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B & B walking distance to town

Chicago, Illinois
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332 posts
70 reviews
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B & B walking distance to town

Can someone please suggest a FABULOUS B & B that is walking distance to shopping and dining? I am open to various regions in the wine country. Thanks!

Forestville...
Destination Expert
for Sonoma
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4,834 posts
79 reviews
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1. Re: B & B walking distance to town

A great way to locate inns that are close to your desired destinations is to go to the TripAdviser "Napa Hotels" then go to the subcategory of "B&B's/Inns" (there are currently 24 listed under Napa--but do a search under Yountville, St. Helena and Calistoga as well). Then near the top of your screen you'll see "map our most popular B&B's". You'll be able to see rankings and map loc's. It's very hard to make general recommendations w/o knowing what you're looking for besides "fabulous" (which to me translates to "luxury" but that may not be what you have in mind) and walking distance to restaurants and dining--the 4 towns I mentioned will have that. If you're really into fine cuisine tho', don't limit yourself to eating only at restaurants you can walk to or you'll miss some great ones (e.g. Auberge's, Domaine Chandon's).

Chicago, Illinois
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332 posts
70 reviews
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2. Re: B & B walking distance to town

Thanks for the input. Trust me, I have spent HOURS on TRIPADVISOR. It is overwhelming though. I was really looking for first hand referrals. Fabulous to me : clean, lovely breakfast, private bath, no pets or children, loacted near shopping and dining.

In addition , years ago we went to Mustards and it was great. Does not seem to be the same. Any thoughts ?

Napa, CA
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4,740 posts
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3. Re: B & B walking distance to town

Mustard's is still amazing. Two things have happened since you were here last:

1. They now keep a few tables open for "walk ins". This is great, but if you look at the bad TA reviews, quite a few of them are ticked off when they show up and have to wait an hour for one of these tables, and see other parties (with advance reservations) being seated ahead of them. Simple solution: Book well in advance.

2. Last time we were there, our server told us Mustard's no longer uses Niman Ranch for their pork chops. It does make a difference. so if you were in love with their pork chop before, you may be disappointed. We were-- it was the first thing we've ever sent back there in close to 20 years. All of the other food was, as usual, spectacular. :)

OK, we saw your "help!" post on the Napa Valley forums, and posted this reply:

*********

In other parts of the country, there are just a few top-tier B&Bs, so picking the right one is fairly straighforward.

But in the Napa Valley, there are nearly 100 top-flight B&Bs-- so it's easy to get overwhelmed! :)

Suggestions for picking a great B&B:

1. Make a list of what is most important to *you* (e.g., walk to town, cleanliness, great breakfast, etc) across the top of a page, left to right. Go through the list, and figure out which things you can't live without (e.g., private bath) and which is less important (walking 5 vs 8 blocks to town).

2. Based on what you read/see in the TA reviews and from the Inn's own website, make a short list of your top places, down the right hand side of the page. Be sure to CHECK AVAILABILITY for the nights you want to stay. The most popular spots book up weeks or even months in advance, so don't be surprised if half of your top choices don't have rooms available (we're currently taking reservations for harvest 2008-- more than 14 months from now!!).

You should now have a list of 4-6 Inns/B&Bs.

3. Call each of these places, and chat with the innkeeper for a few minutes. Ask them about things that are important to *you*-- how many blocks to downtown shops and restaurants, if they have any special activities for their guests, what their breakfasts are like, etc.

You will probably have very nice conversations with all of the innkeepers-- but chances are, 1 or 2 spots will just "click"-- you will really feel like there is a great chemistry between who you are/what you like, and what the inn offers.

This process does take a bit of time (a few hours for the review and website research, and about 5-10 minutes per phone call). But at the end, you will have found a spot that fits you like a glove.

It's OK to wind up with 3 or 4 favorites. Call them back and ask a few more questions. Check out their websites again.

The secret to picking a perfect B&B is EXPECTATIONS: What you find and experience during your stay should be in line with what you thought you were getting when you booked a room.

Since you're looking at so many websites, it's *really* easy to "mix up" B&Bs-- what they offer, etc. So you want to be sure that the place you book does have all the things you want. Verify this when you chat w/the innkeeper-- ask each B&B the same questions. It may be boring by the 3rd call, but at least you won't arrive to find something missing! :)

One last thing: Some folks do all of the steps, and so enjoy the first B&B they call that they just stop their search, book there, and don't call any others. This is perfectly OK-- once you find an Inn that is a good fit, grab it!

But do call, after you have your short list. You will be amazed how much easier it is to make the decision when you talk with a few innkeepers.

Remember that rooms fill up all the time-- so once you've checked availability, try to get those calls in. Every week we hear back from someone who is *shocked* that we are full, when we had rooms a few days earlier!

Have fun-- and wherever you stay, we hope you have a wonderful time in Napa. It's a magical place. :)

-The Innkeepers

Napa Old World Inn

4. Re: B & B walking distance to town

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