Overall, the home was very nice. The price clearly reflects what you get. We got what we paid for- a nice lakefront home that is not ON the beach- it's ABOVE the lake. We didn't feel that we had overpaid for it- the setting is truly gorgeous- every night, we had drinks out on the lower deck and watched the sun go down. In the morning, we'd be out looking at the glass-like lake, watching boaters fish quietly while we sipped our coffee (my son sipped his hot cocoa). Hot afternoons and cooler evenings with all the doors open and the air conditioning off to enjoy the small breezes, we'd sit around the large table playing board games. Those moments alone made the price worth it.
Pros: The entire home was very clean- thank you! The kitchen was large enough to handle cooking for the 7 of us who stayed in the home. The dining table easily had enough seating for all of us to eat together. There was plenty of outdoor seating on the lower deck overlooking the lake. The upstairs master bedroom was quite large, the bed was comfortable and the bathroom was very nice. The indoor seating area (living room?) upstairs was also very nice with plenty of comfortable seating. The upstairs air conditioning unit did a GREAT job keeping the upstairs cool and downstairs air conditioning did a great job in the main areas (kitchen/family room). Easy access through multiple doors into the house. Garage was great to have- we put one car in there for the entire stay and kept the bikes stored in there. Lovely little gazebo on the hillside off to the side of the lower deck.
+ Very well-situated home- super close to downtown and many wonderful restaurants. Far-enough away from downtown that it was really quiet and out of the hustle-bustle. Short drive down the hill to get to the bike trail. Gorgeous views overlooking the lake. Easy access to the freeway and points beyond.
+ Vehicle parking- we were warned that it would be a very tight fit for parking but we managed to keep 3 cars parked there all the time (1 in garage, 1 in driveway, and 1 on the street- as per owner's instructions). My dad is in his 80's and easily parked his car on the street and drove into town several times a day.
Cons: House desperately needs updating in the lower level.
- The downstairs bathroom looks like it hasn't been updated since the 70's- the shower/tub arrangement is... problematic- strange little shelf below the showerhead where the tub abuts what should be the wall but the wall is further back so they added a laminate shelf which was then laminated all the way up the wall. That entire wall setup seemed very DIY. The tile work and the laminate on the countertop/sink are pink with significant chipping on the laminate counter. With enough beds for 5 downstairs, this single bathroom saw extremely heavy usage and just couldn't keep up. The fan in the bathroom couldn't handle the steam or other air filtration needs of a bathroom, requiring us to keep the door shut if we were in either downstairs bedroom. Also, not enough space to hang/dry the bath towels compelling most of us to take the towels to the bedrooms to figure out a way to get them dry.
- The kitchen needs a good gut job on the incredible amount of "left-behinds" from previous renters. Every single shelf in the pantry was filled with things (food, tools, spare plastic grocery bags, etc.) that previous renters had left behind. Ditto for many other storage areas in the kitchen. This was the one area that did not feel "clean" when we moved in. After one day of working around it, we finally corralled all of these items and moved them into a few centralized locations so that we could actually have clean, open spaces to put our groceries. Maybe other guests really liked that there were already a lot of opened condiments, spices, single bags, asst. loose tools, etc. at the house but for my entire extended family, it was a real turn-off.
- Outlets throughout the lower level need to be replaced with new electrical outlets so that plugged-in items stay plugged-in. We were down to one outlet per room that, with careful placement, we could use to recharge our phones & other digital toys.
- Air Circulation in the lower level was a problem. Both bedrooms (incuding the alcove room) were very stuffy. Even though it was very warm outside, the air conditioning unit downstairs was not able to handle the airflow requirements of the lower level so we were compelled to keep the bedroom doors shut and opened the bedroom windows. We also moved all of the fans into those two (three with the alcove) rooms so that we could actually get to sleep at night.
- Alcove/sleeper room. This is clearly another DIY solution to get additional beds added to the house. There is no privacy between the alcove room and the bedroom behind it, with the only separation between the two is a fringed, velvet curtain. All 3 beds downstairs were fine for one person each. But, when we added a second person to the bed, we rolled to the center.
- Be prepared for the very steep road to access the house. We brought bikes thinking we'd be able to bike and/or walk down to the lake from the house. Instead, we re-attached them to the cars each day, drove them down the hill and got on our bikes there. The road is too steep for most bike cruisers, too curved with blind corners for safety, too narrow for safe biking or walking. The write up makes it sound like a bit of a hike but still walkable. We would strongly disagree.
All in all, a good place to stay. However, I would STRONGLY recommend either updating the areas mentioned in the CON section or changing your photos to reflect what your guests see. The price is appropriate for what you get; unfortunately, our expectations (based on that photos) were much higher than what we actually got. If nothing else, we were able to add our "first impressions" experience to our collection of "vacation laughables" that make every vacation a little more memorable.
We enjoyed our stay. The house had a beautiful deck with a great
view. The house was very comfortable for a large group. We only had 4 people,
but the house could accommodate a large party.
Unfortunately, it was very hot and the air conditioner upstairs apparently had
frozen up, so when we arrived it was terribly hot upstairs so we weren't able to
use the master bedroom.
The house seemed very well equipped and was close to town,
It would have been nice to have a blow dryer in each bathroom.
I would stay there again.