Tag Archives: historic

Historic California Lodges

Historic Lodges in California

Oldest hotels in California, West Coast & Sierra Nevada Mts 

julian porch

lodgeWhile the well-known explorers Lewis and Clark were both freemasons and the first white men to walk across the continent were not interested in ‘Masonic Lodges’ of the West Coast. Nor any Worshipful Masters that came after.

The most interesting Historic Lodges of California are the ones located deep within nature, surrounded by grandeur and real wild beauty. The historic hotels in which we list have been accommodating guest for over 100 years.

Ideal locations, from rustic mountain cabins to impressive beach resorts, gold country inns to a desert oasis – this is Total Escape, California off the beaten path.

amargosa

California Deserts

Amargosa Hotel
Amargosa Opera House
Death Valley Junction, CA
760-852-4441
Historic mining location; Mojave Desert, east of DVNP

The Inn at Furnace Creek
Inn at Death Valley
Furnace Creek, California
Death Valley National Park
Death Valley, CA
Palmed poolside resort with luxury, opened in 1927

Southern California Mountains

The Julian Hotel
Julian Gold Rush Hotel
2032 Main Street
Julian, California
800-734-5854
760-765-0201
East San Diego Mountains
Oldest continuously operating hotel in Southern California

HotelDelCoronado
Hotel Del, Coronado, CA

California Cities

Hotel Del Coronado
1500 Orange Ave
Coronado Island, CA
800-468-3533
619-435-6611
West of downtown San Diego
Wooden Victorian Beach Resort, facing the Pacific
Oldest lodge on the West Coast, established 1888

U.S. Grant Hotel
326 Broadway Avenue
San Diego, CA
800-237-5029
619-232-3121
Downtown, directly across from Horton Plaza

The Mission Inn
3649 Mission Inn Avenue
Riverside, CA
909-784-0300

BeverlyHills
The Beverly Hills Hotel
Beverly Hills, CA

Biltmore Hotel
The Biltmore
downtown Los Angeles

Queen Mary Hotel
The Queen Mary
Historic Cruise Ship
Long Beach, California
Port of Los Angeles, busy harbor w/ seaside village

The Fairmont Hotel
San Francisco, CA

Mountain Lodging

Sierra Nevada Mountains

The Ahwahnee Hotel
Yosemite Valley, CA
559-252-4848
granite walls of Yosemite Valley

Bridgeport Inn
US Highway 395
Bridgeport, CA
760-932-7380
Eastern Sierra
built in 1877

Camp Nelson Lodge
Camp Nelson, California
559-542-0904
Western Sierra Nevada
near Giant Sequoia National Monument

Clair Tappaan Lodge
19940 Donner Pass Road
Norden, CA
530-426-3632
Hostel on Donner Pass w/ PCT access
built in 1934 by the Sierra Club

Elwell Lakes Lodge
6200 Gold Lake Forest Hwy
Gold Lake, CA
Lakes Basin Recreation Area
530-836-2347
lodge and cabins, built in 1920

Glacier Lodge
Big Pine Creek
Big Pine, CA
Eastern Sierra
lodge burnt down; cabins remain

Gold Lake Lodge
Gold Lake, CA
Lakes Basin Recreation Area

Evergreen Lodge
Groveland, CA
800-935-6343
West of Yosemite National Park
Hwy 120 (CA SR 120)
88 cabins w/ historic mountain lodge, built in the 1920s

Fern Creek Lodge
4628 Boulder Dr.
June Lake, CA
760-648-7722
800-621-9146

Kings Canyon Lodge
67751 East Kings Canyon Road
Kings Canyon National Park, CA
559-335-2405
built in 1937
destroyed in wildfire 2015

Kit Carson Lodge
32161 Kit Carson Road
Kit Carson, CA 95644
209-258-8500
Silver Lake @ Carson Pass Hwy 88

restsaloon
Lakeshore Lodge, Restaurant & Saloon

Lakeshore Resort
Huntington Lake, CA
West Sierra National Forest
established in 1922

Montecito Sequoia Lodge
63410 Generals Hwy
Sequoia Kings Canyon NP
Recreation Camp w/ lake
877-282-1440

gold country lodge
Murphy’s

Murphys Historic Hotel
457 Main Street
Murphys, CA
800-532-7684
209-728-3444
Gold Rush California, Historic Mining Community

Historic National Hotel
Bed and Breakfast
18183 Main Street
Jamestown, CA
209-984-3446
800-894-3446
Gold Rush Country
since 1859

The National Hotel
211 Broad Street
Nevada City, CA
530-265-4551
Oldest continuously operating hotel in California, built in 1852


Rainbow Lodge
at Royal Gorge
Interstate 80, west of Donner Pass
Sierra Nevada

Rankin Ranch
Working cattle ranch w/ cabins & meals
Caliente, California
661-867-2511
Kern Co. Southern Sierra Nevada
stagecoach stop 1870

Silver City Resort
Mountain Cabins
Mineral King, CA
Southern Sequoia National Park

Sonora Inn
Gold Rush Country
Sonora, CA

Sugar Bowl Ski Resort
629 Sugar Bowl Rd
Norden, CA
530-426-9000
Donner Pass
opened in 1939

Tioga Pass Resort
Tioga Pass, Hwy 120 (CA SR 120)
East Yosemite National Park
Oldest resort in the Inyo National Forest, established in 1914
(under construction 2017-2020, due to storm damage)

Truckee Hotel
10007 Bridge St.
Truckee, CA
530-587-4444
established 1873

Wawona Hotel
golfing on mountain meadows
Wawona, California
South Yosemite NP,
Highway 41 (CA SR 41)
in operation since 1918

tiogacabins

[soon, more to come]

High Sierra Lodges

The phrase ‘High Sierra’ commonly refers to the highest mountain peaks in the U.S.  Located in the Eastern Sierra region of California, as seen all along US Highway 395. The tallest granite ranges protected by Wilderness Areas. No roads, no building, no development.

