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Beautiful and Lush Hidden Wisteria Cottage

Bedrooms 1
Space 750 sq. ft.
Property type cottage
Minimum Stay 3 nights


About the property

1 bedroom, 1 bath, sleeps 2

The island of Alameda is considered by some as the hidden gem of the San Francisco Bay Area.

Your hosts have turned their circa 1890s detached carriage house and stable into a welcoming garden cottage. This tastefully appointed guest spot is perfect for a quiet getaway or extended academic or corporate visit.

Nestled in a quiet neighborhood, you are just walking distance from Park Street, Alameda's central shopping district. Here you'll find everything you need....antique shops, cafes, restaurants, boutiques and the newly renovated Alameda Theatre. Less than a mile away you'll find a pristine beach park with stunning views of the San Francisco skyline.

Want to head into 'The City'? You are just 25 minutes away from all SF has to offer. We are close to the Alameda ferry, AC Transit and BART. A quick drive over the Bay Bridge drops you right into the heart of downtown San Francisco.

The Carriage House: The owners have spent decades collecting antiques and designing interiors and have used their talents to create a comfortable,quiet vacation space for those who appreciate a green way of living.

Virtually every item, from floor to ceiling is recovered or recycled in some way.

The Garden: The bungalow is covered by a gorgeous and legendary Wisteria tree that is the star of the spring season.

The practice of 'Living Green' extends to the lush surrounding gardens. Old San Francisco cobblestones, recovered copper downspouts and perfectly placed architectural elements create a serene garden so creative you'd think you were on a movie set.

A Coi pond that is sometimes visited by elegant egrets, sits just outside the bungalow door. The garden is surrounded by three small aviaries that house small families of canaries. Their song and the sound of flowing water will lull you while you read a book in the sun on your own private patio.

The Neighborhood & Beyond: Developed in the late 1800s as a beach resort community, the modern day version still holds much of it's charm from the early 20th century.

Take a drive through the different neighborhoods and you'll see beautiful examples of California architecture. Perfectly restored Victorians share the same street with cute California Bungalows and Craftsman style homes.

More Details

Property Manager
Melissa Burnley at Bella Bay Vacation Rentals
Member since: 2011
Speaks: english
Response time:
Within a day
Response rate:
Calendar last updated:
May 17, 2017

About Melissa Burnley at Bella Bay Vacation Rentals

The talents of your hosts, John and Arthur, have appeared on HGTV’s Curb Appeal and in a series of books on Arts & Crafts bungalows by Paul Duchscherer – The Bungalow, Inside the Bungalow and Outside the Bungalow. Their business, House of Orange, specializes in European Arts & Crafts furnishings, and some of their most outstanding pieces are now in the homes of local collectors who have become close friends over the years.

Why Melissa Burnley at Bella Bay Vacation Rentals chose The Bay Area

Their carriage house – circa 1890, has been turned into a garden guest cottage – and except for a few planks, tiles and a sofa bed, the cottage and its contents are all recycled in some way. The wood interior and exterior siding are bits and pieces from old projects, and with their creative eye, all the pieces work: as ceiling and wall sections, windowsills, door jambs, storage closets - you name it!

Their recycling even extends to the surrounding yard. Reclaimed copper downspouts from the roof divert rainwater into the koi pond and an existing well. The outdoor lighting is on a sensor to save energy, and old lanterns were rewired as lamps. Chimney liners were turned into water features and pulley hooks into sturdy plant hangers. All plants need little to no watering and bloom beautifully.

Wisteria Cottage – a name given to it by friends and guests – may be small, but every idea John and Arthur used was big on result and can easily translate on an even grander scale. They provide decorating, remodeling and landscaping services and advice.

What makes this cottage unique

John and Arthur are called the “Green Giants” because they are all about reducing, reusing and recycling in a BIG and BEAUTIFUL way. Whether shopping at thrift stores for clothing, repaving their driveway with old cobblestones from a San Francisco street, or resurfacing floors with reclaimed wood, they make mindful and creative use of materials with spectacular results!


