The Yoga Girl Guide – Samujana Villas in General, Travel

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I left Phuket with a heavy heart - it was so hard to say goodbye to the girls! But I was on my way to new adventures: meeting the husband in Koh Samui for a few (more!) days of vacation before our big retreat. I had no idea where we were going to stay and was still exploring our options when I got an email from Samujana Villas just a day or two before our arrival inviting us to visit their property. They picked me up at the airport and since I hadn't done much...

The Yoga Girl Guide – Amanpuri, Phuket in General, Travel

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The next stop on our wild adventure was nothing short of mind-blowing. Who knew it would actually be getting even better? We arrived at Amanpuri Resort, the crown jewel of Phuket, in the middle of the day and felt at peace the moment we set foot on the property. Actually, Amanpuri is a word derived from Sanskrit meaning just that: "place of peace" and it's something the resort has managed to embody well. A sense of peacefulness and calm follows you around throughout every part of the property; from our arrival to the majestic lobby to...

Sgt Pepper’s Friends in General, Love

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I have been getting many questions about the sweet pitbull we found in Thailand and weather or not we managed to find him a home. This is the story as of now: We were walking through a crafts market to get to the beach when we came across this beautiful pitbull chained to a pole. He was very friendly and just stood there wagging his tail, so I walked up and started petting him. It turns out he had been chained to this pole for his entire life - literally, since he was a small puppy....

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Rise & Shine Smoothie! in Recipes

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We came home from Thailand after 40 hours of traveling last night and today I'm feeling everything but perky. I am 11 hours wrong in time and I slept all the wrong hours during my travels yesterday (I have such a hard time falling asleep on planes!). Woke up at 5am this morning feeling wide awake but with a massive headache. My body is confused - 5am in Aruba is 4pm in Thailand where I've spent the past three weeks! The solution? Massive amounts of water and herbal tea, yoga, mineral salt water and green smoothies....

Step into the fire. in General

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This is the year of looking our fears square in the eye without running away. This is a moment of no escape. It's time you step into the fire. Sit with your fears. Feel the pain. Let it pin you to the wall but not paralyze you. Let it breakyou open but not into pieces. Let it shake your ground but not your core. The universe will never give us anything we are not ready to deal with. So if you're finding yourself face to face with death and pain and fucked up, nothing-will-ever-be-the-same, gut...

The Yoga Girl Guide – Anantara Phuket Layan in General, Travel

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I feel so spoiled with beauty during this trip to Thailand! We had the opportunity to stay in the most amazing places; the first of which was Anantara in Phuket. We had a long flight coming in (me traveling all the way from Aruba, Daniella from London and Olivia from Stockholm) so we were pretty tired when we arrived to Phuket late at night. We had a warm welcome by the sound  of a gong announcing our arrival, and received flower bracelets made of jasmine to put around our wrists, refreshing towels scented with lemongrass and...

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The Yoga Girl Guide – Conservatorium, Amsterdam in General, Travel

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I go to Amsterdam all the time but I've never had an experience quite like the one I had this week on our way to our big surprise week in Thailand! We had an absolutely amazing experience at The Conservatorium Hotel and Spa. I'm always excited to stay at hotels I've heard good things about but The Conservatorium really blew me away. The actual hotel is an old music school beautifully renovated with details kept that reveals its history. The lobby and the Brasserie are located in what must have been the courtyard, ceilings and walls made...

Airplane Essentials in General

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I sometimes share my "Airplane Essentials" on Instagram right before I travel places, and I haven't done one in a while! Here on the blog is a perfect place to go deeper into what the items are, what I always bring and what I really can't travel without. Of course it's absolutely possible to just hop on a plane without anything but your passport in your hand luggage, but I am a seasoned traveler and have found there are some things that just make traveling so much easier and more enjoyable. Last year I had...

The Peri Party! in General

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Ladies and gentlemen! I am writing this post from... AMSTERDAM! Yes! I know! The day before yesterday I secretly traveled from Aruba to Holland without anyone knowing (pretty tricky to do when you're life is so public through social media) - you might have noticed that I haven't been Snapchatting at all and I haven't shared anything current on Instagram, Facebook or Twitter. Why, you might ask? The answer is one word: SURPRISE! I have secretly been planning The Peri Party - a huge surprise for one of my best friends in the world -...

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Music. in General, Music

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Music... It makes the world go round! So many of you have been asking about my music choices for videos lately. Did you know I share all of my music publicly on Spotify? No? Well, I do! Go follow me there - search for "Yoga Girl" or "Rachel Brathen" among the profiles and you'll find me. Music is a huge part of my life and I love putting together playlists for yoga classes. My taste in music is very eclectic; I love everything from old school rock to reggae to indie, folk, hip hop and...