Mill Rose Inn
Phone : 1 (650) 726-8750

Category Archives: Half Moon Bay Shopping

Finding hygge in Half Moon Bay and the Mill Rose Inn

March 7, 2017 by Mill Rose Inn

Experience hygge at the Mill Rose Inn

Fireplaces, rich food and cozy nooks are what the Danish experience of hygge is all about. 

We Americans could learn a thing or two from the Danes. For one, they sure know how to make a tasty pastry. The Danes are also well-known for having established a healthy work/life balance and for making the most out of life. In fact, Denmark continually ranks high in measurements of happiness. The country took the first place in the 2016 World Happiness Report. So where does all this happiness come from? Some attribute it to the country’s affinity for  a concept known as hygge (pronounced hoo-ga). Hygge is all about embracing the quaint and cozy aspects of life. Picture reading an engaging novel by the fireplace or drinking hot chocolate and playing board games with a small group of friends.

Hygge is about cozy wool socks and rich homemade foods, a kind of rustic comfort that delights the senses in a way that some more modern day conveniences such as texting and emails don’t. Candles are very hygge. So is coffee and cake.

Cookies can be very hygge.

Comfort food, such as our homemade  cakes and cookies are also very hygge.

Lately, we’ve been thinking about how hygge enters our own lives here at the Mill Rose Inn and in our coastal town of Half Moon Bay.

Naturally, we are fans of this cozy concept. We’re big on throw pillows, soft blankets and freshly baked goods. We even have homemade cakes and cookies available in our dining room at any given moment.

We’d argue that the town itself has a bit of a hygge leaning to it as well. The small town charm, easy beach access and ample open space  are all a throw back to simpler times.

The Coastside is also home to a variety of artists and artisans who take great pleasure in their work. Walk into the various shops and restaurants along Main Street and you’ll be treated to the products of local painters, chefs and jewelry makers. Many of the store owners like to carry the handiwork of their fellow Coastsiders. We’re sure they’ve likely drawn their inspiration from such a beautiful place.

How do you bring hygge to your life?

Hygge can be practiced in your own home, of course. However, if you’re looking for an adventure that still incorporates your favorite creature comforts, we might suggest a stay in Half Moon Bay here at the Mill Rose Inn. We just had  a lovely couple come and take advantage of our new celebration package . They said they were completely drained from their busy high tech jobs and just had to get away from it all.  They enjoyed a three-night stay at our cozy inn and remarked at how refreshed the felt after their stay. Couldn’t get more hygge than that.

If you’re interested in reading more on the topic, you can do so here.

Celebrate the Holidays in Half Moon Bay

November 20, 2016 by Mill Rose Inn

Celebrate the Holidays in Half Moon Bay


The start of the holiday season is a very special time, a time to give thanks and be merry. At the Mill Rose Inn of Half Moon Bay it is a time of transformation. With the addition of delightful European holiday decorations, the Inn offers a magical experience for all to enjoy. The feelings of love and warmth fill the Inn during November and December. Relax and be delighted by our magnificent Christmas Tree. Cozy up by one of our many fireplaces and indulge with a delicious beverage, hot chocolate, holiday cookies, and other tempting treats. Showers of tiny white lights adorn all interior rooms and the gardens. For your celebration of the season, even the individual guest rooms have a small decorated tree and stockings hung from the chimneys with care in hopes that your company soon will be there.


As December fills the air the Mill Rose Inn will warm you up as the holiday chill comes your way. Enjoy the many enchanting holiday decorations as the Mill Rose Inn of Half Moon Bay is magically transformed into the most perfect escape from urban congestion to a rural winter wonderland. Loaded with charm and relaxing clean, fresh air, and the ocean nearby, the Mill Rose provides true detox as well as a total mental work-break.

In December, the first Friday holds the annual ‘Night of Lights’, an old-fashioned holiday event in our historic Main-street downtown area. With a parade, tree lighting ceremony, shops, refreshments, and live music, it is fun for the entire family. Have a chance to do holiday shopping, cut down a Christmas tree, and take in a myriad of month long local activities. Dungeness Crab season opens mid-November and boats in Half Moon Bay Harbor are lit up with colorful Christmas lights. On December 15 in nearby Ano Nuevo in Pescadero are guided tours of Elephant seal activities are highly recommended.


