California’s Most Romantic Boutique Hotels and B&Bs
When planning a romantic getaway, it’s hard to go wrong with an upscale bed and breakfast or boutique hotel. But how does one choose from so many great options? Fortunately, we’ve sorted through this embarrassment of riches and done the work for you. Just in time for Valentine’s Day, here are the best of the best: the properties with extraordinary ambiance, setting, views, amenities, and personalized touches to help you plan the perfect romantic vacation.
In Sonoma’s Russian River Valley, the Farmhouse Inn offers an exquisite wine-country retreat for couples. The inn’s stylish, country-chic Barn Suites exude romance with double-sided fireplaces for cozying up indoors or out, private patios, floor-to-ceiling windows with woodland views, jetted tubs for two, steam showers, heated marble floors, and heaven-sent feather beds layered with European linens and down. Enjoy a couples’ massage in the spa, cuddle up in a swinging day bed, and sip wines poured by local vintners. In the evening, savor a candlelit dinner in the inn’s Michelin-starred restaurant. The ever-changing menus rely not only on what is fresh and seasonal in Sonoma County, but on what is perfect, unexpected, and delightful. The impeccable service is friendly, yet sophisticated and carefully orchestrated down to the smallest detail.
Inn at Zaca Creek
Nestled in the heart of Santa Barbara County Wine Country, the Inn at Zaca Creek takes an unmistakably old-world European approach to romance. For more than half a century, the property has been an iconic landmark in the Santa Ynez Valley. Today, hand-carved doors, century-old stonework, hand-troweled walls, and artisan-crafted woodwork lead to six unique suites. Inside, couples will find rainfall showers, soaker tubs built for two, and Turkish cotton robes. Without leaving the property, giddy lovebirds can choose from a wide variety of in-room massage services, take in the rolling hills at sunset with a glass of champagne, or experience the crisp morning air at sunrise in front of a 30-foot waterfall. From beginning to end, the experience transports guests from the rustic charms of the Central Coast to the ethereal beauty of pastoral Provence.
On Tomales Bay, Nick’s Cove creates the perfect setting for a love story in its waterfront cottages. To enter through the door of one of the 1930s-era cottages is to step back in time. Strains of big-band jazz float through the air. A cozy fire crackles in the wood stove. Warm-hued rugs, glowing lamps, handsome antiques, and vintage photographs imbue the cottage with nostalgic charm. A tray of oysters is delivered to the room upon arrival and a generously stocked honor bar provides all the ingredients for mixing your favorite cocktails. Enjoy the oysters and drinks on the private deck overlooking the water while marveling at the moody skies. Draw a bath in the cottages’ claw-foot or copper tubs and then snuggle beneath the luxurious sheets and lofty duvet and watch the glowing flames from the fire.
Enchante Boutique Hotel
Enchante Boutique Hotel is an authentic re-creation of Paris chic in the heart of Silicon Valley, offering couples the romance of a French chateau. The Premier Queen accommodations feel like a Parisian pied-à-terre with dormer windows and a private balcony, and the luxurious Grand Suite boasts a sitting area with views of Downtown Los Altos, a gas fireplace, and a pedestal soaking tub. All of the inn’s 19 rooms boast Carrera marble bathrooms with oversized showers, monogrammed robes, and sheets like silk. Authentic French accents, art, and antiques all contribute to the feeling of being whisked away to the City of Love. Campagne One Main Bistro, built with 200-year-old timbers offers live music most evenings, and its sunny terrace is the perfect spot to enjoy delicious French fare and a wide selection of wines.
Eden Vale Inn
Eden Vale Inn’s suites invite couples to reconnect in a cocoon of luxury. Hidden amid lush, tranquil gardens on 10 acres in the Sierra Foothills, each of the inn’s suites features deep outdoor soaking tubs for two on private patios or decks. The tubs have wood-slatted privacy shades that can be rolled open to enjoy the views of the gardens and the birds flitting between the trees. The tubs fill to the perfect depth and temperature and depth at the touch of a button. Other buttons set the mood by dimming the lights and turning the fireplace aglow. The suites are furnished with dreamy beds, spa-like baths, and plush bathrobes. Book a couples’ massage in the on-site spa and then watch the sunset over the placid pond while roasting s’mores around the fire pit. Each morning, the innkeepers treat their guests to a gourmet breakfast delivered to the room.
