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.
- 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