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“Perfection in Sonoma on a grand European scale”

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Hotel Les Mars, Relais & Chateaux
Ranked #4 of 9 Hotels in Healdsburg
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed August 23, 2011

While looking for hotels in the Sonoma area, Les Mars (Healdsburg) caught my attention. The hotel website conveyed a European charm and elegance rarely found in the United States. My first email was answered quickly and courteously by Ramon Serrano, the General Manager. The room was booked and a wonderful experience followed. The hotel is lovely and tucked on a quiet street in the charming town of Healdsburg. The staff was among the best mannered, professional and affable bunch I have ever encountered. The hotel is simply gorgeous with attention to detail and in perfect taste at every turn. Our room had double height ceilings, French windows, a fireplace and a four poster bed. I loved the Irish linens which made for a great night's sleep and a relaxing morning. In the early evening, we went to the hotel wine tasting and chatted with other guests (all lovely) and then off to dinner around the corner at Spoon. Back at the hotel we spent the rest of the evening enjoying the room before retiring. In the morning, breakfast was served and it was just perfect. Fresh squeezed grapefruit juice, berries, pastries, oatmeal and a fresh pot of coffee. When we requested more coffee, it arrived a few moments later.
So in short, an amazing stay and I would highly recommend Les Mars. After Sonoma, we headed to Carmel and unfortunately could not get a room at their sister property, L'Auberge Carmel, but will make a point of booking that on my next visit. We did however stop for lunch at Cantinetta Luca, also part of this excellent hotel group and had one of the finest lunches of our trip.

Well done on every level, we will return.

  • Stayed: August 2011, traveled as a couple
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Thank Danielle F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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166 - 172 of 233 reviews

Reviewed August 22, 2011

First off let me tell you that the service is great. However, at $500 a night i just expected more. Following area few simple suggestions that I think would help improve the service.

Breakfast
You've read about the in room breakfast but a couple of things you should note
1. All three nights we stayed there, the coffee we received was cold.
2. Its a carb loaded breakfast. There are literally no options that aren't carbs. Thats crazy in 2011 How hard would it be to add a hard boiled egg option?

TV
Its only basic cable. For $500 a night, I'd expect some movie channels

Valet
Our car was smashed into when parked bu the valet ,I thought that they were taking my car to a lot but it turns out that they just dump it ourisde wherever they can find a space. Someone smashed into my car while it was under Hotel Les Mars supervision. They let me know but did nothing in the way of an apology for not looking after my vehicle

AC
AC in our room was broken. They moved us to a new rom after a day but you'd expect them to have a working AC unit.

We ate at Cyrus, which although attached to the hotel has nothing to do with them. I love Healdsburg but don't think I'd stay at Hotel Les Mars again. There are better places.

  • Stayed: July 2011, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank AnujN
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ramonlesmars, General Manager at Hotel Les Mars, Relais & Chateaux, responded to this reviewResponded August 24, 2011

Hello,
Thank you for your insightful comments on your stay at Hotel Les Mars. We appreciate your perspective on your stay so that we may improve the experience that we offer.

As for your specific points:
- We know that our breakfast offering is limited and we are working to very soon be able to offer a much wider array of options. However, we do offer fruit fresh from the farmer's market and a Greek yogurt with local honey as healthy options along with the wonderful pastries sourced from a local bakery.

- We have 8 HBO channels available on all of our new LED TV's, as noted in the in-room compendium and the on-screen channel guides. As additional entertainment options, we have complimentary DVDs available for our guests to use on the attached Blu Ray players.

- We took the incident that happened with your vehicle very seriously: That another vehicle, unrelated to the hotel or its staff, slightly bumped your vehicle is highly regrettable and I do apologize that it was part of your experience with us. The Assistant General Manager, Nicole, spoke with you at length about the incident, and we felt we were forthcoming with additional options for how to proceed, which were denied when you had deemed the damage as insufficient for further action. All of our valet staff are highly trained and take the utmost care of vehicles, including taking high precaution in where we store them.

- Although the air conditioning unit in your accommodation was working when you arrived and during the first part of your stay, it did indeed fail in the middle of your stay. We inspect the rooms thoroughly before guests arrive, which includes both aesthetic and mechanical components. While we are responsible when one of these systems does not function properly, we took every reasonable precaution to ensure that it would, especially given the hot weather that was forecast during your stay. Since there was no satisfactory way of resolving the issue at the time of day that it was reported, we offered an upgraded accommodation with an air cooling unit that worked the duration of your stay and attempted to make the transition as seamless as possible for you. Nevertheless, it is neither our intent for any of our systems to fail nor for any of our guests to have to experience the consequences, so for that I apologize.

