Luxe celebrity-approved health retreat The Ranch Malibu is expanding: Here’s a day in the life of guests

By Kathryn Kyte

The Ranch Malibu isn't your average holiday – the luxe health retreat is rigorous, challenging and beloved by celebrities like Lea Michele, Connie Britton, Rebel Wilson, Selma Blair, Alison Brie and Mandy Moore. Located in the Santa Monica Mountains with 18 cottages and more than 200 miles of hiking trails, stars and business leaders pay thousands of dollars to adhere to The Ranch’s strict vegan diet and hike for several hours each day. And soon they can kick their fitness into high gear in two additional locations: the Dolomite Mountains in Italy and Sonoma’s wine country (though wine will still be strictly prohibited!).

One reason famous faces frequent the Malibu location is because the results are fast. “We wanted a place where people could go and reset, get measurable results and we believe that if [guests] follow our rigid program with no option, they can achieve this,” explains Alex Glasscock, who owns The Ranch Malibu with wife Sue.

The couple took over the space – originally built by silent film star William Boyd – from a children’s summer camp and repurposed it into an extended stay, luxury bootcamp and wellness facility. They also host programs out of the Four Seasons Hotel Westlake Village, with the cost of each retreat ranging from a minimum price tag of USD$3,900 to upwards of USD$10,900.


Alex and Sue Glasscock, owners of The Ranch

In addition to no alcohol, ranchers do not consume caffeine nor eat any dairy, soy or gluten. They sustain a 1,400-calorie-a-day, organic, vegan diet (though those who do not wish to lose weight can adjust this intake). Cashews and almonds are central to many of the menu items, whether it’s meals, desserts or dressings.

Celebrities are often tasked with shedding pounds swiftly, so the measurable results promised at The Ranch can be alluring. “OMG just finished 4 fantastic days at #TheRanch4.0 challenging but very rewarding!” gushed Pitch Perfect star Rebel Wilson on Instagram. “Not to mention I lost 8 pounds from marathon hiking over the 4 days! Thanks to the amazing staff and masseuses (free daily massages are part of the program)!! Feeling great!!”


The rustic-chic great room at The Ranch Malibu

Others opt to challenge their personal limits while bonding with friends. Mandy Moore also spread the love on Instagram a few years back as she started the program with gal pal Minka Kelly, saying, “Getting ready for hike #1 and staying hydrated w @minkak and @theranchmalibu. #herewego#sortascaredbutmostlyexcitedNashville's Connie Britton made it through a 4-day retreat, saying "Intense hikes in Malibu. Delicious vegan meals. Friendship. Relaxation. Exercise to sweat out the toxins. To re-energize. And then rest. I got it."

As Alex explained, in the context of The Ranch everyone is on common ground, which is probably another draw for stars. “It’s nice to see a celebrity show up, and they’re often guarded at first, but by the end of the week they’ve relaxed and trusting.”

In addition to the daily massages that Rebel so enjoyed, beginning this summer The Ranch will be incorporating cryotherapy sessions for those interested. The body treatments, which take place at sub-zero temperatures, are reported to help ease muscle pain and treat skin conditions.

Also coming this summer is the brand new pop-up program, launching amid the Dolomite Mountains in Northern Italy. Taking place from Aug. 19 to Sept. 29 and ringing in at a whopping USD$8,500, the Ranch Dolomites program is modelled after The Ranch Malibu’s seven-day stint and will host an exclusive 20 participants at the boutique Rosa Alpina Hotel. And in 2019, The Ranch Sonoma will open its doors in wine country, offering yet another stomping ground for the program’s gruelling regimen.

But what is it really like to attend one of The Ranch’s retreats? Click through our gallery for a day in the life of some of the world’s wealthiest and most famous names when they’re looking to get away from it all…

Don't miss a beat with HELLO! Canada's Daily Hits newsletter, your daily dose of royal and celebrity news, fashion, weddings and more. CLICK HERE to sign up for free!