Vintage Sausalito Houseboat Cottage

Boat - Entire home/apt · Kappas Marina West Pier, Sausalito, CA 94965, United States
Your host, Sam
13 Reviews
Response rate: 100%
Response time: within a few hours

The Space

This house boat is built from a liberty ship lifeboat from 1943. It is a rare piece of Sausalito floating heritage. I have put my heart into restoring and recreating the magic of this boat for the last 3 years. It's a perfect get away for couples or those looking to stay close but away from the city.

The location is a 10-15 minute drive from almost anywhere in San Francisco. A few steps outside the door is a cafe and the Sausalito bike path that cuts across Richardson Bay to Mill Valley. The boat is in a stellar location to explore Muir Woods, Stinson Beach, Mt. Tamalpais, and the Marin Headlands.

Some Details About the Boat
The bedroom is a cozy loft with a view west towards the Marin headlands and sunset. The bed is a Queen-sized Temperpedic and truly the most comfortable bed I've ever slept in. The boat has a lovely bathtub shower, WiFi, and a small two-burner stove with a microwave and toaster oven. There is plenty of counter space to prepare food and cook. However, the ceiling over the kitchen does not accommodate taller folks.

This is my home and it does require some care when living aboard. The deck and roof are insulated with material that is easy to puncture, so please no tables, chairs, or high heels on those surfaces. A note for safety: This is a funky houseboat so surfaces on the boat may not be level; there are steps, ladders and other lovely accents and hazards inside.

Travel the Area by Bus or Bike
About whether to keep a car or not, I recommend a car if you plan to explore the North Bay, Marin, Stinson Beach, or other outdoors locales. As for Sausalito, and San Francisco, I'd say you could do without a car and be quite content. Bus stations are located only a few blocks from the boat. There are buses regularly going to downtown Sausalito and SF. You can look up bus schedules online at the golden gate transit website. Ferries run from downtown Sausalito, to which you could use bus, bike or take a long walk. You can find ferry schedules online at the golden gate ferry website. Renting Bikes may be a good option if you are without a car, although it may be pricey. Ferries can take a large number of passengers with bikes (like 30 or more) and all buses reserve 2 spaces for bikes which often go unused.

Food and Drinks
From the boat it is a short drive or bike ride to a few good spots. 'Fish' is outstanding for seafood, well worth the 15 minute walk, although a bit pricey. Cibo is a great spot for coffee, sandwiches and pastries, and it is located on Bridgeway, the main road into downtown. For drinks, Bar Bocce is really nice, and right on the water with a Bocce Ball court and fire pit outside. Those are close and places I go regularly, but there is much more downtown as well. Take a little drive or nice bike ride by the bay to Mill Valley, a small town tucked into the base of Mount Tamalpais. There you'll find lots of great restaurants and a few nice bars as well. Joe's Taco Launge is a local favorite for mexican food. Vasco in the center of town is a slightly more upscale joint that I like. The Sweetwater was a legendary music venue that has just reopened and is definitely worth stopping by to see local artists. I highly recommend taking the trip to Mill Valley, especially by bike, from the boat.

Room type: Entire home/apt
Bed type: Real Bed
Accommodates: 2
Bedrooms: 1
Bathrooms: 1
Beds: 1
Minimum Stay: 5 nights
Weekly Price: $1225 /week
Security Deposit: $150
Cleaning Fee: $50
Check In: 2:00 PM
Check Out: 12:00 PM (noon)
Cancellation: Strict
Overall Guest Satisfaction
Check In
  • This place is magic. Sam has been an incredible host to ensure that I have everything I need. This has been an amazing experience

    December 2013
  • loved the Port Hole Kid! only spent 2 days there, but it was great.

    November 2013
  • Our stay at Sam's houseboat cottage was perfect. We wanted a relaxing spot for visiting San Francisco and surrounding areas and it was everything that we hoped for and more! Everything was clean and quaint, and Sam explained everything thoroughly.

    June 2013
  • I had the pleasure of staying on Sams vintage Sausalito houseboat for two weeks. Extremely comfortable and charming. The location is great for walks, sunsets and great restaurants. It was a completely new experience and thoroughly enjoyable. Patricia

    April 2013
  • I stayed on Sam's houseboat for 3 nights with the idea that I would visit San Francisco during the day and visit around Sausalito at night and I am so happy that I did. First, the houseboat is everything I expected it to be and more. The bed was very comfortable and the heater kept the room warm and cozy. The bathroom is very big for the place which was really nice and the water runs hot which I needed for morning showers. I found everything that I needed in the kitchen (cutting board, knives, forks, plates, wine glasses, wine opener, etc...) The organization is where you expect everything to be which was great.

