tavoosgarden, Author at Tavoos Yoga Cafe & Wellness Hub

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September 8, 2018

Linda Tha is a Cambodian young woman born in, Kravanh district, a tiny town in Pursat Province.

She was lucky enough to have a good and loving family that were able to support her into education.  Linda has a strong social conscience and her desire is to give back to her community, to some of the less fortunate.  She is keen to share her passion for yoga and her spiritual journey with everyone from all walks of life.

Linda had been to Phoenix Arizona on a ‘workaway’ project when she met with a different community of people than she’d ever met before.  They talked to her about yoga, meditation and energy.  This opened up a whole new world for her and was the beginning of a totally new and enlightening journey.  Life would never again be the same.

Linda, having spent some time travelling through various educational scholarships, felt unfulfilled in the work she was doing.  She had prepared for a life in a competitive business world but found it soul destroying and unrewarding.

In February 2017 Linda experienced her first yoga course with the Art of Living Foundation.  Now her fate was sealed but she still lacked an available direction and some confidence in something that was so new to her.  Yet somehow, she knew that she was on the right path.

She spent the next year working as a freelance Khmer teacher, teaching her own language to non native speakers in Cambodia.  It was whilst teaching in Kampot, that she met Marcia Smith one of her yoga teachers, she told Linda about Tavoos Garden and our initiative, a sponsorship program for Cambodian women and men to join Yoga Teacher Training, an Internationally certificated program.  The only Yoga Alliance registered Yoga School in all of Cambodia.

“I could not think about anything else but to apply for this position and wait for a Yes” says Linda Tha.

When I met Linda, Immediately I could see that she was worth investing in, her love for yoga and community shone through.  She is an honest and brave young woman, with a humble eagerness to learn and that is exactly what you need to start a career as a yoga teacher.

“I feel that one year with Yoga would heal and open myself up for different possibilities in life.  I hope to find out what life has in store for me after this experience.  I also hope to use this opportunity to connect and share more with my own people, especially young Cambodian women.  I believe that it is very special when I can do what I love and share that with others. Possibly, magic will happen.”  This is what Linda said to me in her interview.  I looked into her eyes and knew in that moment that she would be a wonderful student to work with and decided to take her under my wing and offer her a mentorship throughout her time with us at Tavoos, once she has graduated from the Teacher Training Program.

We have a host of humanitarian initiatives here at Tavoos to which, as a native Cambodian, Linda will be a real asset, as often language is the problem a barrier.  Hopefully Linda will teach me some Khmer too!

The Tavoos family welcomes Linda as a trainee yoga teacher and hopes that this will inspire other Cambodian women and men to follow in her steps, toward building skills and self confidence through yoga.  Our aim at Tavoos is to share the teachings of authentic yoga to all people and break down the boundaries that often stop some communities from accessing the benefits that yoga can bring.

“Access to wellness is a basic human right, not a privilege to only those who can afford it.”

Our initiative of supporting aspiring Cambodian yoga teachers along the journey of becoming a certified yoga teacher, continues so that these women and men, can grow independently.  With the added teaching skills they will expand personally and their employability.   This is why we offer FREE yoga for ALL drop in yoga classes.

By Amanda Evans
Yogini Amasu
Lead Yoga Teacher and Retreat Host
Tavoos Garden

January 16, 2018

Since our launch in December 2017, we have quickly become the most talked about Yoga & Wellness center in Siem Reap.  We have spent years in this town observing the trends and realizing what the needs are when it comes to quality Yoga and wellness classes.

We have designed the most affordable Yoga & Wellness retreat package in Siem Reap which offers more than what any other facility dares to offer.  We have designed our business model to not take advantage of those seeking quality retreats, but to work with them in order to provide them with top quality programs.  As our motto is that: Wellness is a basic human right, not a privilege to only those who can afford it.

Our Yoga & Wellness retreat packages offer daily Yoga classes, Medical Qigong, Nia Dance classes, visit to a monastery where guests get to meditate with a buddhist Monk followed by a blessing ceremony.   Daily personalized healthy meal plans, a visit to a beautiful Spa, meditation in the lotus fields, cooking class in the countryside, daily massage and more.

Our goal is to make sure that our retreat guests experience more than they pay for.  Our Yoga & Wellness Retreat packages are already being resold by several respectable and award winning hotels in Siem Reap such as Bloom Garden, Golden Gecko, Green Leaf Boutique Hotel, Advaya Residence, Le Tigre, Day Day Inn, Maison Damnak Hotel and Mey Mey Da.  With many more hotels to follow soon.

