A beautiful, large, tranquil Victorian home & retreat-like setting in the South Berkeley area, only 2 blocks from BART. Architecturally colorful & unique, very conveniently located near cafes, bakeries, and the celebrated Berkeley Bowl grocery.
This charming Old Lady, a 1905 Victorian Home, is oriented to being a tranquil home and residence for guests, an artistically colorful and inspiring refuge and place to find rejuvenation for your soul. My intention is to provide a retreat-like setting. I have several guest rooms. To see my other listings, click on my photo or name to go to my profile and see these.
All rooms are single occupancy only to help preserve the quiet environment.
This particular room is generally oriented to those guests who will be staying 3 weeks or longer, but there is a possibility of staying for shorter periods of time when those are available in between guest's longer stays.
This house is very conveniently located directly on the Berkeley-Oakland border 2 blocks from the South Berkeley (Ashby) BART station, the local subway. This allows you to travel to most any San Francisco Bay Area destination without a car. You can quickly arrive to downtown San Francisco within 30-45 minutes by BART.
Within walking distance of 5 blocks, you can find: several ethnic restaurants, 2 cafes, 2 bakeries, La Pena Latin American cultural center, Starry Plough Irish Pub, a low-fee acupuncture clinic, and Berkeley Bowl grocery store, with its celebrated enormous offering of fresh produce. Walk a little farther north, and within 30 minutes or 1 mile you will come to downtown Berkeley, and the University of California at Berkeley, movie theatres and many shops, restaurants, and other attractions such as bookstores, comics/games stores. (Downtown Berkeley is also just one BART stop away.) By walking East, you come to the attractive Elmwood avenue shopping area within ¾ mile, and its shops, restaurants, movie theatre and Metaphysical bookstore.
The neighborhood is very walkable: Walkscore gives my area a score of 88 out of a possible 100 -- any higher and you'd have trouble finding parking! Speaking of parking: there is plenty of 2-hr parking on my street (M-F 8am to 6pm there is a 2 hr limit) but there are also smaller areas of unrestricted parking on my street and nearby.
This attractive, large room is about 12 ft by 20 ft in size. It looks and feels both spacious and cozy -- a den-like peaceful retreat. It features a full size bed with IKEA foam mattress, wardrobe, dresser, shoji screens, nightstand, table and chair with table lamp, floor lamp, Nepali wall hanging featuring the Tree of Life, and large bookshelf set onto the far wall. It has two windows facing south. Note that although it has two windows, the room does NOT get much direct sunlight, so if you want direct sunlight you may be more interested in another of my rooms. ( The Meditation Room and Kaleidoscopic Victorian rooms get the most sun, as well as the Magical Hobbit House.) Clean sheets and towels provided.
You will share the kitchen and bathrooms (two full baths, one half bath) primarily with 2 other guests and myself, though I don’t cook much. I am not vegetarian, and there are no restrictions on what you may cook here. There is wifi and laundry available on site.
Architecturally, this is a colorful and playful house, where you won’t find white or “off white” rooms. The rooms have ten foot high ceilings and attractive moulding. All the original redwood moulding and redwood panel doors remain. The spacious kitchen is orange with a blue countertop and green tile floor, featuring an antique Wedgewood stove. For those staying 4 weeks or less, there are basic staples for you to use for your cooking. (For those staying longer, please purchase your own kitchen staples). Feel free to enjoy the fresh chicken/quail eggs I have placed in the kitchen, from my backyard flocks. In the kitchen I have also placed free maps which will help direct you to local attractions.
When no one is staying in the MEditation Room, feel free to enjoy the meditation room and library, the colorful front room of the house featuring 3 bay windows. Browse my book collection or sit in silence for meditation, yoga, reading or writing, art or any other silent activity: guests may talk in the room during hours 3-7pm.
Also feel free to enjoy the backyard garden, perhaps visiting the hens, or sitting by the pond with running water.
You will not be able to bring any additional furniture to the room. THere is no storage area in the house for you to store any large items or furniture.
There will be one or two others staying on the ground floor, and two to four guests upstairs. You will share the bathroom with 2-3 other people.
The ground floor of the house, while kept clean, does have a "funky" feel to it. There are some odd angles, the ceiling of the kitchen area has a jigsaw puzzle look to it, and the laundry machines are next to the stove/oven. If you are looking for a more traditional space you might want to consider my other rooms on the upstairs floor.
There is wifi available on site which extends to your room. THere is a bicycle storage area in the backyard: let me know if you would like to bring a bicycle as there is only a limited amount of space for bikes. Bicycles may not be kept anywhere on the property except in the bike storage area.
I have a bicycle which you could use during your stay if you pay an additional security deposit amount to cover its potential loss. THere is a rental charge of $40/month or $25 minimum.
This house has been a community house for over 40 years, and I have over 9 years of experience in renting out rooms and learning how to create this a peaceful, restful, well-organized place for others to enjoy. It's a large house, and you won't feel crowded here: it's a great place to stay if you like your privacy and enjoy your independence.
