Griffins Hill Iyengar Yoga Retreat
Griffins Hill is a peaceful, contemporary, architect designed yoga retreat set within a six acre bountiful landscaped garden, two kilometres from Dunkeld in Victorias west. Surrounded by panoramic views of the Southern Grampians, Griffins Hill yoga retreats focus on yoga, rest and organic vegetarian meals.
Frank Jesse : All classes at Griffins Hill yoga retreat are taught by Frank Jesse, who is one of just 27 Senior Iyengar Teachers in Australia.
Senior Teacher is the highest designation that a teacher accredited by the BKS Iyengar Association of Australia.
Frank has spent more than 40,000 hours teaching and practicing yoga in the past 25 years and has attended classes run by the founding master of Iyengar yoga, Mr BKS Iyengar, at his school in Pune, India. He has taught many other Iyengar teachers practicing today.
Frank Jesse and Jane Gibb started Clifton Hill Yoga Studio in 1995, building it into the highly successful Iyengar yoga school that it remains today. Frank introduced innovations in teaching methods, such as the week-long morning intensive courses (before work hours for five working days), which are now commonplace in many yoga schools.
Griffins Hill is another innovative idea, combining a full program of yoga and delicious organic vegetarian fare, mostly home-grown, with the chance to walk around the spectacular local bushland and visit neighboring sights.
Running yoga retreats and weekly yoga classes at Griffins Hill, Frank has further refined his teaching skills and become highly regarded for his ability to cater to the differing needs of individual students, who range widely in age (up to 80) and ability.
Here's how Frank discovered yoga, and why it became so important to him.
"building a mud brick house changed my life. My parents purchased a bush block in the Yarra Valley back in the '70s. I was a teenager, and my brothers, sisters Mum and Dad all set about building this massive three-story house out of mud bricks all individually made.
I didn’t realise at the time, but this experience shaped my attitude to life. Later, when I first started to practice yoga, I realised that becoming a yoga teacher was the same sort of journey. We built that house one brick at a time. I built my yoga practice one pose, one muscle at a time. I learned to love big projects, like starting Griffins Hill retreat, and to enjoy working slowly over a long period of time, little by little to create something really worthwhile."
Jane Gibb : Jane is a successful entrepreneur and landscape gardener who is trained in science and horticulture. Jane's upbringing in the remote alpine region southeast of Mansfield forged the self-reliance, keen observation and love of nature that is so important to her now.
Jane sold her highly successful Richmond-based plant nursery and landscape design business, built over 15 years to establish Griffins Hill with Frank Jesse. Here Jane is realising her long-held dream of creating an ecosystem -- a garden for birds and animals, and the little critters --alongside her extensive organic produce gardens that provide the for guests all year round. She has expanded her expertise into creating fabulous vegetarian food from her garden that look and taste wonderful.
David Green CONNECTING FOOD AND SPIRIT……
So much is now written and televised about exotic, beautiful and fashionable food. Perfect presentations, colours and effects for those of us restlessly searching for new tastes, new sensation, and new fashions.
At Griffin Hill Jane’s food is first of all deeply respectful of the true nature of the particular grain, the bean, the fruit and the vegetable. The dish is presented to portray and honour the integrity of each food—its texture, form, taste and colour. As single or blended dishes, we see and taste the real essence, enhanced by spices but not inherently changed by them.
So we are invited to eat naturally. Both body and spirit are nourished and enlivened by natures gifts and the respectful work of the hands that prepared them for us.
18 August 2013.
Yoga : The practice of yoga is an ideal way to balance the stresses of modern day living, helping us to stay healthy and young in body, mind and spirit. Yoga nourishes the organic body through the practice of asanas (postures), brings clarity to the mind, and keeps the body strong, supple and heathy.