Gracious Living Lifestyle

Toronto, Canada

Gracious Living Lifestyle oasis is a detox wellness center based on level one to five cell, offering detox, meditation, and yoga retreats around the world.

Culinary Vacations 1

Limited availability
from US$2,100
Price for:

8 days / 7 nights

Instructors 2

Grace Van Berkum

(Personal Trainer)

Grace Van Berkum is a registered holistic nutritionist, Sivananda yoga teacher, certified personal trainer, wellness couch, and founder of Gracious Living Retreats. She brings her passion for plant-based whole foods that have healed her own health problems and healed her dad's cancer into everything she does. She believes that being truly spiritual begins with connecting to food from the earth to increase prana and elevate consciousness.

Penny Light

Penny Light is a certified life coach, mindful eating practitioner, SurfSet fitness instructor, Happy@Work practitioner, Hypno-linguistics practitioner, personal trainer, and spin teacher. And if that’s not enough, she is first and truly a life adventure expert. Penny has traveled most of the world including living in a tent in the middle of the African bush for a year and documenting a pride of lions.

Testimonials 28

  • Dr. Veronica Schimp

    Gracious Living Lifestyle website

    What can I say about my experience with Grace and Gracious Living that isnt positive? She is bright, approachable, excellent knowledge base about what she does, and develops great relationships with people. She has given seminars in my clinic to patients and staff and has been received in a very positive light. I look forward to a continued relationship with Grace to continue to give people knowledge about healthy eating and living.

  • Nicole

    Gracious Living Lifestyle website

    A beautiful compassionate presence that has a heart to help heal and transform the minds of us all into a healthy and abundant whole life! Shes just real and spot on! The cancer staff enjoyed and easily understood her education. Her recipes were easy, delicious, and amazing!

  • Maryse Bouchard Toronto

    Gracious Living Lifestyle website

    Gracious Living is the remedy every body needs! I have now attended two different week - long yoga wellness retreats with Grace in Nicaragua, and also enjoyed a month - long nutrition consultation via Skype. Graces retreats not only introduce you to her delicious, healthy, detoxifying foods, but also enable physical and mental rejuvenation and healing. Her retreats are well-organized, personally customized, and attended by other amazing guests who help you enjoy the time and heal! Her nutritional advice is golden. The recipes are easy and delicious, and she teaches you not just about the foods and their preparation, but how to become a healthier eater in the realities of daily life (with holidays, dinner events, and a busy work schedule). Gracious Living transforms me with every trip to Nicaragua and with every bite of food I take! Im stronger and healthier for it! Thanks Grace!

  • Awilda Maymi

    Gracious Living Lifestyle website

    I met Grace in October as I searched for ways to help my mom recover from breast cancer. Little did I know that this was not only going to help my mom but also change my life. From being a meat lover, I am now an advocate for plant based diet. Everywhere I go I am eager to share with others all the positive rewards that come from eating healthy. I divorced coffee and married green juice. We have a date every morning that provides me with energy for the rest of my day. I have lost weight and my husband says I look younger! My daughters itchy, scaly, dry scalp is gone as well as a benign tumor I had on my breast. I now enjoy grocery shopping and fixing meals for my family as I know I am providing them with nutrients needed to live a healthy life. Thank you Grace for guiding me through this life altering but incredibly rewarding change.

  • Erika Gomez United States

    Grace Van Berkum website

    Attending Graces Gracious Living raw food seminars has been a great journey! I now share my eating raw experience with friends, oncology patients, and complete strangers at the grocery store! I am truly amazed at how incredibly alive I feel physically, spiritually, emotionally, and mentally simply through better food choices! As a nurse, I absolutely use every opportunity I have to educate our cancer patients on better food choices and explain how our body is directly affected by what we eat! Thanks Grace for you knowledge and guidance.

  • Irene

    Gracious Living Lifestyle website

    I am new to this type of lifestyle and unfortunately, waited until I was diagnosed with cancer to start eating healthy and reading all of the benefits of incorporating a raw, veggie, and vegan diet. I am on day two and so far so good. Food is delicious and there are so many varieties of preparation that I cannot see getting bored with the food choices. The most important component of eating healthy is ridding your cupboards of all the processed not so healthy foods and having an ample supply of what you should be eating. This way you are not tempted to resort back to back eating habits. I met Grace during her visit to M.D. Anderson in Orlando, Florida where she spent several weeks offering classes to patients, families, and team members on eating healthy. She is so knowledgeable and really cares about the people she is educating. I scheduled a session where she helped me shop at a Whole Foods Store. What an enlightening experience, I left with a cartful of non dairy, raw, vegan foods and was on my way to healthy living. Grace you are amazing and I will be ever grateful for the time you spent with me, and also helping on my journey with battling cancer and incorporating a better lifestyle. I will keep you all posted on my progress. Grace, you are the best!

