There are many ways to spend a day in Napa Valley. Whether you are a history buff; want to visit like a local, love art and architecture; seeking peace and quiet, looking for a wine and food immersion or are a luxury traveler; Napa Valley has it all. If you truly want to experience a perfectly luxurious day in Napa Valley, I’ve got the best recommendations including luxury Napa Valley vacation home rentals.
Start your luxurious day in Napa getting pampered at the most exclusive salon spa in the valley; Bella Capelli. Their world-renowned Hydra Facial delivers immediate and long-term skin health benefits. The facial uses vortex fusion that detoxifies, rehydrates and protects. Or opt for the Skin Resurfacing Facial, famed for smoothing lines, and reducing wrinkles and spots. Follow this up with a professional make-up application and you are ready to experience the remainder of your luxurious day in Napa feeling pampered and beautiful.
After your spa experience, head to Brix; and indulge your palate with the most delicious brunch in the Napa area. The restaurant is located on 16 acres of Napa Valley gardens and vineyards with spectacular views of the Mayacamas mountains. Every table at Brix has amazing views, but if you really want to opt for an exclusive experience reserve the Wine Cellar or the Cottage for private dining. The cottage’s double French doors lead out to a private patio and garden area for cocktails before you dine on their delicious contemporary French-inspired California cuisine.
Exclusive Wine Tasting
For one of the most exclusive luxury Napa wine tasting experience head to Bill Harlan’s Promontory. This winery sits among the western hills of Oakville, overlooking the Napa Valley and tasting and tours are only available by appointment through their concierge.
A visit to Promontory includes an intimate introduction to their wine and philosophy and the lux Napa Valley wine tasting experience begins with a flute of Dom Pérignon Champagne to prepare your palate. Each group visiting is toured around the grounds with your own winery guide where you will visit the winery for a tasting of their wines still resting in casks. This luxury Napa Valley wine tasting experience from Promontory is sure to amaze even the most well-traveled wine lovers.
Another option for a lux wine tasting experience is to hire Karen MacNeil, the only American to have won every major wine award given in the English language to escort you to her personal Napa Valley favorites. Karen is a world-renowned wine expert and writer who can curate a one-of-a-kind tour of Napa Valley providing access to the most exclusive wineries.
Michelin Star Dinner
For dinner, head to the upscale Japanese restaurant Kenzo. Executive chef Hiroyuki Kanda has earned three Michelin stars for his Tokyo restaurant Kanda nine years in a row, so you can be assured you will be experiencing something very special at Kenzo. This is the first U.S. restaurant from Kenzo Tsujimoto, the founder of Kenzo Estates winery (where the restaurant is located). Kenzo offers prix fixe sushi & kaiseki menus, plus wine & sake and is one of two Michelin star restaurants in Napa.
You can also head 15 minutes to Yountville and dine at Chef Thomas Keller’s French Laundry. The restaurant, located in a charming stone farmhouse has maintained their coveted Michelin three-star status for yet another year.
Luxury Retreats & Villas
The perfect way to end a luxurious day in Napa is checking into your own private villa on the grounds of a working vineyard. There are many Napa Valley vacation home rentals, but none quite like Villa Capricho. This fabulous Napa Valley estate features its own private winery, olive groves, a chapel and seven bedrooms.
This exclusive villa offers only twelve stays per year and is one of the most sought-after vacation rentals in the Napa Valley. With access to the winery and other wonderful amenities such as a fishing pond, bocce court and croquet lawn. There are numerous lawns and patios for al-fresco dining.
After a day like this, you’ll feel like you are the queen or king of the valley.
Traveling To Napa Valley Soon? Here are a few tips:
How to get there: If you are flying, the most convenient airport is Charles M. Schulz Airport in Sonoma. There are also several nearby airports such as San Francisco, San Jose, Oakland and Sacramento.
If you are driving, Napa Valley is located about 1 hour north of San Francisco Bay and 1 hour west of Sacramento.
When to Visit: The best time to visit Napa is September through November or March through May. Napa’s peak tourist season corresponds with the region’s harvest season (August through October). During this busy time, expect high prices for everything, including food, accommodations and wine tours.
Weather: Napa Valley has a similar climate to the Mediterranean and temperatures in the valley vary quite a bit between the early morning and evening. Throughout the year, depending on weather conditions, evening temperatures can be as much as 30 degrees cooler than daytime temperatures, and daytime temperatures can vary as much as 10 degrees at the same time of day between the northern and southern portions of the valley.
What to pack: Dress in The Napa Valley is informal and you might be surprised that it tends toward casual. Dressing in light layers is both functional and advisable for moving from day to evening activities.
Napa Valley Essentials:
- Pick up the Fodor’s Guide to Napa Valley.
- A good quality mirrorless camera for capturing your trip. I use the Sony Alpha a6000 .
- Reusable Leak Proof Bottle Protector Bags for Travel (so you can safely bring your wine home).
- Bring a jacket or extra layer of clothing to wear in the wine caves, which are about 60°F year round. This Jay Jay cardigan is perfect for women and this Wantdo cotton jacket is great for men.
Read More About Wine Country
Disclosure: Some of the links in this post are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will add value to my readers.
Alexa Meisler is the editorial director of 52 Perfect Days. Born in Paris, France she has since lived in Chicago, San Francisco, Los Angeles and Portland, Oregon. She currently resides in San Diego with her husband and son where they enjoy exploring California and Mexico.
Travel has always been a part of her life; traveling to such places as Morocco, Tangiers and Spain as a young child as well as taking many road trips to Mexico with her grandparents as a young girl. Since then, she has traveled abroad to locations such as Russia, Taiwan and throughout Europe.
Prior to working at 52 Perfect Days she was a freelance travel writer; focusing on family and women’s adventure experiences.