Want to escape to an island? Want wonderful food, wines and attentive care, along with a dash of history and adventure? For many years I have been aware of East Brother Light Station, and we finally got there for my husband's birthday in early February. It is worth the effort - not only a charming Victorian 1870's lighthouse B&B, but a delightful trip into the past with gorgeous vistas of San Francisco from your rock in the East Bay. Your hosts Peter and Dina are gracious, attentive and knowledgeable, and Dina is a fabulous chef, using local produce, cheeses, wines and coffee. There are only five rooms, so it's cozy. We were very lucky with weather, which was so mild that we could have our homemade hummus and pita chips at the outside table, watching the sun set over Mt. Tamalpais and West Brother Island. Dinner was delicious and elegant: wild mushroom soup, a greens/Halouma cheese salad, roast chicken with garlic mashed potatoes, and both strawberry shortcake and creme brulee for dessert. Breakfast was also fresh and hearty - buckwheat crepes stuff with bacon and apricot jam, fruit, and various breads and jams. Wines, champagne and coffee complimented the menus.
It's a bit of an adventure getting to EBLS. You take a rough road across an abandoned Navy base to the charmingly funky San Pablo Yacht Harbor, where Peter picks you up with the EBLS boat. I was a little worried about the laddder one has to clijmb from the boat to the landing, but it is firmly anchored in concrete and has enough height that you don't have to crawl on your belly to get ashore, you can step onto the landing. Our group of six ranged in age from late 50's to 80, and we all scrambled up with no problem. Once on the island, Dina shows you around, and gets you settled, then Peter regales you with the story of the lighthouse's rise, fall, and restoration. In the morning, Peter will fire up the old 'diaphone' foghorn and blow it for you. It''s LOUD!
EBLS is not cheap - rates start at $295/night. But for a special occasion or just to get away to something a little magical, it is well worth the cost. I hope to go back when I am 80!
- Also Known As:
- East Brother Light Station Hotel Point Richmond