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Month: September 2023

Hotel Review: ALiLa Napa Valley

Hotel Review

ALiLa Napa Valley

A Luxury Adults Only Hotel in Napa Valley
MARIA DIEGO

Located just minutes from downtown St. Helena in the heart of Napa Valley, ALiLa Napa Valley is the perfect base for a romantic getaway or vacation with friends to explore California Wine Country. Originally a physician’s home built in 1905, the historical building is now known as Acacia House, and welcomes you in for a delicious cocktail and mouthwatering meal, both made with fresh local ingredients and served up by their expert mixologists and chefs. The historical “gateway” into the property is a warm juxtaposition next to the modernized wings where the rooms and suites are located.

While there are many fantastic hotels and resorts to choose from in Napa and Sonoma Valley, the location of ALiLa Napa Valley make it ideal for daily outings to the local wineries, and the warm and friendly staff make you feel like you’re coming home after each day of adventure.

Perfect For: Honeymoons | Weddings | Bachelorette Groups and Parties | Bachelor Parties | Romantic Getaways | Incentive Trips | Corporate Groups | Adults Only Groups | Friend Getaways | Corporate Meetings | Spa Seekers | Foodies

ALiLa Napa Valley Location: Located in the heart of St. Helena, ALiLa Napa Valley is also in the center of Napa Valley.

Getting There: The nearest airport, Santa Rosa Airport (STS) is just 17 miles from ALiLa Napa Valley, or San Francisco Airport (SFO) is just over 2 hours. Other nearby airports include Sacramento (SMF) or Oakland (OAK).

  • 38.5093871,-122.478475

    ALiLa Napa Valley

  • 37.622451999999996,-122.38398938548363

    San Fransisco International Airport

Alila Napa Vibe

Vibe: Because ALiLa Napa Valley is adults-only, the atmosphere lends itself to being more peaceful and zen-like. The staff is approachable and friendly, and I found strangers gathering in Acacia House, sharing stories of winery visits and restaurant dishes before or after dinner. The property is small and intimate, but the rooms themselves are spacious and offer complete privacy. Whether you’re the type of person who likes to mix and mingle with fellow travelers, or keep to yourself, I think you can accomplish both things here at ALiLa Napa Valley. It is less spread out than other nearby properties like Auberge Stanley Ranch or Carneros Resort and Spa, but the intimacy delivers a touch more charm in my opinion.

While Napa is packed with more bars and restaurants, St. Helena is the best place for wine enthusiasts looking for a more elevated experience. ALiLa Napa Valley just happens to be the best hotel in St. Helena!

Accomodations: The room categories for the 64 luxury hotel rooms and suites at ALiLa Napa Valley are quite straight forward and easy to understand. The Historic Farmhouse Rooms are the entry level rooms located on the second floor in the Acacia House, and I do not recommend booking, unless you’re looking for a more B&B-style experience. From there, rooms move to either the estate view wing or the vineyard view wing, and offer only king beds or queen/queen bed options. While both buildings offer pretty views, if I’m going to be in Napa Valley, I want to be looking out over an expansive vineyard. All rooms offer floor-to-ceiling windows and sliding glass doors, making the most of this gorgeous view with a mountain in the backdrop. Depending on whether you want a full separate living room, or if you’re okay with just a bedroom, should determine whether you’ll require a room or suite. Popular with small groups or gatherings is the Corner King Vineyard View with Balcony. There are only a few of these, and with a large wraparound balcony, there is ample space to order hors d’oeuvres and bottles of wine to enjoy the view overlooking the pool area and vineyard either pre- or post-activities. The largest room category is the Vineyard View Suite, featuring a king bedroom with separate living room and approximately 1,480 square feet of space. When you book your stay with Diego Travel, as a Hyatt Privé member, you will receive an upgrade at time of booking along with other Hyatt Privé amenities like breakfast included and a resort credit.

