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Relais & Châteaux is a world in and of itself, unlike any other. A warm, welcoming, gourmet affair awaits where outstanding quality is coupled with each individual property's passion for their own region and its terroir.
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Relais & Châteaux offers you a veritable world tour. Whatever the occasion, however long you stay, each of our hotels will offer you the very best of its culture and region.
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When you experience Relais & Châteaux, you experience a whole array of sensations. Each of our properties offers the opportunity to enjoy an unparalleled range of sensory experiences, where the beauty of a particular place, the warmth of the hospitality and the quality of the cuisine are in perfect harmony. Scents and tastes, landscapes and colours make every stay a rare and intense experience.
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USA : West (California)

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1 800 735 2478

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Thomas Keller
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Owner and Grand Chef of The French Laundry
My route to enchantment through California’s wine country

For me a visit to California’s famous wine country is much more than just an opportunity to explore premium wines. The lifestyle and rolling, vine-clad hills of Sonoma and Napa Valley - home to over 700 wineries - remind me of Tuscany in many ways, although they are very Californian. Imagine a place where you can travel by balloon over a misty valley, nibble artisanal breads and cheeses at the source, and dine in a world class restaurant with that perfect bottle of wine you’ve just discovered. And yet this captivating experience is all just over an hour’s drive north of San Francisco. Time spent here will enrich your palate and indulge your senses - a true getaway. Although some areas have become quite touristy, you can find less traveled, insiders’ spots with a little help from your hotel’s knowledgeable concierge. Biking, golf and hiking are popular activities here, but the less energetic can spend time at a spa or at one of several wineries that double as art galleries - from pop art at Cliff Lede Vineyards to the Hess Collection’s extensive display of contemporary art. This is an excellent itinerary and covers many of the best spots and experiences in the Napa Valley. I would definitely recommend this to my friends who plan on visiting the area for the first time.

Relais & Châteaux proposes its Routes du Bonheur for your inspiration: they are suggestions of itineraries that you can adapt to your preferences and desired experiences. Our advisors are at your disposal to individualise your routes and help you make reservations at our properties.
Example for a four-night stay from 1727 USD *
* Minimum indicative rate per person, subject to availability, on the basis of a double room with double occupancy, including accommodation, breakfast and dinner (menu, without beverages) in the properties suggested for the itinerary.
Activities on site and nearby must be reserved by you.

My Route du Bonheur
Stage 1: three days, two nights

Hotel Les Mars

A portal to discovering the undiscovered in Sonoma County
Hotel Les Mars
Hotel Les Mars is a romantic retreat just off the historic Town Plaza in Healdsburg, the quaint, affluent town northwest of Sonoma. This ultra-luxe townhouse hotel oozes European charm with 16 spacious, elegant guest rooms furnished with antiques, draped canopy beds and gas-burning fireplaces. Marble bathrooms have showers large enough for two and some also have spa tubs. In-room amenities include fresh flowers, chilled local chardonnay and wireless Internet. Each afternoon wine and cheese are served in the walnut-paneled library. Continental breakfast is brought to your room on a silver platter to enjoy before, perhaps, a dip in the hotel’s outdoor pool. The central location is handy for strolling to several top restaurants, and the cordial, expertly trained staff can arrange complimentary tastings at partner wineries or direct you to sites off the beaten track.

Close to the property...

Dinner at the Dry Creek Kitchen

Back in Healdsburg, dinner at the Dry Creek Kitchen is recommended. Celebrity chef Charlie Palmer, who first made his name at Manhattan’s Aureole restaurant, is behind this sleek new spot in the Hotel Healdsburg. The kitchen’s inventive, modern American cuisine features local, seasonal ingredients often in unexpected combinations. Wine lovers are spoiled for choice here with a list that offers some 600 labels from the Sonoma region alone.

Sonoma coastline

Head south on Route 101 to view the craggy Sonoma coastline. With more than 30 miles of sandy beaches and coves hidden beneath rugged headlands, you will be seduced by stunning sunsets and a wide variety of sea, plant and bird life. Sonoma Coast State Park is one of several parks and beaches along this route. If you venture onto the beach, however, beware of sudden “sneaker waves” that can carry off the unwary.

