In the Napa Valley—and in Yountville, in particular—most hotels err on the side of sophisticated luxury. Which makes the North Block Hotel’s quirky style such a breath of fresh air. With the look of a Mediterranean town’s cobbled street, complete with lemon trees and hand-painted tiles, one of Napa’s few modern boutique hotels also displays quirky pieces like The Big Book of Boobs in its lobby. It’s hard to pass through the lobby without having a friendly concierge hand you a glass of bubbly, and the umbrella-shaded “sidewalk” tables seem like places you’d actually while away the hours over bottles of good wine with good friends. The trendy restaurant channels a midcentury Italian cool that’s more Fellini than Michelangelo, unlike most Napa wineries’ inclinations, and the fact that it doesn’t have a Michelin star is actually a vote in its favor in sometimes stuffy, star-saturated Yountville. Of course, the spa is still as luxuriously pampering as any in wine country, and the understated rooms are as decked out with designer amenities as they ought to be—and you might actually be having enough fun to enjoy them.
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In Yountville, you’re never more than a stone’s throw from a Michelin-starred dining experience and a famous winery’s tasting room. The North Block Hotel is just down the street from Thomas Keller’s world-renowned French Laundry, the restaurant that put this little wine country town on the map and became a ritzy mecca for luxury travelers. Other famous nearby restaurants include Ad Hoc, Bouchon, and Ciccio. The Domaine Chandon and Heston Vineyards tasting rooms are within just a few minutes’ walk of the hotel, and the winery-lined Silverado Trail, which runs through some of Napa’s most scenic terrain, is just a short drive away.
Need to Know
Rooms: 20 rooms. From $350. Check-in: 3 p.m.; check-out: 11 a.m. Dining options: Redd Wood, the award-winning second restaurant from celebrated local chef Richard Reddington, looks and tastes like a glamorous 1950s Italian pizzeria. Breakfast, lunch, afternoon bites, and dinner are served daily, and the bar is always lively with locals and out-of-towners alike; reservations are recommended, despite the more casual atmosphere. Spa and gym details: The North Block Spa by Francis & Alexander offers a wide range of luxurious wellness and beauty treatments, many designed specifically for the hotel using sustainable, natural products. The hotel also has a well-equipped gym, a lounger-lined outdoor pool with a hot tub, and several GenZe e-bikes for guests to borrow.
Who it’s best for: Design-conscious young couples. Our favorite rooms: All of the stylish, Mediterranean-inspired rooms have espresso machines and walk-in sandstone showers larger than many a room, but the second-floor Superior King rooms also have working fireplaces and private balconies with glimpses of the Mayacamas Mountains. Special treats: Check-in includes a welcome cocktail or glass of wine. Turndown means freshly baked cookies from Redd Wood. And it’s hard to pass through the lobby or get tips from the concierge without being presented with a glass of bubbly.