Baker Street West is a Victorian tribute to Sherlock Holmes. Two friends, Linda Hein and Beth Barnard, met frequently to discuss the Holmes stories. The discussions led eventually to the creation of Baker Street West, which occupies the second floor above Hein & Company Bookstore, located at the corner of Main and California Streets. These facilities are housed in the historic Krabbenhoft Building erected in 1931.
Once 221B Baker Street was in place, Holmes’ Hounds, Amador County’s own Sherlockian Society, formed to meet monthly. Dressed in their Victorian finest, members engage in discussing the original Holmesian canon, give character presentations and listen to guest speakers. Thereafter, the Baker Street Players was created, performing plays several times a year. Full-length Sherlockian plays, Dinner Mystery Theatre and a variety of Afternoon Tea events are offered throughout the year. The dinners for the Mystery Theatre are catered by the National Hotel. While eating English fare, diners listen for clues to try to solve the mystery, presented by artistic director and writer Beth Barnard. Toward the end of the year, the Players plan to perform its version of Dickens’ “A Christmas Carol.” Nominated for regional awards, the Players is a group dedicated to the craft of theatrical drama.
Eight tiny shops straight from the pages of Sherlock Holmes’ stories are an important feature of 221B. The shops brim with Sherlockiana, steampunk art, and vintage treasures which can be purchased from Mrs. Hudson’s Tea Shoppe, Dr. Watson’s Apothecary and more. If you can’t fly to London, the next best thing is to take a guided tour of 221B. During the year, tours are scheduled on select weekends, led by docents in character from the Holmes’ stories. And private tours can be arranged through Holmes’ housekeeper, Mrs. Hudson. Costumed docents will be on hand during the Home Tour and will offer tea and cookies as well. Those who wish to avoid stairs can access the second floor directly from an entrance on California Street.
Other activities at 221B include private parties for birthdays, weddings, graduations and more. Baker Street West is open Thursday to Monday from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. To arrange an event or join the Hounds or Players, go online to www.BakerStreetWest.com.