Media Kit


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Restart Retreats 2017 Press Release



Psychodrama Retreat Returns for Second Year

The transformative Tuscan experience expands upon last year’s success with a new theme

ROME, Italy—After a successful launch last fall, Southern Europe’s first psychodramatic retreat will return this October with a new theme.

Psychodramatist Valerie Simon, LCSW, PAT, and artist/designer Claudia Palmira will once again collaborate on the Tuscan healing retreat.

During last year’s retreat, Simon and Palmira focused on using psychodrama to “awaken the authentic self” and unblock negative patterns and fears that were preventing participants from living their authentic lives. This year’s theme “Actualizing the Authentic Self”, will expand on last year’s results.

“This year we’re taking it a step further,” says Palmira. “We’re delving into, ‘What does it take for you to create or manifest the job, the relationship, the lifestyle that you deeply desire for yourself but somehow have not been able to create?’”

Palmira, a designer and artist, has been involved in creative arts therapy since 2000. Simon, a psychotherapist based in New York, began her career working in film and television and now uses this unique background to create healing retreats based around the creative arts.

The launch of last year’s retreat came about after Simon and Palmira, who met while participating in a psychodrama group, noticed a lack of therapy-based retreats in Southern Europe, especially in comparison to the United States. Seeking to fill that void, Simon and Palmira created Restart Retreats and hosted their first retreat in the Tuscan countryside last September.

The annual retreat provides participants an opportunity to indulge in organic, locally-sourced meals, participate in healing activities with like-minded individuals, and immerse themselves in the natural beauty of Tuscany. Participants live in an 18th century farmhouse in the hillside town of Magliano-in-Toscana. The hilltop house is nestled in the heart of the secluded Maremma region, which borders the Tyrrhenian Sea and gives visitors enchanting views of beautiful and undisturbed countryside.

Simon says the peaceful and scenic location is central to the healing effects of the retreat.

“I think [the location] is part of the healing process. I know the first time arriving, they’re going up this beautiful hilltop and arriving at this beautiful setting. I just felt something therapeutic happening there and then.”

The healing process of the retreat utilizes a technique known as psychodrama, which uses role-playing and improvisation to create cathartic experiences that help participants liberate themselves from restrictive fears and behaviors or heal from past trauma.

Testimonials from last year’s retreat emphasize the “empowering” effects of psychodrama as a transformative experience. This year, Simon and Palmira hope to expand on that success and use the technique to help participants who are struggling to transform their desires into reality, particularly those who feel that the usual manifestation techniques have been insufficient in helping them reach their goals.

“Sometimes things that are affecting us are so unconscious, and things are blocking us that we have no idea about,” says Simon. “And so it’s like, ‘I’ve been saying my affirmations every morning, and yet I still can’t get the kind of job I want, or I’m not making the money I wanted to be making, or theres something in the way of having the relationship or love that I’ve always wanted.’ But I think sometimes there are unconscious things that are getting in the way, and psychodrama really helps us release what’s holding us back.”

Simon’s techniques will reflect last year’s aim of helping participants awaken harmful parts of themselves that may be subconsciously keeping them from living their ideal lives. However, this year’s retreat will take that process a step further by focusing on how to integrate this self-discovery into every day life in order to manifest an ideal existence.

“Last year we planted seeds and [added] water and sunlight, and finally roots have taken shape, and the plant starts to grow,” says Simon. “How do you really keep everything growing in the way you want it to?”


Recognizing the unique needs of the individual, Restart Retreats provides a comprehensive and explorative experience by facilitating various therapeutic techniques in order to help its clients. Restart Retreats  provides a professional and researched service in order to attend to the individual’s unique needs. 

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Claudia Palmira  






Restart Retreats 2017 Fact Sheet



Restart-Retreats: Actualizing the Authentic Self is the second annual psychodrama therapeutic retreat in Southern Europe aimed at utilizing psychodrama to help participants manifest their visions for their lives– to be held in the renowned Maremma region of Tuscany.


October 5, 2017 – October 8, 2017


Psychodrama and creative arts therapy workshops

All natural food and housing in an 18th-century farmhouse in Tuscany

Optional 12 step meetings onsite

Markets served

Restart-Retreats is designed for individuals who feel stuck in life, find it difficult to articulate their vision for life, or want to reach the “next level” but are unsure what that looks like.

Clients are mainly English-speaking people based in Europe. American clients are also included.


Using psychodrama and creative arts therapy techniques, clients will be gently guided to become aware of and release self-damaging cycles – including codependent behavior, negative self-talk and self-sabotaging habits that block them from achieving their personal goals—and learn how to use this knowledge to manifest their vision for their ideal lives.

How many members can participate

Min. 10 – 16 max participants


Valerie Simon:

Valerie Simon, LCSW, PAT, creator of The Inner Stage™ workshops and trainings, uniquely blends her entertainment industry background with her expertise as a certified psychodramatist to create healing creative arts retreats. Valerie has had a private practice in Manhattan for over fifteen years and focuses on healing trauma and addiction with individuals, couples and families.  She runs groups, workshops, psychodrama trainings, and intensives.

Claudia Palmira:

After working with a creative arts therapist in 2000, she became fascinated with this form of therapy. In 2008, she participated in the Breakthrough program at the Caron Foundation (Pennsylvania), where she was introduced to psychodrama. After this program, she was selected by Dr. Tian Dayton to join a psychodrama training group as a non-therapist. She currently leads vision mapping workshops and is founder of the wellness program site among other businesses.

Main Office Locations

Rome, Italy and New York, NY

For more information please visit:



Contact: Claudia Palmira : / +3903468040444

Restart Retreats Photos 

All photos are copyright Restart Retreats and can be used only for the purpose of accompanying articles or announcements about Restart Retreats. Please credit all photos used with the photographer’s name.

The images 01-19 provided are JPGs in 72 dpi. For higher resolution, please contact us at

The photographs show La Capitana, the retreat destination, in Magliano-in-Toscana. The images are of the 18th-century farmhouse, and views taken from the property of the surrounding Tuscan hillside area.

Restart Retreats Logos and Graphics 

Graphics and logos for Restart Retreats are designed by Claudia Palmira.