Overall Impression : We cherished the Honor Mansion resort inn for a quiet, romantic or de-stressing get away. It offered delicious gourmet breakfasts, luxury amenities (including a private Jacuzzi, wet bar, and a modern fireplace) a sense of privacy and the comforts of home in a wine country setting. For those inclined to explore or be active there was a swimming pool, tennis, bocce, basketball and more. Nearby activities and attractions included fine dining, antiquing, golf, wine estate and bicycle tours and shopping.
Class Of Accommodation
Connectivity Only with dial up on our own notebook computer (complimentary for 15 minutes)
Handicapped Access very limited
Length Of Stay Two nights
Location in Healdsburg , California . It is 80 miles north of San Francisco and at the beginning of the Dry Creek, Alexander and Russian River valleys, in the Sonoma Valley
Owned And Managed Steve and Cathi Fowler
Pets Allowed No
Size 18 rooms, maximum of 26 guests on a 3 acre property
Year Opened-Renovated built in 1883, renovated in 1994
DÉCor The common areas of the Mansion were populated with handsome, new looking and comfortable furniture. There were some antiques and reproductions. “We’re all about function over form with practicality and comfort in mind,” says Cathi . Nothing on the property is so valuable as to be irreplaceable. Guests, Cathi says, often describe the inn as “very luxurious and romantic.”
Bathroom Our large and well designed bathroom featured a dark khaki color scheme. It had a tile floor, a shower and separate bath tub with a view of the fireplace. The toilet was in the corner to the right of the entrance. To the back of the bathroom, there was a large his and her sinks and mirror counter area.
Room Our new looking and spotless 650 square foot room, Vineyard IV, faced a vineyard and was the furthest from the Mansion. It was one of two rooms that made up the cottage. To get to our room, also known as “ Conforto ,” (which means comfort in Italian) we had to cross the parking lot and walk about one hundred feet. Just to the right of the entrance we found our comfy king four-poster bed with a wonderful firm mattress and a fluffy warm duvet, a night table on each side, a small Advance alarm clock, a full length mirror and love seat. To the left of the entrance there was a wet bar including a bowl shaped sink, and small refrigerator, and an adjacent closet. There was also a charming gas (timer activated) see-through fireplace that simultaneously warmed the bedroom and bathroom, a remote controlled TV, VCR, CD player (four CD’s for use during our stay) and dresser. Across the room from the TV there was a glass table, a lamp, a vase with a rose, two chairs and a half size mirror. Through the sliding glass doors there was an enclosed area with a small water feature, two lounge chairs and an inviting Jacuzzi hot tub we were too chicken to taken advantage of in the early December chill. The warm burgundy carpeting and wood accents including the bed frame of wood and metal, wood framed mirrors and matching design wooden dresser/entertainment center gave the room a relaxed feel.
Food Breakfast was served on beautifully set tables, including a silver service and Noritake china, in the main house. Among the goodies we were served for breakfast were coffee and herbal tea, fresh juice, a delicious soufflé, poached sliced pears drizzled in espresso, scones, yummy Mexican crepes, fresh fruit, and yogurt.
In-room: European bed linens, down comforters and feather beds, Egyptian cotton towels, cotton bathrobes for the Jacuzzi and swimming poor area, micro fiber robes for use inside the room, slippers, a hair dryer, make-up mirror, iron and ironing board, telephone/fax modem, period antiques, fresh flowers, two umbrellas, iron and ironing board in the closet, Cali toiletries including hand milled olive soap, shampoo, conditioner, bath salts and body lotion, cotton swabs, small paper cups, sherry, bottled water, coffee and tea service.
In-house: common areas in the main house, full turndown service, parlor games available for guest use, and gifts for sale. There was a complimentary warm beverage delivered to our room early in the morning before breakfast. In the early evening there were local wines and snacks, evening sherry and complimentary cookies in the main house, where there was also a self service coffee and cappuccino machine available 24 hours a day.
Facilities Swimming pool, tournament bocce ball court, 2,000 square-foot six-hole PGA (Professional Golf Association) designed putting green, quarter mile jogging track around the Mansion, regulation croquet lawn, hartru tennis court, half court basketball, 100-year old magnolia, oak and sequoia trees, gardens, six fountains, two outdoor spa pavilions (for massages), koi fish pond, and rose and herb gardens.
Pool there was a lap pool though it was too cold when we stayed there to go in the water
we especially liked the koi pond. The Mansion, designed mainly for adult guests, was built in the Italianate Victorian style by a wealthy cattle rancher and amateur botanist. It is named for the Honor family, who owned it for more than 100 years. Steve, a former food industry executive and Cathi , who used to run a decorating business, have imbued the Mansion with their personal touches and comfort oriented hosting philosophy.
No smoking or lit candles were allowed in the rooms; guests were invited to smoke outdoors in a designated area. It was an AAA (American Automobile Association) Four Diamond Award property when we were there. Though we didn’t have an opportunity to try them, our Honor Mansion brochure indicated the Inn ’s staff were able to coordinate in-room massages, flower delivery and other services for guests.
Minimum stays for weekends and holidays applied. Guests were required to pay for their accommodations two weeks in advance.
Check-In-Check-Out Process Ease
Check-in was at 4 p.m. and check out at 11 a.m.
Date Of Review December 2004
ReviewersArticle and Copyrighted Photos by Elena del Valle
Would You Stay There Again? Yes