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Travel + Food Blog

OJAI VALLEY INN & SPA

OJAI, CALIFORNIA

OJAI, California: a small city northwest of Los Angeles. Population- 7,461.

I'll let you in on a little secret. For weeks (actually- make that months) of planning our holiday, my husband and I had been pronouncing Ojai as O-JAY... (yes......as in - "I would love an freshly squeezed OJAY with my breakfast please"). You see, as it happens- we (obviously) aren't the sharpest tools in the shed. Ojai is actually pronounced O-HI. Most people would know this I guess. Not us Aussies- noooo siree!  I even mispronounced Ojai TO LOCALS IN OJAI. Awkward. That was, until a friendly firefighter at a petrol station put us out of our misery. He let us down softly and said it was a common mispronunciation. THANK YOU FRIENDLY FIREMAN- not only do you save lives, you help people save face!

We pulled up at Ojai Valley Inn & Spa just after 2pm on a perfect summer afternoon of blue skies and high temperatures. We picked this resort based on glowing tripadvisor reviews and we were not disappointed. In fact, just the opposite. We were immediately blown away with the stunning gardens and lush expansive grounds- this property is truly breathtaking in every way. Whether you are looking for a romantic escape, a family holiday or a private function- this resort will tick all the boxes and guarantee to deliver a truly memorable experience. The vibe is relaxed, peaceful and luxurious. The pictures speak for themselves- stunning!

We were generously upgraded to a very spacious junior suite, which opened directly to the gold course. It was so lovely being able to sit out on our patio with a cold glass of wine and watch people play golf while squirrels played at our feet (yes, this hotel has the most amazing wildlife- including hummingbirds buzzing around every corner and of course their mascot cockatoo, Casper). There is something so relaxing about being able to step out from your room straight onto fresh grass- you feel instantly calm and tranquil. The room itself was extremely comfortable (OHHH THAT BED! ) and very well designed (extra space to stretch out, a chaise lounge, coffee machine, fridge, fireplace, separate bath/shower combo- the list goes on). As you can see from the pictures, the hotel is Spanish in style and this is reflected throughout the entire resort. White buildings, colourful painted Spanish tile features, trickling fountains, cacti, and pots full of bright flowers scattered thoughtfully throughout the property.

There are so many activities for all ages at this resort- several pools to suit every mood, bikes, golf, a spa that literally offers every treatment you can think of, an artist cottage & apothecary and complimentary mind & body fitness classes. You can do as much (or as little) as your heart desires. As this was nearing the end of our very busy roadtrip, we really just wanted to chill out by the quiet pool. Heaven. We had the most perfect weather our whole stay and everything was truly divine- the food, the staff- everything was faultless. In the evening we would dine at the Oak Grill, sipping on local Californian wines while overlooking the amazingly beautiful Oak tree that lit up with fairy lights and lanterns as the sun set. So picturesque and romantic.

This property was rejuvenating, romantic and peaceful- just what we needed. Being a mere 1.5 hour drive from of Los Angeles, we highly recommend it as a side trip and we will definitely be back soon!

For more information: www.ojairesort.com

All pictures by Belinda- www.outoftheoffice.com.au