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The Serendipity 


 18 - 24 January 2023

Retreat in Sri Lanka

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  7 - 17  January  2023 pre-retreat tour



Presented by acclaimed UK artist Este MacLeod in collaboration with Anna Kwiecinska, who is currently living in Sri Lanka. 

As for the 2021 Serendipity retreat, we'll be based in Galle Fort - a world of its own, full of character and charm, I know you'll fall in love with it as I have since living here. It's the perfect place to come and make art. Brimming with inspiration, evocative streets of old Dutch houses retained with authenticity, as the entire Galle Fort is a UNESCO World Heritage site.  Fabulous cuisine abounds, You can sea swim safely, and our retreat is held in its very own garden hotel with lovely wide verandahs,,it's calm, unhurried atmosphere  just for us, so we're in a safe, peaceful bubble.

We'll have adventures beyond the fort, visit Lunuganga, Geoffrey Bawa's stunning country residence, and you'll meet many of my friends in Galle Fort - some count their family history within its walls back seven generations!

Here are a few Galle glimpses, and as soon as Serendipity'21 is completed, you'll find updates and images of our retreat

If you've any queries please don't hesitate to be in touch with me by email or on the chat box here or Whats App.

Este has a fantastic program for you and everything's provided. We're really looking forward to meeting you here on the Teardrop Isle for a blissful Creative Living Retreat - so much to look forward to!











This is our second art retreat in Sri Lanka with Este MacLeod (the first in December 2021).

It is an all-inclusive tropical painting holiday with art and yoga tuition, fine dining & cultural adventures.

You will be working on projects in watercolour and water-based media and painted paper collage. Two 3-hr art sessions daily dedicated to explorative projects that will build up to a bigger artwork projects on paper, canvas and board. Expect to surprise yourself! 

All materials are included + you'll receive some of Este's favourite brushes, a travelling palette and other art goodies to keep.

ART RETREATS STARTS on Arrival (Day1) 18 January  & ENDS on 24 January  (Day 7), 2023

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Tour Sri Lanka before your art retreat

PRE-RETREAT Tour of Sri Lanka with Este & Anna

  •  starts from Colombo, 7th January, 2023

  •  ends in Galle Fort, 17 january, 2023.

Make your journey into art!

Join Este on Tour for masterclasses and tutorials as we travel. You'll stay in beautiful places with dedicated time to make art. Elephant safari, hill stations train journey, trekking to World's End, fabulous cuisine and Ayurvedic treats.

See what the 20121 tour is like  >

Meet Este Macleod

Este Macleod is an acclaimed UK-based artist and designer whose  way of teaching will show you ways to turn the things you notice into expressive, sophisticated artworks on paper using new dynamic painting and mixed media techniques.

Her way of teaching will spark your imagination, get you in a creative flow and show ways to broaden your art practice as anyone who's experienced Este's popular on-line courses will know. The same matrials Este uses are provided in this course.

Este will have your imagination sparking from the moment you sign up!  Imagine a week to be pampered  whilst dedicating yourself to art-making on a tropical island described by UK travel writer, John Gimlette as "the most beatiful country I've ever seen". Elephant Complex, 2015.

Meet Este

Your Serendipity Experience Begins in Colombo

Your Sri Lankan experience starts the moment you arrive, with your private taxi bringing you from the airport to the iconic Galle Face Hotel, known for years as the 'smartest hotel east of the Suez Canal'. Your deluxe 'Landmark' room awaits!

Read More.....

If you are joining the Pre-Retreat tour, the we will depart from hereon the 8th January, to commence the tour.

If you re joining the retreat directly, your taxi will bring you to Galle Fort to join the grouo on the 17th january. Either way, your home for the next seven nights is within the 3km perimeter of the  C.17th Galle Fort.

It's a world away from the bustling Galle town just beyond the ramparts. Your Dutch colonial-style hotel is a our private oasis this week. A courtyard garden filled with frangiapani, shady verandahs, spacious work areas and an atmospheric dining salon, and an elevator for those that want to avoid the stairs (the hotel's 14 rooms are on two levels).


Beyond  the gates, a quaint village atmosphere caught in time, where you can safely wander, discovering cafes, restaurants and gelaterie, emporia of Indian textiles, and dazzling jewellery boutiques showcasing the most precious of the island's many riches - Sri Lankan blue sapphires. The village is friendly, welcoming and I can't wait to introduce you to my friends there!

The island's natural beauty is legendary, but amongst its built environments the Old Galle Fort is really something unique.

Buddhists, Sri Lankan Moors, and Tamils live side by side, each community gently reflecting their cultural identities  - there's a mosque, a Buddhist temple and several churches withing the ramparts.

Cuisine is a real highlight in Galle Fort, with historic buildings re-purposed into fine dining venues , but theres also a dazzling array of delicious street food too, with hopper (a sort of crsispy pancake from rice flour)  vendors and roti (bread) bakers to tempt you away from a continetal breakfast! 

Galle Fort  - A UNESCO Heritage Site

At first glance the streets may remind you of an Andalusian village, the French enclave of Pondicherry in South India, or even an ancient medina in Morocco. In fact, Galle is all this and more, for it has featured on seafarers' maps for more than 2000 years, as traders sought its many riches - elephants, pearls, cinnamon and rubies. 


Portugal colonised a fort here from 1505, the Dutch usurped it in 1656, and in 1795 Ceylon became a British colony (until 1948).


Each epoch has left its mark and for an artist, inspiration is everywhere: time-worn surfaces of colonial architecture filled with fascinating objects, lush jungly plants shading and scenting cobbled streets, the diverse dress and food of cultures who’ve lived here for centuries beneath an ever-changing tropical sky ... it's like being inside a novel ... while never far away, the sound of the cerulean sea lapping at the ramparts which have encircled this fort for five centuries.