After a hectic, stressful start to the year, it was all I could do to crawn through last week and make it to Friday. Since just before Christmas, my wife and I had The Boat cabin reserved at HCR for Valentines weekend. Nothing, to me, feels better than being able to fully escape to a minimally technologically modified getaway like this. They have Wifi in the main house, but honestly, when you're here, just try to remember that the internet exists. I dare you.
The ranch IS dog friendly and I sure wish we'd have brought ours, but perhaps another time. The Boat House was very "cozy" as many other reviewers and visitors described, but if you've ever been in a studio apartment, you won't be taken aback by it. The smell of redwood in the house can be deceiving if one thinks they're being attacked by some sort of mold. It's what that kind of wood does when allowed to age in a cool, humid place with near constant moisture nearby. It's not mold. It's just wood. It's nature, people.
The ceiling is a little low, so if you're taller than 6', hold out for a different cabin or room. HCR's website does such a good job at describing thing, I don't see much use wasting the space re-describing what they've covered already. I will say that I've hardly ever had such a fun time staying 2 nights away from home before. I'm so glad that we chose THIS place for our first B&B experience. GREAT, friendly staff. Sunny & Sally are both such wonderful people. Sunny spends what seems like every sunlit hour working around the ranch and joins the crowd at the mainhouse in the evening to unwind over a few tunes (they have a piano everywhere you look and he has a little studio setup upstairs at the Barn). The commonplace in the barn is filled with VHS tapes, games, wonderful old antiques, and such interestingly crafted walls, doors, and decorations.
It rained off an on during our entire visit, which is exactly what I wanted and didn't even expect. I had no idea the ranch set on 60 acres until we arrived, but we took advantage of the trail that winds in and around the redwoods behind the cabins and houses. One morning, before breakfast (and do yourself a favor and DON'T miss breakfast. Just be there 8:50-9am and don't get grumpy about it. If you're late, it's your choice and your consequence), we took a little walk to the beach, guided the entire way by one of the farm cats. He lead us down the trail along the creek, through the mud (they have rubber milker boots to lend out so you don't need to bring or buy your own), down to the waves, and then back to the farm where the cat also wanted to show us where the chickens and sheep graze. I count that cat among the lovely staff I previously mentioned.
The food at breakfast was amazing each day, the cook was so kind and adorable. Teresa, who showed us to our cabin and gave us the tour, was so so kind to all she spoke with and VERY accomidating. There is so much to do at this B&B, it's hardly even worth leaving to go check out Ft. Bragg, but even if you don't mind mingling or exploring your thing, you're not too far of a car trip from many MANY interesting shops, restaurants, and sight seeing opportunities.
- 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