Lodging Discovery Bungalows 313 Evokes Italy in Sonoma.
It feels like there are so few hotel discoveries anymore, especially where California Wine Country is concerned. Bungalows 313, evokes Italy in Sonoma, with six spacious, affordable units just off Sonoma Plaza, is just that — a true discovery and a worthy vacation destination with a European spirit, right in the heart of Sonoma town.
Owners Isac and Minette Gutfreund fell in love with the aesthetic of Tuscany on a trip to Montepulciano, and Bungalows 313, which they have lovingly restored over the course of several years, evokes that spirit with inviting indoor and outdoor spaces of various sizes, each with a unique character. It’s not surprising that the original building, constructed just after the turn of the 20th century (1907) — and listed in the Sonoma League for Historic Preservation’s 1978 survey of historic resources — were built by Italian immigrants. Up until the late 1800s, the land was part of General Vallejo’s orchard. Vallejo designed the town of Sonoma, including the plaza, which is the largest in California at eight acres.
We stayed in the just-renovated Terra unit, a huge two-bedroom apartment with a full kitchen and both front and back patios. The stone walls, which are original to the property, give the space continuity and warmth, and the living and dining rooms are one large space suitable for entertaining. The stone house was renovated by Thornley Associates with architect Adrian Martinez, and the interior was designed by Laurie Weatherford.
Other units range from studio size to one-bedroom (not counting the other two-bedroom unit above Terra called Cielo), and each has at least a kitchenette. And all units have access to the lovely common spaces, including a pétanque court and gas fireplace with seating area in the lovely courtyard. The exterior space was designed by Sonoma County landscape architect Penney Magrane.
It’s remarkable how quiet this place is given its proximity to all the action of the plaza just a block away. Add to that the privacy of not having a formal check-in — your key code is emailed to you before you arrive, along with detailed instructions for accessing your unit. (You can always contact someone if you need help, but it’s kind of nice to enter a property on your own terms without needing to make small-talk with strangers.)
Read the full article by Kim Westerman at Forbes