July 27, 2009

Calistoga: Solage Calistoga Resort; hotel review + restaurant review

Wine Country

Solage Calistoga Resort  755 Silverado Trail, in Calistoga, (866) 942-7442, (707) 226-0800. 89 rooms. 3 pools; 2 hot tubs; fitness room; full-service spa. Restaurant; room service. Pets ok.

Guest rooms at this low-key luxury resort feature open floor plans, contemporary decor, and cave-like stone showers with pebble floors. Special touches include Italian linens, down bedding, and complimentary cruiser bicycles parked by each unit’s door for guests to use in exploring the property and town. All units have private or semi-private courtyards, and some suites also have private hot tubs. The heart of the resort is the bath house, spa, and fitness center (must be age 18+). The bath house features a large 100-degree geothermal mineral pool, plus private swimsuit-optional areas for men and women that each hold a hot tub with presssure-point jets strong enough to nearly topple an adult, a deep cold-water plunge pool, and a really hot eucalyptus steam room. This area also offers the property’s signature Mud Bar, where guests sidle up to a bar and select their fragrance to be mixed by a “mud-tender” with nutrient-rich local volcanic mud, then retire to a room to slather the made-to-order concoction onto their own body, then move on to a “mud lounge” or patio to bake, then on to a soaking tub filled with mineral water, and finally finish it off swathed in warm wraps in a sound chair designed to allow floating into a stress-free state of harmonic balance. The spa provides a refreshing outdoor waiting/resting area, and treatments include trendy Kate Somerville facials for both men and women. An adult pool (age 13+) and an area for families with children under 13--with a large pool, hot tub, and play area—are side by side. They use a salt-water, ozone-based filtration system. All water on the property is geothermally heated. Calistoga Water is bottled right next door and available throughout the resort.

The casual bar and Solbar restaurant (B-L-D daily; $$-$$$.) opens onto a large outdoor terrace with a fire pit/water fountain, bocce courts and views of the Palisades Mountains. The bar serves creative cocktails and has the Napa Valley's largest champagne list. The spacious one-room restaurant and bar boast beautiful beams and natural-wood accents. A smallish eclectic menu offeris comfort food as and well as health-minded cuisine. The winner of local awards and a Michelin star, the restaurant showcases seasonal organic produce from nearby surrounding farms and makes its own delicious butter and biscuits. A large pool-view terrace with a striking fire pit/water fountain provides alfresco dining nearly 10 months of the year. The popular indoor-outdoor bar has Napa Valley’s largest champagne list and draws locals as well as hotel guests.

More things to do in Calistoga.

More things to do in the Wine Country.

More ideas for exploring Northern California.

image copyright 2009 Carole Terwilliger Meyers

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