Alameda Cottage Accommodation and Amenities

Property Type:
  • cottage
  • Guests provide their own meals
Floor Area:
  • 750 sq. ft.
House Rules:
  • Max. occupancy: 2
  • non smoking only ...
  • pets not allowed
  • not suitable for children ...
Location Type:
  • Downtown
  • Away From It All
  • Historic
  • Romantic
  • Tourist Attractions
  • Activities Guide
  • Alarm Clock
  • Basic Soaps
  • Fireplace ...
  • Gas Heating
  • Hair Dryer
  • Heating ...
  • Internet
  • Iron & Board
  • Linens Provided
  • Living Area
  • Local Activities Guide
  • Local Maps
  • Local Restaurant Guide
  • Paper Towels
  • Parking ...
  • Parking On Street
  • Toilet Paper
  • Towels Provided
  • Wireless Internet
  • 4 Ring Stove
  • Blender
  • Coffee Maker
  • Cooking Utensils
  • Dishes & Utensils
  • Freezer
  • Grill
  • Ice Maker
  • Kitchen
  • Microwave
  • Oven
  • Pantry Items
  • Refrigerator
  • Stove
  • Toaster
  • Dining Area
  • seating for 2 people
  • 1 Bathroom
  • Bathroom 1 - toilet , shower
  • 1 Bedroom, Sleeps 2
  • Bedroom 1 - 1 queen
  • Books
  • CD Player
  • DVD Player
  • Radio
  • Satellite / Cable ...
  • Stereo
  • Television
  • VCR
  • Video Library
  • Barbecue
  • Courtyard
  • Deck / Patio ...
  • Lawn / Garden ...
  • Outdoor Entertainment Area
  • Outdoor Grill ...
  • Patio
  • 4 garden chairs
  • wheelchair inaccessible
  • arboretum
  • bay/sound
  • botanical garden
  • churches
  • cinemas
  • festivals
  • library
  • live theater
  • marina
  • museums
  • playground
  • pond
  • restaurants
  • synagogues
  • winery tours
  • zoo
Leisure Activities:
  • antiquing
  • beachcombing
  • bird watching
  • outlet shopping
  • scenic drives
  • sight seeing
  • walking
  • whale watching
Local Services & Businesses:
  • ATM/bank
  • fitness center
  • groceries
  • hospital
  • massage therapist
  • medical services
Sports & Adventure Activities:
  • cycling
  • fishing
  • golf
  • hiking
  • mountain biking
  • pier fishing
  • roller blading
  • sailing
  • sound/bay fishing
  • swimming
  • tennis
  • wind-surfing


Exceptional! 5/5 -
(54 traveler reviews)

Beautiful and Lush Hidden Wisteria Cottage
average rating of 4.9814816 based on 54 reviews

Wisteria Cottage - A little piece of paradise.

  • 5 of 5

John and Arthur greeted us upon arrival and introduced us to their little piece of paradise. Upon entering the cottage we so pleased with our choice of accommodations. John and Arthur have done a wonderful job of designing and decorating Wisteria cottage to make it feel warm and inviting. The fireplace is nice at night, kitchen was well equipped for preparing meals and the bed was very comfortable. After coming back from a busy day of site seeing, sitting outside in the yard was very peaceful and calming. Arthur raises canaries which are housed in the yard and they also have a fish pond which the guests are aloud to feed.

We drove from Canada and we felt very comfortable leaving our car parked on the street for our stay. Arthur planted a hedge on the boulevard which protects the passenger side of the car, and there is a neighbor across the street which is know as neighborhood watch which we appreciated.

Alameda was an excellent place to stay for visiting the bay area. We did not want to drive in San Francisco, so we chose to use AC Transit system. We walked 3 blocks to catch the bus which took us down to the Bart subway. We took the Bart daily into S.F. The bus and Bart ride only took approx. 40 minutes. We purchased clipper passes for the bus and the Bart and while in S.F. we purchased muni passes which allowed us to take unlimited rides on their bus, streetcar and cable cars. The muni pass more than paid for itself.

The last night, we were allowed to put the car inside the yard, so it was easier to load up in the morning.

We said our good byes to John and Arthur and a few minutes later, they knocked on our door and asked if we would like to go for a car ride. They drove us up to the hills of Berkeley so we could see an overview of the bay area.

It was greatly appreciated that John and Arthur would go to this effort for us. They created a very special vacation memory that we will cherish forever. We could not have been more happier with our choice staying at Wisteria cottage and we have made two new friends.

