The drive from San Francisco to Little River Inn is a nature-lover’s dream. Larger-than-life Redwood trees line the highway as CA-128 winds its way through mountainous terrain, carrying you from the river-bed of Anderson Valley, up to the breathtaking cliffs of Mendocino. The three-hour drive takes you past more than a dozen vineyards and apple orchards, ending with expansive views of the Pacific Ocean as you arrive at the property.
It’s not hard to imagine why James Dean called a guest room at Little River Inn home while filming East of Eden, earning the honor of becoming its namesake. The main house of Little River Inn sits high upon a cliff that overlooks Van Damme Beach, providing a stunning vista as you land on the massive front porch for check-in. The front porch is the central hub of Little River Inn, allowing you access to the front desk, a piano parlor, the main dining room, and Ole’s Whale Watch Bar. Booking a room in the main house puts you squarely on top of these amenities, however, guests staying at the outer cottages have access to complimentary transportation to-and-from their guest house and the main house.
The atmosphere of the main house at Little River Inn is quaint, with accents reminiscent of a seaside village. The small, interior staircase and narrow hallways give you an old world, at-home feel, which spills-over into your room. The rooms of the main house are appointed with modern amenities, while effortlessly weaving-in touches of maritime nostalgia through their color palette and decor.
The property sprawls out from the main house, offering differing levels of privacy, on-site amenities, and accessibility for guests. The annexed buildings have perks that include more spacious rooms (many wheelchair accessible), porch & balcony access, fireplaces, and even a steam shower if you’re lucky! If you’re looking for a special experience, Little River Inn also offers off-campus seaside luxury accommodations at its Mallory House property, giving you jaw-dropping views of Mallory Cove and the Pacific Ocean.
Mallory House is one of several luxury annexes at Little River Inn, located a short 1 minute drive from the main house. The stand-alone guest house features 3 ocean-view suites that make for an incredible weekend getaway. One of the guest rooms at Mallory House, The Hannah Madison, features deck access (complete with a hot tub), a formal living room, a spacious bathroom with a Jacuzzi bathtub, and a king bed.
Start your day by ordering room service and having a sunrise breakfast on the front porch. Watching the waves crash over the rocks at Mallory Cove as you sip on fresh-squeezed orange juice and gorge yourself on a stack of Ole’s Swedish Hotcakes is the best way to kick-off your stay. Once you’ve had time to freshen-up for the day, going for a golf lesson at Little River Inn’s 9-hole, Audubon-certified wildlife sanctuary green is a great way to get the blood flowing.
Round-out your afternoon with a few cocktails at Ole’s Whale Watch Bar. By this point in the day, I’m sure you’re ready to retire to your room, and that isn’t a bad idea. Slip into your hot tub or take a nap on the lawn as you allow yourself to wind down in anticipation of dinner at the main dining room, lead by Chef Marc Dym.
Opt for the garden view and start your meal with the multiple award winning Dungeness Crab Cakes. The generously lumpy crab cakes are pan seared to perfection and complimented by a creamy mustard dill aioli. You really can’t go wrong with anything on the menu, but I was particularly impressed by the Flat Iron Steak Diane (a charbroiled steak served with mushroom brandy au jus, herb butter, smashed red potatoes, and green beans almondine). Finish off your meal with one of the seasonal desserts. The tongue-tingling flavor of the Warm Olallieberry Cobbler sparkle on your tongue as the creamy vanilla ice cream coats your tastebuds. It’s the prefect way to end a perfect meal.
Little River Inn offers the perfect combination of scenery & simplicity, making it a fabulous getaway – be it for a weekend or a week.
7901 N. Highway One
Little River, CA 95456
United States of America
+1 (888) INN-LOVE
+1 (707) 937-5942
Lifestyle Editor at World Bride Magazine.