Recently we got a very special visitor who came to celebrate Thanksgiving with us. This visitor has been to vacation spots all over the US on a tour that started in 2011 and is presently happening through Northern California. While this celebrity is known to many, it celebrates each of its visits with grace and dignity - and offers a seat to the weary. We were part of The Red Chair Travels, a very unique cross-country journey.
Both Peggy and I are big fans of Charles Phoenix, a gentleman who Peggy went to high school with who has become quite well known for celebrating Americana in so many forms. Phoenix is a character who has been on many national TV programs including ones with Martha Stewart, Conan O'Brian and others. He got his start finding some great slides at garage sales and has built a world of notoriety in celebration of Americana in many forms.
Want to know a lodging property insider’s secret? Most owners of lodging properties wouldn’t use the toilet paper they put in their rooms. Seriously. Isn’t that crappy? Sorry, I just couldn’t resist.
The reason I’m writing an entire blog about toilet paper is that this is a surprisingly important issue in the lodging business. But let’s talk about how toilet paper gets here first, okay?
In the interest of giving thanks, I have created this list of who’s open on Thanksgiving. Turns out there are some pretty good choices all over the price spectrum. Now I’ve only put the places I’ve either heard about or have enjoyed myself. At the bottom of the list are the ones I called that plan to be closed.
Sadly, some of the places I called didn’t answer their phones, have websites or any presence on the Internet or any way of knowing what’s going on. Those aren’t on the list at all. I also tried to think about more “general” dining places such as those that would offer something traditional rather than specialty places, so I didn’t really call the Mexican, Chinese or pizza restaurants. I also included no fast food nor chain places. Sorry, I’m just biased that way and it’s my list, after all.
This is the time of year that so many people look forward to as the string of holidays ensues - Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas and new year’s eve. What makes this time of year so special is that it represents milestones in the calendar that often mean that friends and family are due for a visit.
As the holiday season approaches the bleakness of winter is punctured by the warm glow of your favorite (we hope) people springing from Facebook and actually giving you status updates in person. It’s truly magical. And you don’t have to worry about the batteries on that darned not-so-smart phone just because you want to find out about Aunt Millie.
September 16, 1989 the Featherbed Railroad opened its doors officially for the first guests to stay. From stories told to me by the Bassignani brothers who helped build this place that was much later than originally anticipated for the first day, but converting a caboose into guest room is no easy task. But a quarter of a century later the vision of Len & Lorraine Bassignani and Kelly & Sherry McLean continues to be a great vacation destination for many hundreds of people every year.
The idea of converting a caboose from a utilitarian office at the back of a train to a fancy guest room might be crazy to some and I’ve heard that it took a bit of selling for the idea to catch on with Lorraine and Sherry, but catch on it did and Lorraine’s beautiful artwork still adorns the walls of several of our rooms. She truly jumped in with both feet and used her talents to create interior decor that is still impressing people to this day. Len’s handy work is still in evidence all over the property as well as he used some creative ingenuity to come up with a solution to problems that might have seemed overwhelming.
Lake County Pear harvest is wrapping up and the Lake County wine grape harvest is in full swing.
Enjoy this Lake County harvest-inspired recipe. And don't forget to check out our awesome Farmer's Markets and enjoy some of the best farm to table staples in the area!
It's not good to brag and we know that. But it is important to share facts and, the fact is, there is still a good amount of water in Clear Lake.
Yes, California is in a drought and it's pretty severe. We've also seen several of the lakes around here where you can stand in the deepest parts and not get your bikini bottoms wet. But our ancient beauty, Clear Lake, is soldiering on with enough water that several local friends have kept their sail boats in the drink and spend quite a bit of time enjoying the Lake.
Among Tony's passions in life are trains (no kidding), cars and beer. So when we got our alcohol permit in February Tony immediately set-up an account with the local beer distributor and got cases of what he refers to as the five crowns of Northern California beer. But anyone who likes interesting beer knows those already so they didn't really sell all that well.
So we had an idea - how about finding some of the most interesting beers around and stocking those? Stay tuned to this blog, if you like beer, and join us on a journey of some of the most interesting beers in the neighborhood which we will stock small quantities of for guests who share Tony's passion about beer. Of course this means Tony actually gets to write off beer tasting, and that's a wonderful thing.
Our first interesting beer is Anderson Valley's Boont Barl, the company's signature Boont Amber beer but aged for six months in Wild Turkey bourbon barrels.