    Traveling back and forth everyday was quite easy once you know the schedules of both the buses and ferry. I used both and by the end of the first day I felt like I lived there. It helps that I lived in NYC so I am comfortable traveling by bus and ferry.

    I loved Sausalito, I found the people there to be very nice and helpful. On my first day, I got a ride to the bus stop by a fireman and that same night, I got a ride from the ferry port to the houseboat pier from a local lady who thought it would be too cold for me to wait for the bus. With caution I accepted these offers and it just goes to show that people in Sausalito are really nice to tourists who ask lots of questions.

    I ate most of my meals in San Francisco, but I did dine at Le Garage in Sausalito, a french bistro, the food and service is excellent! I highly recommend it. I also bought a bottle of wine at Bacchus & Venus (nice selection if you like wine) which is located on Bridgeway in downtown Sausalito.

    I did not meet Sam personally but he was more than available when I needed to reach him. Overall my stay on Sam's houseboat and Sausalito was more than I had imagined. Would do it all over again in a heartbeat - loved it!

    January 2013
  • We were married in Sausalito and spent our 1st two nights after the wedding here. This houseboat was our ideal unique & memorable setting to relax after our wedding. The exterior & interior of the houseboat is so charming and made for incredible photos of our days there. Everything was spotless and perfectly organized - the owner has made such great use of every space inside. This place is amazing, stay here!

    October 2012
  • Really enjoyed my stay here. I had a great experience. The shower, small heater, and extremely comfortable bed were my favorites! The place is also very clean, which was a must for me! I didn't bring a car along but I ended up renting one in order to explore Muir Woods and Stinson Beach. Sausalito is actually in walking distance from the (email hidden)'s a bit of a walk but if your main purpose is to explore Sausalito, then it's definitely doable without a car. The food is fantastic there! I dined at Avatar's, Scoma's, Bayside Cafe, and the small cafe that's near Sam's home. There's also a cute ice cream parlor in the area.

    Very comfortable and relaxing stay.

    August 2012
  • Staying at Sam's Houseboat exceeded expectations. It's such a unique place to stay and it's very well kept! The bed is very comfortable, the couch is great to sit on, and the ambiance can't be beat. It's much more spacious than we expected as well.

    We went hiking in Muir Woods while we stayed here and this was a perfect location, since we were able to skip out on the traffic to get over the bridge on the way to our hike. It was about a 15 minute drive to our hiking point, but we passed many options along the way. There's lots to do in the area -- we suggest walking over to a restaurant called Fish just down the street as well.

    We definitely recommend this place -- a great way to experience Sausalito -- and would definitely stay there again!

    July 2012
  • It is an adorable, quaint, rustic cottage style houseboat located in a scenic section of Sausalito with easy access to highway 101. It was neat, clean, and the captain's bed was very comfortable. It did have internet access but no TV. The kitchen is small but between the range top and toaster oven all worked well. There was a electric heater that also worked well to warm up the living room area on the first chilly night.

    This is not for everyone but I enjoyed the adventure and the rustic charm. The only downside was the traffic noise which was a bit annoying while trying to sleep.

    July 2012
  • Everything was "as advertised." This houseboat was incredible and so happy we selected it - only wish we could have stayed longer!!

    July 2012
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I grew up in Sonoma, CA in the wine country and moved into the houseboat community when I was 11. I have lived abroad in Canada, attending university in Vancouver. I moved back to the Bay Area in 2010 after 4 month solo travels around the world. I work as an EMT, teaching emergency medical skills and CPR in San Francisco. However, most of my work hours are spent as an instructor at a rock climbing facility in Berkeley. I run kids programs and coach kids and adults the basics of climbing. Often, a good day for me is just being outside, keeping my feet moving. Find a new corner of the world or a new street in San Francisco. Its why I lived in Vancouver for 6 years and why I'm happy to be back in the Bay Area.I enjoy climbing, running, jumping, crawling, and dancing when called to do so by some basic instinct. But I am also an old man, a tinkerer and can be industrious at odd hours and sometimes for endless hours. Most of the past 3 years I have spent putting my heart and hands into fixing and living in a funky old houseboat. Albeit lacking in skill, I am willing to use chemicals and power tools with enthusiasm. Everyday I learn exactly how little I know about what goes into the making of a home.
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