OJAI VALLEY INN
Bill Mahan, noted Santa Barbara architect dedicated to the proper representation and preservation of "California Spanish Revival" took the lead design in creating this 'spa village'. As in most such architecture all structures and activities surround the central courtyard.
Working closely with Thad Hyland, then Managing Director of the Ojai Valley Inn, we had the opportunity to create spaces and experiences that had not been done before such as the signature group "Kuyam" and fireplaces in treatment rooms.
Thad also had a clear understanding of what staff need to do their jobs well. We didn't have to fight for HOH space. The architecture allowed for the spa to be serviced from a two story core with staff moving in and out of guest areas seamlessly. From a spa design aspect, that necessity is too often a luxury in spa developments.
In addition to the 31,000 sq ft spa with 28 treatment spaces, the gym, movement studio, salon and dedicated spa restaurant, there are two 1,500 sq ft guest suites for guests who wish to stay at the spa. Through the years the initial spa has grown to include a second relaxation pool, a full restaurant, a working Apothecary and Art Cottage.
Though it was over 20 years ago, one thing we miss are the fast paced walking meetings with Thad. Those who have worked with him know of his spontaneous need to go outside, he throwing out an idea a minute as his 6'3" stride turns a walk into a trot for those of us of shorter stature.