Tag Archives: rustic

Historic California Lodges

Historic Lodges in California

Oldest hotels in California, West Coast & Sierra Nevada Mts 

amador2021
Imperial Hotel in Amador City, CA – Gold Rush Country

lodgeWhile the well-known explorers Lewis and Clark were both freemasons and the first white men to walk across the continent; We are 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
The Oasis at Death Valley
Furnace Creek, California
Death Valley National Park
Death Valley, CA
Palms and 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

julian porch

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

Chateau Marmont
8221 Sunset Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90046
323-656-1010
West Hollywood iconic, since 1927

The Fairmont Hotel
San Francisco, CA

The Queen Anne Hotel
1590 Sutter Street
San Francisco, CA 94109
415-441-2828
A grand Victorian built in 1890

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

Sacramento Hostel
925 H Street
Sacramento, CA 95814
916-668-6632
Victorian in old town; built in 1885

Santa Cruz Hostel
321 Main Street
Santa Cruz, CA 95060
831-423-8304
Victorian cottages w/ gardens

Stanford Court
905 California Street, Nob Hill
San Francisco, CA 94108
866-576 5550
accommodating guests for over 100 years

Upham Hotel
1404 De La Vina Street
Santa Barbara, CA
805-962-0058
Victorian in downtown; built in 1871

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

Bucks Lake Lodge
16525 Bucks Lake Rd.
Bucks Lake, CA
530-283-2262
established in 1929
burnt down in 2010
rebuilt/reopened 2013

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

Cary House Hotel
300 Main Street
Placerville, CA 95667
530-622-4271
landmark 1857 hotel offering free breakfast

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

Dardanelle Resort
Highway 108, Sonora Pass
209-965-4275
established in 1923
burnt down in 2018
working on rebuilding 2021

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

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

Georgetown Hotel & Saloon
6260 Main Street
Georgetown, CA
530-333-4428
in operation since 1856

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

Granlibakken
725 Granlibakken Road
Tahoe City, CA
800-543-3221
530-583-4242
Tahoe ski resort, since 1927

Groveland Hotel
18767 Main Street
Groveland, CA
209-962-4000
Gateway to Yosemite; built in 1849

Imperial Hotel
14202 Old Highway 49
Amador City, CA 95601
209-267-9172
built in 1879

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/ small 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 Country

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

National Hotel & Restaurant
18183 Main Street
Jamestown, CA
209-984-3446
800-894-3446
Gold Rush Country
continuous operation, first built in 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

Saint Bernard Lodge
44801 Highway 36 East
Mill Creek, CA
530-736-6188
Lassen National Forest
built in the 1920’s

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

Sonora Inn
160 S Washington St
Sonora, CA 95370
209-532-2400
Gold Rush Country
built in 1896

Strawberry Lodge
17510 US Highway 50
530-659-7200
Kyburz Pass
Eldorado National Forest
* closed due to 2021 Caldor Fire 

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 Inyo National Forest, established in 1914
(ongoing construction)

The Union Hotel
1915 Main Street
Quincy – La Porte Rd
La Porte, CA
530-675-2860
Plumas National Forest
established in 1855

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

Washington Hotel
15432 Washington Rd
Washington, CA
530-265-4364
W of Donner Pass
established 1857

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

 

tiogacabins

Northern California

Benbow Historic Inn
445 Lake Benbow Drive
Garberville, CA 95542
707-923-2124
Mendocino US 101

Blair House Inn
45110 Little Lake St
Mendocino, CA 95460
707-937-1800
1888 Victorian

Didjeridoo Inn
44860 Main Street
Mendocino, CA 95460
707-937-6200
1881 Victorian

Highland Dell Lodge
21050 River Boulevard
Monte Rio, CA 95462
707-865-2300
Russian River
Wooden Retreat w/ Restaurant, since 1906

Inn at Schoolhouse Creek
7051 North Highway 1
Little River, CA 95456
707-937-5525
Mendocino Coast
coastal farmhouse, built in 1862

Joshua Grindle Inn
44800 Little Lake Rd
Mendocino, CA
707-937-6022
1879 Victorian

Klamath River Lodge
34395 Highway 96
Orleans, CA 95556
707-499-0901
fishing lodge built in 1930’s

Tallman Hotel
9550 Main Street
Upper Lake, CA 95485
707-275-2244
Clear Lake
built in the 1870s

Village Inn at Childs Meadow
41500 Highway 36Ehorseback
Mill Creek, CA 96061
530-595-3383
Lassen National Forest
original resort established 1864
stagecoach stop

 

ranger

Fire Lookouts: 100 years

NFS USFS

Many US Forest Service Fire Lookout Towers and Cabins inside California are considered historic, many being built prior to 1940.