I make myself available to you if you have any further comments or questions. Thank you again for your comments which will ultimately allow us to offer a better guest experience and I hope that you will reconsider and give Hotel Les Mars a chance again in the future for your lodging needs in Healdsburg.

Best regards,
Ramon Serrano
rserrano@hotellesmars.com
707-433-4211

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 16, 2011

If you want to feel like royalty must feel, spend some time at this hotel. From the moment you arrive and they take your car, to the fresh fruit in the lobby, the wine and cheese reception, the beautifully appointed rooms, breakfast served in your room, chocolates on your bed, the never ending wine and the incredibly polite and informative staff - this is a AAA romantic experience. It is also well located within easy walks to many restaurants, shops and bike rentals and a close drive to many wineries.

Only comment was that there wasn't a lamp on my night table which made reading difficult - especially with a canopy bed which blocked the ceiling light. I requested a lamp and when I arrived that evening, it still wasn't in the room. I casually walked to the front desk and asked again and the young lady couldn't stop apologizing for forgetting. Not a big deal and the way they handled it was lovely. I got my lamp.

  • Stayed: July 2011, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Woodlandgirl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 8, 2011

We stayed there because of the connection with L'Auberge Carmel, where we've stayed a couple of times and really enjoyed ourselves. Les Mars is a nice hotel, but lacks the homey feeling you get at their Carmel hotel. The hotel needs to be broken in - get the look of that old worn leather sofa that you in front of the fireplace to make me feel at home. It's a bit too new and polished for our tastes. Also, it has no restaurant, so while the price is the same the breakfast for example does not compare to L'Auberge... The wine and cheese was okay, but not outstanding... It is right next to Cyrus a Michelin rated restaurant, so that has its benefits, but I'll leave that for another review.

What we did like was the service - everyone from Nicole to John, Kristen and Travis were great, even you Ramon... (hope I got all the names right)!!

We did the wine tour, allegedly the vineyards we went to are all owned by the same person who owns the hotel - we enjoyed two out of three visits...

Room Tip: Not sure there's a lot of difference?
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  • Stayed: July 2011, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank Pablo2050
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 7, 2011

We stayed for 3 nights in room 302 (top floor, high ceilings, overlooking street) for our anniversary. The service was top notch, the bed was very comfortable, and the room was quiet. We loved the wine and cheese tastings every evening, where we had a chance to meet other visitors, and planned around them when making dinner reservations in advance. While the delivered breakfast was not eggs and bacon (which we didn't need anyway) it was substantial by continental breakfast standards (several pastries, juice, fresh fruit, coffee) and included newspapers (including the NY Times). Our only suggestion to improve the breakfast is to have fresh-squeezed orange juice and a coffee pot that held more, and hotter coffee.

This hotel is very accessable to the many great restaurants in Healdsburg.

  • Stayed: August 2011, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank DK48
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 6, 2011

Ramon is amazing and the very best at helping people.
Costeaux's is a must do. They serve breakfast at Hotel Les Mars, but you still need to go for lunch or brunch. Simply fantastic. Don't miss the Frangipane! Will is the owner of the French Bakery. He is extremely nice Louis Boillot Champagne is lovely too. If you go, please let them know, Nanci the writer suggested you go there. They take excellent care of you. You are treated with perfection!

  • Stayed: August 2011, traveled on business
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1  Thank JoJo120
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 31, 2011

Beautifully decorated, and comfortable.

Friendly, efficient service

  • Stayed: July 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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1  Thank Jrkrupp
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hotel Les Mars, Relais & Chateaux

Address: 27 North St, Healdsburg, CA 95448-3827
Phone Number:
Location: United States > California > Sonoma County > Healdsburg
Amenities:
Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#3 Luxury Hotel in Healdsburg
Price Range: $497 - $1,010 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Hotel Les Mars, Relais & Chateaux 4*
Number of rooms: 16
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Opened in May 2005 and created by the Mars family, Hotel Les Mars brings the elegance and unobtrusive service of the finest European family hotels to Northern California. Hotel Les Mars follows the philosophy that patrons should be treated more like visiting friends than guests, and upon entering the lobby, visitors are welcomed to the warm smiles of the hotel staff, unique 17th and 18th century antiques, and a comfort found only at the home of a very good friend. Hotel Les Mars represents an intimate location, a labor of love, and a new dimension of sophisticated, luxury lodging in wine country. Andrew Harper's Hideaway Report, the definitive guide to luxury travel, commented that "Les Mars now sets the standard for luxury accommodations in Sonoma." ... more   less 
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Hotel Les Mars, Relais And Chateaux

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