Cantilevered off the cliffs of Big Sur is the Post Ranch Inn, an expansive property with three centuries of history. The architecture, however, is unmistakably contemporary, designed to complement and accommodate nature rather than obstruct it. 

Pools, restaurants, and terraces look out over the Pacific Ocean, highlighting the cliffs of the Big Sur. Guests are encouraged to reconnect with themselves and nature through yoga, guided nature walks, forest and sound journey meditation. Take a tour of the Chef’s garden or just relax by the pool. There is no shortage of amenities to take in the beauty of the inn.

Situated along scenic Highway 1, Post Ranch Inn offers an unbeatable Big Sur experience. The unique architecture melds with the landscape beautifully and the staff caters to every guest’s whim. Whether you want to explore the historic ranch or relax at the spa, Post Ranch Inn is an undeniable gem of Big Sur. 

Their story

William Brainard Post claimed one of Big Sur’s first plots of land and began homesteading. He then married Anselma Onesimo of Costanoan heritage. Together they built a life and family on the scenic Big Sur coast. 

The youngest son of William Post married a neighbor, combining their land to nearly 1,500 acres. The family continued to ranch the land over the decades. In the 1980s, ranching in California began to decline and the Posts were approached to turn the property into an inn. This inn could both honor the Post family history as well as the beauty of the Big Sur. 

The Posts commissioned architects Mickey Muennig and Vladmir Frank to build a one-of-a-kind structure for the lodge. The result is a beautiful lodge that adheres to quality, design, and environmental responsibility, whilst showcasing the natural landscape. Since opening, the Posts have offered a quintessential Californian escape with all the luxury and wilderness along with it.

The Post Ranch Inn opened in 1992 as a family-run ranch along with Big Sur’s magnificent coast. For generations, the Posts have been stewards of the land. This 100-acre ranch has grown from a homestead to one of the finest luxury resorts in the United States. Read more about them here.

Sustainability actions

  • The architecture of the lodge was created with the property in mind. Buildings were built around old-growth trees and on stilts to protect root balls below. 
  • The structures were built with reclaimed materials, like wood, steel, stone, and glass. This design furthers the harmony with nature. The buildings follow principles of “organic architecture” which aims to create a balance between the inside and outside.
  • Reclaimed wood was used to line guest room walls.
  • The Ocean Houses accommodations have sod roofs which reduce heat loss and camouflage the buildings into the hillside. 
  • The ranch has a 990-panel solar array that can generate 350,000 kWh of solar energy every year. That is the equivalent of 600,000 pounds of carbon dioxide emissions.
  • Guest transports are hybrid vehicles. 
  • South-facing windows have a protective film that keeps energy use down. 
  • The property is landscaped using native and water-conscious plantings.
  • Low-flow showerheads and water fixtures ensure proper water usage. 
  • Fallen trees are repurposed into benches.
  • Water comes from the seven wells on the property. Grey water is handled in a commercial-grade grey water system.
  • The property participates in a recycling program. Wherever possible, recyclables are used instead of single-use. Organic matter is returned to the earth. 
  • Quality organic ingredients come from the Chef’s garden, located onsite. 
  • Organic fertilizer is used on the native plants in the landscaped areas.  
  • Low-VOC emitting materials are used in guest spaces to protect indoor air quality.
  • Guest toiletries are organic and biodegradable, provided for guests in refillable containers.
  • Post Ranch has a 90-acre preserve of open space. This land is home to many indigenous species, including several endangered species. There is an extensive program that ensures their protection and conservation for years to come.
  • 150 redwoods and oaks have been planted which provide shade, wind protection, and privacy, all while improving the natural habitat.
  • The lodge and restaurant procure goods from local farmers, ranchers, craftsmen, and artists, supporting the local economy and providing guests with a rich and unique experience. 
  • The lodge donates to the Big Sur Community Fund, which helps local organizations along the coast. Post Ranch Inn has also done fundraising for affordable health care.

Most Popular Activities near Post Ranch Inn

  • Whale watching
  • Guided hikes or saunters
  • Morning yoga
  • Spa treatments
  • Falconry
  • Forest meditation
  • An hour drive from Sykes Hot Springs, one of the natural hot springs in California.
  • A handful of miles away from Pfeiffer Beach a unique purple beach.

Best time to visit Post Ranch Inn

  • With more than 300 days of sunshine per year, Big Sur’s peak season runs from April to October.
  • Although you should know that morning marine layer coats much of the coast parts of the summer season.



Post Ranch Inn is 240 km away from San Francisco.
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