6 Reasons Why You’ll Love Half Moon Bay Downtown

October 16, 2015 by Mill Rose Inn

Half Moon Bay DowntownWhile you’re visiting Northern California, take the time to enjoy the great restaurants, shopping and nightlife in Half Moon Bay’s downtown area. Whether you’re on a quest for fashionable clothing or delicious local cuisine, Half Moon Bay downtown offers an endless source of shops and restaurants all within your reach.

Stay with us at the Mill Rose Inn and stroll through the historic downtown to find the hidden gems of local antiques and scrumptious Californian food. Shop the latest fashions, grab something to eat at a local hot spot, and stop by all the visitors’ must-see sites. Use this Half Moon Bay downtown guide to find exactly which places you should spend your time!

  1. Pasta Moon
    Located on 315 Main Street, Pasta Moon serves the best authentic Italian food in the area. While wandering around Half Moon Bay stop by this charming restaurant for a wonderful lunch or dinner experience. With an excellent selection of wine to choose from, you will have no problem finding the perfect one to pair with your entrée. The delicious food, and not to mention friendly service, makes for a wonderful time! End your meal with the classic Italian dessert, Tiramisu!
  2. Cetrella Bistro and Cafe
    If you are looking for a fine dining experience, Cetrella Bistro and Café serves delicious food with great service in a wonderful atmosphere! All the food is prepared with fresh ingredients, adding to the already divine cuisine. Even though the menu changes seasonally, you can always enjoy brunch, dinner or just a cup of coffee at this quaint establishment. Cetrella is definitely something to talk about!
  3. Sushi Main Street
    Sushi Main Street, the best sushi in Half Moon Bay, offers delicious fresh food prepared to perfection. For all of you sushi lovers out there, pop into this charming restaurant and satisfy your palate with a simple California rolls or one of their specialty rolls. Sushi Main Street is serving Japanese food at it’s finest!
  4. Coastside Books
    Coastside Books has served Half Moon Bay since 1972 with a carefully edited selection of current fiction, biography, history, science and nature books. Located in the historic Half Moon Bay downtown, wander through this store full of books and cards made by independent artists and design companies.
  5. Toque Blanche
    From cookbooks and cookware, Toque Blanche offers visitors to the area with a fantastic selection of household goods. Stop by this adorable store and pick up a gift for a friend or something just for you! When you stock your kitchen with the cookware at Toque Blanche, you’ll never forget the time spent in Half Moon Bay downtown.
  6. The Posh Moon
    Looking for the perfect dress for a night on the town? Or a beautiful statement piece? This cute Parisian boutique in the quaint town of Half Moon Bay offers a wide selection of chic, trendy clothing for you to choose from! The Posh Moon is a style wonderland you won’t want to leave. Fill your suitcase to the brim with a lovely collection of clothing, accessories, household goodies, and more! It is nearly impossible to leave this store empty handed!

Half Moon Bay downtown is full of amazing treasures just waiting to be discovered. Just minutes from downtown, our Half Moon Bay bed and breakfast’s rooms and suites are beautifully decorated. The Mill Rose Inn is the perfect place to relax and recharge from the day’s activities. Your stay always includes a full gourmet breakfast in the morning, so you’ll be able to take on the day ahead of you. We look forward to seeing you soon!

Photo credit: vicki moore / Flickr

5 Half Moon Bay Main Street Shops that Rock

May 21, 2015 by Mill Rose Inn

half moon bay main street

Photo Credit: Vicki Moore / Flickr

Sitting on the irresistible Pacific Coast with ocean bluffs and coastal mountains sweeping up from sea, the downtown area of Half Moon Bay is itself a breathtaking picture of small town coastal life in Northern California. From little foodie treasures and American handmade shops to rare imports stores that support the world’s developing cultures, there’s no shortage of great things to see and taste on Half Moon Bay Main Street.

