Phone: (760) 744-1500
Hike: There are multiple hiking trails on the grounds
Dogs: Not Allowed Kid-Friendly: Call in advance
**This is a private retreat. Please call to schedule a visit**
Questhaven Retreat is a secluded nature preserve located in the coastal wilderness in Escondido. It is open to individuals and groups of all faiths to experience peace and renewal. Sincere seekers visit throughout the year to harvest its energies, walk the labyrinth and trails and stay in one of the many cottages.
The Christward Ministry is a spiritual training center dedicated to sharing the esoteric Christian teachings as taught by Questhaven's founders, Flower and Lawrence Newhouse.
Following the path of Christian Mysticism, we strive for a direct experience of God through a deepening relationship with the Living Presence of Christ. Above learning, we emphasize living the Christward Way.
The retreat gets many curious kids causing problems, getting spooked by the security guard that waits at the gate and claiming they've seen a ghost and so on. There is nothing scary about the man at the gate folks, he is just doing his job. He is not a ghost, he is a security guard who was hired because they get harassed constantly!
I have been behind the gate many times and it is very quiet and tranquil. Those of you whom are sensitive to energies, I am very curious about your opinions. There is definitely something strong out there, but I believe that energy is throughout just perhaps a little more heavy out here.
There is endless talk about this place once being a mental hospital and it burning down. Well, there tends to be some truth in all lies right? This is no exception. The founder of the retreat, Flower Newhouse, used to house patients with mental disabilities in the 1940's. During this time, there was a fire and portions of the retreat burned down. If people died in the fire, I am not sure, but it is factual that a fire DID occur there.
One of the members of the Questhaven Retreat tells me that the rumors of where the actual insane asylum once were was more near the intersection of Harmony Grove & Questhaven Rd. There were allegedly old ruins that remained there for many years that were eventually removed. After analyzing historic aerials of that intersection, nothing is showing up until the 80's. Unless we can get some valid stories of people who remember this place or photos, it will remain a myth.
Make sure you call in advance if you plan on stopping by. Please be respectful. Yes, the rumors are rampant, but this is a retreat and private business.
A statue of the founder, Flower:
I love how old-fashioned the playground is:
Below is video of their Carillon Bells, which can be heard throughout the retreat when they go off. When we were there, they played the creepiest rendition of Ode to Joy that I have ever heard. It was really neat though.
Some excellent footage of people performing inside their church: