Do you want to know something that hardly anyone else knows? The Secret Yoga Club is the latest big thing when it comes to meditation, music, massage and feasting. Yeah, that's right - FEASTING.
Hosted in kooky locations for intimate sessions of healthy hedonism, it's a pop-up with soul for people who want to eat, relax and stretch out. Gabrielle Hales teaches flow and Jivamukti classes for those looking to make an entire evening out of the practice. But it's not ALL downward dog and plank torture (promise).
A friend twisted my arm into trying it, so we made tracks to Dalston's Boys Club - the secret location for our session. As well as Gabrielle - our hostess and teacher - we were joined by singer Luisa Gerstein from The Lampshapes and chef Nina Parker who specialises in ice cream and cake making. Oh yes, an evening of yoga by candlelight, cake AND ice cream. It's a secret for a reason.
The vibe at The Boys' Club was pretty eccentric - all creaky floorboards, fireplaces, oversized paintings, mannequins and mirrors. I felt like Miss Havisham could appear from behind a velvet curtain at any moment.
But the yoga itself was perfect for anyone dipping their foot into something new. Plus, for the real yogis, Gabby teaches a variation of postures so that practise stays interesting. Despite the crazy cool surroundings (there was actually a black cat skulking around) I found myself really letting go. I felt all serene moving through the sequence and when it came to Savasana (relaxation pose) Luisa sang (it was goose bump-making) while playing ukulele and Gabby drifted across the room giving us each a neck massage. Stressed? This is exactly how to spend your night.
Class was followed by an intimate vegetarian feast (see?) which we ate around a dining table laden with tealights and flowers. The whole scene was very Cluedo-Libertine-Dalston-quirky. Nina had whipped up ratatouille, savoury pancakes with guacamole, roasted peppers and deep fried beans and a pea and walnut salad. All kinds of deliciousness followed by rhubarb pudding and ice cream. OMG.
When it comes to the Secret Yoga Club - I'm reluctant to share too much, yoga of this variety is too good a thing. But if you keep it on the low-down (only tell your best friends) then I'll reveal that it's a weekly event every Tuesday from 7:30 pm and you can buy tickets online here.
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