Whether you like shopping, or would rather sit in a courtyard or coffee shop and observe the everyday life of passing residents, don’t miss a chance to enjoy the beautiful, and somewhat quirky, Half Moon Bay Main Street on your next trip to town. Here are some of the best shops to check out on Half Moon Bay Main Street.


Even if you hate shopping you’ll love this interactive retail shop made for curious people who love to nerd out about science, nature, and art. Come explore the store with its odd collection of sundials, geode kits, and vintage insect prints, or hang out in their garden where they frequently host events and have on-demand activities for the maker-minded adventurers.

Ellen Joseph Gallery & Studio

Ellen Joseph is a local artist whose landscape paintings are a favorite of residents and visitors alike who can’t get enough of the gorgeous coastal scenes. Her gallery walls are filled with paintings depicting views from around the area. She also sells giclee prints on canvas and paper, as well as pendants, mugs, mouse pads and other reproductions of her work that make affordable gifts.

Cottage Industries

This store celebrates the craftsmanship of home decor, selling only the finest American-made, traditionally built products. Come explore the Cottage Industries’ showroom to remember the difference it makes to have well-built and designed furniture made exclusively from hardwoods.

Fog Town Toys

As the only specialty toy store in Half Moon Bay, there is no better place to pick up a special treat for your kids. Whether you’re looking for teething toys for your baby, to look through the variety of Hape Toys made from sustainable materials, and even kites to fly on the beach, you will appreciate the unique selection at Fog Town as an adult just as much as if you were a kid in toy store paradise.

Gaia Essentials

Specializing in organic and sustainable skin care products, Gaia is the place to go if you’re interested in botanicals and all natural soaps and moisturizers. Their small batch production means that everything is made from food-grade ingredients that are sustainably harvested, with aromas made only from essential oils. These products are the best things you can do for your skin!


If you’re looking for other things to do both on Half Moon Bay Main Street and the surrounding areas, check out this free vacation guide. Whether you’re into hiking, biking, historical sites or just the nicest beaches to explore, there is no shortage of things to do beyond the downtown area. Just book your stay and start your planning for your dreamy Northern California vacation!

Visit the Dinosaurs of Spanish Town

April 30, 2015 by Mill Rose Inn

spanish town dinosaurs

Photo Credit: Anita Hart via Flickr

Half Moon Bay has long been known for its creative community of artists whose eclectic mixed-media pieces will confound most. Northern California is spotted with little out-of-the-way artist communities, and Half Moon Bay has one all its own. Spanish Town, a little village with a handful of artisan shops right off Highway 92 in Half Moon Bay, has grown famous for the life-size dinosaur statues that greet people as they enter the little shopping center. The dinosaurs of Spanish Town are what bring many people to this thriving cooperative whose inventory of items will shock you in both their diversity and number.

The Dinosaurs of Spanish Town

These life-size iron statues of a variety of dinosaurs and prehistoric species are the most shocking thing you’ll see upon entering Spanish Town. Though rusted and dated, every detail of the dinosaurs of Spanish Town is still intact and will shock you and leave you in awe. The eyes of each dinosaur are shockingly realistic, giving them a lifelike quality that adds only more charm to their unassuming presence. The Wooly Mammoth has individual strands of hair covering his entire body while the Triceratops has a perfectly scaled body and the most charming eyelashes framing its big eyes. The perfectly pointed razor sharp teeth, and talons that look like they could do equal damage on the Tyrannosaurus Rex are nothing short of beautiful artistry. As an adult this exhibit is quite astounding, so you can imagine that the little ones will feel as if they’re walking into a scene of The Land Before Time.

Shopping in Spanish Town

If you’re a thrifty type who could rummage through junk for hours, then once you’ve gotten your fill of the dinosaurs of Spanish Town you’ll love what the rest of this little art village has to offer. As you step in and out of the little shops around town you could literally spend hours amongst the quantity and variety of decorative pieces sold. Selling everything from Nepalese imports to landscaping decorations and handcrafted jewelry, it’s the perfect place to come buy a gift for that friend back home. As a visitor you’ll enjoy seeing every garden water feature imaginable, and literally every shape, size, and color of dog statue available. From replicas of DaVinci’s David, to dragons, gnomes, and fairies, the garden alone will keep you occupied. If you’ve been looking for that perfect lawn ornament, this stop could very well be your lucky day and you can ship that beauty home.


