With their charming decors and beautiful grounds, Bay Area Bed & Breakfasts can
provide a quick respite from the daily grind. But the 20 listed below
have a little something extra that lifts them above the norm.
MacCallum House Inn pictured to the left.
1000 Fulton St., San Francisco | (415) 563-7872; (800) 543-5820 |
Romantics should enjoy the Archbishop’s Mansion, right on Alamo Square
Park. Every room has a partially or fully canopied bed, many have stone
fireplaces and whirlpool tubs, and all are named after different
Babbling Brook Inn
1025 Laurel St., Santa Cruz | (831) 427-2437; (800) 866-1131 |
With its acre of gardens, pines and redwoods, rustic walkways and a
sinewy brook that powers an antique grist mill, you’d never guess that
the Babbling Brook Inn is only about a mile from downtown Santa Cruz
and the Boardwalk.
Blue Violet Mansion
433 Brown St., Napa | (707) 253-2583; (800) 959-2583 |
The owners of the Blue Violet Mansion have done everything in their
power to trick you into thinking you’ve been transported to 1886 the
moment you step into their beautifully restored Queen Anne Victorian.
The rooms contain old fireplaces, clawfoot bathtubs, soaring ceilings
and even period-appropriate books. The Victorian look is completed with
a gazebo, manicured rose gardens and a sweeping grand staircase.
The Chateau Tivoli
1057 Steiner St., San Francisco | (800) 228-1647 |
Looking for a kinky night in a classy B&B? Try the Mark Twain suite
at the Chateau Tivoli. In addition to a private parlor and a tower
sitting area, the third floor suite has a king-size, mirrored, canopy
bed. And when we say mirrored, we mean mirrored, both on the headboard
and above on the wooden canopy itself. Mark Twain? Who knew?
485 Brown St., Napa | (707) 253-7733 |
The rooms in this 1889 mansion are lovely, but the real treat
is leaving the room to walk around the veranda that nearly surrounds
the house, sit in the four grand parlors and take breakfast in the
sunroom overlooking the gardens and fountain.
Compassion Flower Inn
216 Laurel St., Santa Cruz | (831) 466-0420 |
Ever wanted to visit a B&B, but didn’t want to leave your
“medical” marijuana at home? Try the Compassion Flower Inn, where not
only will they welcome you with open arms (assuming you have a doctor’s
note) but you can even stay in the Hemp Room, which is decorated with
handmade prints of everyone’s favorite medicinal herb.
Dockside Boat and Bed
Gate C, Pier 39, San Francisco | (415) 392-5526
57 Clay St., Oakland | (510) 444-5858 |
Pretend you’re Gilligan (and the Skipper, too!) with a stay at either
Bay Area Boat and Bed. You can be the temporary-owner of variety of
boats for a night or two, from a 36-foot Hunter Sailboat to a 52-foot
motor yacht. You can’t actually take the boats out on the Bay yourself,
but private charters are available.
East Brother Light Station
117 Park Place, Point Richmond | (510) 233-2385 |
Accessible only by boat (they’ll pick you up at Point San Pablo Yacht
Harbor), this lighthouse-turned-inn has four bedrooms, each with a
great view of the bay. Since you are basically stuck on the island
until you leave, your reservation includes a full breakfast and a
Gingerbread Mansion Inn
400 Berding St., Ferndale | (707) 786-4000; (800) 952-4136 |
For a truly luxurious B&B experience, the Gingerbread Mansion Inn
is hard to beat. It has large, painstakingly decorated rooms, enormous
bathrooms, well-manicured English gardens and an executive chef and
sous chef on staff to whip up exquisite breakfast options.
Inn of Imagination
470 Randolph St., Napa | (707) 224-7772 |
Explore all that is whimsical in this Spanish Revival style inn, where
each of the three rooms is named and decorated after classic
creative-types: Dr. Seuss, Lewis Carroll and, uh, Jimmy Buffet.
