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AEmgee

CA Napa-Sonoma Flamingo Hotel and Resort Santa Rosa

By AEmgee,
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I completed a 1-night stay at the Flamingo Hotel and Resort in Santa Rosa on September 26-27, 2006. My winning bid was $65/night. My last stay in this area (almost exactly one year ago) was at the wonderful Doubletree Hotel Sonoma Wine Country in nearby Rohnert Park

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I stayed in this hotel on may 23th 2007 just for the night. My winning bid was for $50.

Cannot comment on the amenities as I did not use any but I echo the feelings of the other reviewer. This property does not deserve a 3* rating. The rooms are old, the bathrooms are small. In all I would give it max 2.5* rating.

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I have stayed at this property as well - although not through Priceline. I stayed in June 2007 for a conference. Although I would agree that many of the hotel's aspects are dated, there were some areas I was pleasantly surprised. The hotel room was larger than I expected, and mine had an in room refridgerator and safe (both in the closet). Yes, the bathroom was dated and toiletries a little below what you would expect, everything functioned just fine. The room itself was pleasantly outfitted with white duvets, a desk and nice chair, a small table and two additional side chairs. THe room had TWO entrances, one from the hall and one from the parking area. The pool was nice and very busy on the warm summer day. The lobby is practically non-existent, and the desk staff... indifferent is a good word. Didn't eat in the restaurant - had conference food. The bar had a live band with a $7 cover one night. Looked pretty empty. I didn't get a chance to use the fitness facility next door. But I liked the kitchy flamingo sign out front (from the original in Las Vegas).

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We just returned from California. We stayed at the Flamingo 8/16 for 2 nights. It was around 5 when we checked in. We paid around $100 thru Priceline. They had us in a king room. We are a family of 4. The man at the desk was very nice. He put us in a king exec room 516?. The room has been remodeled. The room had a king bed and sofa bed. We also bring an aerobed. We had plenty of room. There is a refridge in the closet. The bathroom was newly tiled with a large shower- no tub. We were worried when we pulled up to the hotel as it does look old. However, the room was nice. We enjoyed the large pool and large hot tub. The hotel was sold out while we were there as there was some sort of hockey competition going on. There are towels available out by the pool. There is also a snack bar outside. The resort is close to the wineries and we also visited Old Faithful Geyser of California. I would stay here again. Our building did have an elevator. Our room had a parking lot view, but the other side had patios facing the pool. Our room only had 1 door into the hallway. We could hear other guests close their doors as they are rather loud.

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I recently stayed at the Flamingo for 7 nights. My observations:

STAFF - the staff was very nice and accommodating. We made several requests to them and they tried to help us in any way that they could.

ROOM - the room is on the large side and has been recently renovated. The carpet looks new and the bathroom has been re-tiled. The furniture looks a little "wine country" from the 80's but it fits in nicely with the rest of the room. The two armchairs in the room were new and so was the desk chair. It looks as though they kept the original furniture (which is in very good condition) and just changed some of the other elements in the room to freshen it up (i.e. new drapes, new linens, new chairs, new carpet, etc). The one thing that I LOVED about the room is that it had a full size wall of windows looking out to either the parking lot or the pool. Our room faced the parking lot but it was a small parking lot for just our section of the hotel. In the morning we would open the drapes and let all of the sunlight come in. It was beautiful. The only thing that was dated in the room was the paint that covered the seams of the windows. It was definitely rotted/rusted in different spots and needed to be scraped and repainted (I'm certain the windows are either original or close to original; they need to be redone). I imagine that they are working on this though as the hotel was still in progress when we stayed there. We did have two doors to our room. I'm not sure if everyone has two door leading to their rooms. We had a door that went to our room from the parking lot (which was very convenient) and a door which led into the hall so that we could get to the pool quickly. We always bring earplugs with us when we are on vacation so that we can sleep through the night when others are coming in late. This always works for us so we never notice inconvenient late night noise (but you will get late night noise with any hotel). The refrigerator was in the closet and opened the wrong way (towards the back of the closet) but it was functional. Every room is non-smoking. A definite plus.