The dinosaurs of Spanish Town are one of the most unique sights to see in Half Moon Bay. Just a quick drive from downtown where you’ll find the charming bed and breakfast, the Mill Rose Inn. If you’re planning a trip to the North California Coast and want more information on other things to do in the area, check this Half Moon Bay vacation guide, chock full of the area’s best restaurants, outdoor activities, and historical places. One quick read and you’ll be saving up your pennies for the vacation of a lifetime.

If you’re considering planning a trip to the area soon, definitely consider downloading our free vacation guide for more ideas on things to see and do in and around Half Moon Bay.

Buy Local at Half Moon Bay Farms

March 20, 2015 by Mill Rose Inn

half moon bay farms

Photo Credit: Catalin Petolea/iStock/Thinkstock

While many attribute the local food movement to west coast cities like San Franciso, these movements wouldn’t exist without their agricultural periphery – towns like Half Moon Bay. Home to many farms and a culture that embraces eating local meat, produce and dairy, this small coastal town is a haven for fresh farm products. Half Moon Bay farms are selling all the sustenance you need, giving residents the option to truly be living off their neighbor’s land.

Experiencing this unique aspect of the community is one of the many things that draws visitors to the area. If the local food movement is something you’re interested in or passionate about, consider coming to visit some Half Moon Bay farms and the eating at the restaurants they supply, including the Mill Rose Inn. These are some of the places you definitely want to check out in the area.

Potrero Nuevo Farm

This charming farm just a mile inland from the Pacific Coast in the Tunitas Creek Valley of Half Moon Bay is not simply a beautiful spot to visit, but is inspiring as well. Committed to ecological land management, sustainable agriculture, and accessible food, this unique 300-acre farm is doing things right. Through crop rotation and cover cropping, their land stays healthy without the use of chemicals. Devoted to their local community they host a U-Pick Club for local families, and frequently offer farm tours for groups. Growing 40 crops throughout the season, they also raise chickens who help to increase the land’s fertility, as well as produce eggs for sale.

Arata’s Pumpkin Farm

Arguably the most famous among the Half Moon Bay Farms, and a tourist attraction in itself, Arata’s Pumpkin Farm is a staple in this coastal town. Specializing in, you guessed it, pumpkins, this isn’t exactly the place you’ll be headed to pick up your weekly veggie order, but nevertheless encompasses the farm-life culture of the area. A harvest season attraction and home to many Half Moon Bay Pumpkin Festival events, Arata’s is worth the trip if you like corn mazes and hay rides for some fall fun.

Repetto’s Greenhouse Florist

Another great opportunity to support Half Moon Bay farms is through your home decor budget. If you love to have fresh flowers at home every week or they’re your favorite kind of gift to send, then you’ll love Repetto’s and their spectacular assortment of year-round fresh cut flowers and exotic arrangement options. Whether it’s a special occasion or just time to rotate that mantelpiece, you’ll love shopping at their gorgeous store.

Coastside Farmers’ Market

If you want a more comprehensive picture of the region’s farm scene, then stop by Coastside Farmers’ Market on Saturdays from 9AM to 1PM May through December. Carrying everything from local cheeses and preserves to grass fed beef, and more fresh produce than you can imagine, this is a foodie’s dream. Voted the Best Farmers’ Market in the Bay Area, you’ll be in for a real treat, and can even pick up some gifts to bring home with you.

Exploring Half Moon Bay farms is a great activity when you’re in the area, as you’ll not only see a great, down-to-earth economy, but meet the exceptional people who are devoted to running it.

