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The Heart & Soul of The Ashram

This dynamic Swedish duo teamed up over 40 years ago to create one of the most highly acclaimed and successful health getaways in the world.

Catharina Hedberg, the Ashram Director and co-founder, is the consummate people person. She has a personality as big as Sweden, and she will make you feel at home immediately. She can light up a room with her laughter, and it is always genuine and sincere. Her “can do” spirit and practical “no nonsense ”approach to problem solving keeps the Ashram in tip top shape. Cat is an amazing blend of modern day medicine woman and wise sage. She exudes heartfelt motherly love, care and concern in everything she does. She is a graduate from the University of Stockholm in Physical Medicine and Education.

Dr. Anne Marie Bennstrom is the original inspiration and guiding light for the Ashram. She was the first Events Director at the world famous Golden Door, and while there she developed a workout program that would be the precursor to modern day aerobics and group fitness classes. She is the designer/inventor of the Thigh Master made famous by Suzanne Sommers and the Body Ball. She also helped Bikram Choudhury establish his wildly successful hot yoga classes. She has lectured around the world on topics related to mind, body and spirit, and has been a regular on TV shows such as Merv Griffin, Steve Allen and Johnny Carson. Anne Marie is a woman for all ages. She is deeply spiritual and totally irreverent. She continues to be a Bishop of the First Essene Christian Church, and she loves to get down and dirty in her garden. Anne Marie has a degree in Physical Medicine from the University of Lund, Sweden, is a licensed Chiropractor, and also has a degree in Naturopathy. 

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