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Meet Juliette Rossato and Devon Young of Colibri Yoga Retreats in Hollywood

Today we’d like to introduce you to Juliette Rossato and Devon Young.

Thanks for sharing your story with us Juliette and Devon. So, let’s start at the beginning and we can move on from there.
Juliette: I was born in Miami and grew up in Germany, where I studied to become a photographer. I moved to New York City in 2008 to work in fashion photography. After several years in the industry, I realized it wasn’t my passion, and I turned to yoga to give me a new direction. My father was a devout yogi, but it wasn’t until this point in my life that I saw the true value of a regular yoga practice.

I quickly fell in love with it and have now been teaching yoga for over 7 years. I moved to LA in 2013 and met Devon Young, who is my partner in crime, my soul sister, and business partner. She was the one who gave me the courage to build something from scratch. We created Colibri Yoga Retreats to share and combine two of our biggest loves: yoga and travel. We are currently planning our 5th retreat.

Devon: I used to struggle with anxiety and depression, and at times I even found it hard to get out of bed. I started doing yoga while I was in college as a way to exercise and I gradually started to feel better physically, mentally and emotionally. I traded some of my bad habits for good ones and over time sought out yoga as a form of therapy and a way to find an inner calm.

After doing yoga for about 6 years, I decided to enroll in my first yoga teacher training and start on my path as a professional yoga instructor. After many years of teaching and many, many trainings, I decided that I wanted to fuse my love for the practice with my love for travel and start leading yoga retreats. Luckily, I have the most amazing partner, Juliette, and we have supported each other along the way to achieve things we didn’t think were possible.

Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
So far we’ve been very fortunate! All of our retreats have been a wonderful experience and we’ve met some amazing people along the way. When something is meant to be, things seem to fall into place very easily. That’s not to say that it’s always easy to work, but when you show up and put in the effort, that effort pays off. Yoga offers so many ways of dealing with challenges and coping with stress, and we take full advantage of those lessons when troubles arise.

The most stressful situation we’ve faced so far was a resort canceling on us the night before the retreat due to flooding. When things happen that are out of our control, it only matters how we react to them. We could have easily been overwhelmed and the retreat ruined by bad energy, but we kept our calm and carried on, and everyone had the best time! Perspective is everything.

Colibri Yoga Retreats – what should we know? What do you guys do best? What sets you apart from the competition?
Colibri Yoga Retreats is a small, women-owned business that offers yoga adventures in paradise for everyone. We know that life can get stressful, and we are living in a go go go society. Even taking a yoga class every week or every day is sometimes not enough of a reset button. This is why we travel. Taking yourself out of your comfort zone helps you switch perspective to see the bigger picture.

Colibri Yoga Retreats takes small, like-minded groups of people to beautiful places to recharge their lives and unplug their minds with yoga, meditation, and community. Our retreats are all levels, and every student receives our full, passionate attention in every aspect of the experience. We offer daily group classes and activities like surfing and hiking, but also leave enough space in the schedule for people to venture out and explore on their own.

Funny enough, usually the group activities are the most popular! Another special feature is our mala (meditation garland) making workshop, which allows our students to use and infuse their own mala with positive energy throughout the week. This is always a favorite, even for people who don’t usually meditate or do crafts, and it’s so fun to see everyone’s creativity flow! We want to help introduce people to their best selves because being your best self is the key to building a better world.

What moment in your career do you look back most fondly on?
Juliette: Seeing the incredible results of our efforts on the faces of our students on every retreat fills me with pride. It took a leap of faith to start this company having never owned or run a business before, but what we’ve managed to build and accomplish, and in such a short period of time, is something I am truly proud of, as well as grateful for.

Devon: Honestly, completing our first yoga retreat was a defining moment in my life. I felt we had accomplished something that we didn’t think was possible and I felt that I had truly found my calling.

When I am leading a retreat, I feel like my life is so full and that I am exactly where I am supposed to be. It is even more validating seeing how much our students are able to grow within a week-long retreat and to hear how much they enjoyed it at the end. Not to mention all of the life-long friends that we make each trip!

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Image Credit:

Anna Ritsch, Micaela Rossato

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