Facility Rentals

Our facilities, including a meditation hall, accommodations, and blessed land are available for rental to spiritual groups of all traditions.


Vajrapani Institute is a sacred, 70-acre retreat center located in the Santa Cruz Mountains, in the stillness of the California redwoods. While secluded in a peaceful forest, it is also conveniently located to the nearby major cities and airports of San Francisco and San José.


We love to host all kinds of groups from a wide variety of spiritual traditions. Buddhist and non-Buddhist groups alike are welcome to enjoy the blessings of Vajrapani Institute.


“As we drove into Vajrapani, I felt like I was embraced by God. There could be no better welcome.”

– Student from Center for Spiritual Enlightenment


Vajrapani Institute is one of the first Buddhist centers to be founded in the US. Many highly regarded teachers have stayed here and blessed the land, including His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama.


Unlike some of the larger retreat centers, we host one group at a time. This means that your group will have the center to yourselves and feel like the space belongs to you.


“Vajrapani Institute is my all-time favorite retreat center!”

– Adyashanti


  • Direct feedback and authoritative answers to questions as they arise
  • Sharing of experiences and ideas through discussion
  • Extra stamina and momentum from a shared group dynamic
  • Increased confidence in your own ability and skill in the practice
  • Meeting like-minded individuals for companionship on your spiritual journey


While our center’s history and practices are rooted in the Tibetan Buddhist tradition, we welcome contemplative groups of various traditions to share our facilities.

What type and size of group can you accommodate?

Vajrapani is best suited for groups of up to 42-50 people or 75 people in the dry season. The wet season generally runs from November to April.
Minimum group size: 21 participants


Please speak with our Facility Rental Manager if your group is close to meeting these requirements.


Length of stay:
Groups must stay a minimum of 3 nights. There is no maximum.

Is my group suited for the center?

The stillness of our forest has a special quality best experienced from a tranquil frame of mind. Therefore, groups with a subdued and contemplative tone are best suited to our center.


Please ask if you aren’t sure whether your group would fit into this atmosphere.


“Truly, we are always so grateful to you for so generously sharing your sacred space with us. It is sacred to us, too.”

– Misha (Zen Teacher)

What are the facilities like?

Potala Lodge
Capacity: 39-43 people
Main Women Dormitory with 14 beds
Main Men Dormitory with 12 beds

Two Semi-Private Dorms with 4 beds each
Four Private Rooms with a double bed each
One Private Room with a single bed
We have seven private cabins situated on a beautiful ridge above the Potala Lodge. There is a shared private indoor bathhouse as well as outdoor showers with a fabulous view of the surrounding mountains. The private cabins have single beds and can be set up for double occupancy with the addition of a cot bed.

Capacity: 7 to 14 people
Teachers House
The Teacher’s House is a beautiful two-bedroom house with its own secluded garden. It has a living room, kitchen, and bathroom.

Capacity: 1 to 2 people
We have 36 camp sites around the land. Size of sites vary and can accommodate a 2-4 person tent.

Capacity: 36-50 people
Outdoor Showers
The Outdoor Shower Building, situated on the private retreat cabin ridge have spectacular views of the surrounding Santa Cruz Mountains. A student from Montana once said: “These showers alone are worth flying in from Montana for”.
Meeting Hall
We have a beautiful Meeting Hall that’s been blessed by 30 years of spiritual practice. The Meeting Hall has a capacity of up to 115 people. Meditation cushions, chairs and teaching thrones are provided. A sound system is available upon request.
Vajrapani Institute is renowned for the deliciousness of its vegetarian cooking. Rental includes three meals per day. Our indoor/outdoor eating area capacity is 115 people. The indoor dining area sits up to 45 people.
Vajrapani Institute has a Dharma Library with many out of print books and a sitting area available to all.
Stupas are symbolic of the unlimited mind of all enlightened beings. Shakyamuni Buddha taught that performing spiritual practices at a stupa would have the same effect as making offerings to the Buddha himself. There are a number of stupas on the land. The main one is situated within close proximity to the main building. The others are up on Lama’s Ridge where the private cabins are located.
Sitting Areas
The land is beautiful to explore. Whilst walking around, there are many places where one can sit, contemplate, and enjoy the view. The stillness of the forest and surrounding mountains has a special quality which generates an expansive spaciousness of mind.
Vajrapani Institute offers a number of beautiful hiking opportunities. The Peace Trail circumambulates the land and its holy objects. Another trail meanders into Castle Rock State Park for stunning views of the Monterey Bay.

What are your prices?

2024 Rates-


Rates inclusive of accommodation, three meals per full day, general facility use (meditation hall, use of lands and trails, main building use):


Group Size: 21 minimum
Length of Stay: 3 night minimum

Standard RatesPer Person
Per Night
Commuter includes meals$89
Semi-Private Dormitory (4 People)189
Private Room (Single Occupancy)242
Private Room (Double Occupancy)205
Retreat Cabin (Single Occupancy)268
Teacher’s House (Single Occupancy)295
Teacher’s House (Double Occupancy)$250

Rates inclusive of accommodation, three meals per day.

What is your Cancellation Policy?

All deposits are non-refundable.

Your group may cancel your reservation at any time, minus deposit fees.

We would appreciate advanced notice for any cancellation so we can offer your dates to another group.

How do I make a reservation?

Contact our Center Manager to begin your reservation process:


Liz Chisler


800-531-4001 x2


Our calendar tends to book up a year ahead of time. The more notice you can give us, the more likely we’ll be able to provide you with the dates you want.


We will ask you to enter into a contract for your reservation, including liability protection, a payment agreement, etc. We will be happy to go over this contract with you when you are ready to book your reservation.


Your dates will be guaranteed from the time you sign and return this contract to us with your first deposit.


We require two non-refundable deposits, each calculated at 25% of the estimated final total cost.The first deposit is due with your signed contract. The second deposit is due 6 weeks prior to your reserved dates. All deposits are non-refundable.

Upcoming Retreats

Family Camp 2024

July 25 - 28, 2024
****Vajrapani's Family Camp 2024 is full, we look forward to seeing you at Family Camp 2025!   A weekend family retreat where participants are given the opportunity to better understand their mind and emotions through a Tibetan Buddhist lens using meditation, discussion, art, nature and play. Set in the redwood forests of the Santa Cruz Mountains, families with children ages 5-12 are encouraged to unplug and reconnect, supported by a community of like-minded families, staff and volunteers.   First Time at Family Camp? Read all about what to expect at family camp at our Family Camp details page    …

How to Train a Happy Mind

Scott Snibbe

August 8 - 11, 2024
About this retreat Based on his book How to Train a Happy Mind, this three-day retreat with Scott Snibbe offers a relaxed tour of eight meditations that help bring out your best qualities, deepen your relationships, and build a better world. Each of the retreat’s practices is derived from the Tibetan Buddhist lamrim “stages of the path,” a series of analytical meditations highly refined over the centuries. This lesser-known form of meditation complements the more popular mindfulness meditation by using stories, emotions, and critical thinking to actively steer the mind away from frustration, craving, and loneliness, and toward happiness, connection, and satisfaction. The retreat requires no…

Our Blog

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Vajrapani Institute is affiliated with the Foundation for the Preservation of the Mahayana Tradition www.FPMT.org