California Riding Magazine • August, 2013

Spirit Equestrian
Ventura property enables easy entry into dream equestrian facility.

Owning a first class equestrian facility usually involves a major building or remodeling endeavor and the enormous planning and permitting process that goes along with that in California. The exquisite 20 acre Spirit Equestrian facility is a shining example of a well-planned, turnkey, professional, equestrian paradise situated in the hub of the Southern California equestrian population, in southern Ventura County's Somis community.

Spirit Equestrian is that rare property for sale in pristine condition and with an already thriving business. Developed for the safety and soundness of equine athletes, the facility evokes superlatives across the board. Its various stabling options, beautifully footed arenas, lovely and low maintenance California native landscaping all generate rave reviews. Set on a former walnut and lemon orchard, Spirit Equestrian has a quiet, peaceful vibe supported by wonderfully cooperative weather. Ocean breezes typically keep temperatures 50-75 degrees much of the year with occasional days in the 80 degree range.

Shortly after starting a show program in 2011, the venue made its mark as a Mecca for dressage enthusiasts. It's thriving as a boarding and training facility with top-flight professionals who want to stay on with the new owners. A slate of successful clinics, competitions, breed inspections and other special events has solidified its important place in the Southern California equestrian scene.

"The owners realized their dream of creating an equestrian facility that rivals the best private barns," says Aisha Krechuniak, a facility consultant and now co-listing agent with Sam Piffero of Sotheby's International Realty and Patti Felker-Breiner of Oro Vista Corporation, a well-known local agent and retired USEF judge. "They have provided tremendous stewardship of this property and will leave a legacy and we look forward to helping them pass that onto the new owner."

Spirit Equestrian offers 150,000 square feet of newly constructed, high quality dressage and jumping arenas. Three full dressage court arenas are complemented by two jumping arenas: one is 200' by 300' and the other is 150' by 200'. The footing in all the arenas is world class. "Good footing has to start with a good base," says the owner. "The natural soil was excavated, cleaned of any debris and recompacted. Then, layers of road base and decomposed granite were added before topping the arenas with sand and shredded sneaker materials from Footings Unlimited. The formula for jumping arenas is slightly different than for dressage because the jumpers need more "purchase" when taking off or landing." For training and competition, Spirit's footing gets tremendously positive feedback. Dressage competitors remark that they score several points higher on their tests when riding at Spirit.

Stabling choices include 12' by 12' and 12' by 24' box stalls, both with Promat Stable Comfort™ mattress systems underneath. Fully- and half-covered 24' by 24' mare motels are additional options. Large turn-outs, a European hot walker, covered round pen and 24-hour gated security are among many other amenities. Low-maintenance landscaping uses native California plants to beautiful effect throughout the facility.

The property also includes two residences and a generous office space that has room for living quarters if desired.

Spirit Equestrian is currently home to about 70 horses, has stables to house approximately 130, and is permitted to stable 200. Having a Conditional Use Permit already in place is a very big asset, notes Aisha. "It's unusual for an owner to go the lengths required to get this permit. It means that the Ventura County governmental agencies have evaluated Spirit Equestrian, its improvements and provided 2012 approval for the Conditional Use Permit for a 20 year term.

It provides evidence of how thoroughly the current owners have approached every aspect of Spirit Equestrian's development. "They've been very diligent about doing everything the right way," Aisha notes. "Everything they've done has been driven by the safety of the horse and the comfort and enjoyment of the rider."

Not surprisingly, a premiere equestrian center attracts trainers who emphasize the best in horsemanship. Spirit's three dressage professionals are Kim Kulesa, Larisa Mantor and Camilla
Fritze. Russell Morgan is the resident hunter/jumper trainer.

Spirit Equestrian has proven itself a perfect place to host shows and special events. The Freestyle Challenge that debuted in June was a huge hit and September will see the staging of a KWPN-NA keuring..

For more information on Spirit Equestrian, call Aisha Krechuniak at 831-595-9291, visit www.sampiffero.com or call Patti Felker-Breiner at Oro Vista Real Estate Corp, at 818-519-5908 or www.orovistacorp.com.