Villa Kali Ma

By The Fix staff 07/23/17

This Southern California residential treatment center facilitates "healing and transformation of women's lives" through a spiritual and holistic program that emphasizes introspection and positive psychology.

The pool at Villa Kali Ma
Location : Carlsbad, CA
Phone : (619) 246-8862
Price : $36,000 / month
Overall :
Accommodations :
Treatment :
Food :
Insurance : Yes
Detox : No

“All that we are is a result of what we have thought. The mind is everything. What we think, we become.” Thus are you welcomed to a guiding principle at Villa Kali Ma, an adult women’s residential treatment center located in La Costa, a beautiful community just minutes from the beach in Southern California. The quote may be from Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, but founder of the program Kay White believes in and lives by it too. “The most important relationship you’ll have is the one with yourself. You need to learn to love yourself,” she says.

Located near both Carlsbad and Encinitas, Villa Kali Ma is a large, beautiful house sitting on over an acre with a pool, basketball court, barbecues and plenty of private areas in which to read or meditate. That’s just the outside. Inside you’ll find a well-appointed and luxurious house containing a family room with a 50-inch TV, premium cable and Netflix included; a home gym and dedicated rooms for yoga and meditation. There is a house computer and wifi for all to use. The bedrooms have one or two beds, and each has its own bathroom and balcony with table and chairs. As a matter of fact, many residents chose Kali Ma for the accommodations quality and the location.

Villa Kali Ma offers help to adult women who suffer from alcoholism, drug addiction, eating disorders, anxiety, low self-esteem, depression…women who need to heal their lives. According to the philosophy here, these disorders, and others such as co-dependency, are all symptoms of a lack of self-love, so the program is about strengthening your spiritual life. Every morning begins with a practice, such as yoga or meditation or breath work, which empowers one to love and be good to herself. Villa Kali Ma also offers comprehensive individual and group therapy for substance abuse and dual-diagnosis.

After the morning spiritual practice, residents are free for the day. Some go to an outpatient program, others are working, running errands, or spending time with family. But, “If you didn't have a job or a family to spend time with, there were always activities planned by the owner. They included movies, hikes, walking on the beach, church services, geocaching. the list is endless.” Residents have to attend 5 recovery meetings per week and while 12-step is not mandatory, sponsors are recommended. “The philosophy of Kali Ma is one of positive reassurance, gentle support and a strong sense of family. I particularly liked the morning gathering on the cozy sofa to read and talk and help each other begin the day with a positive outlook and the tools to conquer any obstacles,” one recent resident noted.

The program also includes evening guided meditations, evening sound healings, group deep relaxation acupuncture, journaling, life-coaching, membership to a local yoga studio, planned group activities such as beach walks, dinners out and movies, and Sunday outings. They also help with transportation to recovery related activities such as 12 step or Smart meetings if necessary. Family visits are encouraged too. There are no restrictions on watching TV or using the internet provided it doesn’t disturb someone else or it’s not during scheduled group times or activities.

Rules violations, such as drug tests coming back positive, are handled with compassion, but promptly and strictly: “If anyone used they were immediately kicked out for at least 3 days,” a former client told us. But, “One woman’s drug test came back positive so Kay provided a motel room to stay at until her drug test came back clean.”

The meals are designed to be healthy and organic. There are nightly home cooked meals and organic and sustainably grown food is provided for all meals and snacks. Residents describe the food as, “Healthy, gourmet….Snacks, coffee and sweets were available readily and particular items by request.” Also, one resident said, “Snacks were readily available, we had three meals per day. Dinner was always prepared by the owner, breakfast often was. For the meals that weren’t prepared, there was plenty of food in the refrigerator for us to prepare whatever we wanted.” But carnivores take note: “If someone wanted to eat meat, that was okay, but they simply had to prepare it themselves.” And “Sometimes all the vegetarian food got a bit much because I’m not a vegetarian.”

Kay White, the owner, is a personal Life Coach and a Certified Yoga Instructor. There is a personal chef and recovery coach on staff as well.

Overall, Villa Kali Ma is a place for adult women to go and heal, to feel safe and transform. To move beyond the past, the trauma, the hurt and move toward a new and self-realized state. When asked about that experience, former residents resoundingly agreed that it was a good one. The recommended stay is at least 90 days though most women stay 3-6 months. Both single and private rooms are available, with a maximum of only 5 residents at a time at Villa Kali Ma. As one former resident put it, “I thought it was fantastic and it really helped me turn my life around.”

This review was updated in September 2018 to reflect Villa Kali Ma's change from a sober living facility to a residential treatment center.

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