Guests staying at any of these respectable hotel partners or any of our future partners will be picked up daily and brough to Tavoos Garden to attend our programs.  Guests who are in Siem Reap for a few days are able to purchase 3 Day, 4 Day, 5 Day or 6 Day Retreat packages. Those in town for a short period of time alternatively can attend our 1 Day Recharge Retreat Program which for a small price of $60 will give them access to Yoga, Medical Qigong or Nia, 3 healthy meals, Massage, Detox Juice and more.  In Siem Reap attending a quality spa session for 90 minutes is almost $100.  So attending a full day Yoga & Wellness Retreat package for $60 is something which all visitors in town must do.

Our programs are designed for everyone, including families.  Family activities in Siem Reap typically include excursions, but rarely health based activities.  Our instructors love it when children attend classes with their parents and start learning about wellness at a young age.

What makes us unique is our attention to detail when it comes to food.  We have worked very hard to build a balanced menu which caters to Vegetarians, Vegans and anyone with any other food restrictions.  We have trained our staff to understand all dietary restrictions to make sure all guests are fed properly and safely.  This is yet another reason why we are unique.  No other retreat center in Siem Reap offers all meals included in the package.  

From now on, when visitors search online for “Yoga in Siem Reap” or “Retreats in Siem Reap” Tavoos Garden & Wellness center will be at the top of their search results.

January 6, 2018

Article by: Luxury Travel Diary

“Access to wellness is a basic human right, not a privilege to only those who can afford it.” These are the thoughts of Valentina Lyubiteleva who sold everything and left a typical 9-5 lifestyle in Canada and moved to Cambodia to launch a non-profit luxury wellness program with her fiance and his partners.

That one sentence is what drives the team behind Tavoos Garden & Wellness Center. A motto they stand behind. A belief system that drives them to work hard each day to bring guests luxurious and affordable wellness retreats while giving back to the community.

Tavoos Garden & Wellness Center is a non-profit luxury retreat space offering daily drop-in classes and weekly retreats for those who want to give back to their body and mind, at the same time give back to the community.

“When we travel to countries such as Cambodia in order to indulge in the beauty, culture, food and zenfulness we are always greeted with open arms by the locals. Even when they barely have anything, they share with us the little food they have on their table. They share with us their rich culture, their beautiful land and most importantly allow us to enjoy the zen environment while escaping our stressful lives. They allow us to heal our bodies, minds and souls in their backyard. So why should we not share with them these wellness activities for which we travel thousands of miles to do?

They see tourists walking around their communities with Yoga mats. They see photos of us meditating in their nature. Often times they are curious and want to learn, but are shy or simply do not have the financial means to do so. This is why we decided to turn the wellness side of Tavoos into a non-profit social venture.” Says Valentina, co-founder at Tavoos.

Tavoos’ Non-Profit Weekly All-inclusive Wellness & Detox Retreats start on Mondays. Guests can attend a 3 day, 4 day, 5 day or 6 day package where they get to take part in Yoga, Meditation, NIA Dance, Medical Qigong, Moringa workshops and Art Therapy while swimming and enjoying three healthy meals and a detox juice each day. The packages can be purchased as daily drop ins if guests have their own accommodations already while in town, or they can add accommodations through Tavoo’s partner hotels such as the Green Leaf boutique hotel. Two of which are directly next to Tavoos Garden.

After each successful weekly retreat, Tavoos will use its profits to dig a water well for families in communities around Siem Reap. This way, by attending the retreat’s guests feel good knowing that not only have they given back to their own body and mind, but also provided access to clean water for years to come to families in need.

Daily drop-in Yoga, Qigong and NIA classes are based on the “Pay it Forward” concept. Meaning for each class a guest attends and pays for, one class is donated to a local woman or child. Each week the centre hosts Free classes so that locals who normally would not be able to afford classes can attend and learn about different practices and wellness rituals.

Tavoos also partners with different businesses in Cambodia such as hotels and restaurants. After each 100th guest that is sent to Tavoos by one of its partners, Tavoos donates a water well in the partner’s honour to a local family.

“The retreats have been designed to provide a luxury environment and experience which everyone can afford. Healing and wellness are about giving back, not about making profit” Says Valentina.

For those who are in town for a short visit and don’t have the time to dedicate to a 3 to 6 day retreat program, Tavoos also offers its Sunday Funday package as of January 2018. This is a full day retreat where guests can get a taste of all the activities and workshops offered, and enjoy a healthy lunch and massage poolside or in Tavoos’ zen tropical garden.

“Be a conscious wandering soul while travelling and share your wellness rituals, as we all need access to wellness programs. Give back to the world we all share”

January 3, 2018

“So what do you do?”

“I teach Medical Qigong.”

“Uhuh…sorry medical what?”

This kind of conversation I have quite a lot. Everybody knows yoga but almost nobody has ever heard of Medical Qigong. So how to explain a 4000 year old healing system in a couple of words? I can’t.  Because basically you have to experience it to understand it.  But I always give it a try.   

