|Minimum Stay||2 nights|
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Our 3,300 square foot residence was built to accommodate 25 people so that we could offer a comfortable place in nature for large groups to enjoy. Read some of the reviews of our satisfied guests.
Safe Haven Forest Retreat is a unique 2 acre property that sits at the end of Wilderness Road at an altitude of 6,200 ft. It is the last private property on the road with three sides connected to the National Forest. You'll enjoy the broad mountain views and surrounding forest in this tranquil retreat. The wilderness is your back yard to enjoy. And yet, it is less than 1 mile to the town of Running Springs, 8 miles to Lake Arrowhead, and 18 miles to Big Bear Lake. You are literally in the middle of the mountains yet have all the amenities of the easy to reach resort towns. You can explore the National Forest and the mountain communities at your leisure. Or, you can just stay put and enjoy the spacious cabin and activity centers around the property, such as the boating pond, the rock creek and sandy beach, archery & air rifle range, Volleyball court, the climbing wall, the outdoor chess board, the mini zip line with low suspension bridge, the toboggan run and the many paths around the property and into the forest.
Notice to people who want to party: Our property was developed as a forest retreat where people could find a SAFE HAVEN to pursue their enjoyment, personal / spiritual growth, connectedness with nature and each other in a positive and uplifting way. With this in mind, we don’t want to have wild, drunken, disorderly, abusive, and destructive behavior on the property. If you are looking for a place to have a wild drunken party, don't choose us.
As retired teachers we wanted to develop a place in the mountains where children could come to learn about nature. Our dream evolved from the idea of starting a youth camp to a more inclusive one where people of all ages could find a Forest Retreat that would be a SAFE HAVEN to convene with nature.
We built the house to create a spacious and comfortable environment where our family and friends, and short term renters would find a SAFE HAVEN to pursue their enjoyment and connectedness with nature and each other in a positive and uplifting way. With this in mind, we don’t want to have wild, drunken, disorderly, abusive, and destructive behavior on the property. If you are looking for a place to have a wild drunken party to go nuts in nature, please look for another place.
Robert Phelps purchased this house in 2007
After a three year search for the appropriate property, we chose this place for it's unique location; having the National Forest as our back yard and being an easy drive to all the other mountain areas. It is in the middle of the mountains yet has easy access to all the mountain resort communities and activities. From our home in Orange County it takes us 90 minutes to get to the property. Once here, we feel we are in another world where we can breath deep, relax and enjoy the beauty that surrounds us.
We have a comfortable house with many activity centers around it like a mini resort that people of all ages will enjoy. Walk out the back door and you have wilderness. Walk out the front door and you have civilization. Walk around the property and you have the best of both worlds.
The size of the property (2 acres) and it's geographic features offer the space to create a number of activity areas. There is a boating pond with a sandy beach and rock creek with bridges across it. The tipi gathering area allows for small group activities overlooking the pond. There is also a climbing wall, Volleyball court, archery & air rifle range, large in ground chess board, and horseshoe pitch. And the picnic area behind the cabin allows for a large group gathering with fireplace, and B-B-Q units. There is also a small zip line over a suspension bridge 1 foot off the ground for kids. And, a 200 foot long zip line for those who take part in our Outdoor Adventure Program. Check the Amenities section under suitability for children.
The property is pretty awesome, with a small rock wall, horseshoe toss, pond, and all the other stuff mentioned in the description (we even made a relay race with everything). We brought our high school youth group, and they had a great time.
There are some minor issues that I think the owner can fix to make this an even better stay. The main thing: sleeping accommodations. We had two students sleep on the floor because the top bunk beds were uncomfortable and kept swaying. One of the futons on the 1st floor doesn't open. The 1st floor beds/couches are all together, so the same place some our guys slept was also the place where we had our group meetings. This meant everything had to be cleaned up each morning. It would be a lot easier if the 2nd floor rooms only had bunk beds (ones that don't creak or sway).