  • Svetlana Lilova

    Gracious Living Lifestyle website

    Grace is dynamic, hard-working, and extremely motivating. She brings total integrity to her practice by combining her sound knowledge of nutrition with personally leading the healthy and detoxifying lifestyle she purports, practicing yoga, and assisting anyone who seeks her expertise. I highly recommend her. Grace offers a fresh perspective, knowledge, and inspiration.

  • Melanie North

    Gracious Living Lifestyle website

    Grace has been a wonderful edition to our magazine publication. Her knowledge and approach to life are a breath of fresh air and her enthusiasm is infectious. Her ideas and contributions to our wellness columns were wonderful - shes a great writer too! She is a very generous spirit and I look forward to the day when I can participate in her amazing retreats around the world.

  • a traveler

    Gracious Living Lifestyle website

    Before I met Grace I counted calories, felt guilt, fear, deprivation, and was always trying to diet or eat less. I was literally at war with the very thing that nourished me and kept me alive. Grace helped beyond the typical nutritionist role. She taught me to shift my perspective on how I viewed food and eating. With her beautiful affirmations and encouraging support I felt my perspective shift from fear to a place of gratitude and love. I would align myself with this mindset before meals and it made a world of difference. I stopped counting calories; Grace would teach me about the healing qualities of real natural foods. It was the content and quality, not the number. She taught me that every body is different and helped me tap into my intuition and reconnect with my body - I learned to listen to what it wanted or needed. I am so incredibly thankful for such a beautiful, authentic, super rad role model.

  • Jennifer New York

    Gracious Living Lifestyle website

    Completing a Gracious Living four-day Liquid Food Cleansing Retreat and Gracious Living Yoga Lifestyle Retreat at the Sivananda Ashram Yoga Retreat with Grace Van Berkum has completely changed my life! Nearly one month later, I feel even more alive, empowered and healthier than I have ever felt! I have shed 16 pounds. So far, am more conscious of how to incorporate healthier options into my daily lifestyle, and have a newly inspired awareness of how delicious, fulfilling, and energy giving plant-based food can be. I learned so much from the courses, not only about raw, vegan food and nutrition, but also about my self. Im so grateful to have had this experience with Grace. She is a dedicated teacher, explains things thoroughly, and is very supportive throughout the entire process. We all came to the classes with different backgrounds, nutrition levels and awarenesss of yoga, and she was able to guide each of us from exactly where we were to beyond where we may have thought we could possibly go. Graces passion about healthy living is contagious! As soon as you meet her, you know that she lives what she loves and loves what she lives. As one of her students, I really feel that she shares her experiences and wisdom because she cares about educating, and empowering others. Now that I am home, I am implementing so much of what I learned from my time with her. It really is possible to make small and significant changes to create a healthier lifestyle. Im even having fun finding ways to creatively share recipes with friends and family. So far, they are all loving it too! Both of the Gracious Living retreats attracted very special people that Im grateful to have connected with. Many of us have kept in touch and its been really fun to continue to support each other from all around the world. Grace is such a valuable resource too, and Im so thankful that she responds via email and facebook! I look forward to attending future workshops with her at Sivananda Ashram in the Bahamas, as well as making it to her Gracious Living Oasis in Nicaragua.

  • Pedro New York

    Gracious Living Lifestyle website

    What made our stay truly special was Grace Van Berkum, who is a yogi/nutritionist/certified personal trainer that works at the Wellness Resort in Nicaragua. She is gifted, attentive, and knows how to work with people with various fitness levels. We took all her yoga classes and also arranged for private sessions at the beach. Her nutrition workshops, including chocolate making class and smoothie class, were lots of fun and well worth the money! I really hope that she stays there as we will definitely be back next year because of her.

  • Harp Toronto

    Gracious Living Lifestyle website

    Thanks for the intro to yoga this week Grace! I must admit, I had this idea of yoga being a lot of lululemon sponsored poses that I see on posters, but what I wanted to get out of it was a way to focus on my breathing, relaxing, and stretching, especially in order to help me out with the sports I play, like hockey. Your step-by-step, pragmatic approach really works, and you teach it in such a great way that a pure beginner like me, who was definitely hesitant to try, has become a believer! Thank you Gracious Living.

