Love is in the air this evening at Jimmy’s Pub. The bride-to-be and her fiance are kissing and hugging old friends as they join in the festive celebration of pre-marital bliss. Our party of eight are seated in the back corner of the restaurant, enjoying brick oven pizzas and micro-brewed beers. We have no connection to the wedding party, yet we are immediately caught up in the positive energy floating through the room.
Romance and weddings at Ojai Valley Inn & Spa
While Ojai Valley Inn & Spa is an ideal place to hold a wedding, it’s an even better place to propose marriage under the outstretched arms of a 300 year old oak tree, or perhaps return to for a special occasion. The floral scented grounds, bursting with flowers, don’t hold a candle to the hillside herb garden with its unique T Houses.
With three acres of Mediterranean herbs, fruit trees, lavender and roses, the herb garden and its T Houses are a place to sit and reflect while the Topa Topa Mountains, 6,000 feet above sea level, protect the valley like a warm blanket wrapped around your body.
Ojai Valley Inn & Spa Artist Cottage & Apothecary
Not one to hang around the pool or enjoy a spa day? Tap into your artistic side with painting on glass or silk scarf making. For those looking to bond during a girlfriend getaway, I highly recommend a custom blending session at the Apothecary. You and three or four friends will create your own massage oil and signature fragrance to remind you of your time at Ojai Valley Inn & Spa ($120).
Spa time at Ojai Valley Inn
From the Apothecary, walk across the lane to the 31,000-square foot luxury spa and experience the 50 minute Essence in Balance massage treatment ($145.) With your newly created scent in hand, you’ll receive a fully body aromatherapy massage tailored to your liking.
The spa features 28 treatment areas, massages rooms – some with fireplaces – steam, sauna, whirlpools and swimming pools. Don’t forget your bathing suit!
Ojai Valley Inn Spanish Colonial style
There are several room categories to select from at the Ojai Valley Inn & Spa. The Ojai Room, averaging 425 square feet, is on the low-end of the price spectrum. A step up in price and size is the Vista Room, at 445 feet, with views of the mountains, golf course or pool area from the balcony. Shangri-La Rooms include fireplaces, deep soaking tubs, separate showers and average 550 square feet. All rooms include valet parking newspaper and access to fitness classes, pools and the driving range.
Ojai Valley Inn Fireplace Mini-Suites
My Herb Garden Suite was a spacious 625 square foot room that looked over the Herb Garden swimming pool and into the forested hillside. I could have stayed in the king bed all day after ordering room service for breakfast and soaking in the spa tub. The signature Spa Ojai amenities, made with hints of lavender from the resort grounds, made me feel like a princess, as did the single red rose on the vanity.
The Lost Holes at Ojai Valley Inn & Spa
I’m not a golfer, but I have heard about the infamous “lost holes” at Ojai Valley golf course. Originally designed by George C. Thomas back in 1923, these holes were abandoned at the beginning of World War II. The United States Army used the hotel as a training camp during the war. The resort has brought back the two signature golf holes for everyone to enjoy.
Regional California cuisine at Ojai Valley Inn & Spa
Jimmy’s Pub is one of seven different dining options on the 220 acre property at Ojai Valley Inn & Spa. As you can imagine, Jimmy’s Pub is relaxed, California cuisine. I loved the Dungeness crab served on a Pretzel roll, but you absolutely must save room for the warm cookie dough skillet dessert topped with vanilla ice cream.
For those looking for healthier dining options, Café Verde, located next to The Ojai Spa and Spa Boutique, offers organic and locally grown produce, salads, lettuce cups and wraps. Freshly squeezed juices and fruit smoothies are also available poolside by the spa.
Maravilla, the Inn’s fine dining restaurant, features Ojai-based ranchers and farmers menu items, an excellent wine list with some tasty California varietals, as well as dessert goodies from the pastry chef. If you love beef, the grass fed Watkin’s cattle filet scores a home run, paired with a fruity zinfandel. I just had to try Pastry Chef Travis Watson’s S’mores Tart from the Oak Grill during my visit.
Insider Tip: Do you like to travel with your dog? Ojai Valley Inn & Spa is a pet-friendly Southern California resort. The $150 fee for the first dog, $50 for second dog with two dogs max per room, includes your pets name on the outside of the room, dog-friendly areas throughout the resort, and a special nightly turndown service. Woof!
For additional insider tips follow Luxury Travel Writer Nancy D. Brown on Twitter and follow Ojai Valley Inn & Spa on Twitter @ojairesort.
Need to know:
Check-in time 4:00 p.m.
Check-out time 12:00 p.m.
If You Go:
Ojai Valley Inn & Spa (805) 646-5511 or (800) 422-6524
905 Country Club Road
Ojai, California 93023
Article written by, video and photos courtesy of Travel Writer Nancy D. Brown of What a Trip, Travels from Northern California. I was a guest of Ojai Valley Inn & Spa.