Vogelsang HSC

various types of Sierra lodging

wilderness camps – hike-in access
rustic cabins – big snow country
fishing lodges – river front
historic forest lodges, inns & resorts
lakeside resorts – often closed in winter
tent cabins – summer months only

Listed below is a small selection of Sierra lodges in Calif. The list will grow over time as we add more recommended stays. Follow the links and call ahead for reservations, cuz some of these remote places close seasonally, or they can get damaged during winter storms.

Vaulted ceilings, large windows, huge wooden beams and granite rock fireplaces are typical of interiors inside the large, historic lodges. Hotel rooms, log cabins, maybe a huge dining room and even a bar. Usually no swimming pools; since alpine lakes and rivers abound.

Sierra Lodges can be found on paved access roads, along busy highways or interstates, near railroads, in neighboring small towns, close to hiking trailheads, and always near mountain destinations. Often open during winter months, but not always.

GenevieveLake

Lodging is super scarce in the wilderness high country. Rustic cabins, community dorms, bunk houses or tent cabins are typical overnight shelter. Daily meals may be provided (when requested in advance). Much desired time frame: June through September, wilderness accommodations can be reserved up to a year in advance, with a hefty fee, of course.

Most popular mountain areas could have seasonal outfitters that provide access to the remote backcountry; usually by horseback, snowmobile, or cross-country skiing. Reservations are needed for such services.

High Elevation Lodges & Cabins in the Sierra Nevada Mountains

elevation: 4000′ – 9000′

Overnight lodging in California; alpine country, located high in elevation. Mountain peaks, fire lookouts, cabins, historic inns, guard stations.

tiogacabins

The highest of elevations – cabins, lodges, small inns, all in perfect locations, totally immersed in alpine wilderness. Many of these are accessible only half the year, due to deep snow. A few can be reached by snowmobile or snowshoe in winter months. Some also have snow ski resorts nearby.

Lodging in Aspendell, California
elevation 8500′
Bishop Creek, Eastern Sierra
Highway CA SR 168
West of Bishop, CA

Lodging in Lone Pine, CA
elevation near 4000′
Mount Whitney Motels
Bishop Creek, Eastern Sierra

Lodging in Mammoth Lakes, CA
elevation 7860′
Mammoth Mountain ski resort
Mono Divide, Ansel Adams Wilderness
Eastern Sierra

Lodging in Bucks Lake, CA
Bucks Lake Resorts
Plumas National Forest

Chalet View Lodge
Highway 70 @ Graeagle, CA
Plumas National Forest
East of Quincy, CA

Gray Eagle Lodge
5000 Gold Lake Road
Graeagle, CA

Kit Carson Resort
Silver Lake CA
Carson Pass, Hwy 88
(closes for winter)

Tioga Pass Resort (TPR)
elevation 9000′
Tioga Pass, Highway 120
East Yosemite NP

High Sierra Camp (HSC)
(horseback or hike-in only)
Giant hiking loop in high country = Tuloumne Meadows, Vogelsang, Lake Merced, Sunrise Camp, May Lake
elevation 9000′ – 12,000′
Tioga Pass, Highway 120
Within Yosemite NP

Rainbow Tavern & Lodge @ Royal Gorge
Interstate 80 @ Old Route 40
West of Donner Pass
Soda Springs, CA

Lodging in Sierra City, California
elevation 4187′
North Yuba River
Northern Gold Country, Hwy 49

Lakes Basin Recreation Area
elevation 6400′
(closed in winter, sno mo ok)
Gold Lake, CA
Packer Lake Lodge
Sardine Lake
Elwell Lakes Lodge
Bassetts Station
North Gold Country, Hwy 49

Lodging in June Lake Loop, Hwy 158
June Mountain ski resort
Double Eagle Resort, Whispering Pines
N of Mammoth Lakes, CA

Lodging in La Porte, California
elevation 5000′
La Porte Road
East of Yuba City, CA

laporte_union
LaPorte Union Hotel

Montecito Sequoia Lodge
Montecito Lake Resort & Cabins
open year round
Sequoia National Park

Sequoia High Sierra Camp
elevation 8282′
(hike-in only)
Sequoia National Park

Sorensen’s Resort
Cabins & Cafe
elevation 6000′
South of Lake Tahoe
Hope Valley, CA

Lodging in LAKE TAHOE, California
elevation 6229′
many lodges, inns, condos and resorts
located at Calif & Nevada state border

Truckee Hotel
Donner Lake Inn Bed & Breakfast
Donner Pass I-80
Truckee, CA

Twin Lakes
elevation 7092′
Eastern Sierra @ Bridgeport, CA
Hoover Wilderness access
Toiyabe National Forest

Vermilion Resort
elevation 7643′
(closes for winter)
John Muir Wilderness
JMT = John Muir Trail access
Sierra National Forest
Lake Edison, CA

Whitehawk Ranch Golf Resort
Vacation Rentals
Plumas National Forest
Graeagle, CA

stonewalls

National Forest Cabins & Fire Lookout Towers

NFS

hiker

Snow melts from MAY into JUNE. Expect closure or mud on dirt back roads. Wildflowers bloom APRIL through AUGUST in the Sierra Nevada, above 3000′. Autumn arrives with aspens and fall colors in the Eastern Sierra, through OCTOBER.

lift tickets