Our Story


 Resthouse Sleep Solutions Ownership Team, Dawn Howlett, Chris Manley and Olga Roberts

The Story of Resthouse

Chris and I opened Resthouse Sleep Solutions in 2014 from a humble showroom in our converted garage. It all began during our search for genuinely natural bedding products for our home, when the idea was sparked to open our own natural mattress shop. Both of us were also ready for a career shift: Chris had over 20 years experience working in the mattress industry, and I was a purchaser at Banyen Books in Vancouver for 23 years. The timing was just right to launch Resthouse.

It started with a simple idea: We felt there needed to be better options for people looking for healthy sleep products. We could see that the current model of a one size fits all mattress concept wasn’t working for most people, including us: Chris needed a softer bed than I did, and I needed much cooler linens than him. Conventional bedding options weren’t able to help us. We could see that the mainstream mattress offerings were falling short and the industry was ready for some serious innovation. 

Happily, during our research we found some wonderful natural bedding companies that were quietly revolutionizing mattress design, and we were delighted to discover they were also solving some long standing shortcomings in the present day mattress industry. Brands like Savvy Rest and Obasan were achieving this by using durable natural ingredients, that were also breathable (without the heavy chemical footprint), with their goal of building something that puts your health right at the center of every design choice they make. Best of all, they were offering individual customization to both sleepers. Neither person needed to compromise when choosing a mattress. Both sleepers could have exactly the density that would give them their ideal sleep. We couldn’t wait to get started.

When Chris and I became a couple and I moved to the Cowichan Valley, we were welcomed by a supportive community that values shopping local and buying organic products. This gave us the confidence to move out of our garage and into a storefront in downtown Duncan, as well as launch our website. We walk to work, and love being a part of a dynamic smaller scale community that is thriving. Duncan turns out, is also centrally located on Vancouver Island, which gives us the ability to service many other communities, including the gulf islands. We have never regretted our decision to put down roots here, in fact we wouldn’t want it any other way.

Olga came onto the ownership team in 2019 after working together with us for 4 years, as we all built the business. Her dedication to customer care, her knowledge from working with other successful startup companies, as well as her 23 years experience working in both the airline and health food industries, have especially honed her deep understanding of service and connection. Olga’s brightness and love for all things healthy living, have been a great fit and invaluable for our growth.

We all come from a background of customer service, and garner great joy from helping others. It has been a wonderful journey this past 7 years of getting to know our customers and continuing to evolve as the “go to” place to shop for your natural and healthy bedroom. Growing Resthouse with Chris and Olga has been an epic journey, one that we are committed to continuing for a long time to come.

 Dawn Howlett