Welcome to a rustic and natural Mendocino Coast in northern California which has one natural gem after another to explore along Route 1, which lines the coast. From Mendocino, head north and soon you’ll hit the seaside town of Fort Bragg, a small town with a Main Street that has a few scattered restaurants and shops. It isn’t the town that people flock to but the raw natural beauty of the rugged coastline, which boasts breathtaking views in all directions.
The perfect place for a luxury inn, right? That’s what owner and founder Willard Jackson, a Connecticut native thought when he discovered the area in the 1980’s and eventually purchased the land in 1986. While he has owned this stretch of land for decades, the Inn at Newport Ranch only opened in 2015.
The ranch now totals over 2,000 acres with a mile and half of oceanfront and three miles of contiguous ridge lines with panoramic views. They have opened up twenty miles of trails through the redwoods and along the streams and rugged coast which you can explore by horseback, hiking or on ATVs and we did all three btw, which I’d highly recommend.
Above shot taken during a two hour ride up the mountain with nearby Ricochet Ridge Ranch who offer a variety of riding options, from beginner to more advanced.
The above shot of the ranch was taken as we were heading back “home” after the morning ATV tour.
These shots were taken of the inn and entryway to the main house at mid-morning.
In addition to the acres of land you can hike on, the outdoor wide wooden porch is a significant asset of the property. Imagine renting the whole place out for a family reunion — the ranch can sleep around 35, although note that if you’re planning a weekend getaway with your kids, their policy is 14 years of age or above.
With views like this, it should be no surprise that they are a popular spot for weddings, especially more intimate ones that go above and beyond. Luxury travelers and couples wanting peace, relaxation and privacy, will appreciate this property the most. If serenity is calling you, then this gem along the northern California coast is a must visit.
Inside, the decor is rustic meets luxury with plenty of natural wood to warm things up. The style has a blend of old fashioned Vermont classic and upscale Montana lodge woven into its fabric, each room unique and each room luxurious with plenty of attention to detail throughout.
The above shots are taken of the first floor of the main lodge, where you can sit and relax when you’re not in your room or taking a walk outside.
Make your way to the spa above, which we reviewed separately — oh so lovely!
Above 5 photo credits: Inn at Newport Ranch
Above, a smaller cozy room as you enter the main lodge, which almost always has a fire glowing. Below, the Chute room is the center room in the main building, which like the Captain’s Quarters, includes beautiful ocean views.
Above two shots, courtesy of the Inn at Newport Ranch
The Chute (above and below) is appointed with memorabilia of the historic Newport lumber Chute formally located on the ranch. The room has a luxury California king bed, gas fireplace, ocean view, and like the other two rooms in the main house, is steps away from the sun deck and water tower hot tub.
The Captain’s Quarters (below), where we stayed, is the largest guest room in the main inn building. The room offers 180° views of the rugged Pacific Coastline and the ambiance is reminiscent of old sailing days. We loved the massive walk in shower with a rain shower head and a sitting bench as well as the sitting areas, all of which offer spectacular views in each direction.
Above two shots, courtesy of Inn at Newport Ranch
For those wanting to splurge, they also offer three spacious suites in what they refer to as the Redwood House.
The Grove Suite
The Newport Suite
The Birdhouse Suite
Sea Drum is the owners’ ocean side vacation home designed by the same architects as the Newport Inn buildings. Offshore, there are huge rock formations with blow holes and when they’re active, they apparently sound like drums, hence the name, Sea Drum.
The Sea Drum House. All Suite and Sea Drum photo credits, courtesy of Inn at Newport Ranch
The home has four bedrooms including a bunk-room with two bunks and a queen bed and each room has a private bath. The living room has a fireplace and on the deck is a built-in hot tub. Beyond the sliding glass doors of the media room is a protected terrace and small garden, which is a great place to have a family dinner.
Downstairs in the main house, breakfast awaits you every morning with fresh yogurt, fruit, juices, coffee, tea and a cooked breakfast.
Above, Sweet fresh berry crepes and vanilla whipped cream served with “eggs in a bacon basket” – a favorite at the inn!
From 6 to 7 pm each night, guests are offered complimentary snacks, which includes a cheese, fruit and olive platter accompanied by both white and red wine (Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Cabernet Sauvignon)
In the main house, there are two large rustic tables, one in the rear of the house and the other which is part of the main lounge area – all sitting areas have a fireplace. Below, we had dinner one evening which they prepared for us on-site. They can accommodate special dietary needs and we noted the gluten-free crackers during the cocktail hour.
Be sure to take in sunset while you’re there, which is truly a spectacular time to go for a walk on the property.
Above, a shot taken of the property during our ATV Tour of the land which we also did by horseback.
Need a romantic getaway from San Francisco? The Inn at Newport Ranch is a great spot. Need a relaxing weekend to unwind away from the kids? Get a sitter and head north. Want to escape solo for a technology detox because you’ve been working too many hours? Book a secluded room or suite for a few days and turn that cell phone off.
While they do offer wifi throughout the property, it’s the kind of place you’ll want to spend in nature, not on your laptop. We love that there are no TV’s in the rooms although if you’re desperate, they offer access in one of the lounges.
Be sure to see my article on 6 Ways to Get Your Nature Fix on the Mendocino Coast as well as where to drink beer in Fort Bragg.
Renee Blodgett is the founder of We Blog the World. The site combines the magic of an online culture and travel magazine with a global blog network and has contributors from every continent in the world. Having lived in 10 countries and explored nearly 80, she is an avid traveler, and a lover, observer and participant in cultural diversity.
She is also the CEO and founder of Magic Sauce Media, a new media services consultancy focused on viral marketing, social media, branding, events and PR. For over 20 years, she has helped companies from 12 countries get traction in the market. Known for her global and organic approach to product and corporate launches, Renee practices what she pitches and as an active user of social media, she helps clients navigate digital waters from around the world. Renee has been blogging for over 16 years and regularly writes on her personal blog Down the Avenue, Huffington Post, BlogHer, We Blog the World and other sites. She was ranked #12 Social Media Influencer by Forbes Magazine and is listed as a new media influencer and game changer on various sites and books on the new media revolution. In 2013, she was listed as the 6th most influential woman in social media by Forbes Magazine on a Top 20 List.
Her passion for art, storytelling and photography led to the launch of Magic Sauce Photography, which is a visual extension of her writing, the result of which has led to producing six photo books: Galapagos Islands, London, South Africa, Rome, Urbanization and Ecuador.
Renee is also the co-founder of Traveling Geeks, an initiative that brings entrepreneurs, thought leaders, bloggers, creators, curators and influencers to other countries to share and learn from peers, governments, corporations, and the general public in order to educate, share, evaluate, and promote innovative technologies.