Please read house rules before requesting a reservation, to make sure you will be comfortable with the setting. I ask that prospective guests fill out a complete profile including photo, and verified email and phone number.
Area safety: prospective guests often ask about area safety. Guests have said that the area feels safe, and neither I nor any renter/guest has been robbed or accosted in the 9 years I have lived here. Apart from stating such facts, I cannot answer general questions about "how safe" the area is, or "will I be safe doing X", any more than I could answer a question about how likely you are to get hit by a car when walking around my neighborhood. Asking, "is the area safe?" is a bit like asking, "are tamales delicious?" Obviously, it depends. Safety is both subjective and relative, and is also dependent upon use of common sense, such as being observant of one's surroundings, and not walking down the street while talking on the phone and advertising one's expensive electronics. Robberies do occur around the Ashby BART area and throughout Oakland and Berkeley. No area is completely safe.
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2 bathrooms, full use of the kitchen, full use of laundry facilities for those staying 3 days or more, use of backyard. Use of Meditation Room if it is not occupied by a guest staying in that room.
Interaction with Guests
I like to talk with guests when they arrive, but I am a pretty private person as well as someone needing large blocks of private time for creative projects, so after I get home from work I tend to spend time alone. I also am out a lot on weekends. I tend to chat with guests when I them around...if you like interacting with others, there is always more than one guest at the house and you are likely to be able to get to know other people from around the world.
The immediate area is a one-block long very quiet residential neighborhood of mostly single family homes, but we are also one block away from a main street which has several cafes and restaurants, and we are walking distance from downtown Berkeley and the UC Campus.
The BART (Bay Area Rapid Transit, the local subway) is only 2 blocks away, and makes it easy to travel to most destinations in the Bay Area. There are also bus lines within 1 block.
In order to provide a rejuvenative, tranquil and retreat-like atmosphere for guests, as well as a healthy, comfortable and safe environment, the following are the rules of my house. It is your responsibility to not only read these rules once, but to be aware of and follow all of them throughout your stay at my home. Most of what follows is common sense or common courtesy. The rules serve to protect you as a guest by helping ensure that the environment you find here is the one that I intended to create.
Please keep in mind:
You will be sharing common areas with other guests, and thus the cleanliness of the common areas is far more dependent upon all guests cleaning up after themselves, than it is upon my once a week cleaning. Most guests do very well in keeping common areas clean!
Kindly remove shoes upon entering the house. Please do not drag luggage up the front stairs.
Please leave things as they are in your room: do not remove pictures from walls, don't move furniture around, and do not remove the comforter cover from the comforter or the mattress protector from the mattress. Also, it should not be necessary to say, but since some guests have done this, I must add: please do not take any of my personal possessions out of my home for any reason.
No smoking or "vaping" of any substance inside or outside house, and please do not smoke on the sidewalk in front of the house as this results in dropped butts littering the street.
No pets/animals may be brought here -- though if you like animals, there are some in the backyard who enjoy being visited!
For the better health of all, this is a fragrance/chemical free environment --no fragrances --no perfumes/colognes, “air fresheners”, laundry soap with fragrance, fabric softeners, incense. Shampoo with fragrance is fine.
Due to danger of fire, no candles, space heaters or open flames may be used in the house.
Rooms come already furnished, and guests may not bring additional furniture. Guests may not bring a huge amount of belongings -- please limit yourself to 2-3 suitcases.
Please observe hours for laundry facilities.
When you are done using the kitchen, leave no dishes or food in the sink, on counters, on the stove, or in any common area. Either wash your dishes or put them in your personal storage space. The kitchen should look as though you were never there. Kitchen hours are 6am to 10pm: you may quietly retrieve snacks outside of these hours but no meal preparation outside of these hours. No heavy/greasy cooking in the kitchen. Please, if you spill things on the stovetop, clean it up. Do not leave spills to bake onto the stovetop, which makes them hard or impossible to clean off.
Please do not consume food or beverage in the bed as this can cause damage to linens. Dishes may not be stored in the guest bedrooms.
Do not leave personal belongings in common spaces when done with those areas. Each guest will have designated bath and kitchen storage areas for your own personal use.
AFter use of the bathtub/shower and sink, please clean out hair from the drain/floor area and sink area and make sure tub/shower is basically clean. Do not remove the drain screens from tub/sink as those help prevent clogs. Do not use hair dyes in tub/shower as this will cause damage to the facility.
Common areas are cleaned once a week, and guest rooms are cleaned in between guest visits. Apart from this, guests are expected to clean common areas after use and clean their own rooms during their stay.
Longer term guests: in order to prevent the problem of stale, unpleasant odors emanating from rooms and into common spaces or other's rooms, room windows need to be opened periodically to air out the room. If stale odors become a problem, I will enter guest rooms to air out these spaces.
Rooms are single occupancy only, and guests may not bring any others to visit to my house, neither overnight or during the day. No exceptions will be made.
