by Lissa Poirot
This 16-acre resort in Napa Valley’s Calistoga is a traditional resort with amenities to lure guests away for the weekend or an extended vacation. Its expansive property includes gardens and walking paths, as well as lawn games like Bocce ball, shuffleboard and croquet. Bikes are available to borrow and guests are invited to swim in the mineral pool with poolside fireplace. A kids’ play area, labyrinth and hammock garden also beckon. Onsite dining is available at Sam’s Social Club, which is open for weekday breakfast from 8:30 to 10:30 a.m., weekend brunch from 8:20 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., weekday lunch from 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., snacks between 2:30 and 5:30 p.m., and dinner from 5:30 on.
In guest rooms, you will find flat-screen TVs, and free Wi-Fi and bottled water. Cottages and bungalows have refrigerators and coffee makers, and the Merchant House and Hill House have full kitchens. The 1930s Spanish-style Lodge only offers queen rooms. In 2014, the View Rooms were added and offer queen and king rooms. The Cottages are the property’s original accommodations and provide studio and two-bedroom options with living rooms and porches. The Bungalows, also added in 2014, are three two-bedroom bungalows with private gardens. The two houses available are stand-alone houses with full resort amenities and multiple bedrooms and bathrooms. Hill House features two bedrooms and two bathrooms, while Merchant House provides three bedrooms.
Our Editor Loves
- A variety of accommodation styles for multiple guests
- Free Wi-Fi
- Two swimming pools
- Family Room 5+
- Free Wi-Fi
- Onsite Dining
by Megan S
Let's start with the good - room product is good, location is proximal in Calistoga, food is good at Sam's Social Club, and I enjoyed my massage at the spa (although the locker rooms could stand to be updated). Here was the big con - the pool. The hotel markets itself as a place of relaxation and the pool as a main amenity. My husband and I just went for our babymoon for our second and the main purpose was to spend the entire main day at the pool. We situated ourselves at the adult pool hoping for some quiet and knowing it was a busy day so the main pool would probably be chaotic. However, this was not the case. There were no fewer than 4 children at the adult pool at any given time and no one enforcing it. While I am all about bringing my daughter to a range of types of places, I think locations with age restrictions should be respected. There was also a 40th birthday party group, and while I am also all about having fun, they brought in loads of coolers of outside drinks, got increasingly loud and drunk throughout the day, blasting music from a speaker they brought, and repeatedly cannonballing into the pool. Behavior more suitable for a private house or houseboating than a shared space. Lastly, there were other rude guests that continued to try to make us move out of our seats in the shade (despite my telling them I was pregnant and needed the shade) so their friends could sit there. I really do feel that a lot of this could have been remedied by having actual pool side service and attendants (this would also create a nicer vibe of not having to hike to the pool store every time you want a beverage or snack). The situation got so out of hand it felt like I was in Vegas on spring break at Encore Beach Club, not a relaxing babymoon. I provided this feedback at checkout and got a "oh sorry, that does sound unpleasant, we heard complaints from other guests as well, we will pass it along" and nothing else. I wanted to ensure the feedback made it to management, so I emailed two different groups upon return home and never received a response (over a week later). I would think that a hotel that typically charges $450+/night with a two night minimum would at least respond. At this point, I would recommend staying at Solage, Andaz, Archer, or Las Alcobas, which is where we usually stay.
We were only here for one night but we left feeling so relaxed. Our room was charming and we loved the bicycles around the property. We had dinner on site and it was great. Everyone seemed obsessed with the mushroom cap churros. We couldn’t get enough.