ACE CAMPS TRAVEL COMPANY

PAINTING WITH HEATHER CHONTOS IN MARRAKECH, MOROCCO

PAINTING + SKETCHING WITH HEATHER CHONTOS | VISIT TO LA PAUSE + EXPLORE THE MEDINA | MARRAKECH, MOROCCO | SEPTEMBER 15 - 21, 2019

PAINTING + SKETCHING WITH HEATHER CHONTOS | VISIT TO LA PAUSE + EXPLORE THE medina | MARRAKECH, MOROCCO | SEPTEMBER 15 - 21, 2019 OR SEPTEMBER 21 - 27, 2019

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About the trip:

Marrakech has long been a favourite destination of ours, since we first visited many years ago and we look forward to returning with Heather Chontos who will be leading a creative filled workshop on painting and mark making.

You will experiment with acrylic ink, water based paints and pastels in combination with each other, looking at layering textures and colours on paper. You will learn how to incorporate painting techniques that utilize a variation of unique tools and methods specific to Heather’s studio practice and style of abstract painting.

Time spent drawing and reflecting when you are traveling invites a kind of presence that illuminates the moments you are recording. When you return home, you may know a little more about yourself and you will have a real record of your experiences: tastes, colours, feelings and impressions, an unrepeatable treasure.

We will use the city, Marrakech, as our inspiration, with a guided tour of the souks, filled with makers and artisans, to visiting the beautiful grounds of El Badi and the Bahai Palace, to the stunning landscape of the Agafay desert hills. And there will be time to shop and explore on your own… we think that is important!

Explore your creative side during this 6 day trip to Marrakech. This workshop is open to all skill levels.

OTHER COOL THINGS TO DO:

The Dar Si Said Museum Admission The former home of the brother of Ba Ahmed, builder of the Bahia Palace, now houses a ragtag collection of crafts and woodwork. 

More engaging is the new Maison de la Photographie  displays exhibits from a collection of 8,000 photographs spanning the period from 1870-1950. The museum’s top terrace is perfect for a post-picture visit drink or light lunch.

The new Douiria Mouassine showcases a restored, petite 17th-century reception apartment detailed with exquisite decorative plaster and wood work.

This Ace Camp includes:

  • Painting, sketching + mark making workshop with Heather Chontos

  • 6 nights*

  • 4 dinners

  • 3 lunches

  • 6 breakfasts

  • Guided tour of the Medina and souks

  • Visit to El Badi, Bahai Palace and Jardin Majorelle

  • A day of sketching at La Pause

  • Candle light dinner in the desert

  • All admissions to sites during the tours

  • An Ace Camps tote bag

  • Airport transfers (for those arriving on September 15th and departing on the 21st only for the first workshop/ and or those arriving on September 21st and departing on the 27th only for the second workshop)

TRIP DETAILS + PRICE

*Rooms are shared with one other guest.

SINGLE ROOM OPTION: We have 2 single rooms available for an additional supplement of $225 USD available to the first two guests to request one. If you would like a single room, please make a note on your registration.

Group Size: Minimum 10 guests and maximum 11 guests.

Notes: Airfare to Marrakech, Morocco is not included. You will be sent a list of art supplies to bring after registration.


PRICE:  $2695.00 USD

Deposit:  $1495 - due when place in workshop is confirmed 

Final Payment of $1200 due June1, 2019

SEPTEMBER 15 - 21, 2019 IS SOLD OUT

SEPTEMBER 21 - 27, 2019 IS OPEN FOR REGISTRATION


WHERE WE'RE STAYING:

Nestled amongst the historical sights of the city, our boutique riad is located at the heart of the Mouassine district, just a 5-minute walk from the vibrant Jemaa El-Fnaa Square and two minutes from the Mouassine Mosque. The riad features a roof-top terrace with views of the Medina and a courtyard with a plunge pool.

WHAT IS A RIAD?

A riad is traditional house in Morocco and is characterized by having an inner courtyard or a garden as the central element of the building. Following the Islamic idea of privacy and inward reflection, a riad doesn’t usually have large windows facing the outside. Instead, rooms will have windows facing the opened-ceiling inner courtyard and garden.


HEATHER CHONTOS

Heather is a creative force to be reckoned with, a dynamic and energetic personality with a passion for her creative talents she exhibits a complex layering of color, texture, lightness, spontaneity, intensity and love in everything she does. There is a playfulness to her nature, somewhat childlike, but always achieving sophistication and grace in her final product.

Heather has a great passion for art, gastronomy, travel, fashion and interiors. And she is well published and experienced in creating and directing projects across all of these fields. She holds a strong foundation in the understanding of the intricate balance between color, form and space. And with her expertise she applies the same visual concept to perfect a sense of natural and effortless beauty in all of her work. Her  “can do” spirit opens all doors for her to imagine and then execute whatever artistic elements are required to make the most beautiful and inspiring image. Whether it be her hand drawn line, her bold markings of painted color, an incredibly beautiful table of food, enhancing  a location in the middle of nowhere, creating the perfect  background design for a celebrity portrait or putting together the room of your dreams, heather will bring it! It will be original and boldly unique. She simply will inspire.

Learn more about Heather and her artwork here.

Photo:  Heather Chontos

Photo: Heather Chontos


TRAVEL ARRANGEMENTS

ACE CAMPS  will email you when it is time to get your air. This email will always be sent 90 days or more before your trip departs unless you book within 90 prior to the camp. 

