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A house located in the paradisiacal Spain tailored to fit a remote worker’s needs. Activities planned every day with the aim to foster connection, fun and transformation. Professional hosts and facilitators. Sounds like the perfect cocktail for a great coliving experience, right?
Now add to the mix a group of strangers from all over the globe, starting this journey all together on a set day and ending it all together. Season it with a feeling of vacation and retreat while you are working productively. Now you have the perfect recipe for an unforgettable pop-up coliving experience!

Our community enjoying the sunset vibes

What is a Pop-Up Coliving

The world of coliving has expanded dramatically in recent years, especially after many companies and businesses in 2020 had to reconsider their work settings due to COVID-19 – both to face a time of crisis and to accommodate the requests of their employees for more freedom of work for better health and work-life balance.

While spending weeks (or months) in a coliving setting is becoming quite standard among new and old digital nomads, there is a growing trend that brings in the elements of community and the exclusivity of a one-off experience: the Pop-Up Coliving experiences.

The pioneers of the Pop-Up coliving scene

Let’s step back in time to 2014. Way before the boom of remote work and digital nomadism as we know it today, there was already a significant market and a large group of people exploring this lifestyle and opening the doors to what it is today. 

Moving around the globe, bringing your work wherever you are – the “OG” digital nomads surely knew how to explore and find their way around things! But as we all know, when you benefit from the freedom of travel and movement, you may lack a very important piece of human life: meaningful connections. 

In 2014, the first examples of digital nomad retreats were launched. Companies like Hacker Paradise and Remote Year started their work, calling all nomads to come together to experience weeks/months-long workations.

Organizing, facilitating, and holding space for a group of diverse individuals all with the keen desire to connect and share their love for traveling and exploring new places.
The pioneers of this industry are still up and running strong in what they do, bringing more and more focus on the community-building aspect of their experiences and inspiring others to do the same: Wifi Tribe and Unsettled, other big players in the industry, opened their game in 2016, only two years later. After a while, With the purpose of introducing conscious living into remote work, Borderless Retreat was born in 2018, nowadays known as Minoma

While Hacker Paradise caters to a big part (but not limited to) people in the IT industry, we also see different concepts emerging, such as Venture with Impact, with their purpose to create experiences for digital nomads and combine them with meaningful volunteer work impactful for the local community where the retreat takes place.


A hike in the beautiful Basque Country

Coliving or Pop-Up Coliving? The differences.

You might have understood the size of this movement, but what is really the difference between joining a Pop-Up Coliving or a Coliving?

Let’s start by saying that at Sun and Co., we are really strong in community building, and we like to think that at the core of all these experiences, there is a desire to build community and connections. Are we a bit naive to believe this? Maybe, but let us dream!

The nature of a stable Coliving space

When joining a Coliving space, you join a community that is rooted in the location where it’s built – the longer the coliving has been open, the more you might feel this: from a practical experience of the facilities to a supportive facilitation team.

From the moment you book to the moment your stay comes to an end, you feel like you’ve become part of something that is flowing in time. To give you a better understanding of what we mean, you can read through “A Day In the Life“: every group is different as every individual joining the community will bring in a different personality and skill set, but the very core of the existing community have already been running for some time, and you will become part of this beautiful journey for a period of time.

At your arrival, a group of colivers will already be in the house and have created a group dynamic. 

You will come right in the midst of this, and with the help of an open-minded community and a great hosting team, you will find your place within this existing reality and you will mold in. After a few days, someone new might join and someone might leave – the group will constantly be changing (the speed very much depends on the minimum stay of the coliving itself) and taking new forms.
Trust us when we say it is beautiful to witness all this from an operator’s perspective: every single person will change the dynamic and vibe.


