Jul 152013

Celebrating Summer… Excitement for the parade on the 4th.  This year we had guests visiting the Inn from Wales in the back seat of the 33 Chevy.  Every year the crowds get bigger, picnics all over the park and fireworks dazzle us.

33 chevy cottage inn spa

The gardens and beautifully planted pots everywhere at the Inn delight our senses.  The elm tree provides its lovely shade during the hottest time of the day as the beautiful fountain atrracts finches.  This year we have a stunning pair of large doves serenading us too.
summer flower sonoma
We are always welcoming back former guests which warms my heart.  How many surprise proposals will we be part of?  Did I mention all the lovely brides, handsome grooms, and family who stay at the Inn this year?  Anniversary couples every day at the Inn from 1 year to 50 years.  Honeymooners from all over the world.

Our little sanctuary provides so many a chance to really relax and celebrate being together.  I am forever grateful to my staff for creating a memorable experience. The best staff in Sonoma!

This special little town of Sonoma, where the weather year round is nearly perfect ~ where people say hello to strangers ~ where community is strong ~ where the city hosts a party and we dance in the streets while the farmers and vendors provide their gifts.
It’s always about the light for me and around 5-6 p.m the summer  light at the Inn is mystical and magical…

Living a dream with gratitude  ~ hoping you can share it with us too…

Jun 142013

summer sonoma cottage inn After an amazing year of some of the best weather in the world, Summer gracefully arrives with mockingbirds singing day and night ~ quail families scurrying here and there ~ flowers of every kind blooming in gardens ~ rolling hills appear to be golden velvet.

June’s longest days of light bring sunsets that linger ~ nothing like relaxing in the warmth of late afternoon sun.

Today is officially “Hula Mai Day” in Sonoma. I will joining my hula sisters in the plaza later today to
share the Aloha through dance. Sonoma has become my other favorite place of Aloha ~ after my beloved north shore of Kauai.

June holiday is celebrating Fathers ~ I say celebrate them every day!

Feeling so grateful to deepen relationships ~ to provide a sanctuary for wellness & romance & reflection for the world to enjoy. It’s always fun when someone who lives here finally walks through the Inn’s tower to get a glimpse of our world ~ the little hidden jewel lovingly tended by my amazing staff.

Every moment is precious with each passing day of our lives ~ do your very best to be mindful of the little things ~ like the doves cooing their sweetness…


May 032013

cottage inn spa spring flowerThis year, May is feeling very much like Summer. The valley is fragrant with so many roses blooming ~ iris popping up ~ grapevines lush with growth & hills are almost golden from lack of rains in April.

 May is bittersweet with memories of loss. 23 years ago I buried my parents together and 6 years ago my Robert was diagnosed with stage 4 prostate cancer after spending his birthday in Yosemite.
It is also a time of renewal and joy, when the days are getting longer with beautiful light and our beings crave the sun.  Gardens are producing and the first cherries start showing up in the market not to mention delicious strawberries worth driving a few miles for.
We think of May as the time to celebrate Mothers when my feeling is that every day is mothers day when you have children.  Every day is a day to celebrate your mother whether living or in spirit.  We carry them with us don’t we? It is also a time to celebrate Fathers every day…
Sonoma …early on, I felt such a feminine energy here.  After 22 years, I realize how many beautiful and soulful women have decided to live their lives here.  Some have passed on, while many others  delight and inspire me every day.
May of 2008, the Inn was part of the Historic League Garden tour where my Tom walked through, it was the beginning of a real life love story ~ Love is really the answer to healing along with laughter and hugs and being in the moment.
May the moments of your Spring provide you a chance to slow down and breathe in the beauty of your world just a little more….


Apr 082013

cottage inn spa springIt seems that we all have places that have inspired our souls. For me, it has been the north shore of Kauai. However, after many years of living in Sonoma, another magnificent Spring has descended upon us. The valley is filled with pastel blossoms of cherry, plum, apple trees. Willows & wisteria swaying in soft breezes hypnotize & intoxicate us with their beauty.

The landscapes are alive with every shade of green from unsuspecting rains. We see artists & photographers inspired to capture the mystical beauty. We suddenly want to be outside more with warm sun kissing our skin and to take more time to breathe in the freshness of the air.

It always brings me great joy to see our guests return again and again ~ in Hawaii the word for family is ‘Ohana. That is what my staff feels like to me and how we like our guests to feel.

As we linger & celebrate this glorious time of the year, wherever you are, take a moment every day to be just a little more grateful . Give more hugs & share more laughter…~Faye

Mar 192013
mustard flowers in Sonoma

Photo courtesy of Sugar & Brownie

What a gorgeous Winter season we have had this year ~ This valley feels so sacred & we who live here, never take it for granted. Every season is beautiful as it gently merges into the next one.

The Inn has brought us many first time to Sonoma guests as well as many of our repeat guests who are so dear to our hearts. We have seen many couples get engaged, celebrate honeymoons, anniversaries, and special birthdays which we get to be part of in some special way.

As the valley is filled with trees flowering and fields of mustard grass getting very high in their brilliant yellow, as the hills are now green, I find myself remembering so many beautiful places I have lived and the season of Spring filling my spirit with a lightness and
deep joy.