You will be met at the airport and brought to the riad. More information will be sent after your registration.

There will be no refunds for this Ace Camp due to the planning and logistics involved. 

WEATHER

The average daily temperature during the month of September hovers around 27 degrees Celsius. This includes a potential low of 20 degrees Celsius at night, and a high of up to 33 degrees Celsius. These high temperatures will likely be during the early afternoon but check the latest forecast to double check.

An average of ten millimetres of rain falls on the area throughout the month, usually concentrated over two days.

ACE CAMP TOUR LEADER

The ACE CAMP TOUR LEADER is a part of your group and are there to look out for your safety, to help resolve issues, and to make sure you get what you want from your vacation. The Tour Leader will make sure that everyone who wants company has it, including dinners when no group meal is scheduled.

They also work with the local guides to insure the right combination of pace, information, and duration - and, well...keep the ball rolling.


ITINERARY

DAY ONE - Arrival Day

On arrival at Marrakech Menara International Airport you will be welcomed by our tour representative and brought to the riad. Please try to arrange your flights to meet us for dinner.

This evening we have a meet + greet welcome dinner with Heather.

DAY TWO - Translating your Inspiration into abstraction

Breakfast at the hotel

This morning Heather will make a proper introduction and give a talk about process, observation, travel and how all of these things can impact art and how we will learn the take cues from the landscape around us. 

Lunch at TBD

After lunch we go on a guided walking tour to explore the souk areas of the Medina, the spices, the dyeing of fibres, the people, all while observing colours, shapes + smells. We take inspiration to notice and document the various moments throughout this new landscape and discover the new ways it might inspire our creativity in an abstract sense. 

We stop along the way to take photos, jot down notes, words, colors, make shapes, lines, whatever it is that comes to mind, we are on a treasure hunt to find what speaks to us in this place so that we may use it later and find ways to translate its beauty through our own voice. Make a collection of visual cues from what we find and collect, in the evening we will discuss what each one of us saw, round table our observations and enjoy the Medina from the rooftop at Nomad for dinner.

DAY THREE - Color and its beauty through painting 

Breakfast at the hotel

With all of our inspiration in hand from the vibrant scene of the Medina, we can spend the first part of the day with our paper and paint and look at different ways and techniques to incorporate color into our abstract work in a bold and beautiful way, experimenting with layering our mark making, brushstrokes, line and different depths of color on paper to discover new ways that all of these elements interact with one another in balance to make abstract painting work. 

Lunch at the riad

We continue with our painting and mark making exercises. Around mid afternoon we take a break and visit El Badi Palace + Dar Si Said or Bahai Palace. 

Dinner this evening on your own

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DAY FOUR - Playing with scale of shape + form + visit to La Pause

Breakfast at the hotel

This morning is free for you to explore. There is so much to see and do in Marrakech and we can give you ideas for areas to explore and shops to visit depending on your preferences. Or maybe take the morning and relax at the spa!

Lunch on your own

Early afternoon we meet back at the riad and travel to La Pause. 30 Kms from Marrakech, in the anciently named the “Désert Marrakchi”, La Pause is nestled in the arid beauty of the Agafay hills with a refreshing oasis bordered by a river, surrounded by dramatic landscape overlooking the vast Moroccan wilderness. La Pause is a Berber desert retreat created by a Parisian with great taste. There's a seductive and honest authenticity to this place but it's also faultlessly stylish.

Once here we will explore the grounds, and Heather will give you some ideas to think about. We will look at how nature shows us an amazing natural balance in its own landscape to play with scale and study the large and the small in contrast to each other. We will take photos and do some sketching in our books based on what we find inspiring. 

You will have the afternoon free to work or relax, and enjoy the scenery as the light changes from afternoon to dusk.

Early evening, enjoy a cocktail and henna treatment at La Pause 

Dinner at La Pause under candle light prepared from locally sourced produce
As La Pause does not use any electricity this is an excellent opportunity to gather new inspiration from the different colours produced at night. 

Return to our riad after dinner

DAY FIVE - Working large scale

Breakfast at the hotel

This morning we visit the newer area of Marrakech and start with a walk around Jardin Majorelle , we will have some time for shopping on rue Majorelle (there are great shops here!), and if time permits a visit to the newly opened Musee Yves saint Laurent 

Lunch TBD

Playing with scale of shape and form continued ~
After lunch, return to the riad for our final creative session with Heather, we will work on larger scale pieces this afternoon and express everything we have explored over the past few days. 

Dinner this evening is on your own

DAY SIX - A day to explore

Breakfast at the hotel

Today is a free day - we will provide guests with ideas for shopping and exploring including where to go in Gueliz or take a relaxing day at Beldi Country Club. Perhaps you’d like to visit a hammam for a steam bath and massage, or spend more time shopping in the medina. Maybe a camel ride! We can help you organize.

This evening we celebrate our final evening together with a farewell dinner in the riad.

DAY SEVEN - Departure Day

Breakfast at the hotel

You will be brought to Marrakech Menara International Airport.  Group departures depending on flights to be arranged once travel plans are sent to Ace Camps administration.

SEPTEMBER 15 - 21, 2019 IS SOLD OUT

SEPTEMBER 21 - 27, 2019 IS OPEN FOR REGISTRATION


Nota Bene: this is a prospective itinerary. It is subject to modest modifications, dependent on local weather, new opportunities and the desires of the group.