By Jarone Ashkenazi
Immersed in the secluded Pacific Redwood Forest, you will find NewTree Ranch, a luxury retreat that emphasizes a spiritual-ethical-ecological approach to travel.
Outside of the rolling hills of Sonoma County and downtown Healdsburg sits NewTree Ranch on 120 acres of untouched land, offering a haven destination for travellers seeking to relax, refresh, and reconnect with nature.
Upon entry, you become immediately absorbed into their wellness-centric ethos when passing through the secluded redwood forest as you immediately feel a sense of calm and are urged to rejuvenate your mind and reconnect with what is around you.
According to Ed Newell, Founder and CEO of NewTree Ranch, the ranch is about finding one’s place in the greater context of the vast complexity and beauty of nature instead of distancing humans from mother nature.
He continues to share that “NewTree Ranch invites guests to discover their inner curiosity, relax, reset and reconnect with what’s around them and restore the mind, body, and spirit. Through an array of spiritual and outdoor excursions, guests become more attuned to how adventure and wellness intersect.”
Along with being a fully biodynamic operation—all food is grown on-site, and guests actually can wander through the property to see their on-site biodynamic garden—the ranch is centred around sustainability, operated by its own power sources and utilizing a closed-loop food system.
Their produce is 100% absent of any chemicals. The expansive garden is burgeoning with an endless variety of fresh fruit and vegetables like beans, purplette pearl onions, tomatoes, carrots, and apples. When you take a stroll through the garden, your senses are heightened by the smell of the freshly grown produce and the natural colours surrounding you.
Imagine exploring Willy Wonka’s chocolate factory, but instead of artificial sweeteners and sugar, you have whole fresh produce (with colours just as beautiful) made from the earth.
Offering one-of-a-kind discovery and adventure experiences, NewTree Ranch boasts a pool overlooking dense oak trees, four luxury suites in its 1,200 square-foot barn and a glamping tent surrounded by nature.
The barn welcomes guests in providing an inviting and tranquil environment through its earth-tone hues and rich wood accents throughout. In addition, its wraparound terrace offers an ideal spot to grab your morning cup of coffee and feel fully enveloped in the surrounding redwoods.
For those wishing for a night under the stars, the luxury canvas tent is equipped with an outdoor soaking tub, wood-burning stove, and luxurious king-size bed. The property itself also is home to two separate horse pastures, a heavenly private lake and an outdoor farm kitchen that usually becomes a meeting ground for guests and staff to discuss the richness of the produce and learn about the healing benefits of what they are about to consume.
It is almost like stepping into an alternate reality, one where time ceases to exist, and you forget that you are only 12 miles from downtown Healdsburg. Connecting with the surrounding environment is relatively easy—even for those who constantly need to be connected digitally—as the silence and stillness here simply allow you to melt into a state of tranquillity.
At every corner of this vast ranch, life is bountiful. The land is well-nourished, the produce bursts with flavour, the open fields are home to their two Scottish Highlander Cows, Kathy and Eddie, as well as Nigerian dwarf goats, Sally and John, miniature horses, Horcelain and Ginger, who graze the grounds and 22 chickens, producing an immediate sense of joy for all guests.
Activities are plenty, from yoga alongside 100-year-old Redwood trees, hands-on, plant-based cooking class with chef Brandon Rouge which guides guests through a seed-to-table meal, an extraordinary mindfulness Wim Hof Experience, a calming Sound Journey as well as flower picking and arranging, nature hikes, tea making and more.
Walk with one of the ranch’s miniature horses or bike on its untouched land to feel the fresh breeze that compliments the beautiful smells of the numerous indigenous plants and flowers in the area.
Outings in the ranch’s Tesla Model X can also be arranged in the surrounding area, including kayaking, paddle boarding and swimming in Lake Andreas, wine tasting and driving up the coast.
The full experience doesn’t end upon exiting their gates; the knowledge gained through their litany of experts allows for deeper understanding and cyclical practices to continue into daily life.
Understanding their approaches to agriculture, nutrition, and wellness present a platform to grow but also a challenge for how to integrate that into daily life from this plant-based paradise in Sonoma County.
*Main photo credit Rachel Weill
Following being published on Fast Company and Wired Innovations Insights, Jarone Ashkenazi expanded his writing portfolio to cover luxury travel, goods, and unique experiences along with restaurants and lifestyle work.
From luxury hotels, resorts and VIP experiences, Jarone has written about exclusive properties for the discerning traveller. Jarone is a native to Los Angeles and spends his free time travelling, playing sports and is always up for an adventure.