Lakeport CA home with bridges, pirates, rope swing for sale | The Fresno Bee Swinging by rope from room to room is one fun feature of this Lakeport home for sale


By David Caraccio


Colleen Henninger’s son loved swinging by rope from room to room at the Lakeport home of a family friend when he was a kid.

Now, the 3,716-square-foot residence is for sale for $1.2 million. And the rope swing is just the beginning of what makes the Northern California property unique and fun.

Brad Bastian designed and built the amazing home in 1997 in Lake County, which is about 110 miles northeast of Sacramento, according to Henninger, who is the listing agent with Center City Realty.

“That is definitely one of the great features of the house,” Henninger said. “It’s one of the things I loved about it. And my kids loved it. They would swing from the rock. There’s a huge rock where the rope comes down from the ceilings — I believe the ceilings are about 36 feet tall — and they would swing from the rock to the dining room table and then back to the rock and over to the other side. And they just had a blast.”

The ceilings are, indeed, 36 feet high. The upstairs primary bedroom and guest suite are accessed by crossing over bridges. And all around the house the eye catches all types of interesting ornamentation, from pirate statues and wood-carved elephants to painted signs and a water fountain, from jukeboxes and pinball machines to a stuffed gorilla in a sombrero.

“Your imagination will run wild in this home,” according to the listing.

The home has a total of three bedrooms and four bathrooms. The upstairs bedrooms look down onto the living room, dining room and kitchen. The residence’s stamped concrete flooring has radiant heat to keep feet warm in the winter months.

Outside, on a 3.77-acre lot, there is a built-in swimming pool with rock waterfall and a gas fire pit. There is a sitting deck to take in breathtaking views of the mountains.

Lakeport CA home with bridges, pirates, rope swing for sale | The Fresno Bee Swinging by rope from room to room is one fun feature of this Lakeport home for sale

The barn-style house is constructed with 1,272 lineal feet of old-growth timber — gigantic 12-by-12 to 24-by-24 boards — to “create an atmosphere unmatched by any other,” the listing states.

The old growth wood came from recycled bridge timbers from Fort Bragg, Henninger said. Other timber used in the home originated from Potter Valley Mill when it was demolished, she added.

“The old growth timber is just really a thing of the past,” Henninger said. “It’s not that easy to find the old-growth timber anymore like they used to have. I think the other (features) are the pirates that are in the house. It is like going into Disneyland, is what it reminds me of.”

A downstairs tiki hut-style bar next to a corrugated-steel “Fisherman’s Wharf” sign is another distinctive attraction. Under the bar’s thatched roof hangs an old canoe that Bastian found abroad, and brought back to the United States in pieces when the airline wouldn’t allow it on the plane because of its size, Henninger said.

“So he cut it up in pieces, and brought it on the airplane and then put it back together. And it’s now hanging as part of the bar,” she said.

The bar’s other decorations include a mounted marlin, an old scuba-diving helmet, Pabst Blue Ribbon lights and a surfboard.

Bastian rents out the home through AirBNB for $750 per night. The property, dubbed “Shack on the Hill,” boasts a 5.0 rating on the home-sharing site.

AirBNB guests rave about their stays:

“Our group loved our stay at Brads place,” Alexandra wrote in the reviews. “The house is so unique and fun, the hot tub, outdoor area, and pool are amazing places to hang out, and the bar, karaoke, stage and rooms were all created with such attention to detail. Highly recommend!”

“The Shack on the Hill is probably the best Airbnb I’ve ever stayed at,” wrote a guest named Justine. “Everyone in my group audibly gasped as they walked through the door because it so exceeded their expectations. Every single detail is perfect, from the fresh towels rolled up by the door to the pool, to the stack of clean flip flops so you don’t dirty your feet on the wooded path to the jacuzzi. The house is stylish and cozy and Brad anticipated every single need we had during our stay. This house is a real treasure and I couldn’t recommend it enough.”

Henninger agrees the house is a great place for entertaining.

“We’ve had some great parties there,” she said. “It’s a wonderful place for your New Year’s Eve parties and Halloween parties, a great place.”

The interior unfolds through big French doors. A wide stairway next to the carved elephant rises to the left. Toward the back of the house sits a stage where a Lake County band, The Lost Boys, has played, Henninger said. Bastian’s son is a member of the group.

David Caraccio