About this listing
This brand-new cottage, conveniently located near the posh 4th Street shopping district, the North Berkeley BART station, and waterfront trails, offers seclusion and beauty while providing all the comforts of home. Winner of an Eco Award from Diablo Magazine due to its energy-efficient design, the cottage has garnered international media attention as an examplar of the Tiny House Movement and a model for smart growth development in older low-density neighborhoods.
This solar-powered cottage provides a full kitchen and bath and sleeps up to four (two in sleeping loft, two on sofabed). We provide wireless internet, bedding (organic mattress provided), and kitchen necessities. Laundry is available, as is extra storage space (including secure bike parking). (A crib is available too.) There's a microwave, a convection oven, and a gas grill, and in season, fresh vegetables from the garden and fruit from the trees. Street parking is always available, and the University Avenue exit from 80 is just 6 blocks away. We are 3/4 mile from BART, two blocks from AC Transit 72, 51, and 52 lines, and on both N-S and E-W bike routes. Stores within walking distance provide all your needs. And the cottage itself is tranquil and secluded from the street.
Spacious, light, yet cozy, the space offers a compelling sense of place and provocative vision for urban living.. Everybody who walks in wants to move in! As San Francisco Chronicle architectural critic John King has written, "it's a well-done space, inviting as well as concise, homey in all the right ways."
And it's an inspiring model for the future. As the urban critic for the Washington Post wrote, "Producing compact, functional backyard cottage designs that are green and affordable is not the problem. The real problem is how to convince homeowners that their fears are unfounded and that creating accessory dwellings is a feasible, worthwhile idea. And the only way to accomplish this is to persuasively demonstrate the value and effectiveness of the idea, which is what the university in Berkeley is trying to do."
In the main house is my laid-back household, including a Labrador retriever and a cat, rarely seen. The property is quiet, as we are out all day. As a city planning professor at UC-Berkeley, I help my guests in all kinds of unexpected ways. And of course as a Berkeleyan I have a deep appreciation of all kinds of cultures and eccentricities!
The cottage will not accommodate children between the ages of 6 months and 2 years. It is not toddler-proof.
12% City of Berkeley Transient Occupancy Tax applies to stays of 13 nights or fewer. These fees will be added to total cost. (Thus, we have set a two-week minimum for visitors.)
Karen was very welcoming when we arrived. The cottage is quietly located in the back of her house and it has everything you need.
Her friendly dog and cat certainly made our stay even more spectacular.
Definitely a 5-star and thank you, Karen!
Reno & Aurora
This was my first experience with airbnb and I couldn't have chosen a better place to stay. Karen's eco-friendly cottage is very well laid out for being a smaller space. Very functional and cozy and could easily live there comfortably. The backyard is a plus, especially if you're a dog owner. Karen's dog is very friendly and her daughter is simply adorable. Very gracious household and would recommend this place to anyone who is looking for a warm and welcoming place to stay, that is a bit more unique than your run-of-the-mill home. This place has charm and then some.
As far as the neighborhood, it's conveniently located right across from a park, great food and shopping, public transportation and much more. The area has a little something for everyone.
My partner, dog and I stayed at the eco-cottage for two weeks, and overall our experience was positive. Karen was a very communicative host, and the location in terms of price and proximity to all that Berkeley has to offer (by foot), as well as Oakland and San Francisco (by BART or car), was very valuable to us.
Our only complaint during the stay was lack of privacy. As previous guests mentioned in their reviews, the cottage is in the center of all backyard activities, and the host's dog, Clay, roams freely. We felt like we were in a "fishbowl" at times, especially when people were hanging out in the backyard, doing yard work, or working on the cottage exterior.
Privacy aside, this is a sweet space for one or two people, and having access to a pet-friendly fenced yard was great too.
The eco-cottage was a wonderful place to stay for the summer! Karen and her daughter were incredibly nice and helpful and not too overbearing. The dog and cat were well behaved as well and the backyard is beautiful. The house is wonderfully set up and has great amenities.
Karen's cottage is well thought out, a pleasure to stay in and conveniently located in a pleasant neighborhood close to shops. I was impressed with the retreat-style feeling of being in the cottage while still being in a residential area.
Booking the cottage was a breeze. Karen is responsive, personable and quick. At one point the internet became unresponsive (a large problem for me since I worked from there). I mailed her about this and within 45 minutes it was fixed. Fantastic.
I recently moved to Berkeley and stayed at Karen's eco-cottage for a month. It was one of the most thoughtfully-designed spaces I've ever stayed in. The cottage was comfortable, homey, filled with natural light, fully equipped with all the minor conveniences, It was also perfectly located for my transition into the Berkeley lifestyle: the cottage is just a few blocks away from the 4th Street shops, and all the interesting industrial artist studios, workshops, restaurants, bars of West Berkeley. And those highly touted grocery stores of Berkeley are all just a short drive away. It was super easy from the cottage to get onto the freeway, and drive to SF and Oakland. Karen and her little daughter are fantastic, sweet, welcoming hosts. Karen accommodated my crazy changing schedule, and helped me in every way to get to know the area. The cottage was very clean and private, the bathroom, kitchen, closet and work area are all full sized, and the sleeping loft was a very peaceful hideaway. I just had a wonderful time staying with Karen and couldn't recommend her cottage more.
We enjoyed our stay at Karen's cottage and all our woodworking friends had to come by to take a look at this modern design for city living. They loved it! The cottage is as advertised. It is three years old and in good shape, but could use some updating on supplies. The place is private from the street and we felt safe enough to leave our door open during the day while we were working so our dog could go in and out. It is not private from the main house and there is some coming and going which if you want privacy will require you to keep your blinds drawn. The bathroom is full size and great. Towels are provided. You will need to bring other necessities including tp, paper towels, etc. The bed is more like a futon than a real mattress so a long stay may be uncomfortable for some. We appreciated the use of the washer and dryer.
The only down side is the neighborhood. While the 4th Street business area is a short walk away and great for coffee and deli (and a great wine shop), there were a few disturbing incidents nearby while we were there and quite a bit of police activity in the apartment building directly across the street. There is also a homeless population in the park across the street. However, we never felt personally threatened or unsafe. The neighbors were all friendly.
Karen, John, Lexi, and Clay were all kind to us and we appreciated their hospitality.