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Auberge du Soleil, Rutherford 

180 Rutherford Hill Road
Rutherford , California
Tel: 800 348 5406 (toll-free)
Tel: 707 963 1211
view web site ›'s insider take:

One of the best-known and best-loved hotels in Napa Valley, Auberge du Soleil has turned its 33-acre hillside property into an outdoor sculpture gallery amid acres of olive groves. If that sounds over-the-top romantic, trust that the design was meant to be exactly that. Every light is on a dimmer; fireplaces burn wood, not gas; and half a dozen strategically placed votive candles let you set the mood come nightfall. The property celebrated its 20th birthday in 2005 with a total renovation, including a restyled pool deck bracketed by high-backed sofas that are ideal for lounging in the California sun. The 52 rooms in both a main house and cottages are inspired by the Côte d'Azur, with terra-cotta and orange accents, tiled floors, limestone countertops, and matelassé bedcovers. Two spacious maisons feature outdoor hot tubs on private patios and steam showers for two. Every room has a full wet bar, complete with top-shelf liquor and homemade mixers; bathrooms are stocked with everything from shaving supplies to Dr. Hauschka bath oils and an "intimacy kit." Regional ingredients—grapes, herbs, flowers, olive oil, and mud—are used in the signature treatments of the guests-only spa (some, such as lemon verbena, come from the hotel's herb garden).

From the readers of Condé Nast Traveler:
This resort consists of a series of cottages overlooking the vine-studded valley. Large bathrooms have skylights and flat-screen TVs that can be watched from soaking tubs—"it's such a guilty delight!" The Restaurant and Bistro & Bar serve cuisine that mines regional produce and has, unsurprisingly, "a remarkably long wine list." Since 2010, the terrace has heaters to enable dining under the stars even on chilly evenings.

(50 rooms)
—2011 Gold List
Overall Score: 94.5
  • Design: 96.1
  • Food: 95.6
  • Location: 92.6
  • Rooms: 94.0
  • Service: 94.1

Also appeared in the Gold List in 2010, 2009, 2008, 2007, 2006, 2005

Amenities: Pool, Spa

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