Little River Inn

The Little River Inn is located in Little River, California in the United States. The inn is located on the Mendocino Coast on California State Route 1 (SR-1).

Little River Inn
Little River Inn - Stierch.jpg
Little River Inn is located in California
Little River Inn
Location within California
Little River Inn is located in the United States
Little River Inn
Little River Inn (the United States)
General information
Coordinates39°16′18.99″N 123°47′20.45″W / 39.2719417°N 123.7890139°W / 39.2719417; -123.7890139Coordinates: 39°16′18.99″N 123°47′20.45″W / 39.2719417°N 123.7890139°W / 39.2719417; -123.7890139
  • Cally Dym
  • Melissa Pyorre
Technical details
Floor count2
Other information
Number of rooms67
Number of suites10
Number of restaurants1
ParkingOn site
Official website Edit this at Wikidata


The original inn building was built in 1853 by Silas Coombs.[3] It was built in the Victorian style.[1][4] In 1939, Coombs granddaughter, Cora, and her husband, Ole Hervilla, opened the property as an inn, which comprised a two-story motel.[1][3] The on-site bar, called Ole's Whale Watch, is the former bedroom of Silas Coombs' wife.[3]

It expanded to include new buildings on the original property and on other nearby properties.[1] It remains owned by the Coombs family.[3] Today, the property encompasses 225 acres.[3]

Hollywood historyEdit

One of the first guests of the inn, in 1939, was the actress Myrna Loy. Joan Fontaine and other cast members of Frenchman's Creek stayed at the Inn during 1943. Jane Wyman, and then husband Ronald Reagan, stayed there during the filming of Johnny Belinda, in 1947.[3] James Dean stayed at the hotel in 1954, which was used as the casting office and headquarters for the Mendocino-based filming of East of Eden.[5] He was kicked out of Ole's Whale Watch after putting his feet on a bar table top.[3]

In 1966, Jonathan Winters, who was filming The Russians Are Coming, the Russians Are Coming in Mendocino, visited Ole's Whale Watch and performed an impromptu, three-hour-long comedy show.[2]



Many of the inn's 65 rooms have family heirlooms on display.[6] Suites have jacuzzi tubs, wetbars, and fire places.[1] The inn is dog friendly.[7] The majority of rooms have an ocean view. The main property is located on a hill, with the ocean directly across the street, past Highway 1. Other inn rooms are located on the west side of Highway 1, on cliffs overlooking the ocean.[7]


The inn has a nine-hole golf course, two tennis courts, day spa, restaurant and bar.[1][4] The restaurant's executive chef is Marc Dym. The restaurant serves local seafood, including petrale sole from Fort Bragg. A signature dish ingredient for sweeter dishes is the olallieberry, which is inspired by Ole Hervilla's Swedish heritage.[2] It is served with pancakes and used in cobbler, the latter which uses a recipe created by Cora Coombs.[2][8] Dym has partnered with Anderson Valley Brewing Company to create specialty craft beers, including Saison 75, a saison (sparkling pale ale) that uses three types of hops and a spice blend created by Dym. John Sverko is the restaurant and bar's sommelier (wine expert).[2]


  1. ^ a b c d e f Andrea Brown (1 May 2004). Writers' and Artists' Hideouts: Great Getaways for Seducing the Muse. Linden Publishing. p. 46. ISBN 978-1-61035-116-4.
  2. ^ a b c d e Medovoy, George. "Little River Inn marks 75 years on Mendocino coast". Features-Local. Daily Republic. Retrieved 9 October 2015.
  3. ^ a b c d e f g Reynolds, Susan Dyer. "Take your dog canoeing at Mendocino's Little River Inn". Marina Times. Retrieved 9 October 2015.
  4. ^ a b Stuart Thornton (21 April 2015). Moon Spotlight Mendocino & Redwood Country. Avalon Travel Publishing. p. 38. ISBN 978-1-61238-981-3.
  5. ^ Bruce Levene (1994). James Dean in Mendocino: The Filming of East of Eden. Pacific Transcriptions. p. 27. ISBN 978-0-933391-13-0. Retrieved 2015-11-14.
  6. ^ Michele Bigley (15 April 2013). Explorer's Guide Northern California (Second Edition) (Explorer's Complete). Countryman Press. p. 332. ISBN 978-1-58157-720-4.
  7. ^ a b Maria Goodavage (21 June 2011). The Dog Lover's Companion to California: The Inside Scoop on Where to Take Your Dog. Avalon Travel Publishing. p. 83. ISBN 978-1-61238-245-6.
  8. ^ Rebmann, Dana. "Add Llamas to Your Mendocino Must Do List". Highway 1. 7x7. Retrieved 9 October 2015.

External linksEdit

  Media related to Little River Inn (Little River, California) at Wikimedia Commons