Ojai Valley Inn "Our Green Promise"

so green

More like our bullshit promise.

so green

Ojai Valley Inn and Spa is a really beautiful resort in southern California, and when you get there they do their best to let you know what a green and environmentally friendly place it is. Only It’s not, quite the opposite.  

You can read the ‘green promise’ here.

The first and most obvious thing I noticed was the extreme abundance of incandescent light bulbs. Pretty much every light bulb on the property is incandescent.  Except for the reading lamps above the bed which are halogen lamps.

An incandescent lamp is an extremely inefficient light source.  A 100 watt bulb is 2.1% efficient. In other words, it produces about 2 watts of light and 98 watts of heat. A halogen lamp isn’t much better. For every 100 watts you put in, you get about 3.5 watts of light and 96.5 watts of heat.

cfl vs incadescent

And as if that wasn’t bad enough, the desk lamp is designed in such a way that It’s right out dangerous. The light bulb in it is at 57 watts and  will easily reach temperatures up to 260 °F (126 °C), naturally the metal fixture also gets very hot. Even an adult who knows not to touch it could get hurt, but this is a place where people take their children..

desk lamp

As far as ‘they look cozy’ or something along the lines of that. Please, that doesn’t make it okay to begin with, and you can get CFL or even LEDs that put out the same color temperature as a regular light bulb. And as for the manager simply being cheap, please take a look at the cost comparison above.

Change the light bulbs, or stop lying to your customers. Simple as that..


Then there’s the issue of the gas heaters that are literally everywhere. At the restaurant they offered to turn on three gas heaters for one table. Also there’s a gas powered fireplace in the room. Once again, if this is about money, someone is terrible at math.

Propane 92,000 BTU/gal $3.00 /gal 80% $40.76 $4.08
Electricity – 3,412 BTU/kWh $0.10 /kWh** 100% $29.31 $2.93

Now if the environment was actually of their concern they wouldn’t be burning any gas at all, that’s quite logical. Combustion creates greenhouse gases.

72°F in the shade, and they were all on, even the ones in the roof

72°F in the shade, and they were all on, even the ones in the roof

There’s also an excellent selection of herbs growing on the property, which they claim to take full use of. Some of the biggest rosemary bushes I’ve ever seen. So far the only thing I’ve seen that takes use of them are lavender towels.. No items on the menu use rosemary, a shame really.

Seems this is the only thing that you do 'for the environment' that actually saves you any money.

Seems this is the only thing that you do ‘for the environment’ that actually saves you any money.

While the sentiment certainly is appreciated, it just fails to live up to its promise.

Not everything with the green promise is wrong, but with these major flaws it just seems ridiculous to claim to be environmentally friendly. Some things show a real effort has been made, so why not do it properly?

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