How often do you take a time for yourself? Have you had any experience of well being in the last few days? Do you know the cradle of holistic in North America? Follow me, I’ll tell you a little bit.

 

– Place

Located in the heart of old Quebec, Le Monastere des Augustines occupies historic wing of the Hôtel-Dieu, which was the birthplace of the first hospital in North America. 3 Augustinian sisters left Dieppe, France in 1639 these nuns had the task of providing hospital medical care to the newly formed colony, layng the foundation for Quebec`s current healthcare system. They settled in the upper city of Quebec in 1644 where they created the Hôtel-Dieu. This hospital has been managed by University Hospital of Quebec (CHUQ) since 1962. Today, only 13 nuns continue to live in this place.

Le Monastere des Augustines is a non-profit organization, it becomes a living laboratory for sustainable health innovation and research projects. All surplus revenues and donations go to: Preserve and share the Augustinian Sister`s heritage, support for professional caregivers, respite for caregivers and accommodations for individuals accompanying patients.

Sensitively restored in 2015, it offers immersive and authentic experiences, as: accommodation in a 17th-century cloister, museum, programs in holistic health and culture, restaurant and boutique.

 

  • Accommodation: It offers a peaceful oasis that nourishes the inner life. There are 2 options: Authentic rooms restored but without lose the spirit of monasticism or contemporary rooms completely redesigned with care.
  • Museum: With more than 40,000 objects collected over four centuries. The exhibition allows visitors to trace the development of medicine and practice, together with the history of the Augustinian Sisters.
  • Health and wellness: Keeping the mission of the sisters in offering holistic health with daily sessions of meditation and yoga, in addition to the wide range of specialized health treatments.
  • Restaurant: Offering healthy fare and a varied menu based on the principles of mindful eating, with vegan/vegetarian options.
  • Boutique: After years of research, all products are made by own brand, without impacting the environment and with health benefits.

 

Unforgettable experience:

 

 

Now that I have told you a bit about the history of Monastere , you will understand better about my experience there.

My journey has started a few days before the retreat, I received an email with all the details of the program and the wide variety of to do there. That already showed that the Monastere takes care you.

I arrived 4 hours before check-in time, however the room was already reserved for me and when I opened the room, I saw a lovely surprise, one that makes you feel special, a letter written in Portuguese (my native language) and a local herbal tea gift.

 

 

From this moment I had already foreseen that it would be a different experience from the traditional hotels, who only aim at the profit, the Monastere is worried about your well being.

It is also worth mentioning the impeccable cleanliness and an architecture that mixes authenticity and mordenity without losing its historical value.

I did not want to waste time and I went on a guided tour with a friendly guide who has the pleasure of presenting the place, passing through every single part of the Monastere.

Yoga, meditation, healthy dinner and the time needed to reflect and relax, things that are almost impossible to do in my day to day.

On the second day, I woke up at 6am to do meditation before breakfast, which I never imagined, but that certainly set me up for the day and made it lighter. After, the silent breakfast, a sample of what the Augustine’s sisters meals are like. Stroll through the local shop, church and talked with some guests, officials and a nun. It seems that everyone is in the same vibe and the only thing that matters is the well being.

I stayed there for just 2 days, but it was enough to recharge the batteries. This was just my first experience of wellness retreat, but I’m already planning the next one.

It`s time to take care of you. Here is your opportunity to have a wellness experience too.

 

“Happiness is not something ready made. It comes from your own actions.”
Dali Lama

 

 

About the Author: Vitor Correia was born in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. He has been living in Montreal. Passionate about sports and travel. He found in Retrigo the opportunity to gather work and leisure.