The other issue was that we were told a trail is behind the cabin, and that there was trail information by the front door, but all it turned out to be was a mostly empty box by the door with a few pamphlets, none of which gave us information about a trail behind the cabin. We went down the one we thought was it, but it ended, and didn't really go anywhere.
Also, all of the cupboards/drawers were mislabeled. They had the things we needed, it just took longer to find things.
Overall, a good place to stay, and we would come back.
Property is comfortable for a large party. Although Big Bear temperature drops at night, inside temperature is warm and humid even with windows open and ceiling fans operating. The property is somewhat clean, however, furniture is old and outdated. Window screens are dusty/dirty.
There is plenty to do for kids ( a plus) although we did not use the pool because it was dirty. If you enjoy nature, surrounding is great and peaceful.
Owner was apologetic and accessible. Overall, my family enjoyed our stay.
We had 4 families for a total of 18 people, age ranging from 15 months to 40yo. The house was very well stocked and we really appreciated all the available beds and bathrooms. The furniture and arrangement was well thought out with plenty of chairs, tables, and seating for everyone. Our favorite places were outside on the grounds -- the kids zip line, rock wall, and fire pit were awesome and we made sure to use everything.
We did do the adventure package on Saturday morning and it was very fun and interesting. I would say this was probably the most efficient way to do outdoor activities with a large group that included very young kids. Robert was very pleasant and easy to work with. You could tell he put his heart into Safehaven and we were glad to have met him. He also gave us some tips on a perfect hiking spot with our group. After the hike we stopped by the little town and a market. The people were very friendly and told my kids where to catch a pokemon =).
Keep in mind that this is not a luxury house with hotel amenities (not that the kids noticed). We, unfortunately, had very warm weather (80's) and with no A/C most of our group found it difficult to sleep at night. The ceiling fans helped, but we were a little afraid to turn them on because of the dust on them. A couple suggestions would be 1) blackout shades in bedrooms 2) a deep cleaning of the house (we don't mind older furniture and decor but cleanliness goes a long way to feeling comfy in a rental house). A few more pricey suggestions would be 1) better flooring (many cultures keep shoes off in the house, but we had to put ours back on since it was cement floor) and 2) if it had A/C we would have fallen in love with it (although I know this would be a luxury upgrade).
Having said all though, we would definitely go back again. It was an incredibly good price for what we got and we could tell the kids we went "camping" sort of (since our group doesn't really want to do real camping). We had many happy memories there from the 4 days we stayed.
Our group had a nice stay. We will surely come back!
Our overall experience was good. It's great for a large group as there are many rooms and bathrooms. No master suite or anything of the sort. It's not luxurious at all but clean and comfortable. Be careful about leaving it near spotless or they will charge you extra for cleaning. They charged us an extra $75 for 3 bags of trash that were left in the house instead of in the bin. That was disappointing but other than that it was good.
It's nice how they let you pick and choose how much of the property you wish to pay for but we did end up with some surprise charges that would not be returned. The beds were not very comfortable, but it was a very good place to let a large group of kids enjoy themselves. Also, the $400 adventure program was enjoyed (zip lines, rappelling, shooting bows and arrows). Mr. Phelps took care to make sure even the little ones (mine included) could enjoy the adventure.
We offer a 3-6 hour outdoor adventure program which includes the rock climbing wall, rappelling, zip lining, archery and air rifle shooting at the range. And, in the winter there can be snowshoeing, tobogganing, and snowboarding. Contact us for more details about the cost and times.
|Rental Period||Minimum Price||Additional Nights||Weekend Night||Weekly||Monthly||Event Price|
My Standard Rate
2 night minimum stay
for 2 nights
|Refundable Damage Deposit||£229|
Three night holiday weekends for the following are $600 per night.
MLK Jr. Day, President's Day, Easter, Memorial Day, 4th of July, Labor Day, Thanksgiving.
Three night holiday stays for Christmas and New years are $650 per night.