Muir Woods National Monument

Farther southeast off Route 101, Muir Woods National Monument is part of the National Park Service and of the Golden Gate National Recreation Area. Its star feature is the 240 acres of towering, old-growth Coast Redwoods (Sequoia sempervirens).

Secret Playground: Back on the coast, Jenner-by-the-Sea is a sleepy seaside hamlet at the mouth of the Russian River, off Highway 1. This is a place to relax, walk on the beach, and savor the natural setting. Whale watching runs from December through April, and seal watching is available year round.

On the route...

Chalk Hill Estate

Nine miles from the hotel, off Route 101S is the sprawling Chalk Hill Estate, in the rugged foothills of the Mayacamas Mountains. The property is planted with 350 acres of vineyards and surrounded by 1,000 acres of scenic terrain. Cooling Pacific breezes and a range of soil types make it ideal for growing several varietals including their well known chardonnay, sauvignon blanc, syrah and more. Visitors can take a tour of the estate’s culinary gardens, striking equestrian dressage pavilion and the winery. In the tasting room with its sweeping views, you can sip current releases as well as library wines.

We can advise you on booking your route. Contact central reservations :

1 800 735 2478

Indicate the code : KELLER

Calling from another country ? Click here

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Stage 2: one day, one night

Meadowood Napa Valley

In Napa Valley people slow down, relax and find the time to appreciate the land, the food and the wine
Meadowood Napa Valley
Like a fine cabernet, certain luxuries in life just get better with age. Take the Meadowood Napa Valley. This grand estate in the hills above St. Helena started as a private club in 1964 and is now one of the area’s premier resorts. The secluded property encompasses 250 leafy acres of golf fairways, tennis courts, swimming pools and hiking trails. In the main lodge, a must is dinner in the timelessly elegant Restaurant at Meadowood, which has just been awarded its third Michelin star. Relais & Châteaux Grand Chef Christopher Kostow, features the region’s local bounty in creative, often complex ways. Many ingredients come from the Meadowood’s own property: the vegetables, free-range chickens, even the honey. The seasonal prix-fixe menu is paired with a prize-winning wine list which is explained by the knowledgeable servers. If you wish to learn more, the estate’s own wine educator, a master sommelier, leads tutored tastings. The 85 guest rooms and suites, spread around the wooded grounds in cozy bungalows and lodges, have recently been renovated in a charming, country-chic style, many with stone fireplaces and patios. The resort’s leisure activities also include croquet lessons from Pro Mike Lufkin, followed by play on the championship lawns, and pampering treatments in the spa.

Close to the property...

Harlan Estate Vineyards

Plan on a visit to Harlan Estate Vineyards, 15 minutes away in the hills of Oakville, which produces some of the most sought after red wines in the area on a 240-acre property. Founder Bill Harlan had a successful career in real estate before starting his own cult wineries. Two different red blends, made with Bordeaux varietals, comprise the output of fewer than 2,000 cases a year. These rare wines can cost several hundred dollars per bottle.

We can advise you on booking your route. Contact central reservations :

1 800 735 2478

Indicate the code : KELLER

Calling from another country ? Click here

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Stage 3: one day, one night

Auberge du Soleil

Discover Napa Valley uncensored!
Auberge du Soleil
A few minutes away from Meadowood, nestled in an olive grove in the hills above Rutherford, this celebrity-favorite boutique resort is celebrating 30 years of hospitality. With 31 rooms and 21 suites, ranging from intimate to sumptuous, the Auberge du Soleil retains its South-of-France flair and wonderful private terrace views. The 33-acre property is dramatically dotted with sculptures. Expect a visual as well as a gastronomic treat when you dine in the restaurant here. Executive Chef Robert Curry’s Mediterranean-accented fare is locally sourced, and the wine list, with over 1,500 selections, is both comprehensive and well chosen. A welcome feature is the large number of wines by the glass. Treatments in the 7,000-square-foot spa incorporate ingredients harvested from the local hills such as the massage with an olive oil infusion scented with Meyer lemons.

Close to the property...

Relais & Chateaux The French Laundry

Head south to Yountville for a dinner like no other at The French Laundry, which has become a legendary destination for food and wine lovers. With meticulous attention to detail, the intimate restaurant’s 9-course tasting menus are designed so that each course just tempts your palate and leaves you wanting more. In creating this emotional experience for diners, we wanted to create a uniquely American restaurant whose inspiration lies in the countryside of France. It has earned three Michelin stars, making us one of the few groups in the world with a total of six Michelin stars. With only 16 tables, reservations are notoriously difficult to come by and accepted beginning two months ahead of the desired date. The small town of Yountville has become a culinary destination with several other hot restaurants, including our own Bouchon and Ad Hoc.

