When guests visit they always ask me how I found the house, well I first came to Murcia as a visitor 11 years ago and fell in love with its blue skies, un-spoilt beaches, mountains and best of all no tourism! I loved the lazy villages, with the way of life seemingly totally oblivious to the modern world. The charm of the countryside and the natural terrain was added to by the great weather here. The World Health Organisation claims the region has the healthiest climate in Europe.
I found Tara Casa through a series of synchronized events following a serious brush with breast cancer – now 10 years ago! At the time I felt this house was meant to be in my life. The little village of La Magdalena wasn’t like anywhere else in the world I had ever known and was worlds apart from my hometown in the UK. The house was then named Casa Pequeña (the house of children); back in the 1950´s it was the village school. It was to be another 4 years though, before I returned to the house.
I spent a year getting over the treatment and felt I was at a watershed and I needed to make some changes, so I decided to train to be a Pilates teacher. In my earlier life I had always taught dance, exercise and aerobics but I needed something more therapeutic at this time. I had developed a bad back as a result of the treatment and loved how my Yoga practice and Pilates were both improving my back rapidly. Shortly after I qualified, I hooked up with a Yoga teacher friend and we started taking people away on holidays, it was the best thing I had ever done, it was so healing for them and with so many benefits gained from having daily practice, without any distractions.
Four years later, once again, life events played a part and I had cause to remember that wonderful house in La Magdalena; it seemed to be calling me. Just like Scarlett O’Hara in the film ‘Gone with the Wind’ – whenever Scarlett had a problem, what did she do? She went back to ‘Tara’.
At first it was really hard, I had to make it work, the house needed some changes and I didn’t have the finances to do it. I started off the Retreat business with groups of friends and eventually the word spread and I started to get more people coming. Then I met my wonderful partner Dan, a local commission artist who specialized in mosaic Art. It was just as though the universe was bringing everything together for me/us, to make what was meant to ‘BE’ happen in the perfect environment.
There were many challenges though, living in a strange country, not speaking the language, and living in a place that didn’t know it was supposed to be in the 21st century!!
The house itself needed changes. The first, being to build a dedicated Yoga and Pilates studio. Each time we had visiting retreaters they would bring a new and vibrant energy, giving the house more power and us an awareness of what needed to be done next, thus we were constantly improving and creating better spaces in the house and garden. They say a house has a heart and I believe this to be true, the heart in our house seemed to be growing bigger and more loving by the day.
Now at the beginning of our 6th year here, we have hundreds of testimonials from guests who have come for all kinds of reasons, to practice Yoga and enjoy the Spanish sunshine, to visit the lovely City of Cartagena, to heal, or to simply reflect on life.
We have had lots of guests since we started, solo visitors and many groups. We have really enjoyed having such a variety of lovely people from all walks of life; to see people enjoying our Mediterranean garden, with the winter, or summer sun always blazing and the jingling of the wind chimes, has been a great joy to us. Every visitor has added to the heart and energy of our lovely house ‘Tara Casa’.