Charming History of Ocean View Inn
The Building, Beginning and the Hotel...So much can be said of this historical building with its colorful past, charming history and exciting future. What catches your eye upon arriving at Ocean View Inn is the exquisite works of wrought iron amber coloring stain glass Victorian inspired windows. Birthed from another era and time, this hundred plus building holds a celebratory past. Now legend has it that it was built by a German family that migrated to what was then called, "Farallon City". Circa 1800's. Built by the Hendrich Family whom a German scholar said migrated from Germany, came to this area and eventually became the financier of the railroad from San Francisco to Monterey. The mansion property line started from Main Street to the cliffs, with the front entrance of the mansion on Main Street. This is the reasoning for the inn having two addresses (more later on that).
Around 1906, Mr Hendrich sold the mansion to a J. A. Flink. Mr Flink being a born resident of Farallon City, turned the mansion into the Farallon Hotel. This part of history was told to me by Valda Oleson, the niece of J.A. Flink. Valda came to me about 2 years ago and appeared in the lobby of the inn to come and check on her Uncles hotel. A vibrant 80+ year old lady of distinction, Valda mesmerized me with her sharp memory and that she had drove herself from Sunnyvale. Needless to say, astounded was the only word that came to mind. Valda climbed the three level of stairs to see all the rooms. You could see in her eyes and expressions a reminiscence of her life coming back to her. We sat having tea so as to collect every bit of history she could provide and three hours later, the turning of the Farallon Hotel became known. Taken aback at the idea that this was a roadhouse cause her alarm. "Never was this a roadhouse", she corrected. Valda explained that the ground level of the hotel was for special occasions, high tea's and frequent by the society traveling through North & South. Her parents were married in the inn and as a young child, she recalled playing on the railroad ties stacked like sticks after she helped her Mother & Grandmother pick up the tea cups along with remnants of tea time in the dining room. Valda talked about the gardens and paths that lead to the edge of the cliff to watch the ocean waves and the grand front entrance of the hotel. Mr Flink painted the hotel white to stand out in the fog. What came to light next was astounding. Valda explained the stainglass windows in two of the suites that exist today. Her Uncle (J.A. Flink) noted to the family that they were memorial windows to immediate family members. In this era, affluent families would have these stain glass windows made in memoriam and place in a church. Albeit, the nearest church as the time would have been in San Francisco, the stainglass windows would not have made it on horse and buggy. As a result, Mr Hendrich placed them in the walls. It is not known if the windows were placed in the ladies rooms or not. But, it was a guest of Ocean View Inn who mentioned that the writing was in very very old German script and writing. Upon his return back to Germany, he would do some research to find its origin. The discovery was these exquisite mastered stainglass windows are memorial pieces to his Daughter and Wife. The cause of their parting is not known.
As a celebration of love, union & the most pristine venue to form the beginning of a new marriage. Every Bride that descends the majestic cherry wood staircase is pictured and preserved as a memory of the Ocean View Inn. As this beginning was not enough, you will see the pictures of Valda, the Flink Family including J.A. Flink and the wedding picture of Valda's parents taken in the Farallon Hotel. We look forward to the future of Brides, honeymooners, anniversaries and special occasions that makes this inn such a treasure for so many reason, but love is definitely a good reason to start here. Montara is the most romantic, quaint and fall in love coastal community you will ever experience.
Next Blog will focus on the next chapter of history of the inn. Roaring 20's and 1930"s.