A fabulous review by Colette Sheridan, freelance journalist for the Irish Examiner who recently attended one of our popular A Woman’s Way retreat escape. So proud and so grateful to receive such remark.

Dare to Live July 2015 (25)

CEILI Fitzgerald knows what women want — and it ain’t boot camp. Half Caymanian and half Irish, Ceili, who has a gentle, graceful presence, set up ‘Dare to Live!’ earlier this year, offering “retreat escapes for women”.

A former HR executive in the corporate sector in the Cayman Islands, Ceili found her job unfulfilling and frenetic, with constant travel and toxic office politics.

She felt there had to be more to life and, compelled by a desire for change, she chucked in her well- paid job a couple of years ago, sold her house and went travelling across America and Canada.

Describing herself as free-spirited, creative, and independent-minded, she attended a writer’s workshop on her travels in California.

Her Eureka moment came to her in her mother’s home near Midleton, and was inspired by her travels. She drew up a five-year plan on a flip chart and has been pursuing her dream ever since.

“I decided to do something for women,” says Ceili.

“I don’t know enough about men to know what they would find meaningful. I have created themed retreats.

“‘A Woman’s Way’ is the flagship one. I also do ‘A Healthy Life’ and retreats for amateur writers facilitated by the writer Carol Drinkwater. It’s all about women giving themselves permission to explore life choices.

“Women attend the retreats for different reasons. They might want advice about career struggles or just a break from being a mother.

“I’m hoping to tap into the international market by doing longer retreats. My sister, who lives in America, is looking after that side of things. It’s all about creating a space for women that is gentle. It’s a great escape.”

‘A Woman’s Way’ is sheer indulgence but not mindless hedonism. This three-night retreat is held in Linden House on Dromgarriff Estate, a two-minute drive from the village of Glengarriff in West Cork.

The airy, spacious modern house built from local stone was designed by German architect, Professor Peter Kulka.

He created large gable walls entirely made up of windows, overlooking the Gulf Stream-infused water’s edge. The house has two wings, connected by a glass corridor.

Each wing has a large living room, one with a huge leather couch and pink and purple bean bags and the other with a table full of self-help and psychology books such as Women Who Run with the Wolves and An Open Heart by the Dalai Lama.

With some hearts more open than others, the five of us on ‘A Woman’s Way’ retreat, led by Ceili, ‘shared’ our thoughts on where our lives are going. Read more here