We were blown away by the quaint little town of Mendocino that sits on what seems to be “the edge of the world.” The three and half hour Fall season drive North from San Francisco was one of beauty and tragedy.

We would like to personally thank Cally Dym and Little River Inn for their partnership and hosting our wonderful stay. We enjoyed immensely getting to know the property. All opinions are 100% from our own experiences.

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It is when tragedy hits, however, is the moment you can see a business’s commitment and character to its community and guests. Little River Inn is no exception.

No doubt the NorCal Coastline is known for its dramatic cliffs, endless ocean views, and prehistoric Redwoods. It is unforgettably beautiful. The tragedy was driving by the wild fires of Sonoma County that continues to plague this mid-October. In the midst of all the smoke, you can see helicopters frantically casing the area in hopes to contain it.

The hidden gem of Mendocino was fortunately considered a safe zone from the fires and far from where we were destined, but not completely free from the scheduled power outages that sporadically occurred throughout the town.

This is when you can observe 5 generations of experience, 80 years in business overall from Little River Inn at its finest. Every single service still resumed, including high speed internet that didn’t skip a beat! We didn’t even realize there was a power outage in town until a gentlemen came into the reception area where we were waiting on some food to go. He was distressed and asked to use the phone. We overheard he was fearful after-dark about running out of gas and low cell battery.

Even though the place was really busy with guests and patrons, without hesitation the Inn helped this gentlemen out and provided him anything he needed to find his way. We were impressed by the calm nature the Inn exuded and eased the passerby’s woes.

My hubby said to me, “this is obviously the place to go for relaxation or even during a crisis!” He’s a physician that works in a hospital and manages crises daily. It was reassuring to hear him say this, but honestly the Inn did such a great job with their preparations we didn’t notice a difference. It was as if they had plenty of back up generators and service providers for a reliable stay.

We asked Cally Dym, Innkeeper of Little River Inn: “Is your business part of the community and how involved is it?

“It’s an unwritten part of our business plan. We are super entrenched in the community. We do a ton of fundraisers… I sit on so many non-profit boards it’s kinda scary.”

Among Cally’s generosity of her time to the community, you will be happy to find how the resort also maintains green initiatives in the Guest Folio found in each room.

We certainly witnessed Cally’s response to community service first hand. The place is wonderfully accompanied by half locals and half tourists all commingling in a relaxed yet genteel atmosphere. It was one thing hearing her state their involvement, but really impactful to see it in acton.

We also asked Cally, “What’s your mantra or something you live by?”

“Respect is really big for me, just respect everybody… and get along pretty well in the world…I think kindness and respect really goes far.”

Great advice Cally! The world can use more of your words of wisdom for sure.

After 80 years and 5 generations of family service, Cally still understands what makes the world go round and she perpetuates what her family has impeccably preserved- kindness and respect.

You will find kindness, experience, and professionalism through all of the services offered by the Inn as we did.

The Accommodations

Our first impression of Little River Inn was “look at the views!” It made us really excited to see what’s to come. We were celebrating our 9 year anniversary and truly wanted to getaway. This was the perfect trip to do just that.

We parked right here upon arrival and took a few minutes to take in the view before checking-in.

The location is prime real estate. It’s just minutes from downtown Mendocino and many National Parks. The views are absolutely stunning! Little River Inn directly faces the ocean of the Pacific Coastline right on North Highway 1.

Festive decor, we arrived one week before Halloween.

Check-in is at 4pm and we arrived closer to 5pm. Our room was ready to go. We always appreciate a speedy check-in service. They gave us a standalone Cottage numbered 111.

The second thing we noticed right away were the well groomed gardens all around the resort. The mature shrubs, trees, and flowers were beautiful and in full bloom. I loved seeing the many Hummingbirds that droned the property.

Our standalone Cottage 111 with gardens had many Hummingbirds.

As soon as we walked to our cozy cottage, we wanted to first enjoy the views from the porch. The weather was perfect, around 75 degrees and the sun was setting.

Breathtaking sunset views on our cottage porch.

Inside the cottage was cozy and perfectly made for two! The furniture was nicely appointed and layout was spacious. The bathroom had a steam shower! We used it and it was wonderful. Everything was neat and tidy with plenty of extra blankets, towels, and toiletries.

Our neat and tidy cozy cottage.
We enjoyed the fireplace in the evenings reading a book.
Lovely bathroom with large steam shower.
Tour Cottage 111 at Little River Inn, Mendocino, CA.

The Amenities

Now lets talk about their fantastic amenities. Even though the name is Little River Inn, it feels more like a full service resort. Guests can play tennis and golf or relax at the wellness spa. They have a great onsite restaurant with a full menu and bar services too. No need to leave the Inn, it’s so convenient.

We had the opportunity to try all of the amenities to share our experiences with you.

GOLF

The Inn has a fantastic golf course surrounded by natural forests and Redwoods. At certain holes, you can even see the unbeatable ocean views. It was built in 1957 and is the only golf course on the Mendocino Coast. It’s 9 holes played as 18 but don’t let that fool you. It was much more challenging than we expected.

