The Coalition is pleased to announce our first “official” business member: the Ojai Retreat, located at 160 Besant Road in Ojai. In the coming months we will be showcasing new business members. If you have a business, we encourage you to check out our business membership benefits and our 1% for the Planet affiliation.
“Our missions align and we know the owner, Ulrich Brugger, has worked diligently to integrate sustainability practices into the business, buildings and grounds,” says OVGC Director Deborah Pendrey. “Ulrich had been after me to set up a formal membership program for businesses. Once we got that up on the website, we actually offered Ulrich a trade opportunity that works well for both of us.”
The property, perched above the Ojai Meadows and Oak Grove School, was originally the home of the Zalk family. Its history includes a 15-year period as the home of the Radix Corp., the originator of the “primal scream’ movement. In 1993 Ulrich reopened the property as an independent and non-denominational educational retreat center.
The five acre Retreat recently underwent a $1.5 million renovation, which incorporated structural changes and landscaping, all aimed at increasing conservation and fire safety, which naturally embraces sustainability. From that they also received an Eco-Excellence Award and in 2011 were voted Best Lodging in the Ojai Valley.
Its 12 rooms can sleep 15, accommodating families, and several are in semi-private or private cottages with sustainable, environmentally friendly choices throughout. The food served is chosen to reflect local and organic sources, and all consumable products are biodegradable.
In addition the Retreat hosts its own events and speakers. The Retreat’s focus includes programs on health, the environment, sustainability, education, spirituality, and the arts and humanities. The availability of its meeting spaces to outside groups is built into their mission statement. Local organizations get a 50 percent reduced rate and nonprofits can arrange a fundraiser for free.
So welcome our first business member and remember the Retreat for your out of town guests; or catch one of their events. They are currently presenting their Ojai Celebrity Series, an intimate speaker series featuring internationally acclaimed writers, thinkers, and artists who make their homes in Ojai.
For more information contact the Ojai Retreat at 646-2536 or check out www.ojairetreat.com.