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“Stepping Back in Time...”
Review of Howard Creek Ranch

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Howard Creek Ranch
Ranked #2 of 3 Westport B&B and Inns
Reviewed 30 March 2013

Hearty breakfasts prepared on a wood fired stove, served in candlelit settings in front of a roaring fire...Conversations that focus on gratitude and awe of the nature surrounding us...Sunrises and sunsets that cannot be given enough words to express their grandeur...Walks up into the hills where old growth Redwoods stand, appreciated and honored...Quiet and solitude
This is found at the Howard Creek Ranch.

Room Tip: We loved the Blue Balcony and would have stayed there if it been available all 4 nights...had reserv...
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  • Stayed: March 2013, travelled as a couple
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Thank TCMargaret
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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56 - 62 of 176 reviews

Reviewed 24 March 2013

I took my wife to Howard Creek for her b-day. What a pleasent adventure. From the beauty of the gardens,to the veiw of the ocean, this was one of our best trip we have taking over our 23 yrs together. Sally is very friendly and and Sonny is interesting to talk too. He is a knowledgeable person with some great idea about life.We stayed in the Willows room . The room was roomy, clean and comfortable.The ranch style breakfast was GREAT. You have the opportunity to visit with people from different areas of the country. We had 2 couples from Nevada, sharing breakfast with us.The owner ate with us,how much more personal and relaxing could it be.With the years we have been vacationing we have never had a talk with the owner or managers of the hotels except if a problem arouses.Thank you Sally,Sunny and Isidra for a delightful and memorable vacation. God willing we look forward to seeing you again...soon ..Ed and Marlene from Benicia,Ca

Room Tip: we loved the willows,the hot tub is just above us so as the library and it can take a family of 4.It...
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  • Stayed: March 2013, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank edward s
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 March 2013

My husband and I stayed one night at Howard Creek Ranch as a stop on a trip up the west coast. We both wish we had booked another night or more at this amazing place. We will certainly be back! The farmhouse and carriage barn are historic buildings that just beg you to stay awhile and reflect on quieter times when life was not so hectic. I can honestly say that I had the best nights sleep in the Solar room than I have had in months. Cozy nooks and crannies filled with antique lamps among all manor of fabulous treasures are fun to explore. We sat for a long while by the wood burning stove just enjoying being quiet. The grounds are filled with flowers which add color and frangrance everywhere. The beach is a short walk and is beautiful. We were the only ones on the beach the morning we went to explore. It was amazing. Breakfast was delicious and the fact that it is cooked entirely on a wood burning stove delighted the country girl in me. Baked pears, all kinds of fresh fruit, perfectly scrambled eggs, sausage and hot biscuits along with delicious coffee made it hard to leave the table. There is WiFi if you have to be plugged in, but no cell service, which suited me just fine. The bed in our room was very comfortable and while the bathroom was small, it was all we needed. We loved the common areas and all the detailed wood work around the place. The moon wqs full the night we stayed and it was so beautiful shining through the skylights. There is a hot tub, which we did not use. If you need a pristine, cookie cutter environment, then HCR may not be for you, but if you love exploring the real side of life in our country, then this place is a slice of the pie that you will want to sample.

Sally & Sunny are great hosts and we enjoyed chatting with them both, as well as Teresa who I believe is a member of their staff. We LOVED Howard Creek Ranch and am looking forward to our next visit!

Room Tip: We loved the Solar room, but I believe you would be happy with any of the offernings.
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  • Stayed: February 2013, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank Katona K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 February 2013

