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“We had a fantastic Valentine Day at the Ambrose Bierce House”
4 of 5 bubbles Review of Inn St Helena

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Inn St Helena
Ranked #2 of 12 St. Helena B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence
Cali
1 review
“We had a fantastic Valentine Day at the Ambrose Bierce House”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 15, 2008

We had a fantastic time at the Ambrose Bierce House. It is very small but rather quaint. We stayed in the room with the canopy bed ~ every little girls dream!! Very comfortable bed, close to downtown and cozy. We were alerted of the "alerts" in the early AM but were sleeping so soundly, we did not hear them. We would definitely stay there again!!

Stayed February 2008
Helpful?
Thank TravelinTH
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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204 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    140
    33
    10
    15
    6
See reviews for
23
135
4
4
Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (41)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Italian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Any
English first
Calgary, AB
1 review
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 15, 2008

Thank you for a wonderful stay. We are on our honeymoon and our stay in Napa Valley has been perfect! We love the house and Carlos was a fantastic help. We hope to visit again on one of our many anniversaries!

  • Liked — Carlos
  • Stayed June 2007, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
Thank silvergladiator
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Denver
Level Contributor
7 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 14, 2008

Writing a review for this property feels a bit like a double edged sword. Telling others how much we enjoyed our stay will on one hand increase competition for this lovely property but on the other hand is a well deserved report.

My wife and I stayed here on our annual trip to Napa and had a wonderful romantic experience. Carlos is a wonderful host. Each morning we were treated to a great breakfast and we enjoyed wonderful conversation with different groups of guests each day. Thank you Carlos and staff. Hope to see you next year

  • Liked — Quaint, romantic, historic and charming property, excellent hosts. Great location.
  • Stayed October 2006, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
Thank Pmo28
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, England
Level Contributor
31 reviews
31 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 40 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 11, 2008

A wonderful B & B in the perfect location. The recommendation for dinner at Cindy's Backstreet Kitchen was spot on - try the campfire dessert! Wine & cheese was a lovely way to meet the other guests.
I think it might be the sweetest B & B we've ever stayed in - and we've stayed in a lot.

  • Liked — Breakfast was amazing
  • Disliked — There was nothing to dislike
  • Stayed August 2007, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank MsPhileasFogg
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Boston
1 review
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 31, 2008

I had a really lovely stay at this inn. It was underbooked while I was there so they upgraded my room for free. The rooms are small but the location right in downtown St. Helena is unbeatable. I thoroughly enjoyed breakfast and the innkeeper was kind and helpful.

  • Liked — Location
  • Disliked — Small
  • Stayed January 2008, traveled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
Thank BostonWanderer82
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Francisco, California
Level Contributor
7 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 26, 2007

After reading all the previous reviews, we were a bit weary of our stay here at the Ambrose Bierce. In general, we prefer not to stay at B & B's as we like to be by ourselves and not have to talk to people (primarily at meal time). But - we did have breakfast at 9:00 a.m. and sat with great people who felt the same way we did about B & B's - so that was fine.

Speaking of the breakfast - yummy! And yes, it was served at 9:00 a.m. - actually about 9:10 a.m. but that was just fine as we knew that was the deal. The food was spectacular and we ate every last bit of it. Thank you for the great food John!

Our room, the Ambrose Bierce suite, was spacious and just right for us. I peeked into the other rooms at the end of our stay - and all were just a room with a bathroom - and I would not have been as happy with those. We are a normal sized couple, but we really prefer room where we can spread out. The Suite had a bedroom, then you would walk through a spacious bathroom to get to the separate sitting/living room area. The bed could have been a bit more comfortable as I have a feeling it is past its prime. The TV in the sitting room was adequate and we had no problems using it... but we also have satellite TV at home so I guess we were able to figure it out easily.

We enjoyed walking to dinner (we went to Market and Terra) and also had lunch at Cindy's Backstreet Kitchen. All places had great food, we were not disappointed. As I am a master planner when it comes to trips, I did not use the services or recommendations of the innkeeper - I already had a good idea of where we would eat. Oh - a good place for drinks is the Martini House - a unique atmosphere and fun!

With all the above mentioned, we would definitely stay here again, but only if we stayed in the Suite. I forgot to mention the hot tub - we jumped in it each night and enjoyed it by ourselves!

We enjoyed our stay in Saint Helena very much and look forward to another wine country visit in the near future!