Feeling grateful to know that Sonoma is a sacred jewel tucked away from fast pace living ~ after walking the beach for three hours recently & driving roads filled with beauty in the long shadows of late afternoon ~ I am slowing down more to take in the willow trees
with delicate early leaves gently swaying ~ the first bud forming on our favorite rose bush at the Inn ~ every single day I have an amazing staff to thank, people who come to the Inn and appreciate the tranquil energy ~ another day to love & laugh …


Feb 142013

I love hearing how people met & fell in love; it is always sweet and beautiful. For me, it is not about a special holiday once a year. Can you imagine someone you love, who is near passing, hanging on to say “Will you be my Valentine” with a smile? Well, that was my life 5 years ago… I believe the spirit of Love is around us all the time, it is a huge part of us. Sometimes when we think there will never be another person to fall in love with ~ when you least expect it, it can happen.

One never knows how one incident in your life can change your whole life ~ for me the Garden Tour in 2008 ~ I happened to mention that my husband had passed a few months ago to a man whose wife had passed a few months before my husband . A few weeks later, we are on a 7 hour lunch date ~ so many similarities in our lives and having someone really understand and know your grief and loss and share that healing journey with you. As you get older you just “know” when it is right & for us it was like a renewal of life with laughter and sweetness…We are together since July 2008.

We both felt that our spouses were smiling down on us and we feel so fortunate to have met and cherish every second of our lives with deep love & gratitude. A loving spouse never wants the other to be alone in life. Never give up ~ never say never ~ Believe in joyful hearts finding each other.

The Inn continues to be a sanctuary for lovers of all ages from all over the world.

Forever a Helpless Romantic

Jan 262013

I am filled with so much gratitude and love living in Sonoma. The Inn provides opportunities every day to share in people’s happiness. Whether they just got married or have been married many years, they radiate joy. There are the surprise engagements & special birthdays & anniversaries that we help create. Couples often come to just “rekindle” their relationship, as well as solo traveler who appreciates quiet solitude.

This month Hula Mai dancers stayed at the Inn. As I witnessed the powerful chanting and dancing around the fire fountain, I felt such a reverent appreciation for these graceful and remarkable women. The recent rains were so reminiscent of “upcountry” rains on Maui. Our grapevines are dormant in winter ~ yet the vibrant yellows of the mustard grasses are emerging and camelias of every color are in bloom.

It seems every day we welcome many new couples who warm our hearts with their own love stories. As my amazing staff nurtures and cares for them in our sacred & romantic spaces, I can’t imagine anything else I would rather do than having these “deeper connections”.

As we are now in the last week of January, let us be kinder, more generous and of course more grateful.


Jan 042013

As we begin our first weekend of the New Year, we have couples arriving to enjoy the stark beauty of Sonoma. The last of the Elm tree leaves float gently to the ground, roses sleep in winter, and this year many new and colorful birds flit & delight us with lovely songs.

I feel a deeper connection with community as more people are discovering the tranquil beauty tucked away behind the white stucco walls. Each room has a totally different energy and decor.

We start this year by saving our environment with no more wood burning fires. We have found tea light candle logs which cast a very romantic glow to the rooms and last longer than logs. There are a few rooms with beautiful gas fireplaces. All rooms, except for Tulsi Cottage, are without TV. The only distraction is the person you are with.

We have kept our rates the same as last year and of course guests who stay more than once will receive 20% discount for life! We believe in giving back. As we enjoy the quieter months here, we welcome you to share the quiet beauty of our Sonoma winter. A season to rest, reflect and be nurtured, bringing more balance to life.

It is with deep Gratitude & Aloha that I welcome 2013 …


Dec 292012

Waking up to the moonlight at 3:00 a.m. is always beautiful. After falling asleep again, I managed to wake just in time to witness beautiful sunrise colors at their peak. I have had another year of great health; that being the most important in life. I strive to be grateful for every single moment with joy, but when frustration shows up, I let it be there temporarily as another lesson to be more grateful. I continue to learn more patience with a brilliant, loving, kind, & patient sweetheart sharing life with me. I honor you Thomas Josiah…

This year is still bringing us guests who have stayed with us in the past; that is so heart warming. We “connect” on a deeper level at the Inn because the spaces allow that. The Inn has become a true sanctuary without t.v. this year.  (Tulsi Cottage being the exception) We have ended the year by replacing wood burning logs with tea light candle logs which cast a romantic glow without polluting our air. We do have some beautiful gas fire places too in some of our rooms.

I want to take a moment here to also honor my staff ~ Gloria, Paula, Lori, Laura & Kathryn ~ these amazing and lovely women answer phones with smiles, provide concierge services ~ take late calls to provide excellent guest service. They are the heart of the Cottage Inn & Spa. The amazing housekeeping staff ~ Martha, Rosalva, Jesus providing impeccable rooms at all times. The gardening team Chris who works diligently & swiftly and Susan who lovingly tends the roses and plants with grace.

The main spa providers ~ Willow, Gianna, Gloria, Kathryn, Tiona, Shannon ~ my heartfelt thank you for your healing energy to bring to the world.

I honor Ken & Brady for providing such incredible photography for our new website and Celeste & Donna for getting us out into the world of social media & creating our magical website. And finally Michael, who finds creative solutions for any and every problem.

As I reflect on my 60th year, it was amazing! I feel such deep peace to be here in this time, in this valley. Blessings to all for a beautiful year ahead.


Dec 242012

Many of you are looking for unique and special gifts to give someone you love. Give the gift of pure relaxation and pampering: a Gift Certificate to the Cottage Inn and Spa for a massage or even a stay. We are happy to create personalized Gift Certificates for the one you love and appreciate.

Please call (707) 996-0719 to order your custom gift certificate.