bare and Wilde for organising and holding space for such a smooth, healing, empowering and relaxing retreat. My heart is overflowing with love. Sending a huge wave of love vibes out to you all :)

With love and gratitude,

Helen xx

Love & Light Wellness Retreat

July 31, 2020

For FULL RETREAT DETAILS and to BOOK – Bare & Wilde – EARLY BIRD SPECIAL $100 off until August 2nd

When – September 17-20th 2020

Where – Smiths Beach Resort Yallingup

Hey beautiful tribe!

Firstly I’d like to acknowledge the Traditional Owners and Custodians of this sacred land, the Wadandi Noongar People. I recognise their continuing connection to land, waters and culture. I pay my respects to their Elders past, present and emerging.

I’m starting this weekend off by sending out a huge wave of love and light to you all. Because it’s been a year and we all need it!

I don’t think I’ve ever needed retreat as much as I do now. My self care rituals have been essential to stay on top of my well being this year. And even then, I’ve had some challenging times of just not being ok. It’s ok to feel this way. And it’s ok to say it. It’s in the surrender, and allowing our feelings to be, that we can truly find some self compassion, love, and healing. Our vulnerability becomes our greatest strength as we navigate our path with self love in our hearts each and every day.

With this in mind, I’m so happy to announce the much needed Love & Light Wellness Retreat, created in partnership with Bare & Wilde Retreats.

This ultimate beachside retreat will be hosted at our favourite spot Smiths Beach Resort in their magnificent beach houses, designed with an understated sophistication to make sure you relax and enjoy. The resort’s backyard is the gorgeous turquoise ocean, nestled amongst a National Park. You will have lots of time to connect with Mother Nature.

This retreat is all about embracing self-love, unleashing our inner child, finding joy and creative freedom. It’s going to be FUN! Bare & Wilde will take care of everything from start to finish, so you can genuinely unwind, reset and connect.

Together we have curated a retreat itinerary for the WA wellness community and we hope to be able to share this with the rest of Australia and wider community when it’s safe to do so. Our hearts are with you all through these difficult times.

As part of the retreat itinerary, join me for some creative fireside conversations whilst enjoying a Q&A boho picnic on the beach, themed around the creation of my blog, rediscovering self-love and how to ignite your creative dreams. The intention here is to have a relaxed conversation, in a beautiful setting, connecting and sharing openly and safely with one another, within a sacred shared space. It will be an opportunity to ask me any questions you have, but more importantly a safe space for you to share and be heard. A space for us to share our mutual knowledge and wisdom, and inspire and elevate one another towards the fulfilment of our creative dreams.

As you guys probably know I am vegan, and healthy, delicious plant based food is something I’m so passionate about. I’m so happy this retreat will be providing plant based premium private dining experiences each day prepared by in-house chefs Jessica Lowe and Valerie Gamer. There will be daily yoga, meditation, sound healing with the incredibly gifted Julian Silburn, abstract art workshop with local artist Sarah Malone (so excited for this!) and coastal beach walks/runs as well as hiking the Cape to Cape Walk Trail. This is one of my favourite walks ever! It’s so healing and stunningly beautiful!

While we may not be able to explore beyond WA at the moment, I am super grateful to be part of this wellness retreat experience like no other. Love & Light Wellness Retreat is the premium wellness getaway you have been waiting for in 2020. We want you leaving this getaway feeling nourished from the inside out and full of life, joy and creative energy. 

You can view the full premium retreat inclusions and book your ticket HERE. There are limited spots left and EARLY BIRD $100 off is available until 2 August 2020 or until sold out.  

I can’t wait to connect with you, share magical sunsets and enjoy some self care time on this beautiful wellness retreat. 

Love and Gratitude, Helen xx

Images and Text Copyright Helen Janneson Bense 2020

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