MEET OUR TEAM
Friends & Family Make Open Lotus Yoga Retreat
Our team of dedicated guides and teachers are what make Open Lotus Yoga Retreat what it is: an unforgettable experience. Read about our team players and how they bring the best services possible.
Born and raised in Vashisht, Chhape knows the locals and the area like the back of his hand. With 20+ years in the tourism business, Chhape has built up an impressive resume and skillset as a guide covering the entire subcontinent of India. During his career, he has adapted the ability to navigate and schedule the perfect itinerary matching both individual and group travel needs. His sense of humor is widely acknowledged and he puts his outstanding organizational skills to good use by providing travelers a wide range of options and flexibility.
Born and raised in Vashisht, Amar has over 15 years of experience as a mountain guide. He leads trekking expeditions all over the valley and to the acclaimed holy site: Bhrigu Lake. He is the owner of the Amar House: our family homestay. On top of English, he is currently learning Japanese and French. Amar brings warmth and enthusiasm and will make it his mission to ensure you are comfortable. When he is not managing the homestay, he is out in his garden or managing the family apple orchards. Amar is also the younger brother of Chhape! Experience runs in the family.
Ricky is from the United States. He has been practicing and teaching healing arts for more than 15 years. He has a plethora of yoga and teaching certifications under his belt which include: Certified Integrative Yoga Therapy Instructor, Chair Yoga Instructor, Multiple Sclerosis Yoga Instructor, Reiki Master Instructor, Meditation Teacher and Thai Yoga Body Practitioner. Ricky owns his own yoga studio in Milwaukee, Wisconsin—a branch of Open Lotus Yoga Retreat! He coordinates yoga and moto tours in India for American travelers. Check out the U.S. branch of Open Lotus Yoga Here
MARTINE & MARLEEN
Martine De Bondt and Marleen Coppens both discovered the perks of yoga later in life in their 40’s. Together, they discovered what it means to find peace of mind. Marleen and Martin are managers at an IT-company in Belgium, Denmark. Their mutual yoga teacher organized a retreat to the Himalayas which brought them to Vashisht. The combination of yoga, trekking, and the village itself sparkled their enthusiasm and they returned to India yearly. They formed a bond with Chhape and his family, eventually collaborating with the business— taking on the roles of technical support and design.
Ethan traveled to India for the first time in the summer of 2017 to help with the graphic design and marketing of Open Lotus. He is a graphic designer, illustrator, and cartoonist. He is a recent graduate from the Milwaukee Institute of Art & Design in the United States. He specializes in brand identity, packaging design, web design, and vector illustration. Ethan is an avid hiker and has been on multiple trekking excursions with Open Lotus and is beginning to learn yoga from Chhape.
He resides in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, grew up in New York State, and originally hails from Hanoi, Vietnam. Check out his freelance design portfolio at www.undertheradargraphics.com.