  • Caroline

    Gracious Living Lifestyle website

    Myself and my body would like to thank you for all the yummy foods and ingredient teachings you taught me yesterday at Whole foods! Your knowledge and motivation are a rare quality and Im so grateful for you, and what you teach in the world!

  • Randi

    Grace Van Berkum website

    More than a nutritionist, certified yoga teacher, and personal trainer, Grace van Berkum would better be described as a modern-day healer. Trotting the globe, Grace touches and transforms the lives of those she meets. Her passion for teaching real people to make real change using real foods prepared real simply, is her raw recipe for elevating the consciousness of the planet. To hear her speak or to attend one of her workshops, is to be awakened to the infinite possibilities of flavor-packed, fun to prepare, fresh foods that can be made in a flash! Inspired by her own father, who healed his cancer by cleaning up his diet, Grace is the powerful voice behind the Gracious Living global movement toward clean food for clean health. Her humor and patience are a bonus that make her recipes and lifestyle changes completely approachable. Having had the opportunity to partner and co-create local and international Yoga, Empowerment, Adventure, and Raw Food workshops and retreats with Grace van Berkum, I would recommend her services and consulting to anyone ready to take their health and happiness into their own hands. Grace brings passion to her purpose-driven life and generously shares inspiration and recipes on her Gracious Living blog.

  • Lizette Ecuador

    Gracious Living Lifestyle website

    Just wanted to thank you again, Grace for all of your practical tips and inspiring tidbits. I participated in a four-day program with Grace Van Berkum in May. This was actually my third experience with Grace, having participated in last years ten day cleanse with Manu Dawson (April 2012) and her Gracious Living Raw Food Workshop (May 2012), both at the Sivananda Yoga Ashram Bahamas. As you can probably tell I am a fan! First, because Grace is so knowledgeable and loves to share her wisdom and experience with others. Also, because Grace cares about her students and clients. Her passion and purpose - the why behind the work that she does - is evident in her courses and also in the way in which she teaches others about the benefits of raw food living. As a lifelong educator myself, I have found this combination to be tremendously helpful to my own learning. I knew that going back home each time, I would have new and different changes to incorporate into my own life, on my personal journey to better health. This is really important to me as a person who has an auto - immune disease and as someone who is trying to heal naturally. Beyond the wealth of knowledge, Grace is an empathetic listener and inspires others to action. She facilitated sessions that really built community among our group and I am grateful to have participated now three times. Ill be back, for sure!

  • Leona Canada

    Gracious Living Lifestyle website

    It is important to me to have a nutritional and personal trainer who offers maturity, sensitivity, and an educated approach to their coaching. And, in my personal opinion, this is very difficult to find in the fitness industry. Grace delivers on all of these aspects. I would not hesitate to refer her to others as an impeccable all rounded lifestyle coach!

  • Susan California

    Gracious Living Lifestyle website

    I recently stayed in Nicaragua for ten days and participated in a yoga and raw foods retreat facilitated by Aquas resident yogini Grace Van Berkum. Everyday, Grace led a glorious Hatha yoga class appropriate for all levels, and afterwards made us delicious smoothies to sip at the beachside bar. She also led a variety of hands on raw foods seminars where we learned how to make yummy raw chocolate truffles, macaroons, salad dressings, soups, and salads. She was always available to answer any questions and also led us on a variety of excursions around the area including a boat trip to San Juan Del Sur, a hike to the tallest peak on the beach, surfing lessons at Playa Amarillo, and out for dancing in Playa Gigante. Every part of the retreat was coordinated to perfection! I would absolutely come back to Aqua and do another retreat with Grace!

  • Rachael Bahamas

    Gracious Living Lifestyle website

    Its always great to learn something new, but when your teacher has sparkling eyes, clear, vibrant skin, a warm, comforting open heart, a beautiful smile, and knows what shes talking about, thats a bonus! Its a whole new world after my three-day vegan food class with you Grace, I cant wait for the next opportunity to be your student!

  • Megan Canada

    Gracious Living Lifestyle website

    Grace taught me that preparing raw food is healthy, simple, and tasty and she explained the health benefits of every ingredient so I have a better understanding of what I eat, where it came from and why it is good for me. Her recipes are delicious and she encouraged me to get creative with my food. I never knew raw food could be so delicious! Yoga with Grace has also been an amazing experience. Having taken yoga for a few years, I found the experience with Grace the most rewarding. When teaching, Grace not only explains how to do the positions, she also explains why that position is good for you and what it does for your body. There is no better feeling than the feeling after a Gracious Living yoga class. It is pure body bliss!

