We are still euphoric three weeks after our magical one-night stay at Erna’s enchanted estate, which was memorable from start to finish. I had the good fortune to read about Chateau du Sureau in the book "1,000 Places to See Before You Die" while planning a fall trip to Yosemite. The Ahwahnee was our first choice for a splurge since it’s so well known. However, the more I read about it on Trip Advisor, the more I realized I didn’t want to stay in such a large, old, expensive lodge. Chateau du Sureau, though 16 miles outside the park, seemed like a perfect treat en route to Yosemite Valley for another three nights. (We quickly came back to Earth upon arrival at Yosemite Lodge!)
The Chateau is unique, a gable-roofed European castle that emerged from Erna’s sweet childhood memories and was built in 1991 with her true grit. Her villa meshes beautifully with her renowned restaurant, Erna’s Elderberry House, and Spa Sureau. Thus, guests are swaddled in luxury from head to toe. Friendly, attentive staff members are attuned to their guests’ every need. Rooms are large, immaculate and inviting, with large comfy beds, a writing desk, fireplace and a two-room bath loaded with fresh towels, bath salts, numerous emollients and other luxurious pleasures. Bottled water, cookies, truffles and wine are tucked around the room or make an appearance while you’re out. The attention to detail is awesome, down to your names being printed on the dinner menu. (Because Erna is in charge, the food is exceptional -- no surprise.) When you want to celebrate a special occasion, see how “the other half” lives and feel like a genuine VIP or King/Queen for a Stay, make a reservation at Chateau du Sureau. You’ll never forget it.