With more than 34,000 acres planted with grapes and its Pinots and Syrahs earning accolades nationwide, San Luis Obispo County is a rising star among California wine regions.
But lodging options haven't entirely kept pace. Now a new/old hotel in downtown Atascadero brings a splash of opulence to the area. David Weyrich ― a winemaker who also owns Paso Robles' posh, 8-room Villa Toscana inn ― has taken the 1929 Carlton Hotel and turned it into a first-class retreat: one of the nicest hotels between the Bay Area and Santa Barbara.
The 52 rooms are large and tasteful, the public spaces ― the ground-floor lobby, a second-floor terrace ― glamorous. Dining options range from homey Carlton Bakery and Café ($) to the Carlton Restaurant & Grill ($$$), with an exhibition kitchen and sushi bar, to the more formal DiVine ($$$). And the lounge and wine bar offers a good selection of the San Luis Obispo vintages that lured you here in the first place.
Carlton Hotel (52 rooms from $180; 6005 El Camino Real, Atascadero; www.the-carlton.com or 877/204-9830)