Elk Cove Inn & Spa
It’s hard to imagine a more romantic spot than the Elk Cove Inn on the misty Mendocino Coast. Tucked in a forest grove and surrounded by lavish gardens, the ocean-view bed and breakfast is known for its breathtaking views, farm-to-table cuisine, and impeccable hospitality. Centered around a historic mansion from the late 1800s, the property includes a collection of suites and cliffside cottages and an elegant day spa. Accommodations feature fireplaces or wood stoves for cuddling, jetted tubs for romantic soaks, and deliciously fluffy robes for after-bath lounging. Each morning, a bountiful in-room spread makes for an amorous breakfast in bed, complete with eggs from the inn’s own hens and produce from their gardens. The on-site restaurant, SIBO, features approachable European-style haute cuisine. Couples can enjoy intimate dinners inside the restaurant, on the ocean-view terrace, or en suite.
Simpson House Inn
Secluded behind tall hedges in a quiet historic neighborhood in Santa Barbara, the Simpson House Inn is an 1874 Victorian estate steeped in romance. The inn’s lush English gardens are studded with trickling fountains and quiet places to hold hands. Inside, the décor has a timeless, elegant quality that exudes sophistication and comfort. Six guest rooms in the main house feature antique wood beds, Persian rugs, claw foot tubs, and intricate Victorian wallpaper treatments. Along the back of the property, carriage house suites and garden cottages offer spacious accommodations hidden among the sprawling oaks with white-washed vaulted ceilings, fireplaces, whirlpool tubs, and private decks or patios. A wrap-around veranda affords views of the gardens and is the ideal spot for enjoying amazing chef-prepared breakfasts. Breakfast can also be delivered to the privacy of the guests’ room.
Benbow Historic Inn
From the moment couples enter the Benbow Historic Inn, they’re embraced by the romance, history, and ambiance the property has exuded for over 90 years. Nestled among majestic redwoods, the inn has long been a sought-after destination for Valentine’s Day, wedding anniversaries, and romantic weekends. A complimentary snifter of Brandy awaits couples in their suites, kicking off the festivities with old-world charm. Enjoy a glass of wine from the inn’s award-winning wine list in front of a crackling stone fireplace, dinner in a historic Tudor-inspired dining room, or a nightcap on a private terrace overlooking a historic bridge and river. Newly built Founders’ Suites capture the romance of a bygone era with glowing fireplaces and clawfoot tubs with idyllic views. Summer evenings bring music on the terrace, accompanied by cozy fires and exquisite seasonal cuisine.
Grand Reserve Inn
Secluded on 40 acres of the Wilderotter Vineyard near Plymouth, the Grand Reserve Inn is a luxurious, 9,000-square-foot Tuscan-inspired villa with sweeping views of the vineyards and the Sierra Foothills beyond. The inn’s stone façades, open-air courtyard, travertine floors, iron chandeliers, and vaulted ceilings evoke the romance of an Italian hideaway. Built around an expansive open-air courtyard, the inn’s five spacious suites each offer vineyard views through arched windows and private patios to catch the sun rising or setting over the bucolic estate. The suites also feature dreamy king beds, spa-like baths, gas fireplaces, and luxe amenities. Guests are treated to private VIP wine-tasting experiences, wine and cheese pairings, and gourmet breakfasts served each morning. In the evenings, guests can relax beside the outdoor fire pits overlooking the vineyards.
SCP Mendocino Inn & Farm
Situated on 15 acres in rolling emerald hills and surrounded by State Park lands on three sides, SCP Mendocino Inn & Farm is brimming with nature and tranquility. This 1867 farmstead and adjoining lodge overlook the wild sea, a breathtaking backdrop for a romantic getaway. Couples can create their own gentle adventures amid the lush redwoods, pines, and ferns along walking trails that lead to an otherworldly pygmy forest. Most rooms at the inn feature wood-burning fireplaces for cozying up, and a daily home-cooked breakfast is delivered right to the couple’s door. For relaxation and reconnection, the hotel’s day spa offers massage treatments, and in the early evening, there are complimentary local wine tastings in the lodge. Afterward, couples can spend time together exploring the charming shops and dining of downtown Mendocino.
