Who we are
45 and 50 couple about to go to Napa for our second visit. Have 3 "winery" days plus a couple of work days.Trip took place-end Sept/beg oct 2009. Fairly traveled but budget conscious. Enjoy beer and wine. Our “maintenance” white is Meridien Chardonnay and our “maintenance” red is Blackstone Merlot, both under $10. Treat ourselves to wines $10-$20 for fun on occasion and consider $20+ a splurge. Enjoy Chards, Merlot, and Zinfandels, lighter Cabs and occasional Pinot Grigio/Sauvignon Blanc esp. with spicy foods, pizza, or eating al fresco..
Before We Left
Went to the dollar store. Bought two amazingly-decent wine glasses to have in the room. Also packed a couple of sharp knives for cutting bread/cheese/tomato etc; a spreader knife (for the pesto and hummus we knew we’d be buying at the first chance), one of the bendy, thin chopping boards from the house to use in the room, a few sturdy paper plates, a few Tupperware containers for storing leftovers, a selection of baggies, and some basic cutlery including a corkscrew just in case. We also packed our neoprene wine travel bags for packing any bottles we bought. From past experience, we just knew that after being out all day tasting, the last thing we wanted to do when we got back to the room at night was go out again. In-room “tapas” with a bottle of the wine we bought is so much more fun…and safe.
Where we stayed
Used points and stayed at Marriott’s Fairfield Inn & Suites in Fairfield, CA southeast of Napa on Pittman Road. Flight arrived San Francisco 2pm. Only one hour drive to hotel. (This compared to the almost 2 hour drive we had on a previous visit when we stayed in Fairfield Inn & Suites in Sebastopol northwest of Sonoma.) We had originally planned to stay in another Marriott property--the Springhill Suites Napa at the junction of the 12/29 south of the downtown. We passed this hotel on our drive into Napa later and when we saw how “out on its own” it was, we were glad we stayed at the Fairfield even though this meant adding 10 minutes to the drive in. We liked that the Fairfield Inn was next door to 2 pizza restaurants, a Del Taco, 2 mins drive to a Starbucks, and just the opposite side of Interstate 80 to a shopping area with a Costco. All that within about 5 mins—so convenient—so to us, the Fairfield Inn with all these shops close by was worth the extra 10 mins drive compared to the Springhill Suites Napa South. Also there was a BevMo wine discount store in Fairfield which is always worth a stop for great prices. Only drawback might be high traffic volume if you were trying to get into Napa at weekday rush hour, also traffic can be heavy on busy wine weekends as there is only one road that connects the I-80 over to Napa / Silverado Trail etc. On busy wine weekends though, you'll encounter traffic everywhere though.
We had the standard King. The room had separate small sitting area with office desk/chair, a decent-sized oval coffee table in front of a small sofa (don't think this was a sofabed), a second TV, fridge, microwave, etc. No wine glasses in the room (luckily we had our own) and the only cutlery available was plastic from the breakfast bar. Borrowed a few small sturdy paper bowls from the breakfast bar to use at night for our in-room tapas-type meals as well as a few cartons of milk for our coffee to use instead of packet creamer. The room coffee mugs were tiny--like little training mugs; we ended up using the paper cups. Great hot/cold breakfast--bagels, muffins, fruit, cartons of various milk types, box cereals plus hot foods. Gym was small but adequate—one each treadmill/elliptical/bike. Everything was clean and comfy. Bathroom hairdryer was fairly good--wall-mounted; only a 1600 speed though.
Add onto that free parking, free internet, and again that great breakfast generously served until 10am, and we would stay here again without question--fantastic.
There's more info about what we did on "Napa for the budget-conscious who still like good wine" on my traveler review.
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- Also Known As:
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- Fairfield Inn & Suites Fairfield Napa Valley Area Hotel Fairfield
- Fairfield Inn Fairfield
- Fairfield Fairfield Inn