Coworking retreats: The ultimate working holiday

Suits, ties, and 9 a.m. starts are but an antiquated cliché for this new tribe of modern workers.

Enjoy the sunshine and outdoor space at Mokrin House. Image credit: Mokrin House
Enjoy the sunshine and outdoor space at Mokrin House. Image credit: Mokrin House

Technology advancements over the past 10 years have given employees better flexibility to be able to log-in and work remotely from anywhere in the world. For this new tribe of online workers, the lines between work and leisure have blurred. 

Since all they need to work is a laptop and a decent internet connection, their equivalent of the “office” is up for interpretation. Whether they’re working beachside in Thailand or from a small village in the French Alps, digital nomads are embracing a new style of living, allowing them to travel the world without having to request time off.

Until recently, coworking spaces were a digital nomad’s best bet for desk space, fast Wi-Fi, and meeting rooms in exchange for a fee. However, coworking spaces still draw a clear divide between work and free time, as they’re often located in city business districts and designed to emulate a traditional office environment.

Enter the coworking retreat.

Catering specifically to digital nomads, coworking retreats offer a holistic space where work, life, and leisure are combined.

Located in some of the world’s most lust-worthy vacation destinations, coworking retreats offer a range of packages that include accommodation and access to shared spaces for a set fee.

Strip off your wetsuit after a morning surf, grab a cup of coffee, and log in just in time for your 10 a.m. meeting while the sea salt lingers – that’s the philosophy.

Coworking retreats are designed to encourage a social atmosphere, where guests cook together, bounce business ideas around in the communal workspaces, or share beers at the end of a working day.

Whether you’re a seasoned digital nomad or looking to test the waters in 2020, we’ve selected a few of the coolest and most innovative co-working retreats, located in incredible locations all over the globe.

Unleash Surf, Peru – the ultimate digital nomad resort

Located just three minutes’ walk from Huatulco Beach, one of Peru’s best surf beaches, Unleash Surf allows digital nomads to spend their free time learning to surf or improving their technical skills.

Unleash Surf’s main hub is located in the beach-adjacent Huatulco township and is decked out with a large co-working space, a well-equipped kitchen, and multiple communal spaces including a terrace with views of the ocean. 

Enjoy a homemade breakfast after a surf lesson at Unleash Surf coworking retreat. Image credit: Unleash Surf
Enjoy a homemade breakfast after a surf lesson at Unleash Surf. Image credit: Unleash Surf

Packages include access to communal areas, one-on-one surf lessons, equipment hire, and accommodation in a private apartment, with the option of adding extras such as Spanish lessons and yoga.

There’s no on-site restaurant, but the retreat is close to a number of local restaurants to explore with fellow nomads after a day spent working and surfing. Alternatively, you can hit the local market and cook up a storm in the kitchen, dining with a view of the sunset from the terrace roof.

Roam, Bali – novel coworking space in a tropical paradise

While Roam has locations in a number of cities worldwide, including Miami, San Francisco, and Tokyo, their stunning coworking retreat in Ubud, Bali, is the jewel in their crown.

Roam Ubud is located within a converted boutique hotel, with two dozen gorgeous private rooms that encircle a central pool grotto and tropical terrace.

The rooftop is home to a large coworking space, cafe, and an open-air studio space that is used for regular yoga and capoeira classes, events, and seminars. 

Ubud is one of Bali’s most popular spots for holidaymakers, surrounded by picturesque rice paddies, Hindu temples, and rainforests, so there’s plenty for guests to explore when they’re off the clock. 

You can book your stay at Roam Ubud for as little as one week, or join their flex program to access special deals for longer stays. Serious digital nomads might consider Roam’s subscription service, which allows them to live and work freely at any of Roam’s locations worldwide.

Sun and Co., Spain – Co-living on the Mediterranean coast

With a top-of-the-line coworking space and an enviable location just a stone’s throw from the Spanish coast in Javea, Sun and Co., offers the perfect balance of work and leisure.

Enjoy meetings outdoors at Sun and Co., Image credit: Sun and Co.,
Enjoy meetings outdoors at Sun and Co., Image credit: Sun and Co.,

You’ll never find yourself crammed into a hammock or beanbag while working at Sun and Co., as they offer a variety of comfortable co-working spaces, meeting rooms, and Skype booths.

When you’re not in professional-mode, you can explore all this picturesque stretch of the Spanish coast has to offer – beautiful beaches, historic towns, Moorish castles, all the tapas you can eat, and year-round sunshine. 

Sun and Co., is located within a beautifully restored villa, with the choice of private or shared rooms. You can book in for any length of time, however, there are discounts for longer stays. 

Mokrin House, Serbia – For a luxury-laced working holiday

If you’ve been sitting on an exciting business idea, but haven’t found the time and energy to get stuck in, then consider booking into the uber-chic Mokrin House for an extended stay.

Nestled within the remote Serbian countryside of Mokrin, this all-inclusive coworking retreat offers a refreshingly calm working environment, where you’ll enjoy three chef-prepared meals each day, access to modern coworking facilities, and stay in accommodation that is as comfortable as it is stylish. 

When you need a break from work, you can hit the gym for a workout, relax by the pool, or take one of Mokrin House’s bicycles and explore the countryside.

The retreat hosts regular events and mixers for social types, including games nights, movie screenings, and networking events.

If you’re looking for luxury, consider booking one of Mokrin House’s award-winning luxury suites.

Unsettled – Curated digital nomad camps in global locations

Unsettled functions slightly differently from the other co-working retreats we’ve mentioned, in that it doesn’t have a permanent location. Instead, the company curates a variety of fixed-length retreats that take place in a diverse range of destinations spanning the globe.

Unsettled has more of a camp-like feel than other co-working retreats, as they’re put together based on what is locally available. A corner cafe might be converted into a designated co-working space or an abandoned rooftop transformed into a social area for morning yoga and evening cocktails. 

While this piecemeal approach might not suit some digital nomads, Unsettled is a great option for those who are looking to spend time in an extraordinary destination without having to log off.

Upcoming retreats are scheduled to take place on a remote beach in Nicaragua, in the Costa Rican rainforest, and in the rustic heart of Tuscany, Italy – just to name a few.


Grace Catherine

Grace is a freelance writer and digital project manager from New Zealand currently based in Mexico City. She is an avid traveler who loves destinations with an eclectic history, a bike-sharing scheme, and plenty of cool animals.