Alila Napa Bathroom
Alila Napa Terrace
Bouchon

Food & Beverage: Perhaps one of the best things about ALiLa Napa Valley are the foodie options in and around this hotel. Acacia House serves breakfast, lunch and dinner, and their award-winning mixologist serves up pairings for each meal. With dishes such as Golden Saffron Risotto & Brentwood Corn or the Iberico Pork Schnitzel with crème fraiche and caviar, the dishes are unique but maintain simplicity with their locally-sourced ingredients. The Lounge is the newly opened outdoor social bar, which offers cocktails, wine and light bites with a seasonal menu. Beyond the offerings at ALiLa Napa Valley, you are in close proximity to famous staples located in the nearby towns of Yountville and Calistoga. From The French Laundry, Bouchon Bistro, Ad Hoc in Yountville to Press, Farmstead at Long Meadow Ranch, to the casual Gott’s Roadside in St. Helena, eating and drinking will be at the forefront of your trip. The concierge team at ALiLa Napa Valley does an excellent job of curating a program for you that includes all the best spots for both food and wineries, but also exploration, shopping and adventures along the way. While the wine train is a popular way to see wine country, I prefer to send my clients with a private driver, so that they can go at their own pace. However, we can tailor your trip to include whatever you want!

Wellness/SPA: The wellness program and Spa at ALiLa Napa Valley was one of my favorite aspects of the hotel. Experiences range from forest bathing at the nearby redwood forest national park to sound bath healing using a guided meditation through use of crystal sound bowls. They also offer yoga, pilates, sip-and-paint classes, astrology readings and of course exceptional spa treatments. We did a Scents of the Valley journey, where a local perfumer led us through an hour-long educational and interactive scent experience, and we got to go home with our own creations, made with the local flora of labdanum, lavender, pink peppercorn and fir. I highly recommend this class for groups of girlfriends who are wanting some fun downtime together as a pre- or post-activity to spa treatments.

Alila Napa Spa

St Helena

Shopping: Long considered Napa Valley’s Main Street, downtown St. Helena has a variety of charming shops, galleries and can’t-miss food stops like Model Bakery, which has been in its location since 1908 and whipping up the perfect pastries in their original ovens since the 1920s. Oprah added their Morning Glory English muffins to her Favorite Things List back in 2016, and the bakery has had a line out the door ever since. If you’ll need new pants following your growing waistline post-bakery, you can stop into a personal favorite, elysewalker  for a wardrobe chic enough for the most discerning Napa wineries and galleries.

BottleRock Napa Valley is another favorite attraction for the area. This annual celebration of the best music, wine and food happens at the end of May, but you’ll need to plan ahead and hotels and tickets sell out.

The Culinary Institute of America at Greystone  is located less than 1 mile from ALiLa Napa valley and is home to multiple award-winning restaurants that are open to the public, including Gatehouse Restaurant, The Bakery Café, and the Greystone Wine Bar & Herb Terrace.

Wine Tasting: Within 20 minutes of ALiLa Napa Valley, there are 40 different wineries that range from every type of wine imaginable. These are all the best wineries of Napa Valley. I am not kidding when I say that ALiLa Napa Valley is ideally located for wine tasting. When you work with Diego Travel, we customize your itinerary depending on the types of wines you like and your budget. Whether you’re looking for big name brands or small family-owned and operated homestead wineries, we will point you in the right direction.

Outdoor Activities: Worth mentioning are the numerous outdoor activities there are to do in and around St. Helena in Napa Valley. From golfing, kayaking, hot air balloon rides, cycling and the Napa wine train, we can customize an itinerary for you that includes a little of everything and makes the most of your time in Napa Valley. No two trips are ever created the same for our clients. Looking to propose or renew your vows on this romantic getaway? We work with partners in Napa Valley to make these experiences one-of-a-kind.

What  Sets  It  Apart: Aside from the ideal location to the best wineries and restaurants, what sets ALiLa Napa Valley apart from other resorts and hotels in Napa Valley is the attention to detail and care that the staff pours into your stay. From personalized welcome amenities to the genuine friendships you’ll form while on property, I felt truly looked after at ALiLa Napa Valley in comparison to some other Napa properties.

