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Fodor's Expert Review Bardessono

6526 Yount St., Yountville, California 94599, USA See on Map Fodor's Choice

Tranquility and luxury with a low carbon footprint are among the goals of this ultragreen wood, steel, and glass resortlike property in downtown Yountville, but there's nothing spartan about its accommodations, arranged around four landscaped courtyards. Service is smooth, from the valet who takes your car to the folks who staff the rooftop lap pool.


Spacious rooms with private courtyards or balconies have high-thread-count organic bedding, gas fireplaces, and sleeper sofas. Art photographs hang on the walls. All rooms come equipped with the high-tech touches you'd expect of a contemporary upscale hotel—virtual surround speaker systems, flat-screen TVs, and cordless phones—and a few you might not, such as front doors you can open using your smartphone, and motion sensors that detect when you're gone and adjust the external blinds for energy efficiency.

YOU SHOULD KNOW Rooms on the Yount Street side of the property pick up a little traffic noise; for a quieter experience, ask for a room toward the back.


Huge (200-square-foot) bathrooms with walnut floors contain fancy spa tubs and separate showers that in some rooms have steam capability. About half the rooms have outdoor showers as well. Concealed within the bathroom cabinets is a spa table for in-room treatments from the B Spa Therapy Center.


A plaque at the entrance honors Bardessono's LEED Platinum status for its eco-friendly practices, which include the use of recycled materials—tufa from the site, a former farm, for example, and redwood wine-barrel staves—and energy-saving heating and cooling techniques. The highly professional front-desk staffers swiftly check guests in, offering wine, tea, or water. A member of the capable concierge team occupies a nearby alcove, ready to help with winery or restaurant reservations.


Stairs and an elevator lead up from the interior courtyard behind the lobby to the 75-foot-long rooftop lap pool and its adjacent hot tub. Guests relaxing in cabanas or lounge chairs facing west have striking views (especially at sunset) of the nearby Mayacamas Mountains; smaller hills near the Napa River hover in the opposite direction and beyond them the Vaca Range. The pool area is meticulously maintained; there's bar service in-season.


Many patrons at the on-site B Spa Therapy Center are hotel guests who take their treatments in their rooms' large, customized bathrooms—all of them with concealed massage tables—but the main facility is open to guests and nonguests. The two-hour Yountville Signature treatment, which can be enjoyed in-room or at the spa, begins with a shea-butter sugar scrub, followed by a Chardonnay grape-seed oil massage. In addition to massages, the services include facials.


The fitness room has treadmills, recumbent bicycles, and other machines, along with free weights. It has a view of the hotel's organic culinary garden.


Some of the ingredients used at the hotel's farm-to-table Modern American restaurant, Lucy, are grown in the culinary garden. Breakfast, lunch, and dinner are served, along with a happy-hour bar plates. The chefs even whip up "canine delectables" for guests traveling with their pets.


Bartenders at Lucy's swank but inviting bar craft seasonal cocktails based partly on what's available in the garden. If money's no object, have a snifter or two of Louis XIII cognac at $380 an ounce—the bottle's a work of art in itself. Whatever you choose—the "I Love Lucy" signature cocktails include the Lucy Does the Tango, made with Tito's Vodka, St. Germain, lime, and chili bitters—you can enjoy your drink indoors on plush sofas and chairs or outdoors on fashionable Dedon patio furniture in view of the reflecting pond.


Getting Around

Yountville lies just east of Highway 29 about 9 miles north of the town of Napa. Most patrons drive to the hotel, which is in the middle of downtown Yountville no more than a 10-minute walk to shops, restaurants, and tasting rooms along Washington Street, the main drag. If this is too long of a stroll, ask at the front desk about how to catch the motorized Yountville Trolley, which circles through town and up to Domaine Chandon winery providing door-to-door service. Bikes for guest use are available across from the hotel's entrance.


For three takes on French, head to chef Thomas Keller's famous The French Laundry (7-minute walk) for intricate preparations and exquisite wine pairings or his Bouchon Bistro (2-minute walk) for California-style bistro favorites; Bistro Jeanty (3-minute walk) does the Parisian classics. The more casual Protéa (4-minute walk) serves Latin American–inspired dishes (the open-air rooftop is a delight in good weather), and Southside Yountville (5-minute walk) dishes up breakfast and lunch until 3, with chilaquiles and biscuits and gravy among the early-morning faves and the Southside Protein Bowl (charred jalapeño hummus, poached egg, and arugula) capturing attention later on.


Several restaurants that are also good stops for a meal have noteworthy bars. R+D Kitchen (11-minute walk) is a good spot for craft cocktails, especially when enjoyed on the large outdoor patio, as is nearby Redd Wood (10-minute walk), where the Mad (Moscow) Mule is the most popular drink. The bartenders at the latter's sister property Redd (5-minute walk) do well by Manhattans, martinis, and other traditional libations. If you like Negronis, check out the Negroni bar at Ciccio (10-minute walk), then see how the ones at Bottega (3-minute walk) compare.


Few places in the Napa Valley match Bardessono for serenity, green chic, and contemporary style, and with its landscaping, organic garden, and perimeter vineyards the place feels simultaneously rustic and sophisticated. Guests enthuse about the royal treatment they receive here, and some of the Wine Country's best cuisine can be had within a 10-minute walk or less.


Green, Service
62 rooms
Breakfast Yes
Lunch Yes
Dinner Yes
Bar Yes
Cafe Yes
Room Service Yes
Gym, Pool
Valet Parking


Phones: 707-204–6000

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