INTERNET - I don't think that internet is standard except for the Executive King Rooms (which would probably not be a priceline room....just guessing). Internet was $4.95 for 4 hours, or $9.95 per day, or $25 for the week (we opted for the last option and were satisifed).

BATHROOM - the bathroom had new tile and came with a blow dryer and a coffeemaker and the regular toiletries (bring your own shampoo and conditioner if you are particular). A little on the small side but nice.

POOL AND SAUNA - The pool area is beautiful. The pool is very large and has a lap pool. This is a classic CA pool area. Just gorgeous. If you are going in the spring/summer spend some time outside reading a book and enjoying the grounds. You have to imagine that the hotel looks like a bike wheel. The center of the wheel is where the pool and sauna sits and the spokes are the different sections of the hotel; they branch off from the pool. The tire on the wheel serves as a walking terrarium; it is an enclosed area that circles the exterior of the entire property and has beautiful plants that smell wonderful inside of it in dry rock beds. You can wake up and go outside if it is beautiful or you could just walk through the terrarium and get some exercise. We used the sauna 3 nights. It was great; really hot water. The jets blow a little extreme but all in all it was very relaxing after coming back from the wineries. We did not find towels by the pool in November (no surprises there I guess although the front desk told us to look for them). We just brought towels from our room. That worked fine.

EXTERIOR - the outside of the hotel is beautiful. It is very retro looking. They have stacked stone on the exterior of the building and the fonts used on all of the signs are very vintage. They have definitely put some money into the exterior design. Some of the elements work very well and some of them seem out of place. They have natural stone and natural wood on the exterior of the building and then a great retro neon sign that lights the hotel up. You can see it coming down the main street before you get to the hotel. They must have worked on the exterior recently because others have noted that the exterior looked dated; I would beg to differ.

RESORT FEE - there is no fee to stay at the Flamingo, however, if you want to use the resort facilities I believe it is around $12.00 per person. This additional add on fee which is optional covers breakfast and use of the resort facilities. We didn't want to use the resort areas because the hotel was nice enough as it was so I have nothing to report on the resort areas.

FRONT DESK AREA - this is the weirdest part of the hotel. It is such a weird lobby area. It is trying to be designed/retro but it doesn't work. It sort of feels like a camp registration check-in desk (hence, the campy feeling of the hotel). It is not elegant or intimate or styled in any way. No worries though. The staff is very nice.

HOTEL RESTAURANT - didn't eat in the restaurant.

PROXIMITY TO WINERIES - this hotel is ideally situated if you are planning on visiting several of the different wine regions surrounding the area (russian river, dry creek, healdsburg, sonoma, napa, etc). You are about 15 minutes away from any of these wine regions (with the exception of Napa which is just a little bit further). It is a GREAT location for wine tasting in all of the regions (very central). Check the lobby for discount tasting coupons in their kiosk area.

RESTAURANTS - there are several restaurants in the downtown area which is about 7 minutes away. There is a Starbucks and a Pete's Coffee & Tea and a great breakfast spot called Mac's. There is also a See's Candy really close to the hotel which is a must for me. There is a decent Thai restaurant across the street from the hotel (.01 miles away). Several people told us that Hank's Creekside across the street is an excellent place to eat breakfast.

SUMMATION - All in all a nice hotel (especially if you like vintage). It looked like the kind of place that film execs would have hung out at in the 60s, and it turns out that was part of the history of this hotel. If you are used to more upscale properties then you probably won't be impressed with this hotel. It has a slightly campy feeling to it but is still very nice. We generally just sleep in our room, however, I would hang out in this hotel if I wasn't always wine tasting. I liked the feel of it. I wouldn't want to pay full price for the room (some paid upwards of $179 a night retail the week we were staying there). I wouldn't pay that much to stay here. Still, a solid hotel that is only slightly overrated at 3.5*. I would feel better giving it a 3* but it did have some of the amenities of a 3.5* (restaurant, room service, etc).

Enjoy your stay. Don't be afraid of this hotel. It is a nice place to stay.

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The rack rate includes breakfast and entrance to the resort (i.e. you don't have to pay the $12 per day fee) but this doesn't apply to priceline customers because obviously we are getting the room at a greatly reduced rate.

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