The Napa Valley is one of the world’s most important wine regions and is a great place to get away for just the weekend or for weeks at a time. The idyllic landscape is marked by endless rows of deep green vines and picturesque wineries. The perfect place for pampering, Napa exudes luxury and is a great place to indulge all your senses. Sample some of the world’s most distinguished wines, dine on fresh, seasonal cuisine in one of the area’s exquisite restaurants or let your worries melt away at a tranquil spa. The best hotels in Napa put you close to all the area’s attractions, including quaint antique stores, eclectic boutiques and, of course, the dozens of vine-cloaked wineries.
Most people come to Napa for the wine but leave having fallen in love with other aspects of life in the valley. The pace is relaxed here and locals know how to enjoy the good life. The best hotels in Napa display this good taste within their premises and in the way they treat visitors. Hospitality here means more than just a greeting upon arrival; it means giving thoughtful and personal attention to each guest. Lively croquet games in the inn’s backyard, fresh fruit at breakfast from the orchard and roaring fireplaces are commonplace here.
Your innkeepers can direct you to the valley’s most treasured and unique wineries. First-time visitors will revel in the chance to sample Kuleto Estate’s award-winning cabernet sauvignon with winemaker David Lattin and get a sneak peek at the renowned winery’s unique bottling process. At Hagafen Cellars, visitors can sample wines for free before selecting an award-winning white riesling, syrah or zinfandel. The famed terrace at Domaine Caneros is one of the best places to enjoy caviar, artisan cheeses, a glass of Brut Cuvée pinot noir and a golden Napa sunset.
Tours you should consider
The hosts at Napa’s best hotels can also arrange tours that will give you an insider view of the complex wine-making process. At the Jarvis Winery, visitors are privy to cellars, barrel rooms and and underground cave encircled by a stream and glistening waterfall. A tour of the Joseph Phelps Vineyards takes travelers back in time. Seated tastings are run by enthusiastic experts eager to show off their vineyard, one of the oldest in the valley. An afternoon spent at the Spring Mountain Vineyard is at once romantic, educational and fun. After experiencing the caves, visitors can view wine-making artifacts, walk the halls of the Victorian mansion and learn about the winery’s many varieties of grapes.
If sampling famous Napa cabernets and meritage wines has not relaxed you enough, spend a day at one of California’s finest spas getting pampered in real style. The nearby hot springs at Calistoga can melt your worries away with its healing mineral waters. Geothermal forces naturally regulate water temperatures so the springs can be enjoyed throughout the year. Treat yourself to an indulgent massage that will relax your muscles and soothe your mind. A decadent mud bath or refreshing herbal facial will also rejuvenate your mind, body and spirit.
After loosening up your muscles with a massage at the spa, play a round or two at one of Napa’s five fabled golf courses. Offering stunning views of the valley with expertly designed holes and perfectly manicured greens, these courses will delight even experienced golfers. The Chardonnay Golf Club is known for its elegant design that weaves throughout more than 150 acres of vineyards. Expert golfers will be challenged by shooting from the course’s black tees, while novices will be grateful for the opportunity to drive from the less-daunting ivory and gold tees. Observant golfers may spot hawks, hummingbirds and even bobcats on the fairways at this stunning Napa course. The two championship gold courses at the Silverado were redesigned by Professional Golf Association Hall of Famer Johnny Miller to reflect the natural landscape of the valley. The thoughtful revamping includes challenging water crossings, ambitious elevation changes and sweeping views of Napa.
Where to Dine in Napa
Reward yourself for a game well played with dinner at one of Napa’s finest restaurants. Dining is what Napa does best, pairing the freshest ingredients with wines that only add to the meal’s flavor. The food is almost second to the atmosphere at the All Seasons Cafe, where vibrant bouquets top each table and wide windows overlook charming downtown Napa. The seasonal menu is complemented by over 400 wines that pair perfectly with dishes like white truffle chicken or fennel nage. Those with a taste for Italian will be satiated at the Bistro Don Giovanni. The small but bustling bistro serves up classic dishes like risotto, pizza and pasta in a bright and cheery atmosphere. At Bouchon, diners are treated to a modestly-priced menu of updated French traditional classics like foie gras, steak frites and marquise au chocolat.
The valley is also the perfect place to enjoy a romantic picnic for two. Sunset is the ideal time to sneak away with your love and a basket of Napa’s finest specialty cheeses, crackers and pates. From atop the hills at the Bothe-Napa Valley State Park, the pastoral landscape basks in golden light as the sun sets, making it the perfect backdrop for a dinner for two.
Adventures in Napa
Hot air balloons frequently dot the sunny skies above the valley. For the adventurous, this is one of the best ways to see all of Napa. Looking down upon the patchwork of vineyards nestled among rolling hills is an experience not to be missed. On the ground, bike tours offer a chance to enjoy the pleasant weather while exploring Napa’s antique stores, boutiques and markets. Hikers will appreciate the state park’s endless trails, flanked by towering redwood trees and douglas firs. The three-mile Ritchey Canyon trail takes visitors through soaring oaks, luscious fern patches and thickets of wild grapes. Hikers that finish the intense trek are rewarded with marvelous views of the staggering canyon.
The best hotels in Napa are staffed with local experts that can guide you to the best the valley has to offer. If spending your days sipping wine under a golden sun in a charming landscape sounds like paradise to you, you are right. Contact Select Registry today to find the best California Inns and hotels for your next Napa vacation.