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“Cool retreat without the attitude” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Duchamp Hotel

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Duchamp Hotel
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421 Foss Street, Healdsburg, CA 95448   |  
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Hotel amenities
Ranked #2 of 8 Hotels in Healdsburg
los angeles
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
“Cool retreat without the attitude”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 16, 2006

The beautiful minimal decor of this hotel with it's occasional witty surrealist touches, really appealed to us. It was luxurious and modern without being fussy or ostentatious (if only more hotels had this sort of aesthetic, and not the ubiquitous twee Victoriana style which seems to dominate most of the little hotels in this country.) This small scale of this hotel, with only 6 'cottages', makes this hotel a very personal experience and at times it can even feel like one's own private holiday home!
The breakfast were simple and delicious serving a beautiful array of fresh fruit, granola, scrumptious pastries, with lovely gourmet touches, like a platter of goat cheese and dates.
Sid, the hotel manager, was incredibly friendly and warm, with lots of helpful tips on the local restaurant scene, wineries etc.
The only thing that disappointed me is that I wanted a totally peaceful get-away, but was surprised to find it quite noisy with the perpetual moan of the freeway traffic and nearby construction work - living in LA something I really wanted to escape from! It has to be remembered that this hotel, while a serene and peaceful little oasis in itself, is not a rural retreat - it is still in the heart of town (albeit a smallish town) and unfortunately the outlying traffic noises seem to be amplified here.
It is very similar in feel to our very favourite little desert getaway, Hope Springs in Desert Hot Springs, thoughwe found it to be significantly more expensive..

  • Liked — The minimal decor and exquisite aesthetics, the service, the attention to detail, the breakfast, the freedom to come and go as you please....
  • Disliked — Noisy traffic background noise, the rooms can get quite stuffy at night with little cross ventilation and very noisy air conditioners!
  • Tips/Secrets — Bring ear plugs for daytime snoozes!
  • Stayed October 2006
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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157 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    118
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See reviews for
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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (25)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Japanese first
  • Any
English first
New York City, New York
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 13, 2006

My wife, Laura, and I were in Sonoma for our honeymoon. Thankfully, we chose just the right place to stay. While the October weather was the worst in the valley's 10-year history (according to some winery folks) we still had a lovely time staying here.

The rooms? Impeccable. Each room, there are only six, is it's own little house/bungalow. This all makes for perfect privacy--especially since the hotel is just off the main thoroughfare and not on it (like Le Mars and Hotel Healdsburg).

The aesthetic of the place is artful—as the name is based on the artist Marcel Duchamp and his idea of “readymade” (that is, everyday things can be art, too; like the bottle-drying rack in a display case at the hotel entrance). The room was very clean and modern (without being cold). In fact, each room has a miniature "wood-burning" (gas) stove to warm up on cool nights. The bathroom was huge and well-equipped. The bed and linen were so extraordinary that we didn't want to get up in the morning—we only rose because the breakfast served in the "main house" was beautiful (you can even make a tray and bring it back to your room for more privacy).

What makes this place the most special is the service. Sid, the manager, was so attentive that he was more of a friend to us while we were there. He even called us before our stay to see if he could book any winery tours, spa services, or dinner reservations. He wrote us out directions, arranged for the best massage we've ever had, etc. He's just a very special part of the experience. I promised him I'd post some candid pics, too, because what I've seen on this site doesn't do the place justice.

Put simply—this hotel is an inviting work of art. So here's to you, Sid. Thanks again. We'll be back next year for our anniversary.

-Todd and Laura

  • Liked — the privacy and service
  • Disliked — that we had to leave
  • Tips/Secrets — call well in advance, take Sid up on arranging dinner reservations, massages, etc.
  • Stayed September 2006, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chicago,IL
1 review
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 6, 2006

This is a very unique hotel_ very small, friendly and all about personal service.
Private bungalows for a peaceful, romantic stay.
It is privacy with attention to details and service.

A special thanks goes to Sid, the managing director of the property. He is the person behind the excellent hospitality.

This is one of those places you want to stay a secret.


Ron Wu

  • Liked — small size and sevice
  • Disliked — All was puuuurfect
  • Tips/Secrets — Plan to stay extra days_ you will fall in love with the place
  • Stayed September 2006, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Macungie
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 29, 2006

My girlfriend and I, later during the vacation becoming my fiancee, recently stayed at the Duchamp. We had an absolutely fantastic time. Quaint 6 cottage property.

We had multiple flight delays on the way out and arrived 10 hrs late. We notified the staff of our delay and they were able to graciously help us with our arrival plans. Upon our arrival we we amazed with the property and our fabulous cottage. It was just what we needed after 20 hrs of travel!

The next morning we woke to an excellent breakfast. The coffee, blueberry scones, goat cheese and date, granola, etc were fabulous. We actually have tried to find product of similar quality back home and have not been able. Fresh squeezed OJ too.

The rooms are very modern. Polished concrete floors, plush white linens, oversize sofa, flat panel TV, full tile bathrooms with stainless countertops, large walk-in doorless shower, Aveda bath products. Everything had a place.

The staff were overall helpful. Some were friendly, and others just minded their own business and went about their work. Regarding some other reviews here on the site, this really is NOT a place for "needy" people or the high maintenance type. What you see is what you get. Basically, aesthetically pleasing grounds with a centralized pool, awesome modern well kept individual cottages, and the best continental breakfast ever! Quiet and unintrusive too.