Thank you John and Arthur.

  • Submitted: Apr 30, 2017
  • Stayed: Apr 2017
  • Source: VRBO, from HomeAway
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Fantastic find

  • 5 of 5

John & Arthur

Imagine our excitement coming to Alameda to visit our beautiful new Granddaughter Audrey Lane. So great!

And then...What a bonus to be lucky enough to stay here at Wisteria Cottage.

We could never have imagined the beauty and magic that lay within.

We loved Exploring the cottage upon our late arrival & entering the garden the following morning just took our breath away. You can feel the love, heart and soul that has gone into creating and maintaining this masterpiece.

We are so glad you two listened to you friends and decided to share Wisteria Cottage with others and we feel so special to part of the lucky few who have experienced her magic.

Thank you so much, and we hope to see you again soon.

Bruce & Shelly

  • Submitted: Mar 9, 2017
  • Stayed: Mar 2017
  • Source: VRBO, from HomeAway
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Charming, cozy, and serene

  • 5 of 5

The cottage is adorable, comfortable, and serene, and John and Arthur paid so much attention paid to the small details that can make a difference when travelling! For example: lots of light, and reading lights and night tables on BOTH sides of the bed (amazing how many places have them only one one side!); Peet's coffee beans and a coffee grinder; lots of bed pillows; thick towels, and plenty of them; comfortable mattress; plenty of storage space in the bathroom; fabulous garden. Alameda is a quiet town on an island adjacent to Oakland, and it is unusual for the Bay Area in that it has charm without being precious. We thoroughly enjoyed our stay!

  • Submitted: Feb 17, 2017
  • Stayed: Feb 2017
  • Source: HomeAway
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Castro Valley, Ca

Hidden Gem

  • 5 of 5

What a wonderful place to stay. It is just beautiful and peaceful. Such a cozy and well kept place. I totally recommend it.

  • Submitted: Feb 7, 2017
  • Stayed: Feb 2017
  • Source: HomeAway
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Little Rock, Ar, USA

Perfect location Wonderful cottage

  • 5 of 5

Lovely little cottage. Our 2nd time to stay there will stay again in the summer when we come back. Has every thing we need or want. We highly recommend this little cottage

  • Submitted: Jan 2, 2017
  • Stayed: Dec 2016
  • Source: HomeAway
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Asheville NC

A true sanctuary

  • 5 of 5

What a enchanting and beautiful cottage. From the moment you walk through the gate to the cottage, you enter a peaceful and beautiful world.

The cottage is charming (I especially loved the fireplace). The details are amazing. You have everything you need - nothing is overlooked.

And the garden! Wow! So beautiful and charming. Every few steps brought another surprise. And I loved feeding the fish. Our only disappointment - we were there in December and the wisteria was not in bloom. Hopefully, our next visit to Alameda will be in spring or summer.

Wisteria Cottage is in an ideal location - just a short walk to Park Street and all the shops and restaurants.

John and Arthur are wonderful hosts. So kind and gracious; always concerned about our needs. We enjoyed our conversations with them. We look forward to seeing them on our next visit.

  • Submitted: Jan 2, 2017
  • Stayed: Dec 2016
  • Source: VRBO, from HomeAway
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Nearest Airport
5 Miles
Oakland International Airport
Nearest Barpub
1 Miles
Walking distance
Nearest Ferry
4 Miles
Ferry Point
Nearest Golf
2.5 Miles
Alameda Municipal Golf Course
Nearest Train
10 Miles
Emeryville - Amtrak
Nearest Motorway
1 Miles
Nearest Restaurant
1 Miles
Walking distance
Nearest Ski
120 Miles
Nearest Beach
1 Miles
Walking distance
Car: recommended


Rates & Availability

Alameda Cottage Rental Rates

Rental Basis:
per property
Manager accepts payment in:
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Rate Period Nightly Weekend Night Weekly Monthly Event
My Standard Rate
3 night minimum stay

Additional information about rental rates

Cleaning $100

If you must cancel, our cancellation policy is as follows:
- Within 30 days of arrival date = 50% will be refunded.
- 30 days or longer from time of arrival = 100% will be refunded.

Manager's Cancellation Policy

100% refund if canceled at least 30 days before arrival date.
Enter dates for accurate pricing
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