There is a certain category of hotels that thrills me. These hotels are not luxurious in a conventional sense. Nor are they easy to find. But the challenge of identifying them and the reward of staying in one is enormously satisfying.
The hotels to which I’m referring are small and unique and offer maximum comfort in a way that responds to the natural environment in which they are situated. Ocean breezes and ceiling fans replace air conditioning. Local foods are served in lieu of continental style buffets. The scenery is stunning, the service impeccable and you as a guest are made to feel so at ease that you could happily melt into your surroundings and never leave. These are hotels where the experience in itself is a destination.
One of the goals of this blog is to introduce you to such rare and wondrous hotels, especially those that are reasonably priced. Here is one of my favorites, located on Point Reyes National Seashore, about 45 minutes outside of San Francisco:
Osprey Peak Bed & Breakfast, Inverness, California
The Osprey Peak Bed & Breakfast is a tiny inn with only two guest rooms hidden deep in the wooded hills that surround the coastal town of Inverness, California in Point Reyes National Seashore. Do not let the term “bed and breakfast” deter you. You need not fear faded floral wallpaper, musty bed sheets or outdated bathrooms at this bed and breakfast.
From the first moment you enter Osprey Peak, your senses will be overcome by the serenity and beauty that surrounds you. The dominant aesthetic is Japanese. The exterior is meant to evoke a Japanese style farmhouse with its distinctive sloping roof, while sliding doors and “ikebana” flower arrangements grace the interior. Every room, from the two guest rooms to the common breakfast area with an adjoining deck, is immaculate and harmonizes seamlessly with the views of the forest and mountains beyond.
The service is also impeccable. The innkeepers, David Herbst and Nancy Beck, anticipate every need of their guests, leaving a jug of water, Japanese robes and good reading lamps in each room, and preparing a personalized breakfast that is the pinnacle of the Osprey Peak experience. David and Nancy ask guests to make their own breakfast selection from an elaborate menu that includes fresh ingredients from the farms, bakers, cheese makers and other artisan producers of the Point Reyes area. A typical breakfast could include a morning bun from the enormously popular Bovine Bakery in Point Reyes Station, yogurt from Strauss Family Creamery in Petaluma, fresh brie from Marin French Cheese Company and various fruits from local farms.
Finally, Osprey Peak offers an excellent value. Rooms are priced at $195 every night except for Saturday (when the price goes up to $225) and there is never a two-night minimum. This is one bed and breakfast where I will happily stay anytime.