  • Kathy Canada

    Gracious Living Lifestyle website

    I stayed in Nicaragua for a week in February and felt completely rejuvenated, relaxed, and inspired. The highlight of my stay was Grace Van Berkums yoga retreat. Grace is a woman who lives her passions and is an incredible teacher. Every morning Grace led Hatha yoga classes, suitable for all levels on the most incredible yoga deck facing the ocean and jungle infused cliffs. It was truly magical. And as I was a complete newbie to yoga, Grace helped me understand the practice and inspired me to want to incorporate yoga into my routine back in the big, busy city in which I live. Grace developed a retreat schedule that was the perfect blend of yoga, raw food seminars, relaxing and discovering. She made me feel completely comfortable. Shes truly a professional. Every second day she led a raw food class where we learned about the benefits of eating raw. We discovered juicing, smoothies, sprouts, salads, deserts, soups, and my favorite chocolate making. She has an incredible way of explaining things so simply that you will leave knowing that you can easily incorporate her recipes into your life. And to have experienced the retreat at Aqua was a pleasure. I would highly recommend a stay at Aqua and without a doubt Graces fantastic retreat.

  • Justin Canada

    Gracious Living Lifestyle website

    I would highly and strongly recommend Grace Van Berkum to anyone person whom is having any dietary, medical, or personal issues with their diets. Grace tells it like it is and she wont sugarcoat the facts. If you are seriously wanting to be fixed and maintain a healthy, pain-free lifestyle, Grace will be there with you, by your side, making life better. I can attest to that vividly! Grace made my life 100% better within a matter of two months, and I can honestly say, she has been the best thing that has happened to me within the last five years. I not only started feeling better each morning I woke up, I had more energy, a renewed zest for life, and I didnt have to have stomach surgery! Thanks to Grace, I had the ability to make a life changing decision, find a terrific job to plan for the future, and all because I can now control my health, and am back to feeling like a regular, normal person. Thanks so much to Grace Van Berkum! A natural nutritionist whom I would recommend to anyone, and have already done so to many people.

  • Courtney New York

    Gracious Living Lifestyle website

    Our spritely Canadian teacher Grace guided us through poses and steady Hatha breathing that left me with the warm buzz I look for in a good yoga class!

  • Beth Los Angeles

    Gracious Living Lifestyle website

    Graces hands-on raw food preparation classes created a real sense of confidence and empowerment. Grace communicates with clarity and grace. Wisdom without condescendence.

  • Matt South Africa

    Gracious Living Lifestyle website

    I was totally impressed and blown away with Graces depth of knowledge. She spoke with confidence, humility, and humor and connected with every person in the big raw food class. Grace made so many things, so quickly, could answer questions, and gave nutritional reasons for using every ingredient. Grace exudes health and beauty and it is obvious she is a product of her own teachings. It was a really great experience.

  • Cecily Costa Rica

    Gracious Living Lifestyle website

    My expectations for Grace Van Berkums and Randi Smiths Yoga Surf Empowerment Retreat in Nicaragua was met and exceeded! I enjoyed the close personal instruction, interaction, and guidance from both of these gracious, open teachers. They are very knowledgeable and inspiring, and totally in sync making them an excellent team. The collaboration was perfect, the diversity of topics covered was fantastic, the group from all over the world was fabulous, and the setting was stunning. My body and mind were stretched and I will remember this trip forever.

  • Cindy Australia

    Gracious Living Lifestyle website

    Graces raw food workshops are inspiring and life changing. I thoroughly enjoyed the hands-on component of the class making it easier to learn. Grace is such a knowledgeable teacher filled with love and light and delightfully funny, too! Never a dull moment in her classes!

  • Jay United States

    Gracious Living Lifestyle website

    I enjoyed Graces Yoga for Peak Performance course so much! Grace inspires through a wealth of information, experience, and her preparation of food. She teaches with such an amazing aura that radiates through her smile. Her experiences in life offered a personal connection with me. She has deep knowledge of nutrition with I found invaluable. And on the last day we made delicious healthy chocolate truffle bars! Overall I left with more than I expected, a great experience, and classmates that will be life-long friends.

  • Sara Bahamas

    Gracious Living Lifestyle website

    Gracious Living Detox Retreats are supercharged with energy, delicious food, informative, fun and recipes which are easy to do at home. She glows with joy and health. Just look at her! The proof is in the juice!

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