I cannot use enough superaltives to descibe the beauty of Lake Villa Guatemala. Traci has one of the most serenely beautiful retreat centers I’ve every visited. Nestled at the top of lushly forrested hilltop overlooking the magical Lake Attitlan, one’s soul is immediately refreshed by just breathing the sweet air.

Every room has windows facing the lake or the natural forestlike landscape. Through out the day, the changing light pours through, enveloping one in infinite beauty from sunrise to sunset. When you step out onto any of the decks, you are immediately immersed in the sounds of the birds and small animals moving through the trees and the incredible smells of the natural surroundings.

A short walk down a cobble stone path takes one to the magical lake to kayak or to the gazebo to lazilyswing in the hammock or sit at the stone table for cup of tea, strong Guatamalan coffee, or aromatic cacao. The outside world is totally gone .Every meal is personally prepared by Traci using local produce; the prepared desserts and sauces are incredible. It is all vegan.

The beds, oh yes, the beds. As good as any bed in any hotel. The decor in the rooms are very Mayan and very tasteful. My room opened onto a private deck where I could perform my own morning meditation ritual, and view the sunrise when I managed to awake in time. The bathrooms are spacious, plenty of hot water and safe to drink water in every tap throughout the house.

If you choose to be more active, just ask this gracious hostess and it is arranged. When I expressed my desire to explore the various Mayan and indigenous ceremonies and visit the local women’s weaving cooperative and a coffee farm, all of this was arranged by Traci over my 3 day stay at her Shangri-La retreat!