I'll start by saying that the resort was absolutely beautiful. The room was one of the nicest rooms I've stayed in; one of the top 3 for sure. I travel a whole lot! The front desk was great and the bell desk / valet guys were great. I also want to call out Bree (front desk), Cynthia (housekeeping), KC (Food and Bev.), and KC's boss (forgot her name; sorry!) who seemed to practically live there as they worked so much. They were all very nice and really understood customer service.
The bad ranged from bad to so-so. The so-so was that there were ants in our bathroom, the crib we ordered was too deep, and the shower had a slow drain. Truth be told we didn't complain about the ants and the drain so I really can't insist that they didn't take care of it. Although I do feel that it should have been looked after before we got there. The crib was so deep that I can barely pick up my daughter. My wife couldn't at all safely. The staff was able to fix the issue for us by getting us a different crib that was not as deep.
The bad was with a few items.
We had issues with the pillows. We had requested foam type pillows but seemed to get the fluffy type cotton filled pillows. We had difficulty distinguishing those from feather pillows and both were very uncomfortable. After asking for the firmer type twice, we just assumed they didn't have them as a choice.
The in room coffee station was never cleaned (cups) and refilled without calling about it. The worst was the resort dining. We dinned at Maravilla, Oak Grill, and Café Verde. All three were extremely overpriced. Maravilla and Oak Grill service were all very slow and food was just average.
Maravilla Thanksgiving dinner was completely insulting. Since food took so long our waitress apologized for the wait as "there was a large table being served." The meal was a very small portion (child size) for $65pp. In fact, my son had what was supposedly a smaller version of the same dinner; it was exactly the same size as mine except for one extra small slice of turkey. His dinner was $20. KC did come by and gave us my son's meal and our breakfast for free the next day.
Oak Grill food was average and our waiters seemed inexperienced. Dinner the first night was just ok. The waiter helpers were outstanding on Wednesday (Oak Grill) and Thursday (Maravilla) nights. We actually had the same girl on both nights. However, there was one additional helper on Wednesday night. We had breakfast there 3 times. The first day we had breakfast it was funny in a way. I selected the breakfast and my wife ordered from the menu. The 2 tables sitting next to us order from the menu like my wife. They were all staring at me as I ate from the buffet. The other 2 tables waited at least 20 minutes before an order was taken. On the last day the hostess (older lady) seemed pretty stressed out and was very short with us. I didn't even see the waitress on the last day we had breakfast until we were leaving. The omelet bar was interesting. I requested a Denver Omelet at which the "cook" asked that I just put all my ingredience in a small bowl and that he didn't know what was in a Denver omelet. It seemed that he didn't really know how to cook a proper omelet after seeing him cook my food. I also recall seeing a staff member fill the warmed pancake syrup with a bottle of off the shelf cold syrup. If I recall the buffet was $29pp and like I said was just average.
I only had one item at Café Verde. I had the chocolate - banana smoothie. It was actually Hershey's chocolate syrup, yogurt, a banana, and ice (skipped on the nut butter). I think it was about 12 oz... all for $10. I probably would have thought twice about it had I seen the price listed on the menu above the register. I will say it was good but $10? Really???
All in all, the place is so beautiful that it's easy to overlook the bad. Particularly since there are lots of great places to eat in town (less than 5 minutes away, driving). My list is: Breakfast - Emporium, lunch - too many to list, and dinner - Osteria Monte Grappa (first choice and has an awesome patio in back for lunch) and Suzanne's (second choice). I absolutely don't mind dropping serious money on dining but it better be really good. The resort is not there yet. Interestingly enough, I asked several locals in town about the resort's food. They all said that the dining used to be the best about 15 yrs ago and that it has really gone down hill in the last 10 yrs.
As far as my individual ratings...
Service is a 3 is mostly for dining but also the aforementioned coffee station complaint. Would be a 4 if dining were fixed. For a place like that, it has to be top notch.
Value is a 5 as the place is gorgeous and the staff pleasant... even the troubled dining area was really beautiful.
Sleep quality is a 4 but could easily be a 5 with firm, foam pillows.
Cleanliness is a 4 but could easily be a 5 if the few ants and the coffee station was given more attention.
Location, Rooms, and the Spa are all a 5. Spectacular, relaxing, beautiful...
Breakfast is a 3. I would pair breakfast with any dining on that rating. It needs to mirror the location. This means being an unparalleled dining experience and particularly for the price. I for one will be dining at the local Ojai joints when returning to the Inn. IMO, at a minimum the staff needs to be trained properly; wait staff to cooks.
Yes, I will be back (in a month) and would recommend it to anyone.... but for the most part beware of the dining on property.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- For over 80 years, Ojai Valley Inn & Spa has been considered one of the best secrets among travelers. Escape to this historic resort of casual elegance featuring luxury accommodations, Spa Ojai, and a championship golf course. Ojai Valley Inn & Spa has 308 deluxe guest rooms, including suites, many with fireplaces and private balconies or patios overlooking the golf course and nearby mountains. Our Spa Penthouse, Hacienda Penthouse and 75 other suites offer you the ultimate in luxury accommodations. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Ojai Valley Hotel Ojai
- Ojai Valley Spa
- Spa Ojai
- Ojai Valley Inn And Spa