ALiLa Napa Valley is not a sprawling resort and does not have many of the amenities that other Napa Valley hotels might have, but the comfortable and sleekly decorated rooms make for the perfect place to lay your head at night after full days of Napa activities. If you’re looking for a boutique property in the heart of it all, I truly think there is no better place.

Alila Napa
Alila Napa Pool

How Much Does it Cost? ALiLa Napa Valley ranges from around $900 for an entry level room in low season to around $3,500 for a top suite in high season.

Diego Travel Loves: Because our clients get Hyatt Privé perks, I love that the ALiLa Napa Valley team always takes care of my clients like they are family. I know when I send someone there, they’ll collaborate on the itinerary with me as if they were planning their own weekend there for the first time, highlighting their favorite spots and insider tips throughout my clients’ stays.

What we love about the Bel-Air
Extras you get booking with Diego Travel at Hotel Bel-Air

Extras You’ll Get with Diego Travel:

  • Hyatt Privé Exclusive Offers
  • $100 USD Hotel Credit
  • Room Upgrade
  • Breakfast for Two
  • Welcome Amenity
  • Early Check-In/Late Check-Out
  • Connecting Rooms

Insider Tips:

Don’t miss the opportunity for a cocktail-making class, which we can set up with a mixologist during your dinner at Acacia House. We made lavender and rosemary cocktails using fresh, local herbs, and it was one of many highlights during our stay.

When planning a group trip, we can assist you with room placement, to ensure rooms are located nearby to one another. As there are separate buildings, you’ll definitely want to consult with us to ensure proximity, as placement can be key here.

Finally, don’t miss your VIP access to Beringer Vineyards, adjacent to the property and California’s oldest operating winery. We loved B Cellars too, with wine tastings paired with B bites. 


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MULTI-GENERATIONAL GETAWAYS: FAMILY-FRIENDLY TRAVEL DESTINATIONS

THE SCOUT GUIDE
September 14, 2023

In search of an award-winning spa for your aunt, a lovely shaded cabana for Grandpa, and an epic horseback riding experience for the kiddos, all in one place? If that seems like a daunting task, you’re not alone. We asked five Scouted travel experts for their top picks for luxury vacation destinations, both domestic and abroad, that prove multigenerational travel can be a memorable—and dare we say—a bonding experience for all parties involved. It’s time to pack those bags.

“One of my favorite places for multigenerational families who may have some non-skiers in the group is St. Moritz, Switzerland. Due to its elevation, it has the longest ski season in the Swiss Alps, yet because it’s a wide valley, it also gets more sunshine than any other ski destination in Switzerland. While there are many great five-star resorts to choose from, we love Badrutt’s Palace for large families, especially over holidays. For New Year’s Eve festivities, a whopping quarter million dollars is spent on the decor alone. Arriving at St. Moritz is an experience in and of itself. Whether you make your way via the Glacier Express train or by private plane, Badrutt’s Palace will pick you up in a car from their complimentary Rolls Royce fleet to transport you like royalty to your accommodations. For a unique experience, don’t miss St. Moritz’ White Turf races. Nowhere else in the world has horse polo and racing on a frozen lake. Night skiing is another unique experience you won’t want to miss. Kids and grandparents can ice skate, go tobogganing, or take horse-drawn carriage rides through the quaint town. Our kids love pizza at Chesa Veglia, an old farmhouse built in 1650 and a St. Moritz staple. For an apres ski experience like no other, visit Paradiso, where they often have designer pop-ups with Gucci or Louis Vuitton. There is no shortage of Michelin experiences in St. Moritz either, and you’ll find premiere shopping for those looking for something to do while the rest are skiing their hearts out down the Swiss Alps.” 

– Maria Diego, founder of Diego Travel in San Diego, California

Read the Scout Guide

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