Located on the south coast of Cornwall is the beautiful Sunshine Cafe & Yoga, a space for people to gather, stretch, work, eat, laugh and heal. We chat with owner Ella Kite and find out more about her journey to creating the cafe, and what her ideal day in Cornwall looks like.
How did you come up with the idea for the Sunshine Cafe & Yoga? What was the vision?
I think I've always dreamt of opening my own cafe by the sea. I was living in the French Alps and had the discussion with a friend of opening a cafe & yoga studio, as we both felt this such a beautiful combination. I love cafe culture around the world and when I have been travelling/living in other countries, it's been an integral part of my lifestyle. I wanted to bring inspiration from all these places and set up a little haven of Sunshine in Cornwall, centred around community & connection. From the start, I envisioned a calm and relaxing environment, where people could spend long amounts of time and feel like they were investing in some self-care. I love when people come in for a class, stay for lunch and then end with a massage in our Healing Room - it’s just how I imagined it to be.
How did you make the leap into building the cafe?
We started looking for potential buildings that could house our idea of Sunshine. We were very open to all sorts of locations and types of building, we were just looking for character and charm! We then found this gorgeous old stone barn, it was completely abandoned and needed so much work, but it had so much promise. The renovation process took just over a year and was really good fun watching the building come to life again! It’s had such a rich history and it feels special to breathe life into it again. So much of the interior just started as a rough idea or a doodle on paper and I couldn’t have imagined just how great it would end up looking in real life, so fulfilling.
What’s the best part about your life with the cafe? And what’s the hardest part?
My favourite part of day-to-day life at the cafe is the feeling of community, making connections with people and watching other people connecting because of Sunshine. Human connection is beautiful and I feel so blessed to be able to provide this space where people can come together. I love the endless creativity involved in running your own business too, there’s so many ways we can expand and it’s very exciting! I love running different events here and being able to offer lots of new experiences to people. The hardest part is probably setting my own boundaries with work. I feel like Sunshine is my baby and it can be hard to switch off from work mode. It’s easy to answer that one Instagram message from bed at 7am or an email on my day off. I’ve had to learn to not be so responsive all the time and take back more time for myself - it’s definitely still a work in progress though!
What does the ideal day at the Sunshine Cafe & Yoga look like?
Start the morning with a wonderful yoga class, stretch out your body, ready for the day ahead. Then a yummy and healthy breakfast in our cafe, stay a while and relax, maybe do a bit of work, draw or read. Then head for a massage in our Healing Room. Sit outside and soak up the sun in our courtyard (such a sun trap!) and maybe even go back for another yoga class - we have a diverse range of classes for you to mix it up!
What message do you hope to promote through the cafe?
Our Sunshine message is one of finding community, connection to self and cultivating healthier practices. We want you to take time for yourself - stretch, ground, nourish and relax. Look after yourself and let us help you do this! Support yourself with healthy and wholesome food. Join us and other like-minded people, meet new friends and connect with old ones. This is a space for you to really make your own.
What’s your daily routine to a healthy body and mind?
Well, the ideal healthy day for me would be - wake up early, open the curtains to some beautiful sunshine, have a good stretch on my mat and a little time to just sit and be. Then take my dog for a walk, have a lovely balanced breakfast with lots of protein, healthy fats and veg! Then I’d head into Sunshine and do some work, see my wonderful team and have one of our tasty Nourish Bowls for lunch, outside in the sun. Then I’d drive to somewhere on the Helford Passage and go for a swim in the sea, sit on the beach and reflect for a while with a cup of something warm. Probably another longer walk with my dog, see friends, maybe dinner and a fire on the beach and an early night!
Are you looking forward to Summer? Are there any events coming up that you’re super excited about?
I am SO looking forward to Summer, its my favourite time of year! I just love feeling the warm sun on my skin and being able to swim in the sea for ages. I find it so blissful and relaxing, just reading a book on the beach and going for lots of swims - my ultimate way to relax! I love a morning paddleboard or longboarding trip, chasing sunrise and sunset, endless summer adventures and fun! Cornwall is just magic when the sun is out. We have such a great collection of quiet outdoor seating at Sunshine too and it really is in the best spot to soak up all the warmth of the sun. We have some really exciting events planned over the next few months.
How can people find you?
You can find our website online - it’s www.sunshinecafeandyoga.co and all our information is up on there about our cafe, yoga, treatments and how to physically find us. Hopefully see you soon!
Hill Head, Harbour Village, Penryn, TR10 8JU