The Incarnation Monastery Guest House is perched on the side of a lush green hill in the Berkeley foothills. My room held a twin bed, desk and chair and a closet to hang clothes. The sliding glass door lead out to a balcony with an unobstructed view of trees, the bay and the Oakland Bridge leading to the San Francisco. At night the lights of the city sparkled like jewels tossed across the land in a multitude of colors. Breathtaking. There is a propensity for the San Francisco fog to wrap itself around the foothills. No matter – I felt warm, closely held and comfortable in my room. The bathroom/shower was just outside my door. Such perfect simplicity! There is a large kitchen in the house equipped with everything for guests to use. However, just a mile down the hill there is a plethora of great restaurants and a specialty market. Great hiking close by or walk the neighborhood with an interesting variety of beautiful homes.
The chapel in the Guest House is also simply dressed with the same outstanding views. There is no obligation for the guests to attend services held early morning and early evening. However, for me it is just part of diving into that Divine space of quiet reverence and beauty. I thoroughly enjoy the reading/singing of the Psalms and participating in the rituals that have been practiced for over 1,000 years! Time with one of the monks is available to all guests. It is my experience that they offer wisdom and sound support.
Whether a spiritual retreat, the need for some gentle self-care or just someone looking for a reasonably priced room for one person, Incarnation Monastery Guest House is unique - a place of quiet refuge in an urban setting. Treat yourself!