RECHARGE YOUR CREATIVITY AT OUR brain spa and living laboratory campus in Portugal

The COProject CREATIVE residencies are dedicated 3, 5 or 7 day retreats to unwind, reflect, create, regenerate, build and contribute to the emerging field of creative change making as a mode of activating positive change.


Who is this for? 

Want to reflect on your career, develop a project, start a book, build your creative confidence, regenerate a burnt out mind, rejuvenate your creativity or simple carve out some time to be in nature? Then this program is for you!

Self-directed Creative Retreats at the CO Project Farm are the perfect way to jump start your project or professional development in a beautiful relaxing and inspiring setting. 

We are running a 2018 spring/summer residencies at the emerging UnSchool brain spa campus, in beautiful sunny Central Portugal. Designed for professionals wanting to enhance, build, reflect, create or collaborate their career, personal and project development in creative change-making. Our lightly curated 3, 5, or 7 day retreats are designed to help you make change. 

The Details

  • These are small group unique creative residency programs until September 2018 on the CO project farm campus near Tomar in Central Portugal. 
  • We take a maximum of 5 people at a time in our beautifully restored 100 year old farm guesthouse, and have designed this offering as a regeneration and creative focused residency in a retreat format.
  • Residencies are 3/5/7 day packages. 
  • The costs cover your accommodation, healthy vegetable-centric meals each day and access to on-site learning spaces. 
  • There are learning and recreational activities you can opt in or out of, lots of beautiful nature around to enjoy, and we've converted a fabulous light filled grain store room into a work space for focused project work. 
  • We offer you a self-directed creative workbook to support your residency
  • We have excellent wifi, or you can ask for a digital detox!
  • It's an easy train ride from Lisbon or a simple drive from Porto. We will send you a welcome pack with all the details on how to get here. 
  • Places are limited and we are almost sold out for 2018, so sign up now!
creative residencies

dates for 2018

We have dedicated residency weeks for our spring/summer program. where you select the number of days you would like to join us for. The below start and end dates are the weeks we have available for you to come:

  • April 25 - May 8th (sold out)
  • May 18 - May 23  (sold out)
  • June 8 - June 15 (sold out)
  • July 13 (limited spots left, apply now!)
  • August 10 - August 17 (a few places left) 

Click to sign up to any of our current residency package opportunities and our team will be in touch with our on-boarding experience information. 


What We Provide

  • A private room in our beautifully renovated 100-year-old guesthouse, Vinho Bunkhouse  or Triangle Cabin (you can pick based on availability)
  • A welcome pack which includes our self-retracted experience pack 
  • Self-serve breakfast and 2 nutritious vegetarian meals a day and provide everything for a DIY breakfast (we do most of the cooking, so you can do the creating!)
  • A steady supply of delicious local wine and cheese 
  • Non-stop french press coffee
  • Studio/workspace to create in
  • Excellent internet connection
  • An inspiring and beautifully peaceful landscape in which to create your project
  • Access to our online learning lab knowledge packages to learn positive creative Disruption
  • Access to our curated library of thought-provoking books 
  • Once a week we head to the local farmers markets to stock up on local goats cheese and fresh bread to create brain nourishing meals, which you are welcome to join us on.

Join us this year at our beautiful nature-based learning laboratory. You will be among the olive and citrus groves, perfect for relaxing and regenerating your creative brain!


The Investment

We work hard to offer these experiences at a rate that is accessible, but that also supports our growing mission as the UnSchool Association is a registered not-for-profit. The investment covers all on-farm expenses (you will need to get yourself to central Portugal yourself) and also your pre and post online learning lab access. 

  • 3 day program:  €375 
  • 5 day program: €575
  • 7 day program: €775
  • Equity access scholarship discounts can be arranged for very clear demonstrated need, but due to the many financial costs associated with running these programs it's preferable that you help to support your learning experience. 
  • We have some creative exchange offerings too, available to apply for on the application. 
systems mapping 1.jpg
  • Our community is full of like-minded creative rebels all working towards a positive and creative career/project during their stay.
  • Residencies may overlap, so you will have access to a diverse set of minds and inspiration.

  • Spots are kept to a small number (maximum 4 at one time) in order to maintain the peaceful setting.

  • The farm is quite large, with many places to walk, sit, lie in a hammock, swim at the local river) and get away from it all.

