Refuge Recovery Centers Reviews, Cost, Complaints

Refuge Recovery Centers CLOSED


Refuge Recovery Centers in Los Angeles was founded in 2014 by renowned Buddhist teacher and Master’s-level addiction counselor Noah Levine and program director, Shannon Fowler. Levine is also author of several books including Dharma Punx: A Memoir and Against the Stream. Refuge Recovery provides outpatient treatment for those struggling with substance abuse and co-occurring disorders, as well as high end sober living facilities for clients.

Besides a multitude of evidence-based modalities, this rehab utilizes the unique Refuge Recovery model created by Levine, which incorporates meditation and Buddhist practice. Unlike AA/NA, which propagates the belief that alcoholics and addicts are powerless over their disease and require the assistance of a Higher Power, the philosophy behind Refuge Recovery is that by learning certain Buddhist tools individuals can tap into their inner power, attain enlightenment and gain freedom from addiction.

Accommodations and Food

There are two co-ed sober living houses—a tidy white house with a red front door in Hollywood and a grey two story Colonial style home in the hipster haven of Silverlake. Each furnished residence accommodates no more than ten clients who share double-occupancy or single rooms. Amenities include daily meditation sessions led by recovering addicts who were trained by Levine, Cable TV, laundry facilities, Internet, Wi-Fi, Against the Stream access, an onsite sweat lodge, and medication management. There is around-the-clock supervision by trained staff, and clients are subject to random drug and alcohol screenings.

A chef prepares meals in various styles of cuisine, including vegan, heart healthy and vegetarian options. Fresh salads are plentiful. Freshly brewed coffee is always available. The 30-day cost for sober living alone is $5,000.

Treatment and Staff

Prior to admission, clients undergo complete assessments by a licensed counselor and receive individualized treatment plans. Some clients reside at one of the transitional living facilities, while others commute from home. For residents, transportation is provided to and from Refuge Recovery Centers, appointments and Refuge Recovery meetings. Treatment length is typically about 90 days long, but sober living clients are welcome to stay longer at the houses. At Refuge Recovery Centers, detox is not provided, but referrals are made to local hospitals if necessary.

On a weekly basis, the Partial Hospitalization Program (PHP) runs 9 am to 3 pm Mondays through Fridays and the Intensive Outpatient Program (IOP) meets Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays from  6:30 to 9:30 pm. Treatment in both programs includes individual and group therapy, family therapy, psychiatric consultations (as needed), yoga and daily meditation with Levine. Group topics include relapse prevention, life skills, somatic experiencing and anger management. Besides Buddhist philosophy, evidence-based modalities including EMDR, CBT, DBT, attachment theory, and motivational interviewing (MI) are utilized during treatment. Traditional psychotherapy and psychodrama techniques are also employed. Attendance at Refuge Recovery meetings off-site is also part of protocol.

A typical schedule includes daily meditation from 9 to 10 am. After meditation, if there are more than ten clients, they are split into two groups. There is a somatic experiencing group and a relapse prevention/attachment theory group scheduled from 10 to 11 am. The ten am groups are repeated again from 11 am to noon. This is done to keep the numbers of clients in each session small. From noon to one pm, there is a lunch break, followed by core Buddhist teaching from one to two pm, and a meditation skills class from two to three pm. Tuesdays there is a Refuge Recovery inventory workshop from one to two pm. On Wednesdays, Levine leads a process group from two to three pm. Thursdays are reserved for experiential therapy and processing groups. Experiential therapies include intensive writing workshops, art therapy and poetry. Friday afternoons include a photography/creative processing group from one to two pm.

Besides founders Levine and Fowler, the team of 21 staff members includes Clinical Director, Dr. Stephen Dansiger, who along with Levine previously founded the outpatient addiction treatment facility BLVD. There is also a clinical psychiatrist, Master’s-level therapists, three case managers, an art therapist, three group facilitators, four residential techs, administrative, outreach and admissions staff.


The houses are pet-friendly.

There are Refuge Recovery meetings next door to the drug rehab. While Buddhist practice is incorporated during treatment, clients are not required to be Buddhists nor are they prohibited from attending other recovery support groups, including 12-step meetings.

In Summary

Those who are interested in Buddhist teachings and looking for a 12-step alternative might find that Refuge Recovery Centers is the answer. By seeking enlightenment and doing some hard work in recovery, clients at Refuge Recovery have the chance to get sober and also attain inner peace and happiness.

