Developing a Vipassana Meditation Retreat Center in the Bay Area

Our goal is to make Vipassana meditation more easily available and accessible to those living in the Bay Area

Our organization, the Bay Area Vipassana Center (BAVC), is planning the development of a silent meditation retreat center in Gilroy. BAVC is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization supported solely by donations from those who have attended retreats and volunteers who donate their time and money to make future retreats possible.

What is Vipassana meditation?

Vipassana meditation is a straightforward, nonsectarian, practical way to achieve peace of mind and thus leads to a happier, more productive life. Vipassana means “to see things as they really are. 

Vipassana is a way of self-transformation through self-observation. It focuses on the deep interconnection between mind and body, which can be experienced directly by disciplined attention to the physical sensations. It is this observation-based, self-exploratory journey that helps those who practice it come out of negative mental habit patterns and live a peaceful more balanced life. 


Who goes to Vipassana meditation retreats?

People from all backgrounds, cultures, religions, beliefs and traditions are warmly welcomed at Vipassana meditation retreats. The only requirement is an interest in learning how to live a more harmonious, peaceful life.  


What is the need for a Retreat Center in the Bay Area?  

Currently, there are three other centers in California. People who live in the Bay Area have to drive several hours from home to attend retreats at any of them. At any point of time, many applicants are waitlisted and hundreds of people are unable to register, as the demand for retreats far exceeds the capacity of existing centers.  

What will the new center look like?

Aligned with our fundamental principles, we have designed a retreat center to blend harmoniously into the land, cutting no trees, and adding native oaks and shrubs to mutually enhance the privacy of both our retreats and our neighbors.

We have applied to Santa Clara County to build a retreat center which can accommodate a maximum of 120 students and 30 volunteers. Students will be housed in simple separate rooms with bath accommodations. Two meals daily will be prepared and served in a kitchen/dining complex. A meditation hall and cell complex, a maintenance building, an administration building, and housing for the volunteer servers and teachers will make up the rest of the campus. These ten-day silent retreats span a 12 day period. Participants arrive on a Wednesday afternoon and then stay in silence for nine full days of the retreat, leaving on a Sunday morning of the 12th day.


For more information about our project or to request a presentation please contact: [email protected]