For over 20 years, the Cal-a-Vie spa (cal-a-vie.com
) was a celebrity favorite, luring the likes of Oprah Winfrey and Sharon Stone to its location in the hills north of San Diego. But while the spa's spare, utilitarian interiors may have been the height of fashion in the 1980s, they did not age wellespecially in the face of the competition that emerged with the spa-building boom of the last few years. Enter investors John and Terri Havens. The New Orleans couple bought Cal-a-Vie in 2001 and embarked on a mission, Terri Havens says, "to bring top-of-the-line luxury to Cal-a-Vie."
The result was an ambitious renovation program that has only just reached completion. Los Angeles-based designer Laurie Steichen revamped cottages and public areas in Provençal styleharmonizing with the spa's Mediterranean architectureand a new pavilion has been added. There are further expansion plans: a centuries-old chapel is being imported stone by stone from France, and an Orangerie (to be the venue for healthy cooking lessons) will be completed next spring. This grande dame
of California spas is now as rejuvenated as its clientele.