Chroma Yoga + Oklava



START: Chroma Yoga, 45 Charlotte Rd, EC2A 3DP, London.

FINISH: Oklava, 74 Luke St, EC2A 4PY, London.

TUBE: Old Street.

THE WORKOUT: 19:30pm Friday Pink Restore with Roberto. A total yoga revolution in colour. Chroma Yoga is the only studio in London combining light and colour therapy techniques, soundscapes and natural scents to create an entirely multi-sensory immersive yoga experience. Each class is a transformative journey as you move through the colours of the spectrum with every asana movement and pranayama breath. Taking place in a ergonomically designed room bathed in a specific colour of light, the teacher guides the class through a set of sequences which correspond to the healing properties of that colour. So for instance Pink:RESTORE focuses on releasing stressful tension and blocked emotional energy with gentle stretching and opening poses. Blue is a dynamic class whose aim is to wake up the body and increase energy. Yellow pairs Yellow light with twists and opening postures to aid digestion and alleviate mood swings. Chromatic takes you through the whole spectrum. And it’s not all show for nothing - the entire concept is grounded in science. Many studies have shown that prolonged exposure to blue light on a daily basis (via our phones and computers) interferes with our natural sleep cycle and suppresses melatonin production. This wreaks havoc on pretty much all our health functions, commonly leading to insomnia and anxiety. Chroma Yoga is all about re-balancing the system and tapping into different light colours, sounds and scents help to bring us back down to baseline. Each soundtrack is chosen to “emulate the frequencies our brains emit in different states of conciousness”. This sounds a bit whacky. But essentially sounds are designed to promote calm, focus, and a more relaxed state of mind and guides you into a full immersive sensory state. Next comes scent, where Chroma Yoga has partnered with scent magicians Askala, and developed their own essential oils blend to correspond with each class colour. Scents are selected according to whether the class is to drive energy, release muscle tension or encourage relaxation. Basically, you’re in for the best yoga treat of your life - you can thank us later when you get back down on earth again.

THE FOOD: Oklava serves the best Turkish-Cypriot food in London. Period. The food is rich, tasty, surprising and super creative. The menu focuses on the charcoal grill (mangal) and stone oven, mixing classic dishes with jazzy fusion ones. While you’re perusing the menu mop up some Medjool date butter with Spiced bread. It’s melt in the mouth. For mains, the spiced trout with crispy pita and olives is fragrant, perfectly cooked and comes with fresh blood orange which makes the dish light and fresh. Meat-eaters can enjoy some creative cooking; the duck and cherry filo pastry pie with pistachios is a really interesting dish. The filling is is a nice combination of salty, sweet, whilst staying perfectly moist with flaky pastry. The lamb kebab is also pretty tasty; packed full of spices, juicy and satisfying. Chili roasted crispy cauliflower is one for spice fans, but the chili isn’t overpowering, and the sharp red onion cuts through for freshness. Potato chips on the side are hot, crisp and the chili salt is like some kind of magic. Whilst you chow down on the food, don’t miss out on the wine. We never knew much about Turkish wine before we came here, but turns out it’s pretty good! And don’t forget about the cocktails. The “Blood Orange Fizz” makes us never want to go back to poor peasant Buck’s Fizz. “Sumac & Pomegranate Martini” is also almost too delicious, since it slides down so quick and easy. We challenge anyone not to like this place.

THE PRICE: Chroma Yoga drop in (45 mins) £13, (60 -75mins) £15, (90 mins) £17. 5 class pack £70 or unlimited membership £110. Oklava dinner: A full menu for the table can be taken for £35 per person. Otherwise spiced bread £4.5. Mains: Trout with crispy pita £16, Kebab £15, Duck and filo pie £16.5, Roasted cauliflower £12, Potato chips £6.5. Cocktails £8-10, and wine £4.5-8.5 for a glass.

BEST FOR: A sensory explosion and a Friday night you won’t forget in a hurry.

Chroma Yoga + Oklava