Kaleidoscopic Victorian nr S. Berkeley (Ashby)BART

Private room in home hosted by Deborah

  1. 1 guest
  2. 1 bedroom
  3. 1 bed
  4. 2.5 shared bathrooms
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A beautiful, large, tranquil Victorian home and retreat-like setting in the South Berkeley area, only 2 blocks from Ashby BART. Architecturally colorful and unique, very conveniently located near cafes, bakeries, and the celebrated Berkeley Bowl grocery!

The space
NOTE: Please read the ENTIRE listing description and house rules before requesting to stay... Reading a hosts' house rules before booking is REQUIRED by Airbnb.

This charming Old Lady, a century old Victorian home, has a colorful interior and is truly a house with character and soul. It is an artistically colorful and inspiring refuge and place to find rejuvenation for your soul! I have several guest rooms in the house, so to see other listings, click on my photo or name to go to my profile and see the others. S

All rooms are single occupancy only to help preserve the quiet environment. (This means only ONE person may stay in each room. )

This house is very conveniently located in the Berkeley-Oakland border region 2 blocks from the South Berkeley (Ashby) BART station, the local subway. This allows you to travel to most any San Francisco Bay Area destination without a car. You can quickly arrive to downtown San Francisco within 30-45 minutes by BART.

Within walking distance of 5 blocks, you can find: several ethnic restaurants (African and Mexican come to mind), 2 cafes, 2 bakeries, La Pena Latin American cultural center, Starry Plough Irish Pub, a low-fee acupuncture clinic, and Berkeley Bowl grocery store, with its celebrated enormous offering of fresh produce. THere is a weekly farmer's market just a few blocks away.
Walk a little farther north, and within 30 minutes or 1 mile you will come to downtown Berkeley, and the University of California at Berkeley, movie theatres and many shops, restaurants, and other attractions such as bookstores, comics/games stores. (Downtown Berkeley is also just one BART stop away.) By walking East, you come to the attractive Elmwood avenue shopping area within ¾ mile, and its shops, restaurants (Indian and Mediterranean among them), movie theatre and Metaphysical bookstore. THe Walkscore rating for my house location is 88 out of a possible 100 for walkability: any higher a rating and you would likely have trouble finding parking. Speaking of parking: there is plenty of 2 hr parking on my street -- Monday thru Friday, 8am to 6pm, there is a 2 hr limit -- but you can find smaller areas of unrestricted parking on my street and nearby.

I have several guest rooms available . See photos of them in the listing.

The Kaleidoscopic Room is similar to the Enchanted Lair room in size, and both of these are on the main or 2nd floor of the house. Each features a full size bed, table and chair, dresser, nightstand and bookshelf. Each of those is 12 ft by 12 ft in size. THe Enchanted Lair room has a closet, and the bed is located under a loft which I use to store some things (you would not need to climb up there). It has one long window for northern light. The Kaleidoscopic room has two windows, one facing west to the backyard garden, and has a wardrobe instead of a closet.

You will share the kitchen and bathrooms (one full bath plus one half bath) with up to 2 other guests and myself, though I don’t cook much. I am not vegetarian, and there are no restrictions on what you may cook here. There is wifi and laundry available on site. The main bathroom has a tub with glass tub enclosure: there is also a tiled shower available for you to use if you prefer.

Architecturally, this is a colorful and playful house, where you won’t find white or “off white” rooms. The rooms have ten foot high ceilings and attractive moulding. All the original redwood moulding and redwood panel doors remain. The spacious kitchen is orange with a blue countertop and green tile floor, featuring an antique Wedgewood stove. For those staying 4 weeks or less, there are basic staples for you to use for your cooking. (For those staying longer, please purchase your own kitchen staples).

Also feel free to enjoy the backyard garden, perhaps visiting the bunnies Moonstone, Flopsy and Cinnamon at "Bunny Castle". Or sit by the pond with running water, or enjoy some quiet time in the "Meditation Hut" and fern garden area in the backyard.

CLEANING: The common areas of the house are cleaned once a week. Apart from this, guests are required to clean up after themselves when using common areas (see house rules for more info). Note that my once a week cleaning cannot keep the common areas spotless 24/7, and I'm not able to clean the house every day, much less several times a day, so the guests most suited for my house are those who understand this.

street parking is available, mostly limited to 2 hrs on weekdays, but there are unrestricted parking areas also within 1-2 blocks.

I have a bicycle available for guest use with the payment of an additional security deposit to cover its potential loss.

