Now Hiring: Earn $130,000 Per Year as a San Francisco Island Lighthouse Keeper

Every man dreams of absconding from society and “making a go of it” in some remote corner of the world with more wildlife than people. At a cabin in the woods perhaps; or homesteading on a Montana ranch; or maybe on some unpronounceable island in the Philippines. However, if you can’t bring yourself to pull the trigger on such a dramatic life change, a unique job opportunity in coastal San Francisco could help you split the difference.

East Brother Light Station San Francisco Island

East Brother Light Station is a beautiful, meticulously restored Victorian-style lighthouse that was converted into a five-room bed-and-breakfast in 1979.

East Brother Light Station is a beautiful, meticulously restored Victorian-style lighthouse that was converted into a five-room bed-and-breakfast in 1979. There’s a reserved, elegant luxury about the design and decor that make for a perfect romantic weekend getaway. With no telephone, TV, or Internet service, guests are encouraged to slow down and appreciate their natural surroundings. The views from almost everywhere on the island are spectacular, including panoramic looks toward the San Francisco skyline, the Marin coastline, and Mount Tamalpais. Guests receive Champagne and hors d’oeuvres upon arrival before getting a tour of the island and the light station. It’s all just 30 minutes from downtown San Francisco.

For nearly 150 years, East Brother Light Station has guided ships moving through San Francisco Bay. In that time, it’s been registered as a California Historic Landmark and on the National Register of Historic Places. The lighthouse B&B operates as a non-profit to help fund the island’s ongoing maintenance and restoration.

East Brother Light Station San Francisco
Frank Schulenburg/Wikimedia

Current caretakers Che Rodgers and Jillian Meeker run every aspect of the island, from cooking to hotel operations to ferrying of passengers to tending to the landscaping. The guesthouse is open Thursday through Sunday night; Monday through Wednesday (the couple’s “off days”) are filled with lots of daily responsibilities. They admit it’s a taxing workload, but it’s also gratifying, provided you have the right mindset. Of the challenging lifestyle, Rogers told Lonely Planet:

“A deep passion for the stewardship of the island is also important. The job requires a huge commitment of time and a willingness to live in a semi-remote location away from most aspects of modern urban life. So the ability to draw enthusiasm from being stewards of the history and the ongoing restoration, and from the wildlife and nature around the island, is vital to the sustainability of the job.”

The young couple has enjoyed their two years on the island, but they’re excited to move on and pass the caretaker baton to their successor(s). They’re helping to interview and ultimately hire their replacements.

East Brother Light Station is now accepting applications, although the flood of media attention means there’s already plenty of competition. In addition to the average $130,000 annual salary, the new caretaker(s) will receive a health plan, plus free room and board for the duration of their watch. Only a Coast Guard commercial boat operator’s license, some culinary experience, and an adventurous spirit are required. The next keepers’ rotation begins in spring 2019.

Food & Drink

Why You Should Get to Know Little Brother Brewing in North Carolina

The Piedmont Triad area of North Carolina has enjoyed a craft beer boom in recent years.

A List of Essentials to Create Your Own Car Emergency Kit

Having a few essentials in the car can help save your life — or someone else's — if you run into trouble on remote roads.
Outdoor and Fitness

The Return of Dave Mackey: From Ultrarunner to Leg Amputee and Back

In 2016, ultrarunner Dave Mackey made the decision to amputate is left leg below the knee — but that hasn't stopped him.

Tesla’s Model 3 ‘Price Drop’ May Foretell a Looming Reckoning

If you looked at some news headlines, the $35,000 Model 3 is already here. So what gives and why does the faux price tag possibly spell a looming disaster?

This Crazy Weighted Blanket Will Have You Sleeping Like the Dead

When we first heard about the idea of a weighted blanket, and more specifically the Bearably blanket we were, to say the least, pretty skeptical...

All 21 Six Flags Parks in the U.S., Ranked

It wasn't easy, but we ranked every Six Flags location in the United States. You're welcome.

This Brutalist Revival Home in Greece Stands Out By Blending In

Forget those white stucco homes of Santorini. Patio House is the future of Greek design.

Bruce Willis’ $13 Million Country Estate Is For Sale

Butch Coolidge and Korben Dallas would never live in a bucolic country estate in New York, which is why it’s so shocking that action movie superstar Bruce Willis did.

The Palms Casino’s Newest High-Roller Suites Have a Bowling Alley and Whiskey Room

The Hardwood Suite is a basketball-centric masterpiece, while the Kingpin suite is a bowling bro's paradise.

Old Meets New in a Unique Way in Chicago’s Cortez House

Cortez House is refreshingly modern but with nods to the building’s past … including the original meat cooler.

The Best Mattresses for Side-Sleepers Who Need Support

Do you sleep on your side? You may need a mattress designed with you in mind.

The Jamaican Villa Where Ian Fleming Created James Bond is for Rent and It Is Amazing

You can vacation at the birthplace of secret agent 007, complete with butlers to make your martinis.

The Best President’s Day Sales on Luxury Pillows This Weekend

Tired of sleeping on that old pillow? Upgrade to something more luxurious.

A Simple Swedish Cabin Gets a New Addition and a Japanese Twist

The two styles have more in common than you think and Archipelago Sommarhus is proof.