My hubby adores golf, so naturally it was the first thing we did upon arrival. After breakfast, we hurried along to the Pro Shop to check -in our tee time of 9:30am. Cally recommended we get the colored balls to easily find them amongst the greens.

The gentlemen behind the counter gave us a rundown of the 9 hole course that can be played as an 18 hole. He gave us a golf cart, some clubs for me and hubby Mike had his own.

We practiced our swings first at the practice range and then on to our first hole nearby.

It was a perfect day of golf. The weather was extremely cooperative with low winds and plenty of sunshine. I must say, I was proud of myself with a few of my shots. The natural beauty of the course can be quite distracting.

Victory! I got it over the pond.

Mike was also pleased with the course and not so much his game, ha! He even got frustrated a few times, but really celebrated when he had a win. We were on the course for about 2.5 hours playing just one round.

Preview of our golf outing at Little River Inn, Mendocino, CA.

We would totally recommend this course for anyone at any level. We’d stay the whole day but had massage appointments that day, ahhhh.

SPA

After a great morning at the golf course, we had a quick lunch and then headed over to the spa. It felt nice and quiet as soon as we arrived. We were warmly greeted by the receptionist and waited only a couple of minutes before our massage therapists came to greet us.

We each had a 60 minute Classic Massage that included a mix of modalities. My therapist was Sue and she was fantastic. I told her to go heavy on the pressure and she delivered. Her style was a hybrid of swedish and shiatsu, interesting I know. It felt great and she knew what she was doing. I get massages every 2 weeks at home, so I am rather particular with my treatments.

Hubby was pleasantly surprised how much he liked his massage with Mic. As a physician, he’s more technical than I am when it comes to massage therapy. He said Mic did a great job and would recommend his services to anyone.

Fabulous massages at Little River Inn, Mendocino, CA

They have several treatment rooms and offer skin, body and massage treatments. The place was clean, inviting, and quiet. They use quality products and the therapists are well trained. We highly recommend their spa services.

TENNIS

Along with a great golf course, Little River Inn has really nice tennis courts. They have 2 that can light up at night for evening play. Tennis is more of my game, but hubby has been taking lessons. He’s getting pretty good, but for now I enjoy beating him, ha!

Hubby’s focus. Tennis is serious, hehe.
Nice tennis courts at Little River Inn, Mendocino, CA

RESTAURANT

The full service onsite restaurant had contemporary style cuisine by Chef Marc Dym, Cally’s hubby! And offered a lovely ambiance. Our reservations were at 7:30pm, but were hungry and showed up early on a Thursday evening. They had no problems seating us. We sat at a table next to the windows with views of the gardens.

For the appetizers we had the oysters and they were amazingly fresh. The mignonette sauce that comes with it was fantastic. We loved these! We also had the wedge salad to start. The dressing is dynamite. They make it from scratch in house.

Our second course, we each had the fresh steam clam chowder. The texture was a lot lighter than a normal chowder, more like a soup broth but was tasty and delicious. It contained fresh shelled clams which was much better than canned. The server mentioned the clam chowder is made in small batches. We can tell!

Fresh Steam Clam Chowder made in small batches at Little River Inn, Mendocino, CA

For our entrees, I ordered off the specials and had the Scallops. I’ve never had scallops that had a crispy batter before. It took a second to get used to, but the flavors were solid. Hubby Mike got the Chicken N’ Gravy, a Little River Inn classic dish. He said it hit the spot.

You all know we love dessert and eat it shamelessly. They had a hot fudge sundae with homemade sauce that was incredible! Hubby also had to get the cobbler to try since he saw everyone else got it. The zero-proof drinks were also really good. I had the Lavender Lemonade and hubby had the spritzer where they made all the syrups in house.

Just get this! Hot Fudge Sundae

ROOM SERVICE

On the day we departed, we ordered room service for breakfast. We filled out the breakfast card the night before and left it outside our door to be picked up per their instructions. All items delivered were either neatly wrapped or properly covered. This was important to avoid birds. They are not shy in these parts and will thief your meal unattended.

I couldn’t decide what to order so I ended up getting the veggie omelet with hash-browns and the granola with yogurt and fruit. I really enjoyed it all, especially the house-made granola.

Breakfast with a view!

Hubby had the classic breakfast with the highly recommended hotcakes! Cally, the owner, was telling us how the recipe was passed down through many generations. We can see why, it’s delicious!

HOTCAKES!

Want the recipe to these amazing hotcakes? Originally from Sweden, it’s been passed down through many generations in Cally’s family. It’s so good, Cally and Marc wanted to share the recipe with all of you. Now you can enjoy a piece of Mendocino and Sweden right at home. Thanks to Cally and Marc Dym from Little River Inn for their time tested recipe!

Ole’s Swedish Hotcakes

Photo courtesy of Little River Inn. Click here for recipe.

If you need complete serenity with some adventure and pampering, look no further than Little River Inn. The Five-Generation family operated business has hospitality down to an art. You will feel welcomed and relaxed. We had a fantastic time here celebrating our 9 years of unity and would return in a heartbeat.

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