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It’s fall and if you are anything like us, you’re excited about turning leaves, unpacking some sweaters… and wine. Well, let’s be honest, we are always excited about wine. But it just so happens that fall is also wine season and that means grape stomping, wine tasting and, more specifically, a very special festival in Napa. Allow us to elaborate.
Hotel Deals / Hotel Promo Codes / Destination Hotels and Resorts / Palm Springs Hotels / Regent Hotels / Napa Valley Hotels / → All Tags
Deals: you want 'em, and surprisingly, everyone has 'em. Take a look at some of the latest hotel deals going around the internet today from booking sites, social media sites, flash sale sites and more. Don't forget to scroll down to see the HotelChatter-approved deal either. Who knows? You might just find what you're looking for. (But don't forget to tell us about your stay!)
DEALS, DEALS, DEALS*
· Unlimited Kids Club and More at The Regent Palms, Turks & Caicos: Right now the Caribbean resort is offering a "Double Your Credit, Double Your Fun" package that offers a third night free, $100 credit per night, full American breakfast, high-speed internet and unlimited use of Conch Kritters kids club during your stay. Call 866.877.7256 or visit regentpalmstci.com. Use code DYC to book.
· Soar Over Napa Valley at The Wydown Hotel: This 12-room boutique hotel on Main Street in St. Helena has put together a Soaring Over California package that includes a one-night stay and a sunrise hot air balloon flight over Napa Valley. The deal also throws in some pre-flight coffee and pastries, a champpagne breakfast at Michelin-starred Solbar at Solage Calistoga and roundtrip transportation. You can also upgrade the package to either the "Royal Treatment" which will get you a tour of the Castello di Amorosa, Dario Sattui's authentically-styled, 13th century, 121,000-square-foot Tuscan castle-winery or the "Vineyards by Horseback” which features a guided 90-minute horseback ride through the Chalk Hill Estate Vineyards and a wine-tastting. The package begins at $424 per person with the Royal upgrade for $26 per person and the horseback upgrade at $120 per person. For reservations, call 707-963-5100.
· The Luxer Side of The Waldorf Astoria, For Less: The original Waldorf Astoria in NYC is offering their high-end suites starting at just $699 a night for a Tower Suite. You can also pick the residential apartments from $1,299 a night or splurge on the penthouse suite at $1,999 a night. We found a regular Towers room for $599 a night in late September so just a $100 will get you a suite. For more information or to book now, go to www.waldorfny.com or call 800.925.3673.
· Desert Season Kicks Off at The Willows Palm Springs: The Willows Historic Palm Springs Inn will reopen for the 2013-14 season on September 11 with special rates starting at $275 a night (normally they are priced from $325.) Each stay also includes a three-course breakfast, evening wine and hors d’oeuvres and en suite and poolside snacks. But hurry as that rate is only good through the end of September. To make a reservation, call 800.966.9597 or reserve online at www.TheWillowsPalmSprings.com. Room selections are available on a first come, first-served basis.
Hotel Restaurants / Calistoga Hotels / Napa Valley Hotels / California Hotels / Hotel News / Wine Hotels / → All Tags
When we went to Napa last week, we did what anyone visiting Napa would do. We ate. We ate our way through the valley, we ate food with food, food on top of food and quite possibly would have had sex with the food if the opportunity was there. Did we make our point clear? The food here is otherworldly.
But there's just so much steak and pastas and steaks our hearts could take. So imagine our sigh of relief when we parked our extra weight at Solage Calistoga's SolBar.
Don't let the name fool you. "SolBar" might sound like a cafe lounge where hippies congregate for hemp kale crisps but it's actually a Michelin-star rated masterpiece. Like, people drive in from San Francisco to dine here, thanks to easy-on-the-eyes executive chef Brandon Sharp's magic wand (or, uh, spatula).
The sustainably farmed ingredients with a twist on soul food recipes (the fried chicken is TDF) is truly exceptional. But that's not what we're all about right now. The kitchen just introduced a new Asian-inspired lounge menu last month. The culinary team of white people prove they can make some crazy-awesome, fancy Asian cuisine.
Read on to hear a few of our favorites!
Hotel Animals / Embassy Suites Hotels / Florida Hotels / Napa Valley Hotels / Texas Hotels / Las Vegas Hotels / Minneapolis Hotels / → All Tags
Craving “Swans a Swimming” this holiday season? Well you’re in luck, as we’ve found eight Embassy Suites Hotels that feature mated pairs of Royal Swans swimming year-round in their atrium lobbies.
Real live swans? Yes! At first glance, their serenity is surprising—after all, they’re being kept in captivity. Yet these swans are happily coupled up and swimming to-and-fro in their lobby ponds without a care in the world. In fact, most of the day, they’re sleeping. With all that peace, elegance, and togetherness (they mate for life)--perhaps married couples should take notes!