Refuge Recovery Centers Location

4300 Melrose Ave
Los Angeles, CA 90029

Refuge Recovery Centers Cost

$25,000-$30,000 (30 days). Reach Refuge Recovery Centers by phone or text at (323) 207-0276 or by email at [email protected]. Find Refuge Recovery Centers on Linkedin, YouTube and Twitter

Do you have a complaint or review of Refuge Recovery Centers to add? Use the comments area below to add your Refuge Recovery Centers review.



  1. monster warrior. Woman who jumps on all the refuge newbies…Let me tell you one thing..stop driving past my house because I don’t want to be reminded of you…stop….if you don’t want me to expose your narcissistic behaviour then pipe down..and yes I’ll never be one of you lot…for good reason…you deserve my contempt..because I was subject to yours for no apparent reason…pipe the hell down..And no I don’t care about any of you and never will…this is my review of refuge Liverpool UK….

  2. Our bri…the meister of deflektion..the tightest…the Shyster of refuge reprobates..the egomaniacal tyrant…the worst and least compassionate…do as he says not as he does..the supreme diva himself..the silencer..refuge Liverpool UK a madhouse of tantrums and tiaras..the love in is over..I’d love to come in and confront you all but you ain’t got the guts to have it…

  3. I also know for a fact someone with a serious health problem peed on one of the seats in a refuge recovery meeting in liverpool UK…and bri’s feet reek..

  4. I also remember the 20 stone monster woman of refuge Liverpool UK telling me that ‘u don’t even want a cooked breakfast” in that high voice…no just don’t want to sit round, watch piers Morgan. Jeremy Kyle and all that terrible morning television..I want to get up, get out and do something..

    Our bri…leader of refuge Liverpool UK group is a shocking mentor…he made me buy an eight track..cast his greedy eyes on it and then said he wanted it but didn’t wanna pay me till two weeks later…the miserly little goblin sod…

  5. The twenty stone monster loony woman in the Liverpool group would put any of you men in a box..she kicked me in the shin in Frankie n pennies..stood on my foot and said don’t mess with me in that way..all for asking the waitress if my mate was working…much love to you refuge Liverpool my darlings..

  6. Emma studnick on

    DO NOT GO Here. Especially if you are a woman with PTSD that is attracted to the fact that they boast about all the staff doing EMDR. I was there six weeks seeing my therapist twice a week and then nothing. Also extremely gender disproportionate, with 30 year old wanna be punk rock children who are several years behind the zeitgist and think feminism is stupid. Lots of sexual harassment slut shaming making fun of things that happened when my sever autoimmune disease acted. And a woman who was head of the program, Loesha simply yelled at me and kept saying she was sick of me causing trouble over a guy I fucked. She kept telling me I had no right to ask for the services they promised me because I was there on scholarship at a very reduced price. If I knew that meant I was fucked over not listed to, I would have gone to the several other mental health programs that gave me the same fucking scholarship. This place offered me a scholarship because my residential sends literally everyone to step down after care programs, and the bullshit low intelince fraud that is Noah Levine had visited several times trying to get people to be sent there, and I was the first one that wanted to. Also I disclosed that I had a very rare disease and I had to figure out my medical care in LA and set up somewhere I could get my infusions that I need to walk ,reduce extreme nerve pain and ward off severe ulcers on the inside and outside of my body pissing blood. And of course I don’t want to take painkillers but i was prescribe low dose pain killers because MY BODY WAS EATING AWAY AT ITSELF. It certainly didn’t help that they kept saying getting my medical care arranged as letting me miss a few days to find doctors rest etc. NOAH LEVINE THAT FAKE WANNABE GURU THAT OPENED A CENTER TO MAKE AN INSANE PROFIT ON A PROGRAM FILLER WITH PRIVELEGED WHITE MEN. Great Buddhist principles right? Haha. So Noah said to my face I had to leave because I was too sickly. First off completely illegal and ablist but he was making no profit off me. I was violently ill with nowh3r to go. The staff is pretty much all low intelligence dude bros that convinfed themselvew they were Buddhist. And in the outpatient program every day was incoherent and useless. And most of the day they just tell us to close our eyes with no deeper instruction and say were meditating. So that kills half the day for them. Also not s single person of color in sight. It was made for white men that disgustingly appropriated a culture and violated the sanctity of their beliefs and the things they did to honor that. Fuck you refuge oh and they record you visually and audio everywhere except the bathroom and scan your room without knocking every hour. Me and my friend there were victims of sexual abuse at a young age and it was not factored in at all. It was incredibly violator. They claim it was to keep us safe yet they let horrible shit go down. I am heartbroken I gave up my opportunity to go to the other scholarship programs. I made it very clear to sierra tuscon to not send anyone there, as I was very close with the head of the trauma department and he said I needed to tell him right away and he would take what I said very seriously.

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