I start with saying that it’s an exercise system to bring back balance in your body. With 7 very simple exercises which everybody, in whatever condition his or her body is, can do, we look for our body’ center or dantien.   Although Qigong is based in the traditional Chinese medicine with its 5 element theory it’s also pure science.   Applied physics to be more specific.   “Physics? Ewwwww, that must be boring” I can almost hear you thinking. It’s not, because I’m not teaching physics. I’m teaching you to become aware of your body, to start to understand what is going on there.

Which habits you have that are not helping your health and how to change them. The more you become aware of your body, the more you can rely on yourself for curing any of your ailments. This system not only helps you to cure, it also helps you to prevent. And that is the real medicine.

As Thomas Alva Edison already said in the late 1800’s: “The doctor of the future will give no medicine, but will interest his patients in the care of the human frame…” That is exactly what medical Qigong is all about. The awareness and the care about your human frame. Come and experience this for yourself at Tavoos Garden. Every Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday.

By Ils Cools

December 9, 2017

Today marks the International Human Rights day.  It could not be a better time to talk about rights to wellness and clean water.

Since the beginning of time, survival has been embedded into our existence.  Long Term survival can not happen without proper health.  Proper health can not exist without proper diet, clean water and wellness activities.

Most of us are privileged to be able to afford gym memberships, Yoga classes and even retreats.

Many exotic countries we visit to practice our wellness rituals welcome us with open arms and share with us their beliefs, their food, their positive spirits and their land.

As humans, it is our responsibility to share our privileges and share the knowledge of wellness with all mankind.  Whether it is proper dietary education, sanitation education, NIA exercises or Yoga and Qigong.

The wellness industry is a multi billion dollar, lucrative business.  There are hundreds of ways to profit with retreats, classes, memberships and products.  This is where the Tavoos brand steps in to make a difference.

When we were conceptualizing the Tavoos brand, it was our goal to give back to the community that has welcomed us with open arms and made us feel at home.  We felt that it was our calling to share the wonderful gift of wellness knowledge with those who normally do not have the luxury of attending wellness activities and classes.

We have made it our mandate to spread wellness to those who on a daily basis do not have access to proper nutrition, or do not know the importance of exercising the mind and body.

Human rights far surpass the topics of free speech, access to education or fair trials.  The subject of human rights includes access to clean water, access to sanitation education and access to wellness training.


We are proud to be the only wellness center in Cambodia that is set up without the purpose of financial gain.

The wellness side of our business is fully non-profit.  Meaning that we are able to share Yoga classes, Medical qigong classes, NIA and proper dietary and sanitation courses with Cambodian people.

We find it unfair that as foreigners we enter someone’s land and take advantage of the beautiful sights and delicious ingredients while the locals have a hard time taking care of their health.

These are the steps we are taking to give back:

1. Free classes for locals “Pay it Forward”

In North America when you go to a coffee shop, sometimes out of the goodness of your heart you pay upfront for the coffee of the person in line behind you.  Another wonderful example is a Pizzeria in New York where people can pay an extra dollar to purchase a slice for the homeless or for those short on cash.  

We have adopted the Pay it Forward concept and will bring it to life in Cambodia.  Each time a client attends one of our wellness classes (Yoga, Qigong, NIA or any other wellness classes), we will donate one session to a local woman or child.  This way locals can also benefit from these wonderful activities.

We have talked to a lot of Khmer women who see foreigners walking around with Yoga mats or in workout clothes.  These women have always wondered about Yoga.  This is their chance to experience it for free.

Once a week we will host free sessions at Tavoos for our Khmer friends.

2. Diet & Sanitation Education

Proper nutrition as we know is the key to a healthy life.  Khmer people are blessed with wonderful ingredients that can be grown in their backyard.  It is our mission to properly educate them on the health benefits of certain foods so that they can take advantage of what mother nature is providing to them every day.

3. Well digging

Access to clean water is a luxury which we take for granted.  In many countries we turn on the kitchen tap and clean water flows out for as long as we want.  That is not the case for many Khmer people.  We work exclusively with our partners at wedigwells.com in order to provide families around Siem Reap with deep water wells so that they can benefit from clean water for years to come.  Not only do we dig and install proper wells for them, we also test the water quality to make sure that there are no contaminations in the water source.

We also take the time to educate them about maintaining the well and will do follow ups with families.  In case they ever run into any problems with their well, we will fix it or replace it for them.

100% of the profits from our weekly retreats goes towards this well digging program.  By attending our weekly retreats, not only are you benefiting your own health, but you are contributing to families around Siem Reap having access to clean water.

The concept is very simple.  We are on this planet for a short period of time.  Make it a good period of time for yourself and for those who share the planet with you.

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#25, Group 4, Vihear Chin Village,
Svay Dangkum Commune,
Siem Reap, 17252

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sat: 07.00 – 21:00
sun: closed

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