LOS ANGELES, May 4, 2013 – Mere minutes across the Golden Gate Bridge, just north of San Francisco, there is a virtually unspoiled paradise that recalls the golden age of California dreaming. A landscape of rugged coastlines, quaint townships, open spaces, beautiful beaches and one of a kind hotels and lodges where the visitor can embrace a world apart mere minutes from one of America’s most cosmopolitan cities.
The Marin County coast beckons with a simplicity and beauty all its own. It remains somehow unscathed by the modern age, and captured forever in the mind the moment you experience it.
The journey begins at Cavallo Point Lodge, formerly Fort Baker, a converted military post sitting on a plot of land actually inside Golden Gate National Park. From just under the Golden Gate Bridge, there are spectacular views of the bridge and the City by the Bay.
The lodge has been upgraded and restored to perfection, and invokes the comfortable serenity of a WW II era outpost, for those military brats among us who grew up on such bases around the world, with the modern conveniences of a plush resort.
Owned by Passport Resorts, who also own the acclaimed Post Ranch Inn in Big Sur, Cavallo Point Lodge is a truly unique destination with sprawling grounds and an ephemeral charm all its own.
The historic lodging is found in a ring of stunning early 20th Century style white houses that form a semi-circle around the expansive parade grounds. These beautiful homes were the Senior Officer’s quarters in their day. Rooms and suites in these exquisitely restored officer’s quarters are authentically quaint mirrors showing a pre-WWII period, redone with luxurious touches, hardwood floors, fine linens and gas fireplaces.
The homes lovingly straddle a delicate balance of a bygone era with modern touches. The views of the grounds, the Golden Gate Bridge and the city beyond are ridiculously amazing.
A contemporary wing of new rooms is set on a bluff above the main circle, with views to match. Exceptionally spacious and modern, they cater to the traveler seeking the more modern.
With a double-sided gas fireplace and a large patio deck, the contemporary rooms are perfect for an intimate getaway where privacy is at a premium.
Murray Circle, under the direction of Executive Chef Justin Everett, is located in the former officers club, and is just as exceptional as the setting itself. The ceiling is a wonder, beautifully restored hand hammered tin panels. The atmosphere is warm, clubby, and romantic.
Using the finest and freshest local ingredients, chef takes advantage of long-standing ties with Bay Area farmers and fishermen. Miso glazed bone marrow and braised shorts ribs are outstanding, and the seared California rainbow trout is exceptional. Add a stellar wine list featuring Sonoma Pinots and Napa Cabernets and you have in Murray Circle the essence of the fine dining experience; outstanding cuisine in an elegantly unique setting.
The Healing Arts Center and Spa is first class, with a variety of massage treatments. Tucked into its own building the staff and service are impeccable, the atmosphere soothing and serene. We settle in for an invigorating and romantic couples massage, followed by time to relax by the heated meditation pool.
Just above the Golden Gate, after passing through a tunnel just off the grounds of Cavallo Point, lies the Marin Headlands, part of Golden Gate National Park. Once again you will find epic views of the Golden Gate Bridge, the City of San Francisco, and San Francisco Bay that are unmatchable.
It is here you will find the image of the Golden Gate Bridge that you will take with you for a lifetime. The juxtaposition of iconic imagery and mind boggling vistas are an innervating jolt to the senses, and we linger on the ridgeline for a long time taking it all in from different viewpoints, like a breathless roller coaster ride transposing the imposing structures of civilization with the awesome glory of nature.
Between the refreshingly beautiful combination of restored glory and modern amenities of Cavallo Point Lodge next to the stunning views of its immediate neighbor, the Marin County Headlands, your exploration of the beauty of the Marin County coast begins.
Yet this is just the gateway, the opening salvo, and as the days unfold, we will see that there is much more in store to come.
(Additional stories to follow)
Cavallo Point Lodge 415-339-4700
Murray Circle 415–339-4750
This article is the copyrighted property of the writer and Communities @ WashingtonTimes.com. Written permission must be obtained before reprint in online or print media. REPRINTING TWTC CONTENT WITHOUT PERMISSION AND/OR PAYMENT IS THEFT AND PUNISHABLE BY LAW.