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“An Enlightening Experience (that I wouldn't trade for the world)” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Ranch at Live Oak Malibu

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Ranch at Live Oak Malibu
Mission Viejo, California
Level Contributor
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“An Enlightening Experience (that I wouldn't trade for the world)”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 17 November 2013

My week at The Ranch was the first vacation I've ever taken by myself. It really was an enlightening experience. I actually loved the fact that there was no cell phone reception and that we didn't have access to the Internet 24/7. It was healthy for me to remove myself from the "digital world" for a week. This "isolation" factor gave me a chance to take a step back, and look at my life objectively. I formulated a clear idea of where I wanted to head with my life, and the changes I needed to make once I got home. The trip was a catalyst for me, and I'm loving the direction I'm heading in now.

Physically, I'm still seeing the benefits of The Ranch 3 months after I re-entered the real world. I lost about 4 pounds and 11 inches, and I actually think I'm more toned now than I was when I first got back. I'm working out more regularly, and while my diet could definitely be better, I did adopt two major habits from The Ranch: I'm eating smaller, more "human" sized portions, and I'm drinking water like it's my job. I've always been an "eat until you explode-er" and I've never been a water drinker, so this is huge for me.

I adored the staff at The Ranch. Everyone was so kind and knowledgable, completely personable and not "fake" in any way. I felt at ease with everyone almost instantly. I hope to come back again someday - I could see how this would be a fantastic experience to have with a spouse, close family member, or a good girlfriend. It would be a "bonding" experience as well, no doubt!

Room Tip: All the rooms are the same, I believe. They're what I like to call "rustic luxurious."
See more room tips
  • Stayed August 2013, travelled solo
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
7 Thank Shay L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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31 reviews from our community

Traveller rating
    21
    5
    2
    3
    0
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (4)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Washington DC, District of Columbia
Level Contributor
155 reviews
65 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 80 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 November 2013

I had the great honor and pleasure to do the 4.0 program, and it was definitely a life transforming event. It enforced discipline that required me to utilize a clean diet and by the final day I had a great sense of clarity within my mind.

I would recommend that anyone who can possible get away either for a full week or 4 days to do one of their programs. It truly is a special place.

  • Stayed October 2013, travelled solo
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank DCJD2012
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level Contributor
18 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 4 August 2013 via mobile

Everything here is first class. The program is tough and requires some discipline but it is possible for almost everyone to participate fully. The food was amazing, even if you are not used to vegetarian diets and one barely was hungry. The facilities were luxury hotel level in a beautiful environment, but perhaps the best of all was the quality of the staff: smart, insightful, attentive and organized. The week goes fast and the pounds and inches melt away. Highly recommended.

Stayed August 2013, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
5 Thank cptravers
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Westlake Village, California
Level Contributor
54 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 34 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 15 June 2013

Just got back from my week at the Ranch and I am tired. I hiked over 50 miles, did countless classes (yoga, core, TRX, foam-rolling, stretching, cardio, etc), ate delicious vegan food, and had fabulous massages. I was pushed to my limits in a couple of hikes, but after the massage, all was right with the world. I didn't have a lot of de-tox to do (people in my group of 16 talked a lot about missing wine and coffee), so the transfer to vegan food was relatively easy. I learned a lot about myself, enjoyed the cheerful and accommodating staff, and hiked many miles. The program is vigorous and challenging, but its a good way to reassess, loose a few pounds, learn some healthier ways of living and eating, and take a breather out of a busy life without just sitting on the beach (not my idea of fun, actually). If you like hiking, being active, and have the desire to separate from your legal addictions for awhile (or permanently), and you want a program that can help you do this, The Ranch is a great place. If you are in for a high level reassessment of your current high level exercise/fitness program, this is probably not the place. Exercise classes are basic gym mat classes focused on core and upper body because of the long hikes which take care of lower body. Kate is a bit more creative in her approach to upper body with weighted balls and partner work. Steve was the drill sergeant. Yoga was basic. Craig was great with the pool aerobics/upper body work. If you go here, I advise that you pay very close attention to the recommendations as to the few months before you go, the equipment list, and the way to break in your hiking boots. These people have been there, done that with many many clients, and you want to be prepared! Don't come here off of a year of inactivity because you will suffer. But if you are active and thoughtful about your preparation, the program will push you, but you will survive. I'm glad I went (although a few days on the trail I was ready to quit hiking forever), and would recommend it to others with a similar mindset. It is definitely not cheap! But its an adventure I will never forget.

