What's New for Summer 2020
Sonoma, CA (June 10, 2020) – Sonoma Valley – a 17-mile-long valley within Sonoma County that encompasses the city of Sonoma and the villages of Carneros, The Springs, Glen Ellen, and Kenwood – offers a variety of new and “traditional with a twist” experiences this summer.
From new hotels and tours to virtual events, there is much for visitors and fans of Sonoma Valley to enjoy.
The brand-new Sonoma Bungalows bring luxury within a few steps of the historic Sonoma Plaza. The property consists of eight unique bungalows, each with a gourmet kitchen, large living spaces and spacious master bedrooms. There are three two-bedroom bungalows and five one-bedroom bungalows on the property. Guests will feel like they’re in their own home, but with the convenience of having round-the-clock concierge service. The clubhouse hosts evening happy hours and other events for guests. The location near the plaza puts visitors a short walk to excellent dining, wine tasting, coffee shops, shopping and more.
The Flamingo Conference Resort and Spa, a mid-century marvel in east Santa Rosa, will unveil its multimillion-dollar renovation in early September. The first phase includes an update to all landscaping, exteriors, the restaurant and pool area as well as a new guest arrival experience n the lobby. Later in 2021, the second phase will feature full guestroom upgrades. The hotel, which is set on a 10-acre campus is ideally located for both city access and its sense of complete retreat. The Flamingo’s lively centerpiece is its swimming pool, which is surrounded by the hotel’s other amenities, including the Montecito Health Club and Spa, lounge and the brand-new Wild Bird restaurant. The Wild Bird will serve locally sourced California comfort food, including their signature Wild Bird chicken sandwich, the plant-based Veggie Bird and the grilled and lettuce wrapped Beach Bird.
This summer, Four Sisters Inns has reinvented the complimentary guest amenities in its Sonoma Valley properties: Kenwood Inn & Spa, Gaige House + Ryokan and The Inn at Sonoma. Guests are treated to a delicious breakfast for two, served in their guest room or the dining area. The signature chef’s choice entrée and fresh baked goods will start the day off right. The Wine & Cheese Mini-Picnic includes wine and cheese tastings and mouthwatering cookies in a handy picnic box that guests can take on their day’s adventure. Four Sisters Inns is also giving away a complimentary stay by entering their “Wish I Was There” travel writing contest. Submissions will be accepted until 11:59 p.m. PST on June 30, 2020.
New to the Sonoma Plaza, the Taub Family Outpost brings together the best of Sonoma Valley – wine, food, cocktails and an artisanal market. The Outpost occupies one of the plaza’s historic buildings, which was originally a general store in the late 1800s then a series of banks through the late 1960s. The Outpost offers a small market, full-service restaurant, a speakeasy and retail establishments selling picnic supplies and other branded items. The new marketplace will be open late to provide a place for visitors to spend time after a day of wine tasting or exploring throughout the Valley.
Happy Travelers Tours is launching its Dispensary and Winery Tour combining the best of Sonoma Valley’s cannabis production, retail and winery experiences. The tour takes guests behind the scenes of a local indoor growing operation, followed by time to shop, paired with a visit to Hook & Ladder or St. Anne’s Crossing Winery for a catered lunch and wine tasting. The tour is perfect for visitors interested in learning more about cannabis production process – from cultivation to trimming and all the technology involved.
WINERIES & TASTING ROOMS
Buena Vista Winery is welcoming visitors back with outdoor tastings with food service by reservation. Guests can choose cheese, charcuterie or an Oakville Grocery boxed lunch option with 48-hours advanced notice. Jean-Charles Boisset, president of Boisset Collection, will continue the popular JCB Live Happy Hour series into the summer on his YouTube channel each Monday, Wednesday and Friday at 6:00 p.m.
The girl & the fig is curating meals to complement several tasting flights throughout the valley. Enjoy wine tasting and a wine country style picnic on the newly renovated patio at Meadowcroft Wines. The winery is taking appointments now for their new, outdoor experience. Lake Sonoma Winery, on the west side of the plaza, is open with an enhanced tasting experience complemented by a Fried Chicken or French picnic for two. Viansa Sonoma is serving the girl & the fig picnic boxes in their beautiful outdoor seating area.
Gay Wine Weekend, the annual celebration of food, wine and LGBTQ+ culture, is going virtual. On July 17, 18 and 19 visitors can join an array of LGBTQ+ events in the Sonoma Valley. The annual event benefits Face to Face and the Sonoma County HIV/AIDS network. For the first time ever, Sonoma Valley Pride's banners adorn the town plaza for the month of June in celebration of Pride Month.
Valley of the Moon Music Festival has cancelled their traditional summer concert season, but that doesn’t stop the music. Artists will be offering a series of free online concerts starting in mid-June and running through the end of the year. This year’s series will feature local musicians playing the complete cycle of Beethoven’s 32 sonatas for piano. Every Saturday, starting on June 13, a new installment will be broadcast on KSVY 91.3 local radio and will be available for one week following the performance on the music festival’s website. The music festival will also feature an introduction and commentary but local musicians and scholars. The festival will also explore Beethoven’s smaller chamber works from July 18 to August 2.
The annual Sonoma International Film Festival moves from March to July this year and will feature more than 90 hand-selected features including independent films, documentaries, world cinema and shorts all shown at intimate venues just steps from the historic Sonoma plaza. Now in its 23rd year, the Festival is dedicated to promoting independent film and supporting filmmakers from around the world. The Festival is set for July 30 to August 2 and will take place virtually as well as in person. Tickets are available now. Starting Friday, July 3, the Film Festival’s summer Drive-In Movie series kicks off with Disney Pixar’s “UP” on a 42-foot screen at Sonoma Skypark. In addition to the movie, guests will enjoy live music, catered food, a raffle and more.
Sonoma County’s award-winning Transcendence Theater Company will perform their annual Broadway Under the Stars virtually this summer. The online event will be a compilation of recordings of the best of the last eight seasons of Broadway Under the Stars, including never before seen footage. The shows will be available free of charge, but donations are accepted. For more information on the shows, running July 10 to September 30, visit www.bestnightever.org.
Craving your favorite Sonoma Valley restaurant, but can’t make it the trip? The Sonoma Valley Visitors Bureau has launched a new section of their website to showcase recipes – for food and cocktails – from the area’s best restaurants. Home cooking is having a moment and now it is easier than ever to bring a taste of Sonoma Valley into your own kitchen. Check out dishes from favorite spots like the girl & the fig, Muscardini’s and Gaige House + Ryokan to get inspired to try the real thing on your next visit. Find a new favorite at Sonomavalley.com/recipes-from-sonoma-valley/
About Sonoma Valley, California
Located in the heart of Northern California wine country, Sonoma Valley is a 17-mile long area within Sonoma County, and which encompasses the city of Sonoma and the villages of Carneros, The Springs, Glen Ellen, and Kenwood. The birthplace of the state of California, as well as the state’s wine industry, the year-round destination is home to more than 100 premium wineries, 85 percent of which are family owned. For more information, visit SonomaValley.com, or follow us on Instagram at @sonoma_valley, and on Facebook at @ExperienceSonomaValley.
Note to editors: Photos of many of the businesses mentioned are available at https://sonomavalley.smugmug.com/. If you need something else, let us know and we will do our best to get it for you.