With colorful gardens under majestic oaks, a pond and waterfall, and a scenic view of the nearby mountains, Lavender Inn is a uniquely magical setting. Cuddle up with your sweetheart in a secluded garden nook, on a porch swing, or in one of the romantic guest rooms. Book a couples’ massage in the garden gazebo or in front of the fireplace in the roomy and luxurious private cottage. With French doors leading to a private backyard, the cottage is the ultimate romantic hideaway. Meander across the street to stroll Ojai’s charming galleries and shops, and then enjoy a romantic dinner. After a cozy breakfast featuring homemade baked goods, couples can hike around the corner and up into the foothills, where they can sit on a bench and take in the breathtaking tapestry of Ojai’s orchards. Other adventurous dates include horseback riding, rock climbing, and jeep tours.
Noyo Harbor Inn
There’s no more perfect place to rekindle romance than the luxurious Noyo Harbor Inn on the Mendocino Coast. Perched on a hillside overlooking the Noyo Harbor, this historic Arts and Crafts building has been updated with incredible attention to detail. The result is the perfect warm and cozy environment for a romantic getaway. With stunning sunset vistas, oversized soaking tubs, an on-site restaurant featuring locally sourced specialties, a serene spa, and a private pathway down to the harbor for sunset strolls, there’s little reason to ever leave the property. But for couples looking to venture out, the inn provides e-bikes for journeying along the scenic Coastal Trail and a concierge who can arrange a stand-up paddle board excursion, river kayaking trip, horseback ride, or train expedition.
Inn at the Presidio and Lodge at the Presidio
Tucked away in a national park in the middle of San Francisco, Lodge at the Presidio and Inn at the Presidio offers two distinct options for a one-of-a-kind romantic getaway. The Lodge at the Presidio is the closest hotel to the Golden Gate Bridge. It features incredible views of San Francisco Bay, the bridge, and the iconic city skyline. The Inn at the Presidio is nestled in a serene corner of the Main Post, supplying couples with a uniquely intimate experience. The inn is surrounded by a forest and romantic hiking trails, including Lover’s Lane—the oldest foot trail in the Presidio and the path traveled by soldiers to visit their loved ones 150 years ago. Both hotels offer outdoor fire pits, expansive porches, and evening wine and cheese receptions.
Inn of the Lost Coast
Nothing sparks romance like “getting lost,” and Shelter Cove’s Inn of the Lost Coast helps couples do just that. Nestled on a cliff overlooking the Pacific Ocean, the inn provides the perfect ambiance for time well spent with that special someone. From the comfort of a private balcony, couples enjoy a front-row seat to unparalleled scenic views, stunning sunsets, and the sound of waves crashing against the shoreline below. Some suites feature spacious spa tubs and in-room saunas, adding relaxation and rejuvenation to much-needed quality time. There’s also a hot tub on the shared deck, ideal for cuddling up to gaze at the stars above. Spacious rooms, private balconies, beautiful sunsets, black sand beaches, and the sounds of marine wildlife in the distance – it doesn’t get much more romantic than that.
El Morocco Inn & Day Spa
A true desert hideaway, El Morocco Inn & Day Spa in Desert Hot Springs is housed behind an unassuming façade far from the glitz of Palm Springs. But upon entering through its doors, couples are whisked on a magic carpet ride to a Moroccan-inspired oasis with pools of warm, natural spring-fed mineral water. The soothing, silky smooth waters are open for soaking day or night. The pools are surrounded by glowing lanterns, lounge chairs, Moroccan poufs, and daybeds piled with pillows. Sheer fabrics billow in the desert breeze while faint strains of Moroccan music drift overhead. An outdoor fireplace and fire pit add to the enchantment at night. Romantic guest rooms feature authentic Moroccan antiques and beds draped in mosquito netting. Couples can also indulge in an array of spa treatments in the onsite day spa.
Inn at Newport Ranch
On a 2,000-acre ranch near Fort Bragg, the Inn at Newport Ranch offers a breathtakingly beautiful and secluded escape with sweeping ocean vistas, sandy beaches, redwood forests, and 20 miles of private trails. The bluff-side setting on a 1.5-mile stretch of rugged Mendocino coastline gives guests the feeling that they’re peering off the edge of the Earth. Handsomely crafted from redwood and stone, the inn is as architecturally stunning as its surroundings. The inn offers nine luxurious guest rooms, many of which boast stunning ocean views, fireplaces, and full kitchens. The Grove Suite is particularly romantic for its headboard made from the trunk of an ancient redwood and private hot tub overlooking the ocean. The inn also features destination-worthy dining with three-course, seasonally-inspired dinners made from fresh, locally-sourced ingredients.