Join me for a journey back in time to Victorian San Jose and San Francisco. Highlights of the tour include the Winchester Mystery House, a private visit to Bradbury & Bradbury, special visit with PBS and HGTV design personality and author Paul Duchsherer, accommodations at the beautiful Adagio Hotel, a champagne cruise of San Francisco Bay, a visit to the Fine Arts Museums, brunch overlooking the Pacific Ocean at Sutro’s, and much, much more!
July 1 – 5, 2015
Wednesday, July 1, San Jose
7:00 p.m. We’ll converge in the lobby of Hotel Valencia, where we’ll meet each other and enjoy a few minutes of conversation before leaving for dinner.
Hotel Valencia Santana Row
355 Santana Row
San Jose, CA 95128
Our hotel is located on Santana Row, a European-inspired neighborhood that includes shopping and dining. Santana Row is also adjacent to the Westfield Valley Fair mall.
7:30 p.m. Dinner at Left Bank, a French brasserie located on Santana Row, next door to our hotel.
Thursday, July 2, San Jose/San Francisco
9:00 a.m. After breakfast at the Citrus Café, we’ll walk across the street for our tour of the mysterious Victorian mansion built by Sarah Winchester, heiress to the Winchester Rifle fortune.
10:30 a.m. Depart via shuttle to Benecia, where we will stop for lunch before visiting the Bradbury & Bradbury factory for a private visit to their showroom and factory. We will be joined by Paul Duchshererer, noted interior design historian and frequent guest on “This Old House” and “Curb Appeal”. Bradbury & Bradbury first became famous for their beautifully detailed Victorian wallpapers, and the company continues to produce wallpapers of a variety of stylistic periods.
4:00 p.m. Arrive in San Francisco, where we will drop off our luggage at our accommodations for the next three nights, the Adagio Hotel, located in Union Square. You’ll have time to relax or some time for a little shopping in one of the world’s most famous shopping districts, Union Square. (Shopping nirvana!)
550 Geary Street
San Francisco, CA 94102
6:30 p.m. We’ll meet in the hotel lobby, where we’ll walk just a few doors away for drinks and appetizers at the Redwood Room at the Clift Hotel. The Clift Hotel is one of the Grand Dames of San Francisco hotels that has been redesigned by Philippe Stark. The redwood paneling of the famous bar has been restored, and the room has been updated with Stark’s innovative touches.
You may be full from appetizers at the Redwood Room, so we’ll leave you to your own devices if you want dinner.
Friday, July 3, San Francisco
9 a.m. Our shuttle will pick us up for a two-hour champagne and mimosa cruise of the San Francisco Bay.
12:00 p.m. No trip to San Francisco is complete without visiting Fisherman’s Wharf and Ghirardelli Square! Our shuttle will take us to Ghirardelli Square, where we can browse the shops, have lunch at Fisherman’s Wharf, and perhaps even a chocolate sundae at the famous Ghirardelli Ice Cream Shop!
2:00 p.m. We’ll embark on a walking tour or visit a private mansion (details to follow).
4:30 p.m. We’ll return to our hotel where you’ll have time to relax before dinner.
6:30 p.m. Dinner at Farallon, a unique restaurant with a beautiful underwater theme.
Saturday, July 4, San Francisco
9:00 a.m. Morning at leisure. Union Square is filled with major department stores and boutique shops. July 4th sales are in full swing!
12:00 p.m. We’ll have lunch beneath the beautiful stained glass at the Rotunda Restaurant in Neiman Marcus.
1:30 p.m. We’ll depart for the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, comprised of the De Young Museum and the Legion of Honor. The De Young Museum focuses on American art from the 17th through the 20th centuries, and the Legion of Honor focuses on European art. One of the cornerstone collections of the Legion of Honor is the Bowles Collection of 18th-Century English and French Porcelain.
5:00 p.m. We’ll arrive back at our hotel, refresh and regroup, and then decide where we’ll have dinner, attend a show, or just luxuriate in our surroundings.
Sunday, July 5 San Francisco/San Jose
9:30 a.m. We’ll depart our hotel for brunch at Sutro’s at the Cliff House, where floor-to-ceiling windows frame views out to crashing waves of the Pacific Ocean.
11:00 a.m. We’ll visit Filoli, one of the finest remaining country estates of the early 20th century. Filoli is set on sixteen acres of formal gardens. The design of the house recalls English country houses built in the late 17th and early 18th centuries. We’ll have time to have lunch in the museum’s café.
3:00 p.m. We’ll arrive back in San Jose, where the shuttle will deliver you to the airport to pick up your flight home.
The cost per single is $1,895, and if you are sharing a room, $1,475 per person. This includes four nights’ hotel accommodations, Wednesday night dinner, Thursday breakfast, Thursday lunch, Friday morning champagne cruise, Friday dinner, Saturday lunch, Sunday brunch, all museum and tour admissions, speakers’ honorariums, and shuttle transportation Wednesday through Sunday. Everyone will make their own airline reservations. It is suggested that you arrive in San Jose late Wednesday afternoon. The van will deliver us back to San Jose airport at approximately 3 p.m. on Sunday, July 5.
Venues and accommodations are subject to change, but will be replaced with ones of equal or higher value.