The Choir of Angels
at Zosa Gardens

The concept of Zosa Ranch was formed many years ago during World War II, when owner, Nena Zosa, was born in the Philippines. Nena's parents had taken refuge in a cave to escape bombings when her mother went into labor and gave birth to Nena while in the cave. Because of the lack of medical facilities, the birth was very primitive. Her father used a sharpened bamboo stick to cut the umbilical cord and proceeded to boil guava leaves to use as an antiseptic.

As Nena grew up in her disciplined family, the youngest of six children greatly enjoyed her father's farm with its many guava trees. The story of her birth and the guava became a special inner message for Nena. She began dreaming of owning her own guava farm.

Nena was always actively involved in her community and attended St. Paul College in Manila, where she obtained a BA in English and Social Science. After teaching for one year, she found a position with the Department of Tourism where she met her husband, Noli.

Dr. and Mrs. Zosa left the Philippines for her husband's internship and residency in Los Angeles in 1966. After 31 years of marriage, extensive community service, and raising three highly successful children, they purchased Zosa Ranch in 1989. The Zosas have planted 3,500 of the planned 4,000 guava trees, added their personal touch and opened the doors as a special haven for new-found friends.

Angels have played a rather large role in the making of Zosa Gardens. Earlier in her life, Nena had a near-death experience where she remembers a vision of nine angels telling her to go back. She had completely forgotten about this experience until her mother passed away and she had another dream of the nine angels. When she began looking for someone to run the Bed & Breakfast, she again had the dream, and although they had not yet met, she knew who her innkeeper would be.

In 1995 Nena met Connie Vlasis, who was working as the fundraising chairperson for the Nichole Brown Simpson Charitable Foundation. During a day of organizing assistance for abused women, Tanya Brown walked in with an angel pin, and the group decided to adopt the angel pin as their main fundraising project. When Connie went to the Gardens looking for a venue for her next fundraiser, she wore her angel pin which Nena admired. Connie took off her pin and pinned it on Nena, and shortly their two lives became entwined.

Both Nena and Connie have been led through much of their lives by angelic forces. With both of these ladies having a lively and anecdotal background, similar qualities and philosophies, and a shared love of angels, it can be no mere coincidence that they have crossed paths.

Connie and her husband, Ted, Zosa Ranch Managers, pride themselves in making people feel welcome and very pampered. And Connie's culinary awards include a first prize for her prima vera pasta sauce, Ci' Bella, in the National Assn. for the Specialty Food Trade, a gourmet worldwide contest held annually in New York. She has also won first prize in the Chocolate Lovers Club for her chocolate layered cheese cake, featured at the Villa Romana Trattoria in Laguna Beach. She has been featured on the TV Food Channel, Bon Appetit Magazine and Who's Who.

A floral theme is carried from the grounds to eight of the nine rooms that make up Zosa Gardens. The ninth room is the "Gardening Angel Room" and is filled with tiny cherubs. In fact, the entire place is filled with angels and winged wonders. From angelic pictures, nic knacks, statues, gardens and fountain areas, to the many ravens, butterflies, eagles, yellowtail hawks and hummingbirds, one can not help but be carried away with the charm and lore of the cupid's lost hideaway.

If you are looking for a perfect location for either a wedding or a romantic escape, consider Zosa Ranch and Gardens. This secluded Spanish hacienda sits on 22 beautifully landscaped acres on a high plateau in the mountains of north San Diego county. Exotic fruit trees, guavas, citrus and avocado trees, bougainvillea and a multitude of colorful flowers grow abundantly in this sunny climate.

Take a stroll through the organic gardens, walk across the arched bridge and listen to the waterfall trickling into the little pond containing exotic water lilies and Koi. The fragrant perfumes from the flowers mingle with the fresh breezes of the Pacific Ocean, only a half-hour drive away.

As you drive through the gates and up to the estate, you will see an elegant gazebo and fountain, a lovely spot for a wedding. The grounds also feature a jacuzzi, swimming pool, tennis court, and a recreation room with pool table. The B&B is within ten miles of ten world-class tournament golf courses. Massage is also available.

The Breakfast Buffet includes a selection of fresh fruit and juices from the orchards. In the afternoon, guests can enjoy local wine, cheese, and other appetizers. Special dietary needs are not a problem.

So, leave your worries at home, and enjoy life at Zosa Gardens - your own private, peaceful hideaway, visited by Angels!

Zosa Gardens is located at 9381 W. Lilac Rd. in Escondido. For more information, call (800) 711-8361 or check out our web page at

Return to the November/December Index page