25 May Meet Hope, Our Yogi in Residence from New York, USA
“What first made you connect to yoga?” Asks Loubna, The Experience Coordinator at the Palais Amani
“ I was in China, going rock climbing with some friends of mine, and there I met an Indian gentleman who offered to give me two free Yoga Classes if I buy one. This was back in 2003 and I was just instantly connected. Says Hope The Yogi in Residence at The Palais Amani.
What type of yoga do you practice and teach ?
I’ve started teaching Yoga back in 2004. As at home, my Yoga is very community dependent so mainly I ended up teaching more Bikram Yoga, as it is the friendliest and homey type of Yoga. Yet, I also teach Yin, Vinyassa, Hatha, and restorative Yoga. You name it, I’ve tried it!
“Do you travel to many different places to practice yoga?”Asks Loubna
I have actually. I’ve stayed and practiced Yoga first in China, and then in Thailand, and I’ve been to Israel, central America. I’ve also practiced in the Philippines, Panama, France, Germany and Now Morocco. So I’ve done four continents for Yoga so far.
Have you been to Morocco before?
Hope: I have been here just before covid for a very short stay. I spent four nights in Marrakech for a quick desert tour.
Loubna: What are your first impressions since being here?
The People here are very lovely, especially in Fez, and that’s something very impressive. And also the density of the street art, everything is so beautiful. With so much attention to details, There is so much beauty in every corner of the old Medina, where everything looks like a jewelry box.
And Palais Amani, what are your impressions?
Palais Amani is like a fairy tale; A fantasy to be here. Everyone is being welcomed by the warm staff and there is so much attention to make the guests have the most personal experience of Moroccan hospitality.
Yoga is not a part of the Moroccan tradition, but why do you think yoga works in this environment?
I think that when you ask about Morocco, and especially in a place like the Medina, where there are a lot of hills, and you would be walking the whole day, the physical therapy aspect is good for you, and just the fact of stretching out would be great for the spine.
How long are you planning to stay in Morocco?
I’m in Morocco for about five weeks.
What plans do you have once you finish your Yogi in Residence at The Palais Amani?
After this I’m heading back home, where I will be working in holistic Yoga center in New York city, sharing my Experience in Morocco with my students.
Interviewed & Transcribed by Loubna El Bouchikhi, Experience Coordinator at Palais Amani