Please, don't scoff; the words, 'Bohemian' and 'Rhapsody' were the most apropos I could think of when trying to rate this lovely place. My husband and I came out to Howard Creek Ranch a year ago in May for the last leg of our Honeymoon. We'd been to a couple other B and Bs in the Northern California area during our road trip, both inns very pretty and accommodating; Howard Creek, however, seems to be the place that stays perfectly mythologized in my recollections of last summer, and I just wish everyone would discover it! A uniquely-fashioned combination of rustic homeyness with artistic sensibilities. Such distinctive craftsmanship that went into these spaces! Not to mention the eco-minded and poetic gypsy-touch that can be admired in the decoration throughout. Eagerly, we came out again for a retreat in August, stayed in the Blue Room (a choice decision, I must say; the pictures on the web hardly do justice to the overall coziness and singularly romantic design of the room) which allows for privacy, but also the option of exploring the incredible Common Room adjacent. I liked that fact that even though our kitchenette area was within the Common Room of the Carriage House, we never felt intruded upon; oddly, in both times that we visited the rooms at Howard Creek's Carriage House, we scarcely saw anyone. Seemed like the entire place was a secret hide-a-way from the drab and uninspired of contemporary settings. Heaven! Better still, during our August trip, the bushes leading to the beach were completely bursting with ripe black-berries. We picked bowls-full, decided to skip dinner in Fort Bragg, made sandwiches with fixings we brought from home (thank you, mini-fridge), uncorked some white wine (thank you, kitchenette, complete with wine glasses and lovely dishes) then from the Carriage House deck, savored a gorgeous, lemon-y view of the setting sun over the Pacific ocean. -Most B and Bs that I have researched charge at least a hundred dollars more for the sights and sounds that we were able to enjoy freely on that communal balcony, before venturing out on foot when the mood arose, to the beach itself; again, wonderfully free of crowds or crowd debris. I have read other reviews that make derisive note of the highway bridge between the property and the beach; personally, I have never been distracted by it, the area is just that beautiful and serene. I particularly loved the mist that hovers over the place in the mornings, ah! Just the memory of misty mountains and the sound of the ocean after a delicious breakfast of quiche, baked apples and cream. Loved it! In closing, if you're looking for a romantic, bohemianesque get-a-way with your Sweetheart -or for yourself, book a couple days at this idyllic spot. Make a beautiful memory.

Room Tip: Though the Blue Room does not have direct view of the ocean, a view from the dining deck in the Carr...
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  • Stayed: August 2012, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank desiree w
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 January 2013

We stayed for 2 nights the second week of January. It was the off season. We had requested a different cabin, but it was being repaired so Sally gave us a more expensive cabin for the same, reduced rate as the original. We stayed in the Boathouse and it was cute and nice and a retreat. Now, if you are expecting to stay in a CABIN in the WOODS with the minimum; you will get all you expect. The cabin is wood slates, modified around a boat. There is no insulation so in the summer you will be fine. We had 40 degree days and 20 degree nights and we were either cold or very hot as the wood stove is old and lacks a damper system to control burning levels. You have a bed with sheets, blankets, and pillows, a microwave, dishes, a mini fridge, a sofa, a table, a woodstove with wood provided, a small sink, a toilet, and a shower. There was ample hot water. The lights are dim and antique, so it was hard to see in the cabin after dark. There is no TV, radio or internet access...you are literally at the end of the world.
The hosts are great. They are characters and very friendly. Breakfast is at 9am sharp. It was good. FIrst morning we had french toast, turkey sausage, fruit, and bananas in a maple syrup/apple cider sauce. Day two we had Eggs with salsa, biscuits (from a can, I might add, which I thought was odd), jam, turkey sausage, baked pears, and fresh fruit. The only animals I saw were sheep. The selling point is the beach access and we walked at low tide for 2 hours alone on the beach and saw lots of starfish, crabs, and mussels. That was really nice and private. Bring food, as Fort Bragg is a curve 30 minutes away. There is a small grill you can use. It was nice to hear the creek babbling and the ocean breaking when we went to bed.

Room Tip: In the winter, don't get the room up on the cliff. NO HEAT. THe couple who stayed there were abs...
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  • Stayed: January 2013, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank Jim And Lori B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 October 2012

My husband and I just returned from 2 nights in the Walden room for our first anniversary. It was wonderful- everything I hoped for and more.

