Solo Writing Retreat Location in SF Bay Area?
November 23, 2020 12:26 PM   Subscribe

I would love to hear recommendations for places I should look for cabins/homes/guesthomes I might like for a two week stay sometime next month (December) around San Francisco. I have a car and I'm happy to drive anywhere with 3-4 hours of the city. Could be coastal or forested, but I do need internet access. Hot tub would be great but definitely not a requirement!
posted by vocativecase to Travel & Transportation around San Francisco, CA (10 answers total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
What is the budget? Do you want a kitchen or would you prefer restaurants nearby? How much social distancing is needed; is hotel staff ok?
posted by dum spiro spero at 12:28 PM on November 23, 2020

Response by poster: I don't have a big budget; I can afford the cheaper end of AirBnbs and will have to cook for myself.
posted by vocativecase at 12:29 PM on November 23, 2020 [1 favorite]

I'd look around the larger Guerneville/Monte Rio area. There are lots of little houses tucked away in the forests there and the town of Guerneville has a big supermarket and other businesses that will have necessities. Hot tubs are not unusual in those parts. The Russian River flows through there and there are beautiful redwood forests that are lovely at this time of year.
posted by quince at 12:41 PM on November 23, 2020

In my experience, requests like this don't bear fruit. There's too much inventory, and the recommended ones are already reserved. Or maybe not, but to locate specifics you must do the leg-work yourself, in my case on but I guess AirB&B works in a similar way. Input your dates, and see what's available.
posted by Rash at 12:45 PM on November 23, 2020

If you like animals, check out Trusted Housesitters. The only charge is a membership fee (I think I might be able to give you a discount if you want to sign up, memail me) and then you get to stay in a house for free in exchange for taking care of pets. For example, there are currently listings for houses in Half Moon Bay, Santa Cruz, and Santa Barbara, among others. There are usually listings in Sonoma County, Marin, etc.
posted by pinochiette at 1:27 PM on November 23, 2020

I have the dreamiest artsy hand-built cabin on a ridge, about an hour from SF, to recommend to you...if you can do with cell service for your internet access instead of WIFI (tethering perhaps)? It's rustic but magic. DM me for the link if that would work.
posted by amaire at 1:59 PM on November 23, 2020 [1 favorite]

Nick's Cove in Marshall, CA (~2 hours drive from SF, northern bit of Point Reyes on the Tomales Bay side) has wonderful little (and not-so-little!) cottages either right on the bay or across the street from it with a view.

I stayed there for a few days recently and would have loved to have been able to stay a couple weeks. I can confirm general coziness and cleanliness, reasonable wifi (fine for internet research and checking social media, not great for streaming media or checking in code) but no cell signal, and not jacuzzi hot tubs but at least some of the cottages have nice deep soaking tubs. Most if not all their cottages also have a fridge and a kitchenette. There's a grocery store in Point Reyes Station where you can get supplies to restock.

They may be on the upper end of your budget, but between it being off season and you wanting to stay for two weeks, they may be able to find a discount. I had a bunch of questions before I booked and they were super nice and helpful on the phone.
posted by rhiannonstone at 9:57 PM on November 23, 2020 [1 favorite]

A few previous suggestions
posted by tangerine at 12:40 PM on November 24, 2020

Two weeks in December? You can search by dates available on AirBnB and probably on similar sites too. You aren't going to find a lot available for that length of time this close to December, so that is going to narrow your options quite a lot.

A relative who was looking for a place for some visitors to quarantine had some success asking around people they knew, it turned out someone had a cabin that they don't list for rent but only let people they know use. So that's one avenue. Especially if you know people who might be traveling, maybe they would let you rent their place while they are away.
posted by yohko at 1:47 PM on November 24, 2020

This is a little off your brief, but I've used Asilomar for a really similar purpose. It doesn't have a kitchen, so you'd need to either eat on site (the food is actually pretty good) or eat locally (the food is amazing).

It's the off-season, so it's likely to not be as crowded.
posted by guster4lovers at 4:37 PM on November 24, 2020

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