Post Ranch Inn
Mystics say that music is found between the notes, that hollow place where everything is possible. After a stay at Post Ranch Inn, I discovered that place in a physical location. It is rare to find a destination so breathtaking that it leaves an indelible mark on your soul, but as I sat in the cliffside pool overlooking the expansive Pacific Ocean with only the sounds of nature, I was at peace and feeling connected to something greater and more spectacular than just myself. It was as if this sacred space called me to be a part of it, and I listened.
Post Ranch Inn is famously known for its luxurious accommodations, sensational views, and celebrated seclusion. It has been a world leader in 5-star service for 30 years and is perched on the edge of the world in Big Sur. With only 40 guest rooms hidden on 100 acres of lush hills shrouded in oak trees and giant redwoods, I wandered the property’s many trails in awe of its beauty.
From urbanites to nature lovers, guests enjoy a bounty of activities. A few of my favorites include gazing at the endless Pacific Ocean, soaking in private tubs, enjoying the cliffside infinity pools, hiking the many trails, and dining in their award- winning restaurant, Sierra Mar.
While the surrounding nature outdoors is stunning, the guest rooms are a beautiful expression of rustic elegance with well-appointed amenities, including an organic king-size bed overlooking wood-burning fireplaces, indoor spa tubs and/or large walk-in showers, private terraces, and mini fridges packed with complimentary, healthy snacks. In addition, there are 15 rooms with custom outdoor steel hot tubs (made from recycled steel) either with ocean or mountain views, six of which are heated by solar assist hot water panels located on the roofs of the rooms. The water used in each of these rooms is heated by the sun daily. For an extra touch of comfort, the floors are heated by radiant heat.
Along with world class guest rooms and an award-winning restaurant, the resort offers many activities for the body and mind. The Post Ranch Spa offers a myriad of massages, healing therapies, and reflexology treatments. Inspired by local history and community traditions, the spa provides organic signature spa treatments and Mother Nature’s healing elements to nurture guests. There are a few other wellness programs that you can add onto your stay, including the Post Ranch Sleep Program. Post Ranch Inn has partnered with Dr. Michael Breus, known as The Sleep Doctor™. One of the country’s most distinguished sleep experts, he collaborated on the Post Ranch Sleep Program which is a comprehensive approach to improve the way you sleep each night.
I met with Monika, the spa director, and she tailored a massage specifically for my needs. I was lucky to receive a deep tissue Post Ranch Inn Signature Massage from Brandon, who added lymphatic massage to my treatment. After the incredible massage, I floated back to my treehouse, cozying up to the warm fireplace with a cup of hot mint tea. The guest rooms include surround sound, and my treehouse had preprogrammed spa music playing when I returned. Heaven.
During the day, guests are invited to enjoy complimentary yoga, meditation, and sound healing classes. One of the favorite activities is their signature falconry class. Guests meet and learn about the local birds of prey with a professional falconer. Along with riveting information about each species, the activity ends with a falcon perched on your forearm. Being so close to nature gave me a new perspective on wildlife and our need to protect this earth and the many animals that live on this delicate planet.
Ironically, Post Ranch Inn utilized biodynamic practices before “eco,” “green,” and “sustainability” were considered possible in hospitality. Nevertheless, their ecological, holistic, and ethical approach to gardening, farming, and management has guided the way for the industry’s responsibility to employ Earth-friendly practices.
Post Ranch Inn’s eco-friendly endeavors have led the hospitality sustainability movement. Some of its impressive innovations include:
- The use of low and zero-VOC paints.
- The room desk lamps are made from recycled plumbing parts (fabricated by a San Francisco artist).
- The redwood used in some guest rooms was re-milled from old redwood wine barrels.
- Low voltage LED and compact fluorescent lights (CFLs, CVUs, and LEDs) are used wherever possible, especially in guest rooms. In addition, most outdoor lights utilize LED light bulbs.
- The 600 thread count Egyptian cotton sheets are manufactured in California without chemicals or dyes.
- Flower-based guest soaps are handmade in nearby Santa Cruz; other in-room guest amenities are Earth-friendly. These specialty products and others are available for purchase in the Mercantile to support small, regional businesses and cottage industries.
- No single-use plastic containers are used at the resort.
- Adjacent to the resort, the Inn provides subsidized housing for many of the Inn’s employees in 20 two-bedroom and 12 studio apartments to help reduce traffic and energy emissions.
Chef Il Hoon Kang is the acclaimed executive chef of Post Ranch Inn and Sierra Mar. Before leading the culinary charge at the Inn, he was at Michelin-starred Madera in Menlo Park,
California. His other appointments include Commis in Oakland (one Michelin star), The Restaurant at Meadowood in St. Helena (three Michelin stars), and Auberge Resort’s Calistoga Ranch in Calistoga. Each night, Chef Il Hoon Kang uses seasonal, local, and garden ingredients to craft prix fixe menus that change regularly. All the herbs and some of the vegetables are from his private garden located on the property.
With more than 3200 wine selections and a wine cellar of more than 12,000 bottles, Sierra Mar features one of the largest restaurant wine lists in California with a Wine Spectator Grand Award. It has the only Grand Award in Monterey County.
There is a sense of place grander than the 100 acres of Post Ranch Inn. It is a sense of responsibility and history as well. For example, the owners named each unique guest house after a family who shaped the Big Sur region. Before opening the resort to the public, the owners invited each family to stay in their namesake’s guest house. Every guest room has a photo of that family and their history in the area.
The Post Ranch Inn invites guests to experience something more significant, more magnificent, and more important than “just a visit to a pretty resort.” For me, it was a profound shift from witnessing the world encased in technology and deadlines to genuinely hearing, feeling, tasting, and seeing the world through Post Ranch Inn’s expansive spaces where anything is possible.
CONTACT AND RESERVATIONS Toll-free: 1-800-527-2200