Please read house rules below before booking a reservation, to make sure you will be comfortable with the setting. I ask that prospective guests fill out a complete profile including photo, as well as verified email and phone number.

Prospective guests often ask about area safety. Guests have said they felt safe in the area. Neither I nor any renter/guest has been robbed or accosted in the 12 years I have lived here. Apart from stating such facts, I cannot answer general questions about "how safe" the area is, or "will I be safe doing X", any more than I could answer a question about how likely you are to get hit by a car when walking around my neighborhood. Safety is both subjective and relative, and is also dependent upon use of common sense, such as being observant of one's surroundings, and not walking down the street while talking on the phone and advertising one's expensive electronics. Robberies do occur around the Ashby BART area, and throughout Oakland and Berkeley. No area is completely safe.

This house has been a community house of one kind or another for over 40 years, and I have over 14 years experience in renting rooms in my house and learning how to create a tranquil environment for others to enjoy. It's a large house, and you won't feel crowded here: it's a great place to stay if you like your privacy and enjoy your independence.

I welcome you to come enjoy a tranquil retreat from the workaday world and rekindle your sense of delight and enchantment!


Search keywords: retreat, meditation, mindfulness, vipassana, contemplation, dharma, reflection, quiet, tranquility, garden, cottage, private, privacy, independent, introverted, spiritual, Buddhist, Buddhism, Zen, zafu, silence, art, artist, library, nurturing, rejuvenation, psychology, nature, animals, chickens, hens, urban farm.

Where you'll sleep

1 double bed

What this place offers

Dedicated workspace
Free on-street parking
Free washer – In building
Free dryer – In building
Shared backyard – Fully fenced
Luggage drop-off allowed
Hair dryer

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4.82 out of 5 stars from 51 reviews


Where you’ll be

California, United States

The immediate area is a one-block long very quiet residential neighborhood of mostly single family homes, but we are also one block away from a main street which has several cafes and restaurants, and we are walking distance from downtown Berkeley and the UC Campus.

Hosted by Deborah

  1. Joined in March 2013
  • 809 Reviews
  • Identity verified
I have a passionate interest in cultivating the life of the soul of the human psyche. In the past I worked as a counselor and led a dream group. For many years, I have studied mythology and Jungian psychology, and practiced Active Imagination and dreamwork. I use Tarot as a tool for spiritual/soul growth as well as the Divinatory Arts, and I study and practice Horary Astrology. Since I am a practicing Horary Astrologer, please inquire if you would be interested in me doing an Horary Astrological Chart interpretation for a question that you may have. You can find me by looking for "Green Planet Astrology".

I enjoy Early Music and Sacred vocal music, and am an avid yoga practitioner. I also spend time taking long walks in the many Bay Area parks we are so fortunate to have available here. I also love creating beautiful spaces, and having an opportunity to do so creatively is one of my favorite types of projects to undertake in my professional life in home design. I've spent a lot of time making a more beautiful and inspiring space out of my own home, and I feel grateful to be able to make this space available to others!

I am an introvert, a visual artist, writer and book lover and also spend a great deal of my free time either browsing bookstores, or at home engaged in the enchanting world of a good story or compelling mystery book, doing pen sketches and small watercolor or acrylic paintings, or working on the mystery novel I"m writing.

I love that the San Francisco Bay Area is one of the richest spiritual centers in the world, with a marvelous diversity of teachings, retreat centers and workshops available here. We are extremely fortunate in this regard. In my own spiritual path, the role of Imagination and Creativity are very important, and the type of Meditation I practice is music/devotional meditation rather than Vipassana, though I do attend Buddhist retreats and workshops from time to time.

I have a passionate interest in cultivating the life of the soul of the human psyche. In the past I worked as a counselor and led a dream group. For many years, I have studied my…

During your stay

I like to talk with guests when they arrive, but I am a pretty private person as well as someone needing large blocks of private time for creative projects, so after I get home from work I tend to spend time alone. I also am out a lot on weekends. I tend to chat with guests when I them around...if you like interacting with others, there is always more than one guest at the house and you are likely to be able to get to know other people from around the world.
I like to talk with guests when they arrive, but I am a pretty private person as well as someone needing large blocks of private time for creative projects, so after I get home fro…
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Things to know

House rules

Check-in: After 1:00 pm
Check out: 11:00 am
Self check-in with lockbox
Not suitable for children and infants
No smoking
No pets
No parties or events

Health & safety

Airbnb's COVID-19 safety practices apply
Carbon monoxide alarm
Smoke alarm

Cancellation policy