by Courtney Elko
Located just a five-minute drive from the center of Mendocino Village, the Little River Inn is situated directly on California’s Mendocino Coast Highway 1, which overlooks the gorgeous coastal cliffs and Pacific Ocean. Nearly every room at Little River Inn–which has been family owned and operated for five generations–offers impeccable views. Families will love playing a round of golf or taking a tennis lesson before watching the sun set from the rocking chairs on your guestroom front deck. The large guestrooms and suites offer plenty of space for families to spread out. The onsite restaurant offers both a casual pub atmosphere and a more resort casual dining room for breakfast and dinner.
The Little River Inn offers families a comfortable, Victorian vibe where you can slow things down and hang out as a family on the property or get out and explore Mendocino and its surrounding area.
Our Editor Loves
- Gorgeous views
- Tennis courts and golf onsite
- Spacious, pet-friendly guestrooms and suites
- Free Wi-Fi
- Onsite Dining
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All of the guestrooms and suites feature outstanding coastal cliff ocean views and a shared or individual deck with rocking chairs. The rooms do not offer air conditioning, but there is often a nice coastal breeze blowing across the property so just open the windows on a warm day. Complimentary Wi-Fi can be found throughout the hotel.
The spacious guestrooms feature a king or two queen beds, small table, a coffeemaker, television, and DVD player. The deluxe guestrooms also feature a mini-fridge, fireplace, hot tub or Jacuzzi tub.
The large suites, which are more suited for adults on a romantic getaway, offer a king bed, fireplace, Jacuzzi tub, small table, a coffeemaker, television and DVD player.
There are a few small cottages onsite. The two-bedroom cottage option is ideal for families. It offers a king bed in each bedroom, a separate living room area, fireplace, hot tub and two bathrooms. The one-bedroom cottage offers a king bed and a sleeper sofa in a separate living room area. There is a fireplace and hot tub as well. Pets are welcome in several of the cottages.
There are various accommodations at the Little River. We were in Room 162 which had a great view, large balcony, gas fireplace and large bathroom. The place is very well kept. Dinner was wonderful in the dining room as well as a nice breakfast. The front desk staff was friendly and welcoming. I would advise anyone to stay here for a lovely visit. This is about our 12th visit over a number of years.
The Little River in is one of the most unique and intimate places in Mendocino. They offer such amenities as hot tubs or fireplace. They have four rooms with wood burning fireplaces.
Just minutes from the Inn is downtown Mendocino. The downtown shops are very cute. They have a wonderful grocery/delicatessen as well as fine dining, art and jewelry stores; all within a few short blocks of each other.
Anyone who has asked their sweetheart where to go for a special occasion such as an anniversary or marriage proposal should consider The Little River Inn in Mendocino.
Tucked away in the redwood hills, this nine-hole course offers golfers challenges and stunning ocean views. There is also a driving range and a putting green, which the kids will love. There is an onsite pro shop, and lessons can be booked as a group or for an individual.
There are two lighted championship tennis courts onsite that are free for guests to use. Rackets are available to borrow and tennis lessons can be booked.
Main Dining Room
Open for breakfast and dinner, the main dining room offers a comfortable, resort casual feel. If you’re lucky enough to get a window seat, you will overlook gorgeous ocean or garden views while dining on salmon, eggplant, chicken and gravy, steak and more. The kids’ menu offers things like chicken breast, pasta, fish and chips, burgers or a kids’ steak. Reservations are suggested.
Ole’s Whale Watch Bar
This pub-style bar/restaurant offers a more casual vibe and lighter fare. Fish and chips, fish tacos, burgers, sandwiches and salads are available here, along with a full beer, wine and cocktail list. Food is served from 4 p.m. Monday through Saturday and starting at 1 p.m. on Sundays. Seating is first come, first serve.
Room service is available during restaurant hours for breakfast and dinner only.
Planning & Tips
All About the Extras
Complimentary Wi-Fi is available throughout the property.
Free parking is available.
- Pet Friendly
Pets are welcome to stay in the pet-friendly designated rooms. There are designated on-leash walking areas on the property and treats, water bowls, waste bags and more are provided by the hotel.
The Best Time to Visit
Most families visit during the summer months or whenever there is a school holiday. Mendocino is in Northern California so expect cooler temperatures. Temperatures stay around 60 degrees most of the year, with it being a bit cooler in the winter and a bit warmer in the summer. It’s also cooler closer to the coastline compared to more inland. And once the sun goes down temperatures tend to drop as well.
Little River Inn is located in Northern California about three and half hours north of San Francisco. The Sonoma County Airport in Santa Rosa is located about two hours away. Both the Sacramento and San Francisco International airports are located about three and a half hours away.
A vehicle is needed when staying at the Little River Inn. The small village of Mendocino is located about a five-minute drive away from the hotel. The village area is easily walkable. But you can’t walk there from the hotel. Also, parking is limited in Mendocino Village and during peak tourist season in the summer months, could prove difficult.
The adults will love to truly relax at the onsite spa, which is open daily. A variety of massage and body treatments are available, along with facials, manicures, pedicures and hair services. Reservations are recommended.
Ole’s Whale Watch Bar offers a great bar selection, including food. Sit outside at sunset with a drink in hand and you won’t be disappointed by the views.