Out of the Valley

Out of the Valley

It started with a single cabin, built in a deep wooded valley by the river Teign, on the edge of Dartmoor in England. Driven by a desire to embrace off-grid living in close connection with nature.

Rupert constructed the cabin as a home for himself, where he could embrace a simpler way of living. Word soon spread, and others were interested in similar sanctuaries for themselves. And so Out of the Valley was born.

Out of the Valley worked on their first sauna soon after, built on the waters edge in Cornwall – it started a fascination in sauna culture and the health benefits it could bring.

Both our founders have spent time exploring various traditions who use heat for healing, from sweat lodges in Mexico to spas in Finland. It illustrated the powerful benefits of thermal stress on the body.

Quarry Sauna-6
“We’re on a mission to elevate the world of outdoor wellness”.

Comprising architects, designers and craftspeople, the Out of the Valleys team are experts in timber construction and have a wealth of knowledge in biophilic design – that is, the design of structures that invite their inhabitants to connect with the surrounding natural landscape.

Rupert McKelvie Founder

Ru spent much of his childhood playing with wood shavings and offcuts in his parents’ workshop in the Gloucestershire countryside.  It was this love of the material that led him to study sustainable design in Falmouth and then classical boat building in Dorset, where he learned centuries-old woodcraft techniques from the masters. After four years spent working for design houses and furniture workshops in London, Ru relocated to Devon in 2015, where he built his first cabin. He founded Out of the Valley in 2016.

Chris Selman Co Founder

Chris spent his childhood in the UK but emigrated to Australia in 2010 working initially for JJL as a leader in sales and commercial real estate. In 2017 he transitioned across to WeWork where he headed their sales and partnerships program across Asia, helping them launch in 21 new locations. Needing some much needed time out to recalibrate, in 2023 Chris went on a global research tour visiting some 100+ sauna destinations. From Japanese onsens to floating saunas in Tasmania, he joined Out of the Valley in 2024.