House quiet hours are 9pm to 8am, and laundry hours are 9am to 9pm. To help preserve the tranquil environment, please keep electronic players and/or voices down at all times, and do not have cellphone conversations in the house after 10pm to avoid disturbing others. No socializing in the house after 10pm.
Please use computers, radios, electronic players and cellphones in your room only and do not bring these into common areas.
Please always lock deadbolts of exterior doors when passing in/out through the doors.
If you have a bicycle, there is a bike storage area outside where you can put it: please do not bring bikes or additional furniture into rooms. Because bike storage space is limited, please ask me before bringing a bike to the house, as there may or may not be room for additional bikes. I do have a bike available for guests to use if an additional security deposit amount is paid to cover its potential loss. Bikes may not be parked/stored anywhere on the property except in bike storage area.
I had hoped that I wouldn’t have to say this, but because some guests have done this I have to say: you may not be present in my house in an intoxicated state. Neither I nor other guests at my house want to have to interact with an intoxicated person or have our sleep disrupted by someone who arrives drunk late at night. Persons who are intoxicated in my house will be asked to leave my house and find another place to stay.
No mail may be received by guests at my home. I used to allow this but due to repeated abuse, I cannot allow this any longer. I get an enormous amount of mail for people who no longer live here. There are UPS and Fedex places nearby where you can receive mail. Unauthorized mail will be refused delivery and returned to the mail carrier.
Please exercise common sense and good judgement throughout your stay. Examples of not using good judgement: piling up dishes too high on dish rack, so they fall out onto the floor. Putting on makeup or hair gel and then lying down on my linens, thus damaging them.
Guest agrees to pay Host for damages or loss for any of Host's property damaged/lost by the Guest.
In order to save myself and my guests from trouble in the case of any guest refusing to follow house rules, significant violation of house rules may result in immediate termination of the reservation, forfeiture of the total cost of reservation, and/or a $20 fee per incident.
When checking out, leave room door open, go out front door and lock exterior door, then place the keys in the mailbox. Note check out time of 11am. You must leave no later than checkout time.
I will orient you to the house when you arrive.
I look forward to meeting you!
Arbitration. All claims and disputes for total amounts greater than $5000, with the exception of Unlawful Detainer actions, arising under or relating to this Agreement are to be settled by Binding Arbitration in the state of California. An award of arbitration may be confirmed in a court of competent jurisdiction.
Deborah is a very nice host, and she always respond to my request super fast. The peaceful room is exactly like the description. It is a very clean and large room. Safe neighborhood.
The peaceful retreat room was clean and spacious. It provides a comfortable bed, well-proportioned desk, a dresser-drawer set and wardrobe. I liked the empty shelves on the left side of the room as they provide good additional storage (office stuff, papers, books, light miscellaneous). Wifi was consistently strong. Very conveniently located near the kitchen and half-bath and shower. Fellow house-guests were friendly and mindful of cleanliness and the quiet hours. I would highly recommend this room, especially to students and to those staying for at least a week or longer.
Clean room and quite place in a quite neighborhood. Easy access to the BART and the host was very kind, especially when I needed to store my large amount of luggages while waiting to check-in in another place.
The description was accurate and the neighborhood was nice. I walked home late at nights from the Ashby train station (conveniently 2 blocks away) and always felt safe.
Deborah was a very friendly host. The house is very close to BART and not far from UC Berkeley (apart from any other alternatives somebody can walk to go there). It is a very quiet place and also guest are provided with the necessary stuff such as bed sheets, pillows and towels which is very convenient especially for the guests who come from very far.
This is a peaceful place and ideal if you need some quiet time. I was really exhausted when I arrived from travelling and I was able to rest and recuperate so it was perfect for me.
It is also really close to the BART so handy from a travel point of view.
This room is a little dark as it is in a kind of basement area but if you don't mind that then it's fine and stays pretty cool.
Deborah was also very helpful with directions and local places of interest etc.
This host has 157 reviews for other properties.View Other Reviews
I have a passionate interest in cultivating the life of the soul of the human psyche. In the past I worked as a counselor and led a dream group. For many years, I have studied mythology and Jungian psychology, and practiced Active Imagination and dreamwork. I use Tarot as a tool for spiritual/soul growth as well as the Divinatory Arts, and I study and practice Horary Astrology. I enjoy Baroque, chamber music, and sacred vocal music, and am an avid bicyclist. I also spend time taking long walks in the many Bay Area parks we are so fortunate to have available here. I also love creating beautiful spaces, and having an opportunity to do so creatively is one of my favorite types of projects to undertake in my professional life in home repair and design. I've spent a lot of time making a more beautiful and inspiring space out of my own home, and I feel grateful to be able to make this space available to others!
I am an introvert, a visual artist, writer, astrologer and book lover and also spend a great deal of my free time either browsing bookstores, or at home engaged in the enchanting world of a good story or compelling mystery book, doing pen sketches and small watercolor or acrylic paintings, or working on the mystery novel I"m writing.