Our 8 Favorite Half Moon Bay Shops

February 26, 2015 by Mill Rose Inn

half moon bay shops

The Bay Area has long been known for being on the frontier of culture, which includes its retail sector. Though the small coastal town of Half Moon Bay is a few miles south of San Francisco, its landscape can be expected to be just as exciting and progressive. You’ll find world-class cuisine from many different ethnicities, award-winning bed and breakfasts and, of course, a vibrant shopping climate, making it the perfect place for vacation or even a day trip.  If you’re staying with us at the Mill Rose Inn the best thing about Half Moon Bay shops is that they are within walking distance, making your excursion all the more convenient and enjoyable.

Here are 8 of our favorite Half Moon Bay shops:

  1. Savvy Skirts is a fun, eclectic clothing and accessories store for women. This shop supports local artisans and entrepreneurs and carries a wide selection of products made for women by women.
  2. Toque Blanche is the ultimate cooking store for the home chef. As the Bay Area is known for its culinary scene, you can be sure that this great kitchen store sells only the best in cooking tools.
  3. The Half Moon Bay Wine & Cheese Company is one of the most necessary establishments in town. Their selection of California and international wines and cheeses is the subject of many foodie dreams. If you’re planning on spending time at any of the Half Moon Bay beaches, you definitely want to make a stop here on the way.
  4. For a taste of the California surf, head over to Mavericks surf shop, which belongs to one of the town’s most legendary surfers, Jeff Clark. Whether you’re interested in taking a lesson or not, this is one of the Half Moon Bay shops that will give you some great insight into the town’s culture.
  5. The Bay Book Company is a one-stop shop for a great read and a quality imported cigar. Depending on your tastes, this could also be a great place to stop by on your way to the beach or one of the many beach-side patio bars.
  6. Fengari is the local fiber arts store selling only the best in quality yarns and knit products. If this is a hobby you enjoy, get ready to be inspired.
  7. The Posh Moon is a boutique carrying only unique brands and styles. It was recently voted the Best Place to Buy Clothing on the Coast.
  8. Rouge Boutique is another great shop for rare finds in women’s clothing and accessories, music, men’s shirts and humorous gifts.

If you’re heading to this charming Northern California coastal town in the near future, no matter your motivation, be it surfing, hiking or just straight relaxing, you’ll enjoy exploring a few of these Half Moon Bay shops. The experience of staying right downtown at the Mill Rose Inn with the ability to walk to all these great shops and the town’s wonderful restaurants is unmatched. You’ll love your downtown Half Moon Bay experience, no matter the time of year or the reason for your visit.

Do Your Christmas Shopping in Half Moon Bay

October 27, 2014 by Mill Rose Inn

Christmas Shopping in Half Moon BayBelieve it or not, the holiday season is upon us and Christmas is just around the corner.  If you hate searching for gifts each year, then turn a dreaded chore into a relaxing getaway and do your Christmas shopping in Half Moon Bay while you stay at Mill Rose Inn.  Half Moon Bay is full of unique shops that are ideal for finding that perfect gift for everyone on your list! If you’re ready to start a new holiday tradition, plan your stay at the Mill Rose Inn and take a look at our guide for shopping in Half Moon Bay this Christmas.

Spanish Town

For the gardner on your list, Spanish town has a large collection of garden art, fountains, plant containers, antique doors, vases, stoves, and outdoor sculptures.  It’s also a major attraction because of the giant metal dinosaur, Buddha, and giraffe sculptures that inhabit the property.


Abode is a great Half Moon Bay shopping locale for those in the market for elegant yet unique home decor.  This shop specializes in home accessories, furnishings and art. Their excellent selection has been described as “carefully curated.”

Luz Luna Imports

This Half Moon Bay shopping location offers unique handmade items with a purpose.  Luz Luna Imports supports women’s cooperatives around the world and sells only fair trade products.


For that eclectic friend on your list, pay a visit to Tokenz. A staple for shopping in Half Moon Bay for 20 years and you can easily find a unique gift among the store’s many treasures. Merchandise includes crystals and beads, incense, jewelry, Aboriginal items and much much more.

Posh Moon

Posh Moon offers a selection of California made clothing and accessories.  They also have a great collection of unique French jewelry.


Goldworks on Main Street offers a large selection of jewelry perfect for gift giving.  If you’re on the hunt for custom, designer or estate jewelry for someone on your list, Goldworks is a great place to stop by during your Christmas shopping in Half Moon Bay.

