Archive for the ‘Lodging’ Category


Howling Wolf in the Sierras and lightweight in a saloon ~ What? No wine!

Years ago, I worked for Ironstone Vineyards. It was a two and a half year gig, and I intuitively knew going into it that it would only last two years. It managed to squeak out to two and a half years, with the last six months really squeaking along… except for that howling night. I’d […]


19th Auunal Florida Winefest & Auction ~ April 23-26, 2009

While working for wine companies, I was very lucky to have been sent to 40 of the 50 US states. I attended all the major wine festivals (Aspen, Boston, New Orleans, Santa Fe, Charlotte, etc.), pouring wine for the wine companies I was representing, while experiencing  a lot of the United States. I learned that […]


What do Wine Country Types Do on the Weekends? Head for the Coast…

The Pacific Coast is very dramatic. It’s a far cry from my Atlantic roots, where waves quietly lap sandy shores on the best of days, and maybe have three to four foot waves on the worst of days. In this Sonoma County region, fog is as much a part of the landscape as are the […]

Longboat Key Club ~ My Own Slice of Heaven

There are just some places that once you’ve visited, they’ve found a home deep within your heart. The Longboat Key Club has done such a thing to me… And the placement is so deep that I find myself not only continually finding my way back, but also bringing others along for the experience. This past […]

Melanie’s Wednesday Wines ~ February 20, 2008; It’s a Two-fer, Camellia Cellars and Inn

Melanie Hoffman When I first moved to California 15 years ago, and may I say wow 15 years, but I digress… When I first moved here, Healdsburg was where my heart found its home. I have lived in Healdsburg the majority of my time spent in California. Healdsburg has a quaint artistic appeal that I […]

Villa de Buena Vista ~ In the Heart of Paso Robles, it’s so welcoming

Having clients all over the place – versus being a regional PR person – has me traveling for business on occasion. Heading down to the Paso Robles area has become a special adventure. I travel from Sonoma County to Paso to check in with the Donati family’s winery, in order to reconnect. My colleague Mitch […]

Whale Watch Inn ~ A Jewel on the Mendocino Coast Line

Along the southern end of Mendocino County is the Whale Watch Inn. Don’t blink as you drive the twists and turns of Highway 1, or you’ll miss it; although, most people who arrive, arrive not by accident, but by design. By 60 percent, they come to The Whale Watch Inn as return visitors. They’ve already […]

As a Winery, the Biltmore Understands and Fosters Family Values

Welcome to a winery that not only understands their future audience, but also embraces it… The Biltmore. I recently found it fascinating that another blogger took the time to gather opinions on whether or not children belong at a winery. (Remember, I’m a former director for the Androscoggin Girl Scout Day Camp in Sabattus, Maine… […]

Sea Ranch Lodge ~ A Welcoming Pacific Coast Experience

Not using a true-to-scale map spells, “adventure.” It won’t give you the quickest route; and it might take you on roads not meant for the feint of heart. And, so it was. Melanie and I headed to Sea Ranch Lodge for our big adventure. Sea Ranch is situated in Sonoma County on 52-acres of scenic […]

Inn Love with Luxury ~ Landis Shores Oceanfront in Half Moon Bay

Or… “You can take the girl out of wine country, but you can’t take wine country out of the girl.” It all started when I was introduced to Ellen Landis, who – at the time – was the sommelier at Half Moon Bay’s Ritz Carlton. After my initial introduction, I then learned that Ellen, a […]