Seriously. Make sure to check out the floor to ceiling mural in the
dining room that imagines what would happen if these three luminaries
could hang out.
598 Laine St., Monterey | (831) 372-4777; (888) 428-7253 |
Every day is an un-birthday at Jabberwock, an Alice in
Wonderland-themed B&B near Cannery Row and the Monterey Aquarium.
All the rooms are named after places in Lewis Carroll stories and
breakfast treats include “Nuddy Nubble Abblestuffel.”
211 Miranda Rd., Half Moon Bay | (650) 726-6642 |
Sure, many of the rooms at Landis Shores on Miramar Beach feature
whirlpool tubs, fireplaces and cute rocking chairs. But you probably
won’t notice, seeing as you’ll be out on your private deck, stunned by
the incredible right-on-the-ocean views.
MacCallum House Inn
45020 Albion St., Mendocino | (707) 937-0289; (800) 609-0492 |
In addition to more traditional rooms, the MacCallum House Inn also has
several private cottages, so you don’t have to see another soul after
you check in. You can even get in-room massage and spa services. But
you may want to leave your private heaven to fill up on the
complementary breakfast of prepared-to-order organic entrees at the
inn’s acclaimed restaurant.
Madison St. Inn
1390 Madison St., Santa Clara | (408) 249-5541
The Madison St. Inn takes its proximity to the Winchester Mystery House
to heart by offering murder mystery weekends for groups of eight to 12.
Everyone gets involved in the case, be it as a suspect, detective or
even the murderer. Bwah ha ha ha ha!
255 Oceanview Blvd., Pacific Grove | (831) 373-3388; (800) 93950 |
Have fun the old-timey way at the Martine Inn. The game room has a 1917
nickelodeon, 1890 pool table and a 1930s dime slot machine. The inn
also boasts a library stocked with over 1,000 books, a significant
collection of antique silver flatware and a 1932 baby grand player
Old Thyme Inn
779 Main St., Half Moon Bay | (650) 726-1616; (800) 720-4277 |
Herbs are all the rage at this seven-room Victorian home. Eighty
varieties of herbs and flowers grow in the garden, each of the rooms is
named and decorated after a different spice and herbal aromatherapy spa
amenities are also available. But perhaps the most delicious use of the
homegrown wares is in the full breakfast with treats like
lemon-rosemary coffee cake and basil featherbed eggs.
The Red Victorian
1665 Haight St., San Francisco | (415) 864-1978
Some people need a B&B with an ethos. And for those people we
present The Red Victorian, suitably located in the Upper Haight. With
names like The Flower Child Room, The Butterfly Room and The Peace Room
(not to mention The Love Bathroom), it’s clear this “traveler’s hotel”
is milking all it can from it’s history as a hippie crash pad during
the Summer of Love.
1309 Spruce St., Berkeley | (510) 559-3621 |
Ever wonder what it would be like to sleep inside a giant redwood?
Well, you won’t get much closer than this 1902 Craftsman style home,
where almost everything, from the floors and walls to the intricate
moldings (and even an ironing board) feature the hearty dark wood.
Rose Garden Inn
2740 Telegraph Ave., Berkeley | (510) 549-2145; (800) 922-9005 |
Fans of pink rejoice! The Rose Garden Inn not only manages to somehow
include the color in almost every room of its two adjoining mansions,
but its beautifully maintained gardens also feature pink roses and
other flamingo-colored flora.
Victorian Garden Inn
316 E. Napa St., Sonoma | (707) 996-1689 |
There are rooms of all shapes and sizes at this Greek Revival
farmhouse, from the gigantic Woodcutter’s Cottage (with fireplace,
sitting area, and extra-large clawfoot tub) to the smaller, more
aromatic, Garden Room, located right beside the Victorian garden and
babbling brook. But for something high above the usual, try the Top O’
the Tower room, which is perched atop an old water tower.