Our Team

Our Team and The Role of the Host:

What makes Via Yoga different?  The host!   People often ask, “what’s the role of the host”?  Ultimately it’s about happiness, we care about your happiness.  To ensure you return home a healthier, happier version of yourself we send down a host whose sole job is to take care of you. You won’t have to worry about a thing, we have you covered from a partner to explore the best tacos and margaritas in town to a friendly ear when you just need someone to listen.  The host is many things, your activities coordinator, tour guide, adventure buddy, group photographer and basically the person who makes sure you don’t have to worry about a thing!    Below is a list of our hosts, to learn more about our yoga teachers click here  yoga instructors


Suzie Cavassa:  Owner & Host

Suzie’s Via Yoga story begins in 2007 on a yoga and surf retreat in Costa Rica with her sister, Mimi. “It was an amazing week of renewal. The perfect mix of activity and rest, of self-discovery and care-free fun. I was hooked!” So in 2009, when the opportunity presented itself to join the Via Yoga team, she jumped at it. Her fifteen years of management experience in the health, fitness, and wellness industry were a great fit for the growing business.

In 2011, when Via Yoga co-founders Kelly Kemp and Michelle Gantz were ready to pass the Via Yoga torch, Suzie happily embraced the chance to take on the business. “With Via Yoga, I was able to marry my love of travel and an active lifestyle. I’ve always believed in the mind-body connection and the practice of yoga as a transformative vehicle.” Today Suzie leads the Via Yoga team with Michelle and Kelly still actively involved.

Suzie lives in Seattle with her husband (Via Yoga Co-Owner and Fitness Instructor Mike Hardin) and young daughter Lucy, who are her daily reminders to enjoy the moment and embrace joy at every chance she gets.


Alyssa Schnitzius: Host & Operations Manager

Alyssa’s first Via Yoga retreat was in 2009 in Sayulita, Mexico with her mother.  She loved the idea of an active vacation and enjoyed meeting new like-minded people in the group setting.  In the years following her retreat an active lifestyle, in particular fitness became a driving force in her life. Eventually Alyssa took on the role of fitness instructor teaching barre and sharing her passion with others. In 2014 Alyssa started at Via Yoga as Host and Operations Manager, her favorite part of the job is the role of host.  She enjoys meeting all the guests, from that first moment they step off the shuttle to the last tearful farewell.  Getting to know and share the week with people she may not otherwise have the opportunity to meet is something she truly enjoys.  Alyssa is more than happy to take guests on her favorite taco tour, show them the best margaritas in town or wake up early for a pre-yoga run on the beach.


Julie Andres: Host & Yoga Instructor

Julie has a life-long love for travel and a strong personal tie to Mexico, in fact she honeymooned in Sayulita long before her yoga career began. As an instructor, Julie has found purpose in helping people with their daily struggles through the use of breath and movement. In the role as Via Yoga host Julie is able to take this natural desire to help people off the mat and share in their joy of self-discovery or re-discovery which tends to happen when you take time away. As an instructor, host and person, Julie is compassionate, nurturing and always able to find joy in the moment.  If you get a chance, ask her to take you to her favorite place to dance salsa!


Andrea Arriaga: Host & Yoga Instructor

Andrea is Via Yoga’s most senior host and Instructor sharing her love of yoga, surf and Sayulita with guests since 2005. Raised in a bicultural family, she is a citizen of both the United States and Mexico and has resided between Nayarit, Mexico and Hawaii since first arriving in Sayulita to work for Via Yoga, over a decade ago. Her connections and knowledge to the local community and culture serve as an invaluable benefit and comfort to Via Yoga guests.