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Spring 2010

Made in Italia

Hotel Luca brings a Tuscan getaway to Napa Valley

by Sarah Sung

When it comes to visiting Wine Country, there's so much more to it than wine tasting and vineyard visits. Add bountiful food, elegant scenery, and luxurious spa treatments, for example. And Hotel Luca, the newly opened boutique resort just steps from the French Laundry and across from local dive Pancha’s, on the north end of Yountville, successfully incorporates it all with its well-appointed 20-room accommodations.

Think of it as an escape that transports you to Italy from the moment you pull up to the villa-like stone tower and walk across the 300-year-old Italian floor tiles in the courtyard. Immerse yourself in a lunch or dinner of house-made salumi, wood-fired pizzas, and a hearty fisherman’s stew known as cacciucco (originally from the Tuscan port of Livorno), accompanied by wines from the 300-label list, which features Italian varietals with local Napa Valley accents. After a digestif, retire to the spa for a relaxing rubdown—all under one roof that just happens to be made of 200-year-old tiles imported from Firenze.

The rooms—each outfitted with its own private balcony or patio, a relaxed interior with custom furniture, and toasty radiant-heated bathroom floors—are cozy enough to accommodate fireside, in-room spa treatments. But if you want to soak in the hot lavender saltwater pool, you'll want to get your deep-tissue or soothing hot stone massage in the spa. There is also a heated outdoor swimming pool and hot tub, ideal for sunny days or a starlit dip.

The bustling trattoria, Cantinetta Piero, serves all three meals, all day long, including a gratis breakfast that offers frittatas, eggs (fried or scrambled), breads, and granola. It’s more than enough to fortify you for another day of channeling the life of an Italian in Wine Country.

Hotel Luca, 6774 Washington St., Yountville, (707) 944-8080,

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