  • Stayed June 2013, travelled solo
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
11 Thank playquartets
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
dallas
Level Contributor
48 reviews
26 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 109 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 9 December 2012

Just got home from a week at the Ranch at Live Oak. The actual ranch was being renovated so we had to endure the beautiful Four Seasons. The staff was careful to "unplug" the rooms....no tv, no menus and no minibar. (I probably would have cheated if those were available).

What a incredible week. Be prepared to be completely taken care of, and adhere to their schedule. Incredible daily hikes, food and bonding experience with like minded people who I had the pleasure of spending the week with.

I lost 5 pounds anticipating the trip and 5 more while there and spent my first day home trying on clothes that I haven't been able to wear in a couple of years. Need a kick start? Hands down this is the place to go. But be prepared to work hard and take advantage of every class.

Thanks to the incredible dedicated staff for making my experience one to remember for a long time. I hope I can make this an annual trip!

  • Stayed December 2012, travelled solo
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
9 Thank docjennings
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
New York City, New York
Level Contributor
12 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 29 October 2012

No white flour or dairy, no sugar, no caffeine, no lazing around by the pool... This place will stretch you, literally and figuratively, but if you've been meaning to clean up your diet, tone up your body, and take some time for yourself, this is a gorgeous setting in which to do it! The food, rooms, program, and staff are amazing, and so are your fellow guests, all 12 of them.

Room Tip: All the cabins are the same.
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  • Stayed January 2012, travelled solo
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
10 Thank FourSeasonsGirl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Australia
Level Contributor
89 reviews
69 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 66 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 7 October 2012

I'm just back from a week at the Ranch. It is an amazing place - just perfect if you need a real break to recharge. Not that you will be lying around - this is a wellness resort that will recharge your body and soul. Check out their facebook page for more info.
The staff are top class - the program is very well thought out and planned with a lot of variety.
Daily activity is a 3 hour hike (more or less), then lunch then in the afternoon a few more hours of exercise, a massage, dinner and then fall into bed.
Their is no choice which is great - you dont have to worry if you chose the right activity - or food.
The food is amazing - I never knew vegan food could taste so good.
There is no caffine, gluten, alcohol, dairy or meat - I can away feeling refreshed and energetic.
Definitely a worthwhile experience.

  • Stayed October 2012, travelled solo
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
6 Thank global_nomad_pacific
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Ranch at Live Oak Malibu

Property: Ranch at Live Oak Malibu
Address: 12220 Cotharin Rd, Malibu, CA 90265-2146 (Formerly Ranch at Live Oak Malibu)
Phone Number:
Region: United States > California > Malibu
Amenities:
Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #6 of 7 Speciality Lodging in Malibu
Number of rooms: 18
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Ranch Malibu and The Ranch 4.0 are two acclaimed, results-oriented, fitness and wellness destinations that feature a no-options program designed to recalibrate the mind and body. An intense daily fitness schedule, paired with a highly structured vegan diet delivers sustainable results, providing guests with the skills, discipline and practice to make lasting changes. In an intimate setting with just 18 guests each session, the day begins at 5:30 a.m. for morning stretches, breakfast and then a four- to five-hour hike through the Santa Monica Mountains. After lunch, enjoy a nap before an active afternoon filled with core and ab work, weight training sessions, a daily massage, and evening yoga followed by dinner. After an invigorating daily schedule retreat to one of 18 private cottages, each beautifully decorated with rustic, yet refined interiors to calm the mind, return to nature and allow you to focus on your health, fitness, nutrition and wellness goals. Whether you opt for our signature seven day program at The Ranch Malibu or our 4-day version at The Ranch 4.0 at Four Seasons Westlake Village, expect to shed unwanted pounds, lose inches, improve mental clarity and detoxify the body! ... more   less 

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