  • Liked — The location and great breakfast
  • Disliked — Getting up at 9:00 a.m. for breakfast - but at least it got you out of bed and starting your day!
  • Stayed August 2007, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
Helpful?
1 Thank fillerup98
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
bethesda, md
Level Contributor
4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 10, 2007

The Ambrose Bierce House should really be describe as a Boarding House that serves breakfast, rather than a Bed & Breakfast. Check in time is stated to be between 4:00 and 6:00 pm, however their is never anyone to greet you on arrival only a note posted to an outside board with arriving guests names telling them where to find the keys to their rooms. There's instruction telling you how to use their TV, which may be the smallest on the planet, and dificult to use. A number to call if you have any problems or needs. Since our room had no conditioner only shampoo we called and reported this. Our call was returned and we were directed to Safeway if we wished to purchase conditioner since the Ambrose Bierce House doesn't provide this amenity. Also included is the fact that they do not provide sodas or water, but that they may be purchase for a dollar each. Breakfast is not bad, however it is at 9:00 am sharp. We asked if we could have breakfast at 8:45 one of the mornings and we're told NO, only at 9:00. They do claim to be your personal concierge, however we never had the chance to speak with anyone after breakfast is served, they seem to disappear until the following day when breakfast is served, again at 9:00 am sharp. They do have a convenient location, however it is on the main street and the heavy traffic may keep you up at night. If you should fall asleep, not to worry, the St. Helena Fire Department across the street will awake you every morning with a blast from their fire house siren at 6:00 am. and maybe once or twice during the night. Sweet dreams.

  • Liked — None
  • Disliked — Everything
  • Stayed June 2007, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
Thank cphilipsc
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Carlos-Innkeeper, Carlos, Innkeeper at Inn St Helena, responded to this review, February 7, 2008
We wanted to respond to this ad for a number of reasons. Our "check in" is between 4 and 6pm, but we also provide a note for each guest with instructions on how to find their room, along with information about breakfast and other amenities of the inn. Sometimes, when the guests are checking in at the front door, the innkeeper may be with another guest, or upstairs in the inn itself, and unable to hear the doorbell for the incoming guest. It is for this reason that we leave the notes there, so we don't leave the guest waiting at the door and they can make themselves at home. We also leave instructions for the television because the cable tv can be confusing for some guests. The size of the tv's are in direct correlation to the size of the rooms...they are standard 19", with some mounted for better viewing. We have since added conditioner to our bathroom amenities, and understand that the guest was disappointed at not having it made available to them during their stay. Waters and sodas are $1 as a suggested donation. Breakfast has been served in the same manner at 9am for as long as the owners have had the inn. We serve it at 9am only...and it is posted on our website. We will make accomodations for guests leaving early with a "to go" bag, but for a full breakfast, you must attend with the rest of the guests at 9am.
The expectation that is should be served any
earlier or later is unfortunate for this guest.
During the day, after breakfast, the innkeeper can be found in the office, reachable by phone or by asking in person. The day to day
workings of the inn occur downstairs within the kitchen and the office, as well as in the laundry area, and also the entire inn itself. If a guest requires anything, including concierge services, they need not do anything but ask. We are here for their needs. Unfortunately this guest never made their needs known. The location, on Main St. in downtown St. Helena, is the hub of a very small and special community, where there is a volunteer fire department. In the guest rooms, there is a detailed explanation of the alarm and it's importance as a key communication signal from the local authorities, so there is no false reaction to what is a very necessary function. We understand it can be seen as a nuisance to some...others it saves lives. For this reason also we have double paned windows in all of the guest rooms, to make the experience less intrusive. We hope that this guest will read our response to their review and also hope that others will understand the importance of communication, and how relevant it is when you are traveling, so your experience meets your own expectations as you involve yourself in your own reservation.


Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Inn St Helena

Property: Inn St Helena
Address: 1515 Main St, St. Helena, CA 94574-1851 (Formerly Ambrose Bierce House)
Phone Number:
Location: United States > California > Napa Valley > St. Helena
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 12 B&Bs / Inns in St. Helena
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:3 star — Inn St Helena 3*
Number of rooms: 4
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Welcome to our Napa Valley bed and breakfast! We invite you to experience the romantic charm and "warm and enthusiastic hospitality" of our 1872 Victorian bed and breakfast inn. This California bed and breakfast is in a perfect location... right in the center of the finest wineries of Napa Valley. You can walk to fine and casual dining, historic Beringer Vineyards... and unique shopping in beautiful and quaint downtown St. Helena. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Ambrose Bierce House Hotel St. Helena
Inn St Helena St. Helena, CA - Napa Valley

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