Exploring Your Tidal Craving

Sausalito 'Floating Home Tour' shows off the artistic side for its 29th annual edition
Floating Homes Tour
Photo: Emily Riddell

When asked what they love about their Eichler or other mid-century modern home, people frequently cite the integration of the interior with the exterior: sunlight, moonlight, plants, birds, bees.

Okay, maybe not bees.

But what if you want all that nature with something extra? How about the tides? Then a modernist floating home may be what you crave.

To explore this tidal craving, few excursions can beat the annual 'Floating Home Tour' hosted by the Floating Home Association in Sausalito.

The theme of the Association's 29th annual tour Sunday, September 20 is 'The Artistry of Waterfront Living.' In addition to art for sale on the marina green by the many artists who live on Sausalito's approximately 400 floating homes, all 15 of the homes on tour have art-infused design and décor.

Floating homes are distinguished from houseboats by the purported virtue of no longer being navigable, although many certainly were in previous incarnations.

From the Asian and African art on the sumptuous Dol Khyim (4,000 square feet) to the Wayward (1,600 square feet) with its neon Elvis clock and conical bathroom cabinet to the Om (375 s.f.), a converted Navy communications barge seascaped with 30-plus orchids, the tour has something for everyone.

Larry Clinton, co-director of the tour, has lived onboard in the Sausalito marinas and volunteered for the tour its entire run. He said the homes are all owner- or docent-guided, and one of the most artistic ones could be the Water Song (1,300 s.f.) with its glass décor throughout and residing artist with onboard kiln.

"We really tried to stress diversity in the tour," said Clinton, noting that eight homes are new to the tour.

To pay $40 for the 11am-4pm self-guided tour (instead of $45 on tour day, when the event sometimes sells out), or for more information, click here.