Hi Anna, you were born and raised up in Munich, but travelled all around the world. One of your trips has led you to South America and you have learnt more about cacao. Can you tell a bit more about this trip?
I am what you would call a ‘Münchner Kindl’ but at the same time an adventurous gypsy soul who loves to travel the world. That’s how a few years ago my journey led me to Sri Lanka where I participated in my first cacao ceremony. It was love at first sight or should I better say at first sip… ? 😉 Since then I was diving deeper into the magic of cacao and it was clear to me that I wanted to travel to Central America, the ancient lands of the sacred plant Cacao. In Mexico I experienced first-hand how cacao is served as various drinks and in Costa Rica I spoke to different cacao farmers to learn more about their amazing work with cacao trees. But it wasn’t until I reached Guatemala that I really stepped into the depth and divine realms of the Cacao spirit. I travelled to San Marcos, a tiny, spiritual village at Lake Atitlan where Keith, the most known Cacao Shaman lives. By joining his ceremonies my understanding and devotion to ceremonial cacao grew a lot more. In San Marcos there is also an indigenous women’s collective producing artisanal Guatemalan grown ceremonial cacao which I love to use in my ceremonies.
Cacao is not chocolate. What exactly is the difference?
Cacao vs. Cocoa, raw cacao, ceremonial cacao, regular processed chocolate, bean to bar chocolate... there is a lot to talk about. But one thing for sure: Yes, chocolate really does grow on trees, at least Cacao!
Known as the ‘Food of the Gods’, cacao is the very seed found in the pods within the fruit of the Theobroma cacao tree. True authentic raw cacao is made by cold-pressing unroasted, often sun-dried cacao beans to keep the living enzymes and to remove just the fat (known as cacao butter). On the contrary, cocoa powder is raw cacao that has been roasted and processed at very high temperatures which lowers the overall nutritional value by up to 90%! Regular cocoa is what’s usually used in chocolate you can buy at grocery stores which also includes many additives such as cacao butter, milk powder, sugar of course and much more! So overall, if you are looking for the real deal, a healthy superfood rich in antioxidants, vitamins and minerals – raw cacao and ceremonial cacao should be your choice! -> Join Anna's cacao ceremony!
How does your morning routine look like?
Well, let’s put it like this: my intuition is my routine! I do not have a fixed schedule, each day when I wake up I take a few moments to connect deeply with my breath and then I intuitively start the day as it feels good! But I always dedicate about half an hour in the morning to just be with myself and tune into the day: often times I sit down, light a candle, pull some oracle cards, meditate or journal for a few minutes. Sometimes I focus more on moving my body and on other days I just read a couple of pages of a book that inspires me at the moment or I listen to some feel good music and dance into the day 😊
You also organize retreats. Tell us more about this!
Oh yes I love retreats! I have a background in tourism management and as I have been already travelling a lot I truly have a deep passion for the hospitality industry. Therefore it brings me so much joy to organise retreats in lovely places that feel like sanctuaries for the body, mind and soul! I have had many lovely retreat experiences myself in various countries and consider it as a highly sacred and transformative time you can gift yourself with. My retreats focus on deepening the connection to your intuition and your heart as well as diving into the magical realms. As I work a lot with astrology, moon magic and the overall cosmic events my retreats include a lot more than just yoga on the mat. My intention is to provide a variety of tools for participants to sink deeper into their own soul’s magic and to hear the subtle whispers of their heart. My retreats are always a special blend of gentle Yoga, Sound Healing, Moon Circles, Meditation practices as well as reflection and journaling exercises. At the moment I am offering my ‘Magical Mountain Moments’ retreats at the Magic Mountain Resort ‘Die Hochkönigin’ in Austria. I guess it’s obvious now: in the end it’s all about magic 😉
What always brings you back to Munich and what are your favorite hidden spots in town?
Munich is very close to my heart, I always love to come back to the city where I grew up and all of my family still lives. Munich is not too big nor too small, you have lots of gardens and parks to retreat from the daily busy world and it’s very close to the mountains as well! As I live in the city center I am surrounded by lovely corners with small shops, cafés and restaurants and of course Munich is extremely yoga-friendly. In terms of yoga studios Munich actually has the highest density, I guess. But yes, it’s true as well that Munich is still rather traditional and often not yet very open to new, creative ideas and concepts. But it’s happening, step by step. Every city has its character and I love to see how Munich evolves and overall I feel very blessed and happy to call it my home town.
My favorite hidden spots: the ‘Rosengarten’ near Isar for garden lovers, cute cafés such as ‘Gartensalon’ for cake lovers and the chocolaterie ‘Götterspeise’ for chocolate lovers and summer terraces at the Flushing Meadow Hotel or Haus im Tal Hotel for rooftop lovers! Other than that I always love to just walk around and discover new places!
Thank you for your time, Anna and see you on the mat!