>>> find all California National Forest Cabin Rentals and Fire Lookouts

Crocker Guard Station
Plumas National Forest
constructed in 1912

Big Meadows Guard Station
Sequoia National Forest
constructed between 1933 – 1935

Girard Ridge Lookout
Shasta Trinity National Forest
constructed in 1931

Harvey West Cabin
Eldorado National Forest
constructed in early 1930s

McCarthy Point Lookout
Lassen National Forest
constructed in 1936

Robbs Hut
Eldorado National Forest
constructed in 1933

Sly Guard Cabin
Eldorado National Forest
constructed in early 1940s

fire lookout tower

Mike’s Sky Ranch

Baja Resort Off Road

A rare gem: a rustic river ranch in Baja California Mexico. Fully operational, clean hotel with great rates & home-cooked meals. Open year round.dirt bike trails

This historic place is a living legend; well known throughout the tourists circles. A quaint, family run, secluded backcountry lodge – in the middle of nowhere. A motorcycle haven, well known w/ crowds. Hundreds of bikes, buggies, sand rails & jeeps each year make it to this lovely destination.

Also a popular destination for campers with the horses, 4×4 clubs, SUV travelers as well. No motorhomes, caravans of clueless, nor RVs should attempt this remote Baja location.

Baja Ranch Inn
Mike’s Sky Ranch rests on a hillside overlooking the Arroyo San Rafael, which is a somewhat wooded river valley with steep, brush-covered mountains. The ranch offers motel-type accommodations for a very reasonable price: family-style meals, a swimming pool, horse-back riding, sycamore-shaded campsites. The individual hotel rooms are adequate with a bathroom, plus a variety of bed sizes & combinations.

Remote Ranch in Baja

The price is right. Mike’s Sky Ranch charges on a per person basis. The rental includes a bed, plus two meals:

  • dinner the night you arrive
  • breakfast the next morning
  • bring cash for bar drinks
  • bring snacks, lunches & own ice chest
Camping also available; inquire for rates

Mikes Sky Ranch Reservations
write a letter:
667 Twining Ave.
San Diego, CA 92154

Call during the week Mon-Wed
phone # 011-52-664-68-15514

Ask about information regarding nearby day-trips to – the Oberservatory by vehicle or, on foot, into the rugged country to the east. A nice watrerfall is only 1 mile hike up the canyon. Depending on the year and waterflow, this may or may not be impressive. Small rainbow trout sometimes can be found in the river next to the ranch. Hunters may find deer, rabbit, & quail.

Baja Dirt Roads

Imagine the remote, dirt, back roads of Baja Mexico. Dusty, bumpy, undeveloped & adventurous. Some areas may require 4 wheel drive depending on the rainfall & erosion at that time. Road conditions can change from year to year, so come prepared. Although a 2WD truck or SUV can easily make it all the way out to the infamous Mike’s Sky Rancho, it may not always be the case. Let’s just say on a heavy winter rainy season, beware. You may wanna see just how deep that river crosing really is before attempting that last obstacle.

Poolside MSR Baja

The swimming pool is clean & the properties water source is straight from the mountains via the year round flowing river next door. Camping out is an option down by the river.

There is a small bar that is open nighly; but please don’t expect poolside Palm Springs style service. This is a rustic place that caters more to the ‘roughin’ it’ types.

Getting there is half the fun. I wouldn’t try your first visit arriving at night, since the small dirt roads can get confusing with limited signage. There are no telephone poles out here, or even electricity wired this far out, so the small ranch uses a generator every night from dusk until 10pm.
“Man, when that generator goes off. Poof … the stars come on!”

30 mile Dirt Road access only

MSR Baja California MX

Located approx. 50-60 miles; south east of Ensenada, Baja south off MX Hwy 3

DIRECTIONS: From Ensenada & Hwy. 3 East bound: This road to Mike’s begins at signed junction 10-11 miles south east of Valle de Trinidad. High-clearance vehicles are necessary; 4WD is not required. The entire route is on rough dirt roads. The first part rises over rural dry brush landscape & then decends down into a wooded river valley – where the resort is located. The overall mountainous region has few large trees & plenty of dust. The road becomes rougher as it winds down & approaches a junction at mileage 13.8. Bear left to continue 8 miles to the ranch. Creek crossings and river crossings, slow down!

MAPS:
NatGeo Baja Map Set
North BAJA Norteoverview MAP

Baja Topo Map
Baja Almanac

The BAJA ALMANAC is by far the best back roads guide to Baja California MX. Numerous versions span from 1990-2001. May be difficult to find cuz it is out-of-print. Fast becomeing a collectors item, since so few can be found on the ‘used book market’

Rainy New Years Eve
Rainy New Years Eve
River Crossing at Ranch
River Crossing at Ranch
Tent Camping
Tent Camping MSR, Baja California

Baja Roads

Bar Crew in 2003
2003 Bar Crew @ Mike’s