a traveler US
This is my 4th Ranch experience. While I had another nice week, I do feel like it is getting too expensive to return, especially when there are other options that are very similar. Yes, it NEAR Malibu but really $7000 for one week is just too much. As usual, you will hike 8-10 miles per day ( or 3-4 hours). You will do yoga and other classes. You will lose weight/inches and feel great at the end of the week. The owners are nice and may hike at least one of the days. The staff is good and certainly, Lisa is a lot nicer than their former camp director. The chef does an amazing job with the food but I will agree with another reviewer...donot dare to question her or inquire too much about her food. She is NOT nice. She is condescending and arrogant. The yoga classes were great and the lady who came up for some of the circuit classes ( can't remember her name) was awesome. She was enthusiastic and entertaining. The one thing I don't like about the hikes is the way that NO guides are really ever with you on the hikes. If you happen to be faster or slower than others and don't fit the pace with a group of folks, you will be alone. Technically there are guides around but they are way out in front or further back. If I came across a wild animal I would have been on my own. I remember one day I was getting concerned I was lost. I was following the orange flags but kept going and going and going and it had been awhile since I had seen someone or heard anyone on the radios. Finally, we have turned around. Just not the best "security" of the guests in my opinion. Others hiked in bunches if they matched pace, but my pace was off from the fastest and faster than some others so I was by myself almost all week. The pool is nice but the hot tub was overcome with bugs. I got it but quickly got out as there were just too many bugs. The massages are great!
The last thing I will complain about is the continued lack of wireless or cell service I agree with the general concept of getting away and disconnecting. However, with teenagers at home, there is security in being able to have them text you. Cell service is available near the owners home ( top of the mountain), so you know it is there but no boosters or wireless are installed on the official ranch property so not an option. They should make it available in the rooms if those who desire it wants it. It could be purchased for a fee. I have been to other places that allow it and it doesn't detract from the week or overall experience.
Overall, a good place, great results, good food but getting too expensive to justify.