The Kula Project Offers Yoga, Juice, Paddleboard Rentals And More

By Erica Moser
The Day, New London, Conn.

WWR Article Summary (tl;dr) The Kula Project is the creation of entrepreneurs Julie Kikla and Rebecca Foss. “Kula” is Sanskrit for “community,” and that’s what the women are trying to build together in Mystic, Connecticut.


The scent of hardwood floors is still fresh in one of the airy yoga studios upstairs, with views overlooking the boats on the Mystic River. Across the hall, infrared heating panels can get the other studio up to 97 degrees for a class appropriately titled “Ultimate Sweatfest.”

Downstairs, jars of spirulina and chia sit next to packages of acai powder and matcha atop the bar of High Tide Juice Co., open from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. For $8, one can get a 12-ounce juice, a 20-ounce smoothie or a small acai bowl.

Also on the first floor is a lounge area and a play area for kids, with miniature Adirondack chairs and a picnic table on which to draw. Then there’s the retail space, featuring sunglasses, candles and coconut oil from eco-conscious brands.

Outside are several paddle boards for rental — $25 for an hour, $40 for two hours — through Paddle Surf RI. They’re open for business at 10 a.m. seven days a week and are experimenting with closing hours.

As if that’s not enough going on, Independence Day festivities will include rides across the river, to Red 36, on a giant inflatable unicorn.

This is The Kula Project. “Kula” is Sanskrit for “community,” and that’s what owners Julie Kikla and Rebecca Foss are trying to build at 37 Water St., across from the Captain Daniel Packer Inne.

Kikla and Foss are both in their mid-30s, and opening The Kula Project has been quite the journey for both.

Kikla, a Philadelphia native, was a college gymnast at the University of Pennsylvania. She “came out of that pretty broken” and started doing yoga about a decade ago while going to back therapy.

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