Every now and then I write about a friend who runs a business on the Côte d’Azur worthy of everyone knowing about, and today I’m going to tell you about yoga instructor Faye Villalba. Faye lives in the gorgeous back country behind Cannes and works across the Côte d’Azur. I recently had the pleasure of chatting to her about yoga on the Côte d’Azur.
To a lay person like me you’re a yoga teacher but I realise there are plenty of different types of yoga. Tell us a bit about your style.
The style of yoga that I practice and teach is inspired by my original training in the Iyengar school, coupled with the teachings of Vanda Scaravelli and her innovative and intuitive approach to yoga, which focuses on the proper alignment and “awakening” of the spine.
How long have you been on the Côte d’Azur? What brought you to this area and why yoga?
Having worked in the film business for nearly 25 years I came to film in Monaco in 1996 and fell in love with the area, but more importantly with my future husband! We both started practicing yoga some 4 years later whilst going through a painful period in our lives, battling with the frustration of infertility and numerous highly stressful cycles of IVF. My yoga practice had such a profound effect on me – both physically and psychologically – that I felt a passionate desire to share its extraordinary benefits with others and this is what drew me to teaching 8 years ago.
What do you like best about what you do?
Teaching brings me great joy; I humbly watch as women whose arms ached from just hanging out the washing regain strength and flexibility. As stressed-out men clear their minds and find enough calm to balance on one leg. As those lacking in confidence find it within themselves to lift their legs into a headstand. My students are a constant source of inspiration and positive energy as I watch them becoming stronger, more supple, calmer and more mindful.
Where do you practice?
As well as private lessons in people’s homes and at a large company in Sophia Antipolis, I teach several group classes at different studios based in Antibes, Roquefort les Pins, Valbonne and Magagnosc. Because there are so many different styles of yoga and teaching practices, it’s extremely important to find the right teacher for you (I compare it to finding the right psychotherapist!) and with this in mind I always offer one trial group class free of charge. For any new students who mention this blog when they first contact me I’d love to offer an additional incentive of 10% off all group classes for their first month of practice.
Thanks for answering my questions Faye, and for the generous discount for my readers! How can people get in touch?
If you’d like to contact Faye you can find her through Facebook or her website. Whether you’re resident in the area or just visiting and want to keep up your yoga, get in touch with Faye and organise a session. Group classes are in English though she can do personalised sessions in French and Spanish too. Don’t you think this would be a great thing to do while on holiday at Lou Messugo?
Do you do yoga? Would you like to spend an active holiday or retreat in the South of France practicing yoga? (I know just the place to stay!) What do you think? I’d love to hear from you in the comments.
Secret Paradise: a Refreshing River Walk
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I love yoga but haven’t been for awhile….this makes me want to get doing it again. What a lovely part of the world to practice in!
Absolutely VaiChin, I so agree.
Inspiring isn’t it?
Me too Lauren!
But perhaps you would become flexible and balanced if you gave it a try. I oftne feel like that too.
Well now you know where to come Charotte!! You can book at Lou Messugo any day.
It is inspirational isn’t it! :p
me too Louisa!
I agree Jen!
Faye certainly knows how to make it look lovely doesn’t she?
You will be one day Ness! Thanks for commenting.
Wow! I love yoga, but to do it against such a backdrop must be quite an experience.
great interview – I’d love to get to a Yoga class again soon
Gorgeous photos!! I have never tried yoga but could be persuaded with views like that to practice in
Love the pictures. Makes me wish I was able to do all those things!
Gorgeous photos – amazing yoga poses too – pretty sure I’m not flexible or balanced enough!
Never really been into yogo – but I could definitely do the retreat part, especially in the South of France! 😀
So inspirational. A girl I went to school with does it and I see her amazing photos on facebook. I could do with trying it.
A great interview, very inspiring. I think yoga could be what I need to strengthen and tone my aching body.
What a great interview and such amazing surroundings, it would be the perfect retreat for anyone 🙂
I have never done Yoga, but is I was anywhere I would want to do it in the sun and this sounds bliss
Looks dreamy! What a blissful retreat.
I’d love to do yoga but I’m never on my own to be able to go.
What an amazing place to practice Yoga! Very inspiring. Yoga is really not “me” but I’m planning on trying Pilates.
Book yourself a little yoga retreat with faye staying at Lou Messugo Sophie!!!
Such a beautiful part of the world to do outdoor yoga too – this post reminds me that I should think about getting back into yoga, I’m so stiff these days!
My great pleasure Faye 🙂
Thanks so much Phoebe for your lovely blog, all about me! And thanks to all those who’ve left comments. Yes to Vicki, absolutely get in touch next time you’re here. I always try to get to the Festival to catch up with friends from my “previous life”!
Thanks Vicki, it would be great if you hooked up with Faye next time you’re in Cannes, and we could actually meet too!
Stressed Corinna? Take it easy…. 🙂
Thanks Tracey, so when shall I expect you then?!!
A wonderful post, so inspiring and beautiful pictures! I was a director in the film industry before becoming a pro-blogger and love yoga-recently got into it so still a beginner but it’s really changed so much for me, given me peace of mind, great sleep and so much energy! I often visit the Cannes Film Festival so will have to look you up next time!
I need the retreat now!
Great post, Phoebe. Yes, to the yoga retreat!