Tours, travels, hikes and journeys!

Posts tagged ‘healing’

Optimum Health Institute, Lemon Grove, CA

This is another one of the wellness centers that I researched years ago so it was a treat to finally get to visit.  I have a friend who has worked here before so that gave me an introduction as well. Today I attended their weekly open house, orientation, and meal. Even though I was a visitor and not someone attending their program, I was welcomed just the same. I found everyone there very warm and welcoming.

The program was initially started  as Robert P. Nees, Sr., his wife, Pamela and their friend, Raychel Solomon, met at a class teaching God-centered mental techniques for healing the whole person, taught by Robert’s brother, the Reverend Russell Nees.  Raychel traveled to the Hippocrates of Boston center and learned Essene based dietary and cleansing practices and brought these back to add to the program.  They then created Hippocrates West,  a not for profit mind-body-spiritual healing center.

Soon they recognized the need for a stronger spiritual base so they transferred the assets to The Free Sacred Trinity Church, a Christian church rooted in Essence traditions.  The healing center became a mission of the church and in 1977 the name was changed to the Health Institute of San Diego and then in 1983 it was changed to the Optimum Institute. Although the Institute is connected to this church, they do not hold services and hold space for any and all religious and spiritual traditions.

The center was started in a home and quickly outgrew those facilities and they moved to their present location, which they have expanded over the years.  They have been at their present location for 36 years. They average around 100-120 guests per week.

The focus of this program is to cleanse and nourish the body with diet, fasting, exercise,; quiet and focus the mind with journaling and meditation; and teach the guest tools so they take these healthy practices back into their lives. Although this isn’t a medical facility, many healings have taken place over the years after guests have attended the classes and taken these practices back into their lives, including guests arriving with stage 4 cancer given 2 weeks to live.  The idea is to detox the body/mind/spirit and then give the body what it needs to rebuild a healthy system, not just for a week or month but for a healthy future. People seem to return over and over and some guests end up living on the property and/or returning to work there.

The program is 21 days long and can be attended at one time or a week or two at a time.  There is the CA campus and two in Austin, TX.  There are 40 classes offered per week.

Week 1 -Body/mind/spirit connection

Week 2- Tools for healthier choices

Week 3- Take home skills

The cleansing is done with wheat grass grown on the property and juiced just before use by the guests; enemas, wheat grass implants, and gentle exercise and stretches.  Massage, reiki, reflexology, salt glow body treatment, body wrap, colon hydrotherapy and chiropractic care are available on site as well.

The food is all organic, fresh and raw, some grown on the property.  All the water on the property is filtered and the drinking water is filtered twice and then the ph is balanced, too.Classes are taught in how to prepare the food, too.  Guests are taught how to grow and juice wheat grass.  There are gardens to rest or walk in, a jacuzzi, a pool, a library, a night for movies, a store, a chapel, groups, ceremonies, and Friday night live sharing of talents.   All the guests seemed very honoring and supportive of each other.

The program costs $955.00 per week.  The accommodation prices range from $475-$1195 single occupancy for a room,  $370 and up for a room in a shared townhouse, and $645 for a 2 Bdr. townhouse. I’m assuming these prices are per week.

The dinner meal I shared with them consisted of: Cucumber and tomato salad, Broccoli Salad delight, Humus, Sprouts, Green salad, celery sticks, zucchini sticks and crackers made from dehydrated zucchini slices with some spices. There were salad dressings, various sprouts, lentils, spices and nuts to add to the meal. No salt or sugar is used at all. The entire meal was raw food.

These are pictures of the patios, a courtyard and some rooms.


Patio and rooms Brick courtyard and rooms Bungalow

This is the front lawn and office, the dining room and a lecture room and the door to the chapel for meditation and contemplation.

Office and front lawn Dining room and lecture room Door to chapel


This is the organic gardens and avocado trees, the greenhouse where wheat grass is grown and the memorial garden.

Organic garden Green house Memorial garden


For further information you can check out their website at:


Chopra Center, Carlsbad, CA

Chopra Center


Yesterday I went to visit The Chopra Center, in Carlsbad, CA. This is one of the wellness centers I had researched online a few years ago so I wanted to see it in person. I attempted to set up a tour, also, of the La Costa Resort and Spa, where the Chopra center is housed, but after leaving 3 voice mails with 3 different marketing people, and a voice mail and email with the marketing manager, I received no response and after two weeks gave up. I did drive up and receive a 5 min. tour of the center though. I wasn’t allowed to take pictures, nor did they offer for me to grab photos off the website. So if you want pictures, you can look at their website

The draw for this center is of course that it was founded and is run by Deepak Chopra.   He founded this in 1996.  Many of the participants in his classes and workshops stay at La Costa but they also can stay in other local resorts and catch shuttles to the center. I recommend the Park Hyatt Aviara, instead, which I toured yesterday and will soon post pictures of, as they were much more accommodating.

One of the drawing points of this center is that there are classes available online as well as in person, workplace wellness is offered via various teachers trained through the center,  and it offers teaching training to those desiring to be trained in one or all of the tracks they focus upon.  Locals can come to occasional talks they have there, too. The Center offers medical consultations, Ayurveda body treatments, online counseling, retreats, programs and a store at the site and online. There are only 7 treatment rooms but if there are more therapies scheduled, they use the La Costa spa for the overflow.

The Center consists of medical consultation offices, a waiting room, store, two meditation rooms, a classroom, and treatment rooms. That is all.  But their offerings are intended to powerfully immerse participants in full mind-body-spiritual programs for profound transformation and provide tools to take back into daily life and relationships.

A few of the programs I found on the website were as follows:

Music and meditation – 6 or 7 day program cost $2175

Journey into healing -$2075 for a week

Perfect health (their signature program) – $3375 for 6 days (Includes a medical consultation, cooking classes, treatments, classes, meditation, yoga and is available in a 10 day program, too)

Emotional Freedom – 3 day $1175.

There were also various weekend programs mentioned as well.



Casa de la Luna Retreat, Ojai, CA

I’ve been talking to Margaret Elliott, the owner of Casa de la Luna Retreat for 5 years about ways we could collaborate.  I finally got to meet her and see her retreat center in early July.  Margaret started out renting a house on the property and then when the owner decided to sell, Margaret purchased it and has since then turned it into a retreat center. Her vision is to also include an organic farm near by, and expand the offerings of workshops, ceremonies, events and partnering at the center.  She loves to connect up with other eco-villages and wellness centers around the world.  She has offered up her space for free to various spiritual teachers off and on over the years.  She is very warm and generous.

Casa de la Luna sits on almost 4 acres with produce trees, organic gardens, horses, oak trees and redwood trees.  There is a residential compound consisting of  5 private lodging units with 10 large bedrooms, 15 bathrooms, 5 kitchens including a large industrial kitchen,  and a large event room that holds up to 60 people. The event room has recording, live streaming, editing, and screening capabilities and Margaret is skilled in all of this and offers its use to the public.  The rooms can hold up to 20 people for retreats, reunions and other gatherings. There is a large ceremonial/event lawn that has held many public ceremonies, weddings, and other gatherings.   There are other indoor/outdoor event areas. The retreat center is used for transformation, education, outreach and healing. There are treatment rooms located on the property, too.

Come check it out, or if you are interested in investing, please contact Margaret at

The photos are not mine.

1-Bedroom-Living-room_9645 2-Bedroom_0485 another entry way Casa-Entry-La-Luna_0019 Ceremonial-Lawn-Area_0118 ceremony Entry Housing Lawn Main house Redwood_1842 rooms vegetation

Tag Cloud

%d bloggers like this: