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The Inn at Occidental: A Redwood Forest Wine Country Getaway

The Inn at Occidental is a redwood forest wine country getaway.

Sit back and relax in a redwood forest within the heart of Wine Country at The Inn at Occidental. The Inn offers the best of several worlds: the homely warmth of a small country inn, furnished with museum quality art and antique collections; a sense of peaceful intimacy paired with the optional camaraderie of fellow travelers; and finally, a feeling of “getting away from it all” while still being within minutes of wineries, ocean beaches, river adventures, and stunning western Sonoma county hiking trails … not to mention also being within a short stroll of four restaurants and a dozen downtown shops.

This inn was built in 1876 and is one of the oldest surviving residential structures in the historic logging town of Occidental. A few decades into the 20th century it became a popular and relatively genteel destination for San Franciscans who wanted to escape the noise of the city while surrounding themselves with the deep quiet and stunning beauty of redwoods.

And so it is today. The Inn at Occidental offers visitors a choice of 16 rooms and a private cottage, each decorated masterfully with stunning examples of folk art, original contemporary art, and a few beautifully crafted antiques. It’s really worth investigating the photos of the rooms, because each is decidedly different from the others, not only in decor but amenities: choose a room with a fireplace, private patio, or a secluded grotto with hot tub.

And don’t forget your best friend: this inn has wonderful accommodations for your dog — complete with recommendations for the best local dog-friendly restaurants and wineries, dog parks, and walks.

And while there’s a bounty of things to do in the area, it’s also worth taking the time to just slow down and relax here. Enjoy an afternoon reception featuring local wines to be sipped at your leisure on a verandah, overlooking gardens and forest. Pick up a cup of coffee or tea and a few homemade cookies for a late night snack by your fireplace. Book an in-room massage.

And of course, leave time for the gourmet breakfast that’s served by a stone fireplace in the dining room. While I was visiting, they offered a main dish of cinnamon French toast with salted caramel sauce and chicken apple sausage. In addition, you can always take advantage of the buffet, featuring creamy yogurt, fresh fruit, warm-from-the-oven scones, juices, and their house-made granola that is so good that they sell it packaged to go. And as a side note, they will happily adjust their main dish menu to suit your dietary restrictions.

The gardens alone are worth a visit, with multi-seasonal blooms surrounding a classic fountain. This must be why the inn has garnered the notice of travel writers - it was voted one of the “Best B&B’s in the West” by AAA’s Via Magazine, among the “Best Lodging” by Sunset Magazine, and one of the “Top 100 Inns in the World” by Conde Nast Traveler.

Not surprisingly, It was also given a “4 out of 4” rating locally as one of the Best Places To Kiss in Sonoma County. For information or to make reservations, call 1-800-522-6324 or visit www.innatoccidental.com

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