Posted in Blogging Marin on Friday, January 8, 2016 by MCVB Staff
By Whitney Butler
The holidays can be taxing, and sometimes New Year’s resolutions incite more anxiety than change. This year, why not focus on what really matters? Valentine’s Day is just around the corner, so ignite some romance with a couple’s retreat to Marin County.
Here are a few tips to help get your Valentine’s Day romantic getaway underway:
Where to Stay
Tucked away in a beautiful redwood forest, the perfect retreat is waiting for you and yours at the Mill Valley Inn. Located a short walk away from downtown Mill Valley, this intimate hotel rests at the foot of Mount Tamalpais, where visitors can enjoy hiking, biking and other outdoor recreational activities.
For a uniquely private bed-and breakfast experience you’ll only find in Marin County, reserve the single AppleGarden Cottage located on a farm and cidery known for producing some of Marin’s finest hard ciders. Modern furnishings, including a private kitchen, are perfect amenities to enjoy being surrounded by the rural countryside of the farm. Take a tour of the cidery to learn more about the natural food systems that make Marin County a leader in sustainable agriculture.
The Inn at Roundstone Farm is another rustic and romantic choice for couples interested in intimate accommodations and coastal views of Marin. Located along Point Reyes National Seashore, guest will enjoy classic, country-style accommodations and hospitality on 10 beautiful acres.
For a more spacious experience, the Point Reyes Seashore Lodge has 22 rooms and two private cottages on more than 71,000 acres. Enjoy world-class beaches just a short drive away from the gorgeous Nantucket styling of the lodge. Enjoy the day shopping at Point Reyes Station, then return to the lodge in time for a romantic sunset on its western lawn and patio.
What to Eat and Drink
When it comes to romance, one thing is for certain — it should always include good food and drink. The farm-to-table scene is strong in Marin County, celebrating a mindful and intimate approach to food that reflects local products and global lifestyles.
Cowgirl Creamery & Cantina is a Marin County treasure and a seductive way to taste and smell the distinct flavors of Marin’s world-famous food scene. You’ll find the creamery at Point Reyes Station, where you can explore American- and French-style cheeses made the old-fashioned way from milk cows grazing nearby.
At the Heidrun Meadery, also located in Point Reyes Station, couples can explore the picturesque farmlands where naturally sparkling meads are produced using a traditional French technique called méthode champenoise. Enjoy a tasting or pack a picnic and enjoy a bottle al fresco.
If meads don’t get you excited, other native varietals at Trek Winery in downtown Novato certainly will. Enjoy the casual tasting room while sampling award-winning wines like the 2010 Dry Creek Valley Syrah. This family-owned winery is a great place to warm up with local wines and live entertainment scheduled almost every night of the week. Check the schedule for details about live music and comedy performances.
For a traditional approach to farm-to-table dining, reserve a table at Vin Antico in San Rafael. With a large bar and fine selection of libations, the food at Vin Antico is focused on locally sourced and farm-fresh ingredients. Be sure to save room for dessert—the Antico Fashioned Chocolate Donuts are delicious!
What to Do
While in Marin County, be sure to stop by Art Works Downtown in San Rafael for an inspired (and romantic) look at local works in mediums of all kinds. In addition to several storefronts, enjoy collections inside one of several galleries open to the public Tuesday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Sometimes igniting romance is as simple as a change of perspective. Barbary Ghost offers Marin County visitors a chance to get out on the water for private bay cruises. Bring your own picnic lunch or dinner aboard and a bottle of wine, and enjoy a different view of Marin County on one of several packages available for couples or groups up to six.
Couples interested in learning more about locally produced wine, cheese, meats or produce should definitely consider booking a West Marin Food & Farm Tour. This customizable food experience offers a behind-the-scenes look at some of the best of West Marin’s food purveyors, while providing tidbits on local culture and history.
Before you leave Marin County, make sure to enjoy the breathtaking natural beauty at one of many nearby national parks. Hike to the romantic views overlooking Point Reyes Lighthouse, or bike a mountain trail at Mount Tamalpais State Park. Getting your heart pumping while enjoying Marin’s natural wonders is a great way to gear up for a new year of romance.
More information on featured attractions:
AppleGarden Cottage is a very private bed-and-breakfast located on a working farm just outside the historic small town of Tomales. About an hour's drive from San Francisco, we...[Learn More]
This family-owned, five room bed and breakfast inn sits on the beautiful outskirts of Olema, where guests are surrounded by horse pastures, a natural pond, and hundreds of...[Learn More]
Our creamery is located at Tomales Bay Foods, a restored barn at 80 Fourth Street in Point Reyes Station. There is also a cheese counter for tasting and...[Learn More]
Come experience Trek Winery located in downtown Novato. Taste our distinctive, yet affordable wines in a comfortable indoor or outdoor setting with friendly and knowledgeable tasting room staff.
Farm-to-table fare, "where passion meets the plate"~
Vin Antico's theme "where passion meets the plate," showcases the bounty of local farmers by bringing to the table dishes made up...[Learn More]
Art Works Downtown Inc. is a premier nonprofit art center in a 40,000 sq.ft historic building in the heart of downtown San Rafael on Fourth Street. Featuring 4...[Learn More]
Experience Point Reyes in a whole new way ~ come along on a gourmet guided tour of West Marin's culinary hotspots and sample the best wine, cheese, breads,...[Learn More]
The Point Reyes Lighthouse is located at the western-most point of the Point Reyes Headlands. Due to concerns that Point Reyes’ heavy fog could obscure the lighthouse, it...[Learn More]
Magnificent Mt. Tamalpais has 6,300 acres of redwood groves and oak woodlands with spectacular views from its 2,500 foot peak. It is a hikers and bikers paradise. The...[Learn More]