If You’re Interested In Planning A Trip, Here Are A Few Things To Do In Ojai.
You hear a phrase in Ojai, CA, when locals describe the stunning sunset glow that comes each evening: It’s called “a pink moment.” Ojai itself is having a moment. More and more stylish, creative Angelenos (Los Angeles is a 90-minute drive away) are settling in this relaxed, beautiful small town, nestled in a valley surrounded by the Topatopa Mountains.
Stylist and Vogue contributing editor recently made the move with her young family. While it may seem a surprising choice for this fashion insider who has spent most of her time in swirling big cities, she says Ojai is the perfect mix of serene and stimulating. “There’s such a cultural savviness here, “Ojai draws interesting, creative people from all over. The vibe here is not vastly different from the cities I’ve lived in.”
In the Field
This is practically a one-stop shop for mastering Ojai style, which describes as understated, dusty, and handmade. Owners and husband/wife team Channon and Bianca Roe opened the store in 2014 and stocked it with “well curated” labels such as Ulla Johnson, La Botte Gardiane, and Black Crane as well as a mix of relaxed, bohemian home goods. “They have impeccable taste, and I think it’s spot-on for Ojai: the things you want in your house that feel right. It’s all beautiful, but nothing is precious.
deKor & Co.
Definitely stop by this beautiful home store, One of the owners, Rachel Marlowe, is a beauty writer, so they have some really cool, insider beauty brands there. It’s nice to know that you can get the things that usually are only accessible to city dwellers. They also have a very nice tea shop.” The breezy, loftlike shop sells vintage and custom-made furniture and accessories, Moroccan rugs, gardening supplies, jewelry, and art.
EAT AND DRINK
Knead Baking Co.
It’s a small-town bakery with a true homegrown spirit, “It was opened by two sisters and their mother, who use their own starter to make their amazing sourdough loaf.” In addition to artisanal breads, the airy, homespun space offers a breakfast-lover’s dream, from quiches and honey-drizzled granola to lemon ricotta tarts and date. “The homemade bagel,” she says. “It’s our Saturday-morning treat for the kids.”
Sit on the patio on a warm evening, where you can watch the sun set on the Topatopas.The menu at this classic Italian eatery boasts locally sourced, seasonal ingredients that stand out in dishes such as homemade tagliolini with mushrooms and leeks. Feeling a cocktail? “I love their Negronis.
Ojai Valley Inn & Spa
This is the most beautiful property in all of Ojai,It has mountain views from all angles. And I love that it has maintained the old Spanish style.” The stunning resort, opened in 1923, sits on 200-plus acres and has a Moroccan hammam-style day spa and multiple restaurants. “We go for early dinners at Jimmy’s Pub and let the kids play on the putting green under the giant oak tree.
I discovered this inn through my friend, Irene Neuwirth—she was raving about it. It’s an amazing property with private cottages, The owner, Calvin Zara, does it all. He lovingly restored the buildings, decorated it with amazing antiques, raises animals, and grows fresh vegetables for the menu.” At the former private estate, Calvin customizes each guest’s stay based on “personal interests, tastes, and needs” with farm-to-table dining and activities that include gardening, pickling, and preserve making.
The first time I ever came to Ojai was on a camping trip with my husband,It is super special to me.” Part of Los Padres National Forest (10 miles from downtown), the grounds are dotted with swimming holes, hiking and horse trails, and plenty of wildlife. “People live in the canyon, but there are definitely some mountain lions there. The natural sulfur hot springs are cool too. But they’re tricky to find.” Visit ojaihotsprings.com to get the skinny.
Whether you meditate or not, this is just one of the most beautiful spots in all of Ojai,It’s just a really cool place to take a yoga class, or you can just walk around on the property and enjoy it like a little retreat. I always put it on every visitor’s must-do list.” Open Wednesdays through Sundays, the property has daily yoga and Pilates classes as well as a monthly full-moon meditation, which is keen to try. “It sounds incredible.”