We are already planning our next trip back to the Duchamp!!!

Regrading Healdsburg, we liked it a lot more than Sonoma and Napa. Less people. Better wineries, and most are free tastings.
Napa is about 1 hour drive.

You must try Cyrus while in town. The service and food are excellent, and it's on the corner next to Duchamp.

Thanks for a great stay.

  • Liked — Modern. Secluded feel.
  • Stayed May 2006, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
new york, ny
1 review
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 29, 2006

This hotel was spectacular! The furnishings, and the over-all style of the hotel, was very posh and hip. Not only was it a fun, interesting place to stay, but also the management was incredibly helpful, warm, and friendly. I highly recommend staying at this elegant, hip hotel.

Stayed June 2006
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
A TripAdvisor Member
1 of 5 stars Reviewed July 10, 2006

I'd like to start this by saying I stayed at the Duchamp twice before and very much enjoyed my stay. It's a beautiful space - great modern design.

However, I recently booked a room at the Duchamp for my 40th Birthday. I invited friends from across the country to join me and we ended up together at the Duchamp - in all 6 cottages.

Upon check in and quite randomly, we were told not to move any of the furniture because the owner "doesn't like that". Later that afternoon, I asked if they would leave 12 small plates and forks out on a cafe table so that after dinner I could serve cake to my friends also staying there. I was told no, that they only have so many plates and that the housekeeper would have to come in early to clean them and continental breakfast would be delayed. I told her, as it was our group staying there, we didn't mind if the breakfast was late or we would be happy to wash them ourselves. I asked if she would check with the owner and was told that the owner said no, but that I could walk down the street and buy paper plates if I liked.

This was not the first cold response me or my guests had been given.

The next day, while sitting by the pool, I outdoor noticed speakers outside the lobby. I asked the woman at the desk if she would mind turning on the speakers. She said she didn't know how. I asked if there was anyone else on property that perhaps did. She said no. I asked her if she would call the owner to ask, and without turning around from her chair, she said no - he's hosting a dinner party and I don't want to disturb him. It was 3:30 in the afternoon. All this transpired without her ever turning to face me.

Frustrated, I asked for further clarification. I explained that I suggested the Duchamp to my friends staying there - we were spending well over $6000 that weekend - and that I was embarrassed at the total lack of service and extremely unfriendly attitude we had received.

She told me they "didn't like groups" and that the owner teaches them to be "aloof" to guests - that if she were to be freindly, the requests would never end. She said several guests had already made requests of her and that she was busy returning emails and doing bookeeping work - we were imposing on her time. She went on to tell me that my friends rooms were filthy, which they were not, and that none of the guests bothered to buy any of the wine that the owner had "thoughtfully" put out for sale. I explained that we were all spending a considerable amount of money to be there and that the service did not match the expectation or the room rate. She told me that's what all the hotels cost and it didn't matter to her as they were booked for the rest of the season, anyway. She went on to say this is a part-time job for her and that she wasn't here to serve us.

The conversation devolved from there and I left the office in a state of utter shock.

I have to add that my friends are very thoughtful, well traveled and professional people- one is a food writer for a major newspaper, another heads a major arts organization, another runs a PR firm, another heads HR for a major technology company, etc - we were nothing but gracious guests.

I was shocked and embarrassed at the way we were treated. Recommending the Duchamp is a mistake I will not make again.

  • Stayed June 2006
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 53
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
, owner at Duchamp Hotel, responded to this review, July 18, 2006
Duchamp is an attractive and highly styled property offering overnight accomodations to people who cherish what we have to offer.We also are constantly approached to book our property for all sorts of special events. Most people offer to pay additional fees for such uses but some feel that renting all our cottages entitles them to use our propertty to any extent they like.Therefore we have long ago instituted a policy of not accepting reservations that book our facility for one parties use.If the reviewer would have been clear about his intention of having a Birthday celebration he never would have gotten a reservation. Instead all cottages were booked intentionally by individual parties without us having knowledge that this was one group.It is very unfortunate and regrettable that the encounters with our employee went to such an extent, but it is frustrating to be forced into a situation where you in essence have lost momentarily control over your property.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
A TripAdvisor Member
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 14, 2006

My wife and I stayed at the Duchamp for four nights on our honeymoon four years ago. If you are not comfortable with modern design, this place is probably not for you. But since we are, it was great. Cool furniture, plenty of space to spread out. Within walking distance of fantastic restaurants in Healdsburg. Minibar stocked to the gills in the room. However, we removed everything and returned it all to the front desk so we could put some of the delicious local wines, cheeses and meats in there.

My only complaint was what seemed to be a lumberyard next door that continually paged staff over the intercom during the day and making it a bit difficult to relax. Don't know if it is still there.

If you are interested in places like the Duchamp in Sonoma County, we also stayed at the Gage House Inn in Glen Ellen. A little more isolated, but still had cool modern design and access to good restaurants.

  • Stayed June 2003
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Duchamp Hotel

Address: 421 Foss Street, Healdsburg, CA 95448
Phone Number:
Location: United States > California > Sonoma County > Healdsburg
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 8 Hotels in Healdsburg
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Number of rooms: 6
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Boutique hotel in Healdsburg, separate cottages, pool, Free WiFi, Free Parking, near plaza. ... more   less 

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