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Be guests in a rejuvenating Alpine village


Ostana is a small village in the north-western Alps in the Po Valley, facing the Monviso mountain (3841m a.s.l.). Like many places around the world it has changed tremendously during the past century. In 1921, there were 1200 inhabitants, while in the year 2000, only six people were left. In the 1980s, former Ostana inhabitants returned with the idea of reviving the village again with high-quality architecture renovation. Ostana, this small village on the path towards resilience, has been able to adapt, powered by their imagination of reviving a flourishing village based on community, respect for a minority culture and sustainability. Ostana is an envisioned collective project in times of transition and a recognised model of alpine regeneration.


The host for our retreat is part of this collective as incubator and  connector - the campus of the 'Living Systems Lab' MonViso Institute (MVI), a project at the cutting-edge of research and education on sustainability transitions and regenerative design.

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Location and seminar spaces


MonViso Institute (MVI)

We are delighted to offer this training mainly on the campus of the 'Living Systems Lab' of MonViso Institute (MVI), a project at the cutting-edge of research and education on sustainability transitions and regenerative design. This is our “home base”with its amphitheater, fire place, pizza oven and camping/glamping area, permaculture, paulownia plantation and hemp fields and numerous embedded projects, in breath-taking nature with ever-changing views to MonViso mountain (3,841 m), overlooking the Valley of the river Po. As weather permits, mornings are spent with outdoor practices on and around the MVI Campus.


Centro Culturale Lou Portoun

Afternoon sessions for the Mindfulness Self-Compassion Core Skills course will be spent in the stunning Centro Culturale Lou Portoun with its cooperative “Viso a Viso”, including a coffee and bar space with healthy, local food, that serves as a meeting point for hikers and the local community. We will have a cozy space just for us a group for the safety and calm needed for this important part of our program. The Centro is located at a walking distance of 15 minutes from MVI on a beautiful forest path and right in front of "La Foresteria" hostel. 

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We will be guests of the place and people of the Occitan culture, experienced by us through food, music, language and professions that are still cultivated. Occitan is a minority culture.We will get a sense of the resilience of Ostana, and how a regenerative approach has brought back life to this community. We will also learn about the backside of the drastic changes the communities go through in these times. We will enjoy Piemontese food - the birthplace of Italy’s slow food! - and savour it in village restaurants to support the local economy and twice on MVI campus for collaborative outdoor experiences and as a chance to invite locals to connect and network.

Occitan Culture

Getting here

International travel: The MVI campus can be reached by train/bus to Torino and then by train to either Savigliano (preferred) or Pinerolo, followed by a shared taxi ride of one hour uphill into the Commune di Ostana. Closest airports are Torino and Milano. If you come by car, there is some parking space in the village. Car sharing or public transport are encouraged to keep the village free from traffic. Overall, we encourage you to arrive by public transport, if slow traveling is feasible for you as a means of respect for the environment.

Local transport: During the course, distances between the MVI campus, the main village and accommodations can be walked or cycled on mountainous trails, or the winding road. Count in distances of about 20 minutes walking up and downhill. Bringing an E-bike is ideal; one E-bike is for free use for campus guests and more can be rented in place for additional cost. A few normal bikes can be rented. Where needed, the MVI team will provide us with car transport in the village as an included service. Extra transportation outside the village is subject to additional costs.

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