Yotopia: not a frozen dessert
Last week's new class for me was at Yotopia, in Covent Garden. I love the name, although it does slightly make me think of a frozen yogurt shop!
I'd heard lots about this place and, of course, it's ridiculously central so was easy to pop to on a lunch break. And after all the craziness of Barry's Bootcamp (which I've been keeping up with, although in a more manageable two classes per week on average!), I was definitely in need of some opening and stretching.
Easy to find on Mercer Street, the space is simply decorated and, on entry, I have to admit not very yoga-y feeling. It's a nice, clean space but compared to some studios which have a very zen, low-lit feeling as soon as you enter, Yotopia is very while-walled and fairly bright. Functional is probably the best word that comes to mind.
The class I chose for my first visit was a Vinyasa Flow class taught by Kate Gaddini. It took place in a slightly warmed room (but not advertised as, nor anywhere near as hot as a 'hot' class) and Kate was welcoming and talked through injuries and comfort levels with each of us.
I enjoyed the class and it was nice to try a new yoga venue. Going in with no expectations of the intructor made for an open-minded experience and I genuinely enjoyed her style. Kate provided for all levels so it was definitely challenging (or not, as you preferred or depending on your level).
After class, the showers and changerooms were clean but, again, basic like the reception and nothing stood out to me to make the experience better than 'good'. At £16 for a class, Yotopia is no cheaper or more expensive than other London classes but does lack the nice touches of free towels, nice toiletries or a bit shinier decor that studios often provide. I wonder if the difference is the central location, which is what you're paying for rather than high-end toiletries? Hmm.
Regardless, if you're looking for an easy drop-in in central London, Yotopia definitely more than fills the need and I wouldn't hesitate to recommend it to anyone in the area, despite a slight lack of one or the other of a more calming atmosphere or better 'small touches' in the post-yoga area.
Image courtesy of Yotopia web site