  • While there will be others on the property, it's not hard to find a lot of quiet alone time by yourself either.

  • We are only able to accept residents while we don't have programs running, so please indicate a few dates you would be interested in coming when applying

  • We tailor the program to your learning/development needs and once you are accepted we will develop a learning journey with you, which will include tailed digital content and mentorship. 

  • Longer residencies can be arranged upon request. 



Can you cater to my dietary requirements or food allergies?

We will do our best to cater to food allergies / intolerances, keep in mind we prepare food for the entire group and do not prepare specific individual meals. You are most welcome to jump in our rustic sunlit kitchen and prepare your own food if you feel what is on offer will not be suitable. We cater all vegetarian, locally sourced meals and do not offer meat or fish. We have farm fresh eggs and local cheeses for protein and lots of delicious organic meals to energize you.

How do I get there ?

From Lisbon, a 2 hour train to Tomar is the best way. We offer one pick-up time in the morning (usually around 11am) or you can get a taxi from the station to the farm for around €15. It is a 20 min drive. We will send out arrival and departure information prior to your arrival. You can easily drive from Lisbon too in 1.5 hours.

Can I bring my dog ?

Some of our animal family here on the farm aren’t very compatible with dogs, they would be much happier if left at home.

I have been following Leyla’s work and love it, will I get a chance to meet her ?

We have amazing facilitators that have been working closely with Leyla for a long time and will be taking care of you during your stay. Leyla loves to come back to the farm as much as possible but does a lot of travelling with her work in activating change globally, and may not be here during your visit. If you want to guarantee an opportunity to learn from Leyla then please sign up for one of the workshops she is facilitating.

What kind of support will I get in my project development?

We offer a variety of support tools such as reflective thinking exercises, reading lists, online classes and small group facilitated activities (depending on the group). Expect to have at least one activity during your stay with us and the rest of the time you will be given the space and time to work and reflect independently on your projects.

Who else will be there during my stay?

We keep our residency programs small and intimate. We usually have between 2 and 6 people on the farm at any one time during the residency programs. Expect like-minded creatives and professionals from all walks of life with a shared interested in affecting positive change and learning more about systems, sustainability and design.

What accomodation is provided ?

We offer shared and single room accomodation. The upstairs guest-house has 3 single and 1 twin rooms all with shared bathroom, downstairs we have the beautiful bunkhouse with shared shared bathroom & kitchen and we have an individual Triangle Cabin on the farm. We will allocate you your first preference for accommodation wherever possible. All rooms have conformable beds, linen and towels for your stay.

What facilities are provided onsite?

There is a beautiful sun-kissed workroom separate to the accommodation areas where you will have your own work desk, there is also a library, a projector for movie nights or presentations, yoga mats, whiteboard and stationary. Wifi is accessible throughout the accommodation and workroom areas. There is a large communal kitchen and many different outdoor areas for relaxation (think hammocks and sunbeds) along with the guest house sunroom and bunkhouse lounge area for working and relaxing.   

Will I have time to work on my own projects?

Yes! That is what the residencies are designed for. We have a loose schedule of recommended work, reflection, reading and activity times but it is completely up to you if you would like to follow the schedule or do your own thing. The residences are all about self-directed learning with support provided by CO project staff in the form of great food, good reflective conversation and encouragement.

What can I expect on a daily basis?

Each day here is self-directed. Mornings are great for individual work and playing with the animals or getting your hands dirty in our veggie garden. Breakfast is self-serve and we offer an organic cooked vegetable-centric lunch & dinner at a time that suits the group. We provide a loose suggested schedule and offer some recreational activities and learning exercises depending on your needs but ultimately your time here is yours to do with as you please.

How do I apply to be a resident?

We offer one residency week per month and have a simple signup system for our 3, 5 and 7 day residency programs. Simple select what date that we have on offer you would like to attend and select to join the program, you will have a few short questions to compleet along with payment to secure your place. After you have done so you will have access to our welcome pack with all the information you need and we will be in touch to arrange your arrival details.

The Process Snapshot

  1. Select  from our current availability, book and pay
  2. Once accepted you will receive the welcome pack with all your planning and residency details
  3. We provide your access to learning materials in our online learning lab 
  4. You arrive in Portugal for your stay, and after the residency you will join our alumni community