The Inn at Rancho Santa Fe’s renovation slated for completion this summer


By Karen Billing

Just three months remain in The Inn at Rancho Santa Fe’s $12 million renovation project. All plans shoot for the early July time frame for completion, according to Rob Stirling, director of sales and marketing

With its renovations, Stirling said The Inn aims to be sensitive to its historic roots while creating a heart for the community that is elegant while still approachable and comfortable.

One of the most visible areas of work recently took place on the lawn, which had one side fenced off and under construction for several weeks. That work has now been completed, with new planters lining the sidewalk on one side.

“In past years that lawn was a little more slanted,” Stirling said. “We replaced the grass and leveled it off to take more advantage of the area for our outdoor events.”

Currently the other side of the lawn is getting the same treatment, the area known as the croquet lawn under The Inn’s signature pepper tree.

The Inn is working to ensure that impacts of the enhancement plans to their guests are few.

“We’ve really tried very consciously to watch that when there’s any type of construction or possible disruption, we take the adjacent rooms out of inventory,” Stirling said.

The Inn overhaul will include an upgrade of the lobby area, as well as a vehicular entrance off Linea Del Cielo, a distinctive sense of entry with a small single story porch structure with a large fireplace, a fountain, some seating areas, planters and decorative tile.

Right now they are in the midst of build-out on the new, 3,000-square-foot spa and relaxation courtyard. The concept of the spa is a country feel with sophisticated comfort, an environment to “escape modern day frenzy and slip into a Rancho Santa Fe state of mind.”

The Inn even asked for feedback on names for the new spa on its Facebook page, prompting suggestions such as Unwind and Sanctuary.

“As we design our brand pillars we’re seeking input from the community on what they’re expectations might be and combine them with the internal work we’re doing right now,” Stirling said.

Another big project will be the build-out of the restaurant, which will take over the garden room, its original location.

“It will become a more contiguous space with the outdoor terrace,” Stirling said. “The old restaurant area will become a private dining area.”

The library will remain in its current configuration as it has been so “well-liked and well-received” over the years. The fireplace and flooring will receive a refreshing.

“Our focus from the restaurant standpoint is to continue to be at the heart of the community, offering comfortable sophistication, rustic elegance and to be very much approachable,” Stirling said, noting they want the restaurant to be a place the local community and families visit on a weekly or bi-weekly basis, in addition to a venue for special events.

Stirling said it’s very important that The Inn continue to be approachable in many ways and they will be looking to enhance their community offerings, such as wine education classes, cooking classes, mixology events, and yoga and healthy eating classes with the spa.

“We want to offer a very energetic program of events for all areas of the hotel,” Stirling said.

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