Wine country weekends and romance go hand in hand. Whether you’re significant other is trying to score points or get out of the doghouse, you really can’t go wrong. But there comes a time when you try shaking things up a bit! Leave the husband or boyfriend at home (you can blame the idea on me, my girlfriends always do), grab the girls and go. You’ll have a great time, it’s a given. The added bonus: While you’re gone, the guys will have time to realize how much they appreciate you.
Taste & Toast
You’ll no doubt need to finalize the getaway game plan, so make a reservation to jumpstart the weekend with lunch at the Mayo Family Winery Reserve Room. Sit back, relax, and enjoy the vineyard views while you indulge in their seven-course pairing menu. Seven Mayo Family Reserve wines are paired with dishes specially created to compliment them. At just $35 dollars a person, it’s a steal!
But the pampering is just getting started. Next on the agenda is the Flamingo Resort and Spa. My personal favorite is the Traditional Thai massage, but I wouldn’t say no to a facial, manicure or pedicure. The Flamingo is a fun place to call home during your visit to Santa Rosa. The resort opened in 1957, and was built to mirror the original Vegas Flamingo design. Think old-school resort with a great pool area that’s been upgraded without losing its charm. When your treatment is finished, you can linger in the sauna or hot tub. If you’re staying at the Flamingo, take advantage of the attached Montecito Heights Health and Racquet Club. Forget the nap! Grab a mat and take a pilates or yoga class. Relax by the pool or give Zumba a whirl.
Dinner is Served
By now you have to have worked up an appetite. Dinner is waiting just down the road at Monti’s in Santa Rosa’s Montgomery Village Shopping Center. If the weather is nice, leave the car where it is and walk and window shop your way through Montgomery Village. When you get to Monti’s order a bunch of small plates and try a little of everything. My recommendations: Hummus with warm olive flatbread and marinated feta cheese, macaroni & cheese with bacon, and french fries with gorgonzola and rosemary. Monti’s offers dozens of wine selections, but I’m often swayed by their margaritas.
Rise & Shine
Sleep well and sleep in. There’s no reason to get up early. Willow Wood Market Café serves great food all day. It’ll take about 15 to 20 minutes to drive get there, but the conversation and scenery will keep you entertained. If you have to wait for a table, you can meander along Graton Road. There are a couple antique-garden stores that might call out to you. But don’t wander too far—you want to be able to hear when they call your name. If the sun is shining, sit outside in the back garden. Everything I’ve ever had here is good, but know that piping hot polenta is on the breakfast, lunch, and dinner menu. If you’re lucky enough to be there for Sunday brunch, even the huevos rancheros comes with creamy polenta.
Santa Rosa is loaded with great hiking opportunities, and Armstrong Redwoods State Natural Reserve near Guerneville is nothing short of fantastic (I take all of my out-of-town guests there). There are plenty of trails and you can decide how hard and how long of a walk you’re in the mood for. The tallest tree in the grove is the Parson Jones Tree. At more than 310 feet, it’s longer than a football field. At an estimated 1400 years old, the Colonel Armstrong Tree is the oldest tree in the grove. Both are less than a mile from the park entrance.
If your hike leaves you feeling a little parched, you should know, Korbel Champagne Cellars is close by. Enjoy a tour, a taste and the impressive gardens. Maybe take a bottle home to share with that special someone you left at home. But don’t gush about the trip too much, or he’ll never let you leave him home again!
For more ideas on girlfriend getaways in and around Santa Rosa—as well as tips on the best restaurants and lodging—log onto VisitSantaRosa.com.
And if you have your own tips and recommendations on family getaways to Santa Rosa that you’d like to share, feel free to add your own comments to our blog below. We’d love to hear from you.