550 Second Street West, Sonoma, California 95476
Located near the historic town square in chic Sonoma, California, you can find decent lodging for a fair price at the Best Western Sonoma Valley Inn. Because of the popularity and appeal of Sonoma and the entire wine country region, many hotels capitalize on their location and charge higher prices than necessary. Fortunately, I was able to find a suitable room for my family for a reasonable price just blocks away from Sonoma’s Main Square.
The Best Western Sonoma Valley Inn lobby is warm and inviting, complete with a crackling fire during the colder months. The welcoming theme of this hotel showcases rich woods and warm colors in the Craftsman/Mission style.
The hotel is shaped in a rectangle, with a large courtyard in the middle which features the pool, hot tub, and seating. There are 82 rooms within the hotel and rooms have entrances from the exterior. There are no inside hallways.
My check-in experience was prompt and pleasant. I found the Sonoma Valley Inn staff very helpful when necessary. You can find fruit/vegetable flavored water, hot coffee, and snacks near the lobby any time of day.
If you’re here to tour wine country, the staff here are very knowledge in wineries and tours. They can provide you with info, maps, discounts, and brochures for the area.
Like the lobby, the rooms of the Sonoma Valley Inn are warmly decorated with earth tones, dark woods, and burgundy accents. Our 2 queen guest room was a standard room (dubbed a “fireplace double queen with private patio or balcony”) that was on the main floor and featured a patio door that exited to the courtyard. In terms of comfort, the bed and the pillows were a bit on the soft side for me, but I did sleep fine while we stayed here.
A small sofa sat opposite the wood-burning fireplace, with a painting of old Sonoma City Hall. Each day, one Duraflame log is provided for your fireplace. You only get one log per day, otherwise you need to request more for a fee, from the front office. Plantation shutters on the sliding patio door provided privacy and blocked out light from the courtyard. There was also a heating/cooling unit at the far end of the room, next to the patio door.
Opposite the beds was a writing desk with lamp and outlets, a counter area with a few drawers, and wall-mounted television (with HBO). A mini-fridge was provided under the counter (a super convenient amenity for traveling families) and wi-fi was provided for free. A small coffee pot with coffee was located on the vanity next to the bathroom. We were also happy with the number of electrical and USB outlets in the room.
It was really nice to have a view of the nicely landscaped courtyard. Although we did not sit out and enjoy our patio, it was relatively private and had a small table with two chairs. Rooms on the second floor have balconies.
Near the entry to the room, there was a small closet. The closet contained a safe, iron, ironing board, and a hotel umbrella to use.
Our hotel room did seem to be on the darker side, with minimal natural and artificial light.
As a family of four with 2 teenagers, staying here for 5 days was a bit difficult. This was simply due to a lack of space. Four adults and four full sized suitcases have little free space in any hotel room, especially in older buildings with smaller rooms. However, for it’s age, the Best Western Sonoma Valley Inn was nicely decorated, clean, and suited our needs well.
The bathroom within our room was quite large, but the vanity, which was separate from the bathroom, was rather small. I found it a bit strange that the small coffee pot was placed on the vanity and not on the counter by the television. Nevertheless, I moved it since I needed more vanity counter space. Being a family of 4 with two teenage daughters, counter space is coveted in our rooms! A makeup mirror and mediocre hairdryer were provided next to the vanity.
One small problem we had involved the drain in our sink. It drained incredibly slowly. Being that it was the only sink in our room, it was rather frustrating. The water pressure in the shower wasn’t the greatest either but as California was battling forest fires at that time, I was a bit more patient, understanding, and conservative in my water consumption.
The bathroom was large with plenty of open space. The heated lamp on the ceiling was appreciated during the rainy, cold days of November. We had a tub and shower combo with a shower curtain in our bathroom. As of our stay, the hotel was providing small toiletry bottles.
Below are the Speedtest results of the hotel’s wifi during my stay. As you can see, the wifi results were quite good. We didn’t have any issues with coverage. Also pictured below is an explanation of the Speedtest results.
Within the courtyard of the hotel is the outdoor saltwater swimming pool, outdoor hot tub, and steam room. The outdoor hot tub is covered by a gazebo top and the steam room is nearby in a small room. There is also a fire pit and plenty of seating within the courtyard. The pool, hot tub, and steam room are open daily and year round, from 8:00 am – 10:00 pm.
A nice plus is that guests on the first floor have easy, quick access to the courtyard with patio doors.
Other hotel amenities include free parking, free guest laundry, a 24 hour business center, and free breakfast at the Krug Event Center (see below). In addition, ice and vending machines can be found near the stairwells. Despite not having a fitness facility on site, you can ask the front desk about passes to fitness and yoga classes.
Overall, I was quite pleased with the hotel grounds. Despite having exterior hallways to get to rooms, the walkways were well landscaped, maintaining privacy and protection from the elements. Annuals and perennials adorned the common areas and there were plenty of inviting places to sit and enjoy a bottle of Sonoma-made wine.
During one’s stay at the Best Western Sonoma Valley Inn, complimentary breakfast is served in the Altimira Room at the Krug Event Center. This building holds events, meetings, and conferences and is located at the back of the hotel, connected through the parking lot. In the mornings during our stay, there usually were signs around the hotel and courtyard that lead guests to breakfast at the Krug Center.
Breakfast options included hot items like oatmeal and scrambled eggs, traditional items like breads, fruit, cereal, and pastries, as well as pre-made smoothies. Juice, coffee, and milk was also provided and there was plenty of guest seating. Breakfast is offered daily from 7 am – 10 am.
Sonoma is a beautiful place to visit, both for the scenery and for the wine. (If you’re simply interested in touring non-wine sites, check out a previous post of mine.) You don’t have to drop a ton of money to get great accommodations. With the location of the Best Western Sonoma Valley Inn, you get a hotel in a fantastic location, with great service, a nice room, and free breakfast. What more can you ask for?
Note: I was not compensated in any way from Best Western or the Sonoma Valley Inn for this review.
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