Wednesday, February 22, 2012

The Fairy Tale Houses of Carmel


This weekend, I travelled to San Francisco to visit my sister.  We headed down the coast to spend the weekend in Carmel-by-the-sea.  On the way, we took in the 17 mile drive.  The wind was perfect for flying a kite.

IMG_8446 Sea lions on bird rock.


The lone Cyprus.



The 18th tee at the famous Pebble Beach course.


In Carmel, we stayed in at the Monteverde Inn, a small inn just a few blocks from the beach.  With the help of the Visitor Information Centre, we scouted out the fairy tale cottages.   There are approximately 20 cottages which were built by Hugh Comstock in the late 1920s to early 40s.  Mr. Comstock originally built the cottages as a studio and showroom for his wife, who was a maker of rag dolls.  Generally, the cottages have a thatched roof or a whimsical cedar shingle roof.  The style has also been imitated throughout many homes Carmel.  You feel like you are walking through a real life film set.  Many of the houses are located around Santa Fe & 5th Avenue and Santa Rita and 6th Avenue and they are inhabited.

(I loved these cottages so much that I purchased a book by photographer Mike Barton.  He photographed the cottages during the summer months when the gardens were at their peak and had better access to the cottages. There is also an interesting post on architect design which shows some of the interiors.) 

Below are some photos of the original cottages as well as some newer builds.








IMG_8587 IMG_8598


The cottage below is located near the Carmel mission and is on the market right now for approximately $1.55 million.



The Mission.IMG_8671 



It was a wonderful mini break and chance to explore a little spot on California’s stunning coast. 



  1. Those houses are so gorgeous, and so is Carmel so I'm not at all surprised at the price. We were there about three years ago, passing through one evening on our way along the highway but I don't remember seeing the cottages .. we found a steakhouse instead!!

    Did you see Clint?

  2. What a wonderful holiday. Those cottages are simply magical. I had never heard of them until your post. Simply fabulous.

  3. Wow those roofs! Can you imagine living in such a house?... I had no idea Carmel was such a pretty town. Thanks for the tour KJ.

  4. Oh this is fantastic!
    Thank you for sharing all these beautiful pictures especially of the cottages. I would have had the time of my life!

  5. Lovely pictures, KJ. I am so happy you had a fun break to see your sis.

  6. I've heard that Carmel was quite the destination but have never seen pictures - thanks for sharing - quite honestly, I am jealous - I would have loved an opportunity to take a shot of some of those gorgeous views and locations!!

    I am glad you had a nice little mini-break.

  7. Wow--I've been there before but did not know about the fairy tale houses. How cool!

  8. those ARE real fairy tale houses ~ so charming !
    I hope you had a relaxing get away

  9. Love these cottages! I am a little bit Hugh biased, as that is my brother's name. Thanks for the tour. Dream homes indeed!

  10. I'm glad you had a good trip, KJ. I've always wanted to visit Carmel. Those cottages are adorable!

  11. Those houses are amazing. They really are out of a fairy tale. I might need to make a detour the next time I am in the area.


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