My travels have brought me to Napa on several occasions, but I’d never really had the opportunity to visit Sonoma until now. Staying at the MacArthur Place offered an ideal immersion to bask in local culture of Sonoma, and I must say, it’s one of my favorite locations in the whole world. What I love most about Sonoma is the authenticity and local heritage that have been preserved over the years, which, compared to its busy neighbor (Napa), has resulted in a much more refined, less touristy, and serene environment where vineyards span across a much larger area of land, allowing for the discovery of untouched vineyards and secret spots. Compared to Napa, Sonoma offers intimate wineries and experiences, away from big crowds, and that’s what I love most. While Napa is beautiful, it also boasts a greater deal of tourists and high prices, and as a traveler who enjoys more of a remote, off-the-beaten-path experience, Sonoma is where it’s everything and more.
The MacArthur Place is the perfect, secluded get away yet so close to the center of Sonoma where restaurants and local tastings reside. When I choose a place to stay, I try to ensure that it’s 100% local and offers some sort of unique appeal, and Sonoma’s iconic MacArthur Place Hotel & Spa is one of the few remaining examples of Victorian architecture in Sonoma. While my experience at the MacAthur Place was perfect, they’re currently embarking on a major renovation of the entire property including arrival experience, reception, guest rooms and more. Along with the complete renovation, the property will launch a fully re-imagined food and beverage program with one of America’s leading chefs and hospitality groups, comprised of a contemporary and elevated Mediterranean restaurant; lively lobby bar; and communal coffee and market space. The newly renovated MacArthur Place will reemerge in early 2019 to offer a stunning and singularly authentic luxury experience that embrace and maximize its views, celebrate its singular gardens and elevate indoor-outdoor interplay at every turn. Original barn beams will be exposed; shady porches revealed; the fragrant bounty enlisted throughout; and convivial lawn parties return with au natural splendor.
The Garden Suite is where I stayed, and in my opinion, it’s the best room in the house! Aside from the grand size, the bathroom is out of this world, with a jetted tub and double vanity sink. There is a full bar with a mini sink and the most comfortable, king sized bed. The best part of it all? An outdoor garden complete with an outdoor shower and deep wine bath with a lavender tea bag sachet to soak and wind down after a long day of tasting.
The overall rating that I gave the MacArthur Place is a 10/10.
What I loved: Efforts to be sustainable, unmatched luxury, wonderful and helpful staff, authentic and high end cuisine, fabulous welcome spread with local wine from Sonoma, pristine grounds with bountiful gardens, ultimate relaxation amenities and suites that represent the authenticity and local heritage of Sonoma.
What Set It Back: Nothing!
Overall: A hotel that is a must to stay if not dine whilst in Sonoma.
What makes a sustainable or regenerative hotel? A reverse osmosis water system, farm to table produce, supporting local dairy and meat farmers, engaging with local non-profit or community organization endeavors to address an issue within the country or community, energy efficient lighting, low pressure water systems, recycling, employing locals and offering fair and equal pay, replanting what was lost during the construction, use of biofuel (for boats), engaging guests in local cultural experiences and making them aware of environmental and cultural needs, LEED Certification, educating staff on importance of sustainability (turning off lights, observing for wasteful practices, etc.), reducing bathroom amenities waste (using bamboo toothbrushes instead, locally made/organic soap, shampoo and conditioner that help the environment), the list goes on.