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10:22 30 Jul 23
Spent a week in July at Finca Ara Oko with Luanda Pau Afro Cuban Dance Retreat. What an amazing experience this was! Alongside fantastic dancing/drumming/singing experience we enjoyed our stay in this old Andalusian farmhouse nestled in the mountains at the altitude of 1.2k meters.Vicky and David were amazing hosts, making sure our stay was comfortable, relaxing and stimulating. Despite being extremely busy with hosting, catering, drumming and singing tuition, Vicky and Dave were extremely personable and always had time to talk and listen, play games and just be there for you.The activities during the time were well planned and organised. Food - amazing, and the rooms we stayed in well maintained, comfortable and clean.I would highly recommend and hope to be back one day for more.
17:10 25 Jul 23
Vicky and Dave are both lovely people that will make you feel welcome immediately. They live in a beautiful, peaceful area where you can relax. I loved the variety of delicious fruit available all day!
09:54 25 Jul 23
A wonderful retreat in a delightful setting with focus on body movement, musicality and technique. Thanks to Vicky, David and Luanda for coming together to produce the amazing immersive and authentic Afrocuban experience!
12:58 20 Jul 23
A beautiful experience! I did the Coro de Clave retreat in June/July 2023. Vicky & Dave are not only expert musicians, but experts at building community. Sharing space in an off-grid farmhouse can present some challenges, but that was more than made up for by the beautiful surroundings, lovely people, delicious food, and soul-stirring music. I hope to return next year!
20:36 10 Jul 23
I had a beautiful week at Finca Ora Oko for the Coro de Clave retreat. Vicky and Dave opened their home and hearts, and shared the music they love with us. I learnt so much and had a fulfilling and joyful experience in the mountains of southern Spain. I would return in a heartbeat to do it again. It really was a special experience that will always stay with me. Truly amazing!
20:44 06 Jul 23
I just got back from a week long retreat full of singing, drumming, and relaxing. Although the dates didn’t fully fit my schedule, Vicky and Dave were very flexible in accommodating me and tailored a couple of custom workshop days to my liking which was incredible. The workshops themselves were just the right amount of challenging with a very comfortable atmosphere to learn, so I could playfully grow my knowledge of Afro Cuban songs and rhythms. The finca is beautifully situated in between almond fields with beautiful views of the surrounding mountains and starry night skies - and there’s various beautiful porches and hammocks to enjoy them from during siesta. Special shout-out also to the food, I’m a vegetarian and just loved all the dishes made from fresh, local veggies! Thanks for the perfect week!
18:52 04 Jul 23
Vicky and Dave are so generous with their talent and passion to share the wonderful music of Cuba. They manage to make the experience fun and yet with attention to detail and excellence. The beauty of the setting, the vibrancy of the music, great food, excellent company all topped off with the fulfillment of learning new skills. Altogether marvellous
15:12 06 Oct 22
I attended a Salsa Percussion Retreat at Finca Ará Oko and had the most amazing time. Vicky and Dave were very welcoming and great to learn from. The tuitions were fun and insightful, Dave catered to different levels within the group easily and my lovely co-students were also helpful. The finca is homey (there’s even a pool if you’re not nesh!), the views are stunning and the food delicious. We got to do some nice walks around the valley, visited the local bar for some tapas and gazed at stars at night. I highly recommend this retreat and look forward to coming back next year. 🙂
08:07 02 Oct 22
Just back from the salsa percussion retreat Thank you so much Vicky and Dave for a fantastic experience at La Finca Ara Oko, such a peaceful location with stunning views across the mountains, great accommodation with chillout areas including a plunge pool and hammocks (think I'm going to have to buy one). And for making us all feel welcome and at home! Delicious, tasty food every day, eaten on the patio with the mountains in the background, seeing the stars wow! And the lessons - thoroughly enjoyed playing with such a friendly supportive group of people, and a huge thank you Dave for being a great teacher and so so patient. Highly recommend this experience, I'll definitely be back!!
13:02 26 Sep 22
Just back from a glorious week playing salsa at Finca Ara Oko. What an amazing place to escape for a music retreat with stunning views over the mountains and a great feeling of space. Add to that expert and patient tuition from Dave, the generous hospitality of both Vicky and Dave, and great company, and you've got yourself a perfect holiday. I really appreciated the effort that was made to not only accommodate a vegan diet, but to provide really delicious and healthy food. Treat yourself to a week here if you can.
10:28 12 Sep 22
I'm writing my review whilst still here, dangling my feet in the delicious, cooling plunge pool. This place is special in every way, from the peaceful location with its spectacular views, to the beautiful accommodation and lovely spots to chill out and breathe it all in. We've been treated to delicious, wholesome food all week, all shared with a wonderful community of warm, friendly people who now feel like family. But it's not just about kicking back and relaxing. The level of study has been fantastic, immersing ourselves in Afro Cuban percussion for a week with just the right balance of challenge without creating any stress. Various trips out to the surrounding areas have given enough variety for this to be an all round magical experience. I came here with my partner who wasn't participating in the workshops and he was welcomed into the group beautifully and never felt left out.Do we really have to go home?
19:26 22 Jun 22
I went on the batá drumming retreat at Finca Ará Oko in in June 2022 and had a lovely time. The place is beautiful and extremely peaceful (apart from when we’re drumming starts of course!) and a brilliant location to disconnect from day to day life and focus on learning. As a retreat location it’s idyllic, in the Alpujarra / Sierra Nevada mountains with a panoramic view of the area and all the way down to the sea. It’s truly magical - especially at night when you get to see the stars and even the Milky Way at times. I loved the accommodation - I had a spacious apartment with my own privacy which I really wanted, but would've probably been very happy any one of the other shared rooms to be honest. The rest of the finca is lovely, including a plunge pool perfect for dipping in in the heat. The food was delicious and healthy which was great too. The other participants were lovely and I felt really comfortable getting to know new people as well as spending time with Vicky and Dave. The surrounding area was great also - including walks in the hills close-by and I really loved going on a couple of ‘excursions’ during the week to see nearby towns.And this is all before talking about the drumming - which was brilliant! We focussed on learning a sequence of toques which included transitions, variations, calls and responses and singing. It was really good to focus on the batá and then these specific toques to really try to master them. I have been learning for a few years with Vicky and Dave/Bombo Productions and I get a great deal out of learning - from a sense of community to a therapeutic feeling through playing and entering the 'flow' mode. Combined with the beautiful location, the company, food etc, this made a perfect retreat to nourish my soul whilst deepening my skills/ knowledge in Afro-Cuban music which I love. It was an amazing week - I’m definitely going to return at some point in the future!There’s a lot I haven’t mentioned as I’m aware people probably won’t want to read an essay…but trust me that you will get so much if you choose to visit the magical Finca Ará Oko. Thank you so much y hasta la próxima! 🙂