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Walnut Creek Magazine

A California Coastal Retreat: Elk Cove Inn

Apr 05, 2023 03:53PM ● By Pam Kessler

Driving along the winding roads of Highway 128 enroute to Mendocino County, it's easy to get lost in the bucolic beauty of the Anderson Valley region. 

First stop is Boonville, a hidden gem for foodies and wine lovers. At its heart is Pennyroyal Farm, a small family operation that has made its name by crafting some of the finest artisanal cheeses in the region. Tour the working goat farm and creamery, then revel in the flavors of seasonal homestead cheeses and estate-grown wines on the patio. 

For wine lovers, a stop at Navarro Vineyards is a must. This family-owned winery has been producing award-winning vintages since the 1970s. A short drive away is Goldeneye Winery, a premier producer of Pinot Noir that has garnered critical acclaim and a loyal following. Other notables in the Anderson Valley include Twomey, Roederer Estate, Toulouse, and Husch.  


Highway 128 winds its way out of the vineyards through towering groves of redwoods. Nestled along the rugged Mendocino County coastline is the Elk Cove Inn, a coastal retreat that offers a true taste of California's beauty. 

This well-appointed bed and breakfast, perched on a bluff overlooking the Pacific on Highway 1, feels like a well-kept secret. But it's not just the breathtaking views, every detail has been thoughtfully considered to ensure a serene escape from the hustle and bustle of city life.


Spacious suites blend rustic and contemporary elements. Soak in a deep tub with a glass of wine or lounge on your private ocean-view balcony and watch the sun dip. Wake up to the sound of waves crashing against the shore, before a sumptuous breakfast is delivered to your door. From fluffy pancakes to savory omelets, each dish celebrates the region's bounty. If you need a bit of pampering, the Elk Cove Inn's spa offers a range of treatments, from massages to facials. 


Of course, no stay at the Elk Cove Inn is complete without exploring the rugged beauty of the Mendocino Coast from the property’s private beach trail. If hiking is not your thing, relax in one of the Inn's serene gardens.


Nearby the tiny town of Elk is home to a handful of quaint shops, and The Elk General Store, where you’ll find locally sourced produce, and handmade crafts, plus a café serving made-to-order deli sandwiches. For dinner, reserve a table at the Inn's onsite restaurant Sibo, or jump in the car and head north on Highway 1 to Mendocino.  A short 20-minute drive takes to you the charming seaside village of Mendocino filled with art galleries, boutiques, and eateries.

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