We take a sweet look at the animal love stories:
Hotel Sommeliers / Hotel Wine / Napa Valley Hotels / Auberge Resorts / Girl Scout Cookies / Hotel Fun / → All Tags
It's the most
annoying wonderful time of the year when irresistible little Girl Scouts set up shop everywhere you go selling their delicious Girl Scout cookies. (We confess, we gave into a box of Samoas outside a Bed & Bath last week).)
But now thanks to Kris Margerum, the wine director at Auberge du Soleil in Napa Valley, you can make chowing down those cookies a little more "adult"-like thanks to his inventive wine pairings. Yes, Girl Scout cookies and wine. Delightful!
Combing the hotel's extensive 17,000-bottle wine cellar, Margerum came up with the following pairings for these Girl Scout cookies:
· Trefoils-Old Fashioned Shortbread: Margerum recommends pairing the cookies with the 2007 Schramsberg Blanc de Noirs Sparkling Wine. Tasting Note: "The creamy richness of the shortbread is balanced by the fresh lively notes of the Sparkling Wine."
We don’t usually mix wine-country getaways with fancy cars—after all, we’d never advocate drinking and driving—but a recent experience at the tony Carneros Inn in Napa has us thinking that cars and carafes (with a driver!) might just be our new favorite mash-up. That’s because this luxury resort is one of only four in the country that has partnered with Audi to have a couple of primo vehicles that will shuttle guests around the property.
The New York Times recently reviewed Hotel Luca in Yountville, California, and while it did give the Napa Valley hotel props for its prime location and great staff, the paper didn't exactly give the Tuscan-like spot a ringing endorsement.
On the plus side, the 20-room hotel is off of a road filled with vineyards, offers quick access to the wineries along the Silverado Trail and is a short stroll from restaurants and shops. But even more important, the staff came to the rescue of the reviewer who was hitting some dud wineries. The reporter called the hotel concierge from the road to ask for recommendations, and within a half hour she had made him an appointment at a private winery.
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It’s been a while since we hit the Valley. Napa Valley, that is. But we had a hankering for great wine and fine food last month, so we headed up to NorCal for a little bit of epicurean living, and while there, happened to stay at the newest hotel in the Valley: the Hotel Yountville.
Of course you're invited in to take a look at our exclusive photo gallery and walk-through video of our Premium Suite, but hands off the wine...
As summer came to an end last week, we headed up for one last wine country weekend in Napa, and stayed at Solage Calistoga. The newest of Napa’s Auberge Resorts, Solage is aimed at a hipper, younger and more eco-conscious crowd than its sibs, Calistoga Ranch, and Auberge du Soleil.
To see what the average $495 room rate gets you, check the video of our room.
There are no shortages of good places to eat in Sonoma and Napa so we're pretty sure that if you find yourself heading there one weekend, you will be well-fed. But since we're always asking what you did over the weekend, we thought we'd fill you in on what we did this weekend.
We headed up to Santa Rosa in Sonoma County for a family wedding and shacked up at the so-so Flamingo Resort which is essentially an old 60s motel that has been renovated for the 21st century. Room rates were $109 a night and the sheets were extraordinarily crisp and clean. Other than that, we have really nothing to rave or rant about.
But on Sunday morning, we found ourselves at the Vintners Inn, a hotel on a proper vineyard.
Can’t afford even the low-season $300 a night rate at Yountville’s new eco-resort, Bardessono Hotel? Fear not. The exclusive resort opens up its guests-only rooftop pool to non-guests on Wednesday evenings from 6:00-9:00pm for its punny Dive Bar, so even Napa townies can enjoy the stunning mountain and vineyard views while enjoying a dip and a drink while DJ's spin tunes near the bar.
The secluded pool is usually open only to resort guests, who come to lie in piece and quiet in one of the screened off day-bed cabanas. Come Wednesday evening, though, anyone can stop by the rooftop cement pond, and they're encouraged to come in their bathing suits to take a dip between bar rounds, with drinks going for just $8 each. The resort even throws in complimentary valet parking. That way, everyone can enjoy the privileges of being a hotel guest without having to spend a night.
Last week, we had the good fortune to spend a glorious fall day amongst the sun-warmed vines and valleys of Napa. Between wine-tasting rendezvous, we managed to invoke the tiniest bit of professionalism and took a tour of MTM Luxury Lodging’s new Bardessono Hotel in Yountville, which aims to be the greenest hotel in America. By the looks of it, they’re well on their way, but judge for yourself based on our video tour of one of their rooms.
Besides conventional eco-resort initiatives like LEED certification, controls that turn off the electrical systems when guests leave a room, and an organic garden that provides produce for the restaurant, the resort has also forged ahead with several distinct environmental practices that set it apart from other hotels.