Relais & Chateaux The French Laundry

On the route...

Chappellet Winery

Back near St. Helena, up a winding lane on rugged Pritchard Hill, is the family-run Chappellet Winery. Founded in the 1960s, this was one of the first in Napa to grow grapes on high elevations. The specialty is age-worthy cabernet sauvignons with concentration and finesse. Pritchard Hill has been dubbed “Napa’s Grand Cru.” Appointments are recommended for the winery’s 90-minute tours and tastings.

Swanson Vineyards Salon

In Rutherford, Swanson Vineyards Salon is the upscale, French-inspired hospitality and tasting room of this handsome winery. Here, by appointment and for a fee, up to eight guests can sample about six wines along with artisanal cheeses and other local products at a tutored tasting. Swanson is the largest bottler of estate-grown merlot in the area, and also produces pinot grigios and cabernet sauvignons.

My Secret Playground : Silverado Trail

When the traffic backs up on busy Highway 29, Napa’s main thoroughfare, go off piste and take the Silverado Trail, a 30-mile long route on the pastoral, eastern side of the valley. You’ll discover about 40 vineyards - from Andretti to ZD - many of which produce small batches of wines that you probably won’t find back home. Regularly scheduled tours are offered at Monticello, Mumm Napa Valley, Rutherford Hill and a few others.

We can advise you on booking your route. Contact central reservations :

1 800 735 2478

Indicate the code : KELLER

Calling from another country ? Click here

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Stage 4: one dinner

Gary Danko

The chef who delights San Francisco
Gary Danko
Relais & Châteaux Grand Chef Gary Danko presides at one of San Francisco’s top fine-dining spots with a luxurious menu that features ingredients at their seasonal best. Near Ghirardelli Square, the smart yet buzzy dining room, with lovely flowers, contemporary paintings and wood paneling, sets the stage for the chef’s updated versions of French and regional American cooking with global accents. The cheese selection and chef’s giveaway treats enhance the experience. With perfectly orchestrated service and an extensive wine list, Michelin-starred restaurant Gary Danko usually books up weeks ahead.
Or

Quince Restaurant Relais & Chateaux, San Francisco

The whole spirit of California personified into our cuisine
Quince Restaurant Relais & Chateaux, San Francisco
At home in a fine brick building that dates back to 1907, this wonderful Italian restaurant has to be one of California’s best. You might think that its Grand Chef, Michael Tusk, hails directly from the boot-shaped Italian peninsula. However, Michael is a native of New Jersey who first studied art history before he took up his chef’s apron. The experience he acquired in France and especially in Piedmont, and later beside the great Paul Bertolli taught him that language shared by the greatest Grand Chefs. A hint of Italy produced with the best that the San Francisco Bay has to offer…

Close to the property...

Fisherman’s Wharf

Fisherman’s Wharf, on San Francisco’s northern waterfront, is a bustling tourist attraction that started as the dock for the Italian emigre fishermen in the 19th Century, who set out to catch the local specialty, Dungeness crabs. Although it is now lined with hotels and visitors’ attractions, the Wharf is still home to some of the local fishing fleet. From this area visitors can take boat tours of the harbor including visits to infamous Alcatraz Island.

Alamo Square

Alamo Square is a residential neighborhood of Victorian wood townhouses and a park on a hill with wonderful views of San Francisco. The row of colorful, large houses facing the park on Steiner Street, nicknamed the “Painted Ladies,” is often featured on postcards and in films. A wonderful place to visit during the day.

My Secret Place : Ferry Building Marketplace

Food lovers should check out the Ferry Building Marketplace, a conversion of the old ferry terminus on the Embarcadero. There’s a sustainable farmer’s market, as well as shops for cookware and local artisan foods, coffee shops and restaurants. The Wine Merchant here offers wine tastings and classes.

We can advise you on booking your route. Contact central reservations :

1 800 735 2478

Indicate the code : KELLER

Calling from another country ? Click here

Texts : © Guides Gallimard