An ayurveda skillshare hosted in our Javea location

What Makes The Pop-Up Coliving Special

For some colivers, especially the ones staying long term in a place, the constant goodbyes and welcomes can sometimes become tiring. So here lies what we believe is the main difference between a Coliving and a Pop-Up Coliving: 

While in the first one, there is a constant rotation of the group, the second one starts and ends on specific dates. Sometimes you can join at different times, but in general: everybody arrives and leaves at the same time.

What Are the Key Elements of Such a Setting?

  • The group forms upon arrival. Everybody gets to know each other at the same time, which means when you arrive, you are the newbie as much as everybody else!
  • Spending a limited amount of time together translates to people bringing in all the energies they have: the experience will eventually end, and everybody wants to get the most out of it.
  • No new arrivals in between allow for deep connections with your group, really having time to get to know each other.

While for some slow travellers, a few weeks or a month might not be enough to explore a place, for others, this is the perfect time to deeply connect with a group.

The Pop-Up Coliving experience often has a theme attached to it, which can make it more appealing for some people more than others: like a focus on yoga and well-being or on surfing.

The weekly agenda is more or less curated, depending on the hosting team and organization.


A hike on a sunny day in the Basque Country

Pop-Up Coliving or Workation Retreat?

Nesting under different names, such as Pop-Up, Retreat, Workation, Chapter, the concept is usually very similar. But the coliving industry is still very new, and there are new models showing up that combine old and new ways of gathering people together for a certain period of time with a common goal. 

There are also pop-up coworking spaces that operate only for a short period of time, and they just offer an impermanent office to work from. And you can also find places that operate as a workation retreat all year, as it’s the case of Coconat Workation Retreat

Scrolling through the pages of Nomad Retreats, you will get an idea of the multitude of offers available!

Sun and Co. Pop-Up Coliving in Spain

As we already mentioned, Sun and Co. is all about community building. The way the activities, weekly agenda, and ways of communication are structured have been developed since its opening in 2015 with the idea to empower our colivers in creating the experience they want, bringing in their own personalities, knowledge, and interests.

For three years now, we have been running a Pop-Up Coliving Experience in the Basque Country, North of Spain.
A beautifully renovated villa, in a small town nestled in the heart of a National Park. With space for 12 to 18 people, the month-long workation retreat brings in and amplifies all the elements of a day at Sun and Co.: a curated agenda filled with professional and social activities, lots of community dinners, and plenty of time for deep connection and self-exploration. 

The Origin of Our Pop-Up Coliving in Spain

The idea behind starting this adventure in 2022 was to bring together a unique experience for our growing community: a get-away to explore a new part of this beautiful peninsula together and give our coliving family yet another chance to connect, this time for a longer time and with a more stable group. 

While in 2023 we ran a 6-week retreat, 2024 runs over 4 weeks, with the option to join for the first or second fortnight, as well as for the whole length of the Pop-Up for those who want. Thanks to our new team’s skills, we have also introduced optional yoga and mindfulness sessions, to give our guests even more chances to enhance their well-being.

The agenda will include our signature events such as community meetings, masterminds, skill shares, and roundtable discussions, as well as plenty of time to explore the local life and surroundings through hikes, town visits, and fun activities.

Are you curious to see what 2022 looked like? Have a look at this video!


An evening of connections in our Pop-Up Coliving experience

Conclusions and takeaways

There is no right recipe for all – we are all different, and thankfully the options out there are many. 

Whether you find a coliving space or a unique Pop-Up coliving experience, ask yourself if what you see is aligned with you and where you are in life. If you have a limited amount of time and/or prefer to have a more stable group of fellow colivers, a retreat experience could be a good fit.

If you want to immerse yourself in dynamic community life, check out coliving options – in this article, you will find some colivings in Spain that we love. When you have doubts about the experience or the facilitation, we encourage you to get in touch with the organizer or hosting team – it’s a good way to get an overall feeling of the vibe and to clarify any question.

Whether through coliving or a workation, we believe you will find the place that speaks to you!

Have a look at our Mindful Travel article – you will find interesting tips on how to enhance your travel experience.