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Where To Go When the Snow Melts: The Ojai Valley Inn & Spa

It's officially the shoulder season, the muddy, frustrating time in the high country when crowds disappear, but so does the skiing. It'll take a few weeks for the hiking and mountain biking trails to dry out, so in the meantime, we're bringing you a series of articles on what to do when the snow melts.

Where: The Ojai Valley Inn & Spa
Who Will Love it: Discriminating travel connoisseurs who need some California sunshine
The Skinny: Flee the mud season in ski country by booking a vacation at California's Ojai Valley Inn & Spa, a sister property to The Little Nell in Aspen. There's plenty of space in this Spanish Colonial oasis with 308 rooms and suites (most with fireplaces and terraces), and the property is a Shangri-La getaway, with a world-famous spa, massive swimming pools, and a golf course originally built in 1923. The spring might be the best time to visit Ojai; you can expect blooming roses, lavender, and a green landscape that looks a hell of a lot better than the current vistas at muddy ski areas. It's also Pixie season in Ojai, and the resort is celebrating the revered tangerine with everything from cocktails to a pixie body polish at the spa. Our expert tip? Avoid the LAX-crazy and book your flight to nearby Santa Barbara, hitting some urban wineries before driving the short (and beautiful!) 35 mile route to Ojai.

-All photos provided by the Ojai Valley Inn & Spa
· Ojai Valley Inn & Spa [Official Site]
· The 38 Essential Ski Town Hotels, March '14 [Curbed Ski]
· All Surviving Shoulder Season Coverage [Curbed Ski Archives]