The Paper Crane

The Paper Crane has printing presses in the back of a shop full of cards, stationary and gifts.  Personalized stationary, letterpress paper goods and more are available at this charming store.


No matter where you go shopping in Half Moon Bay this holiday season, be sure to book a room at the Mill Rose Inn.  Surrounded by lush gardens that colorfully bloom all year round, our Half Moon Bay bed and breakfast is the epitome of a classic California Inn.  Our beautifully furnished and elegantly decorated guest rooms and suites are the perfect place to unwind after a day of shopping or exploring Downtown Half Moon Bay and the Coastside.  Relax by the fireplace (all but one of the rooms have them) in your room or in the sitting room, stroll the gardens, soak in the Garden Jacuzzi, or schedule a massage in our Rose Grotto for some extra pampering.  Whatever activities your days include, when you stay at Mill Rose Inn, you’ll have a relaxing getaway that will take the stress out of this part of the holiday season!



Half Moon Bay Shopping on Historic Main Street

March 25, 2014 by Mill Rose Inn

Half Moon Bay ShoppingHalf Moon Bay, California is home to great beaches, culture and dining.  Part of the charm of the town Mill Rose Inn calls home is the idyllic and historic Main Street.  Within walking distance of the inn, Main Street has many places to shop as well.  If you want to indulge in a bit of Half Moon Bay shopping during your stay, make sure to visit some of these stores.

Ellen Joseph Gallery and Studio

The Ellen Joseph Gallery is home to the work of local painter Ellen Joseph, who specializes in coastal paintings.  Original paintings and reproductions are available for purchase.  You may also catch Ellen there and be able to observe her working.

Gallery M

Hit this Half Moon Bay shopping spot toe experience the “West coast’s premier wood furniture gallery.” The gallery showcases hand-crafted custom wood furniture, art and accessories.

The Garden Gallery

The Garden Gallery shows the work of contemporary sculptors and painters. Paintings in acrylic, oil, watercolor as well as charcoal and pastel are on display along with bronze scuplture.

Cottage Industries

Cottage Industrties is great for those doing Half Moon Bay shopping for furniture.  Their furniture is handcrafted using native sustainable woods such as cherry, maple, walnut, oak and white pine.


For an eclectic Half Moon Bay shopping experience, look no further than Tokenz.  This Main Street shop has been around for more than 20 years and you can easily wile a day away wandering through the treasures.  Wares include crystals and beads, incense, jewelry, Aboriginal items and much much more.

Posh Moon

Posh Moon offers a selection of California made clothing and accessories.  Also look out for their French jewelry.


Abode is a great Half Moon Bay shopping locale for those in the market for elegant yet unique home decor.  This shop specializes in home accessories, furnishings and art. Their excellent selection has been described as “carefully curated.”

Luz Luna Imports

This Half Moon Bay shopping location offers unique handmade items with a purpose.  Luz Luna Imports supports women’s cooperatives around the world and sells only fair trade products.


A new addition to the area, Goldworks on Main Street offers a large selection of jewelry and services.  If you’re in the market for custom, designer or estate jewelry, Goldworks should be on your Half Moon Bay shopping destination list. They also offer repair and appraisal services.

The Paper Crane

This has become a Half Moon Bay shopping destination for letterpress and stationary enthusiasts.  The Paper Crane has printing presses in the back of a shop full of cards, stationary and gifts.

Half Moon Bay Electric Company

Along with electric services, Half Moon Bay Electric Company has a large selection of unique light fixtures, lamps and decor.


Looking for Half Moon Bay shopping with an exotic flavor? Jungletraders specializes in handmade furniture using salvaged railroad wood dating back to the colonial era in Africa.

For those who want to take advantage of all historic main street has to offer, including the fabulous Half Moon Bay shopping, Mill Rose Inn is the perfect place to stay.  Just minutes from downtown, our Half Moon Bay bed and breakfast has beautifully decorated rooms and suites that blend classic European elegance with modern day conveniences that will make your trip exceptional.


Photo courtesy Experience Half Moon Bay.