My first trip ever to the Napa Valley started with a stay at the Fairmont Sonoma Mission Inn and Spa. Several years later and returning to Sonoma for a third time, I was excited to return to the Fairmont. I frequently talk about the Accor product and have stayed at many of their hotels. Although I do like to branch out and not stay set at one particular hotel chain, the Fairmont is typically a great choice. Memories started coming back to me as we drove inside the property, and I noticed a few great changes too. One of those changes was at check in, as I was offered a glass of sparkling wine. Things were off to a great start!
To get to the Fairmont or around the Napa Valley and Sonoma, I recommend renting a car. The convenience is almost priceless, and you can always hire a driver to navigate between wineries so everyone can enjoy. My first trip, we flew into San Francisco airport. After that, I flew into Santa Rosa for the next two trips. Both involve a drive, but I think the Santa Rosa airport is quiet, small, and more convenient. American Airlines brings in a flight from both Phoenix and Dallas on a regional jet.
After arrival and check in, I wandered to my room in their main building. There are a total of three floors. One inconvenience is their main building does not have an elevator. If you have a lot of luggage, this could be a nuisance. Their hotel staff is of course available to assist. My room was waiting for me with a lovely welcome amenity of a bottle of champagne in addition to another complimentary bottle of red wine. For being a platinum member of Accor, you also get two drink tickets available for use during your stay. I love all of these small perks, and I typically find their bars/cocktails are a good, high quality product.
On my last stay, I was in one of their other buildings in a suite. That room was much larger with a bathtub that opened up into the room. There was also a lovely fireplace and seating area. Both rooms were great. The suite was nicer, but it also came with a higher price tag.
The property has a lot of fun lawn games and plenty of restaurants. One of their new additions was a food truck in their front drive. On Friday night, they had some fantastic live music and the food truck menu looked pretty incredible. They also had a bar outside serving drinks for convenience as you listen to music. Daily, the Fairmont offers a happy hour from 4:30-5:30 where they serve complimentary wine. They also offer a house car that will go within short distances of the property. It was an incredibly convenient way to get to dinner and not have to worry about driving. Getting an Uber or Lyft often isn’t the easiest task, so the car was a nice perk.
The concierge on property is wonderfully helpful for any of your needs. We requested a list of wineries for our first stay, and I used this list again for our repeat visit. It has a very brief description of wineries in both Napa and Sonoma. They also can assist you with drivers. This is how we were able to set up our driver for winery tours on Saturday. Deborah with lets roll wine tours arrived at the Fairmont to drive us to our three winery reservations for the day. There is no shortage of assistance and great recommendations if you require it.
One of the mistakes that I have made when staying at this property is not spending enough time enjoying it. There is no shortage of places to relax and plenty of things to keep you occupied. I recommend only visiting 2 wineries per day in order to allow for more time at the hotel. In the past, I have tried fitting in three wineries on more than one occasion. It always seems too much, and two is probably the perfect number.
Wine country encompasses such a large territory in Northern California. A stay in Sonoma allows you to visit wineries in Sonoma, but it doesn’t leave you too far from properties in Napa as well. The Fairmont Sonoma was lively and welcoming. They offer some great amenities like a house car, live music, good food, and much more. Some resorts in Napa come with an extremely high price point. The Fairmont is more reasonable, but you still feel all the luxury. Consider a stay here for your next long weekend away!