The grounds: We thought they were gorgeous. We love old things, and had a blast exploring all the nooks and crannies of the place (cute old out house, etc) . We especially adored the animals. Sally was nice enough to offer carrot sticks to feed the goats. The goats were a TRIP! We ran into them on a hike up the hill and could barely get rid of them. It was just a little extra adventure. The beach was awesome but unfortunately we never made it down for low tide. I don't understand the reviews saying the grounds were not what they expected, we thought they well represented in the pictures. A little construction debris is no big deal, if you can appreciate all the hard work that has already been put in!

The common areas: We LOVED the hot tub in the upstairs! It was a great way to unwind after a long day of hiking. We glanced over the books but were so distracted by all the beautiful lamps that we did not have the chance to sit down with any. I especially loved the area of decorative bunnies. Some may call the carriage house common area clutter-y, but I think disorganized museum would be a better description. Outside there was a lovely sitting area with beautiful stained glass. My husband remarked this would be a great place for a small family reunion because of all the great sitting areas. We were the only people in the common areas, so it was nice and private.

The room: Our room was incredibly comfortable and quaint. The bathroom tile was mesmerizing (I know this is an odd thing to say, but seriously, check out the pictures). The kitchenette was functional and had a nice little table to sit at. There was an area outside to sit as well. We liked the touches like the lamps and the great wooden coffee table. Little journals were included where other travelers wrote tales of their stay. Lots of engagements, anniversaries, etc! My ONLY complaint was when we arrived our sheets were filthy. Honestly, filthy. Long black hair everywhere and "stains". Luckily there were plenty of towels for us to sleep on, and our sheets were changed the next day when we asked. Unfortunately it was too late in the evening to ask to have them changed by the time we arrived. I was initially very upset, but figured it was probably an oversight since the rest of the room was very clean.

Breakfast: Wonderful! My husband and I almost died when we tasted the strawberry banana pancakes. The egg scramble bake was delicious as well, but then again so was every single thing we tasted. We were made to feel very at home, and even with our ravenous appetites for coffee, we were never without a full cup! 9am breakfast might not be early enough for some, but it is perfect timing for vacation. It was fun sitting at the table with a view into the kitchen. The breakfast staff was AWESOME! Seriously, exemplary service. Raises for everyone!

Location: Far from the towns but great if you're looking for something secluded. Right by the beach, right near great hiking. When we headed into town, I wished we were back at the ranch!

Anyway, we will definitely be back. Hopefully we will be back with friends/family in the future, but this will be the first place we think of for a romantic getaway. The sheets situation was more than redeemed with the rest of the awesomeness.

Room Tip: Walden room is very romantic and downstairs. Perfect for two, and only two. The solar room also look...
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  • Stayed: October 2012, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Kasey K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 October 2012

Wouldn't have wanted to stay anywhere else in Fort Bragg/Mendocino. HCR has character. Willow is dark, but it was right for us. Breakfasts were delish and filling. Plenty of places to sit/read/walk. It was freezing and foggy, but heaters in room kept us warm. If you want sterile, stay away! If you want to get away and enjoy the coast, a stay here will fulfill. So glad for the experience. Theresa was a bonus.

Room Tip: Boathouse for single person who wants to be in treehouse environment!
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Stayed: September 2012, travelled with family
Thank MyNameIsGirl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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Additional Information about Howard Creek Ranch

Address: 40501 N Highway 1, PO. Box 121, Westport, CA 95488-8732
Region: United States > California > Mendocino County > Westport
Amenities:
Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Suites
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 3 B&Bs / Inns in Westport
Price Range: £65 - £142 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 12
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Registered Historic ocean front farm on 60 acres settled in 1867, bordered by miles of beach and mountains in a wilderness area. Award winning flower gardens, antiques, a 75 foot swinging foot bridge over Howard Creek, cabins, comfortable beds, hot tub, nearby horseback riding, full ranch breakfast. A work in progress. "One of the most romantic places to stay on the planet" S.F. Chronicle. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Howard Creek Ranch Hotel Westport

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