Santa Rosa’s Flamingo Resort is back to being as vibrant as its iconic sign–an illuminated rotating marquee–and as lively as its historic past.
Throughout the last few years, the Sonoma County resort has received quite the face lift with approximately $20 million in renovations to update and amplify its charming mid-century style, and to match the roaring vibrancy of its celebrity visitors of the past and its current-day guests.
At an aerial view, the 10-acre resort campus with five two-story buildings takes the shape of a wheel, the same layout from when it was built in 1957–something staff says will never change.
Upon arrival, guests drive up to a new porte-cochère, where they catch an open view of the well-known, historically photographed and beautifully large pool and courtyard lounging area when exiting the car.
The newly crafted lobby, only a few steps away, has unarguably the most eye-catching details of the remodel to all who enter. Something that is bound to be the now-iconic element of the space: a brightly colored mural on the lobby wall hand-painted by San Francisco’s own Grammy-nominated illustrator and artist Serge Gay Jr. The mural showcases a lobby receptionist named Monroe taking multiple calls at once with her bronzed pink phones, wearing her large pin-curled hair, cat-eye eyeliner and glasses–a modern, multi-talented woman with the retro and classic look of Marilyn Monroe.
Each one of the 170 remodeled rooms and suites has maintained the integrity of the original structure but is now adorned with modernized gold furnishings, matching electric kettles and retro landline phones, electrical outlets and USB ports, and luxury soaps and lotions. All details show off the historic and retro feel of the entire resort, but with the convenience of our modern time. The carefully curated theme fits the narrative spoken by each stylistic décor piece throughout the campus: “A blast from the past, but a modernized step into the future.”
Attached to the front lobby is the resort’s restaurant, Lazeaway Club, which is decorated with bold colors like its salmon pink walls and teal textured glassware. The menu, described to be Cal-Pacific cuisine, is filled with creative dishes and drinks inspired by different countries from Mexico to Thailand, and are all garnished with fresh California ingredients like colorful and crisp radishes, pickled cucumbers and berries. Here, the goal is to enjoy “a vacation within a vacation.”
A must-try on the dinner menu: Tamarind-glazed roasted chicken with grilled broccolini, chicken jus and pepper greens. For anyone who is less adventurous with their taste in food, the menu still has classic all-American dishes like a good old burger and fries.
What’s talked about by many, including staff, is Lazeaway Club’s new brunch menu, which is offered every Saturday and Sunday from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m., bringing customers to the Flamingo for the food and fun alone. (Try the cinnamon rolls!)
Health and Wellness:
By far one of the highlights when staying at Flamingo Resort is its partnership with Montecito Heights Health Club and Spa, a two-story center filled with a full gym, 25-meter lap pool, tennis and pickleball courts, basketball courts, locker rooms, saunas and steam rooms, child care and a full-service spa for appointment services, among other amenities. The club and spa is located just outside of the resort gates, a two-minute walk from the pool.
Though the center is open to the community, those staying at the resort are able to take advantage of the full schedule of classes and community-based events including spin classes and a running club. The resort also offers Wellness Programming, with both complimentary and paid programs on the resort campus and at Montecito Heights.
As a guest, being able to go on a run outside, use the spacious gym and then have full showering amenities on site leaves guests feeling pampered, even outside of their rooms.
The spa is built directly into Montecito Heights and again allows the space to be a one-stop shop for all things wellness, offering an array of services for facials, nail care and massages. A special detail to note: the spa also offers 25-minute massages for those who don’t have a full hour to commit.
For Four-Legged Friends:
Did we mention that the resort is not just friendly to–but incredibly welcoming to–our four-legged friends? Flamingo Resort welcomes each pooch with a goodie bag filled with a toy, water bowl and clean-up bags. With the resort campus being tucked away off of the freeway and within the beautiful wine country, there are lovely natural surroundings perfect for roaming with your pets midday. (As someone who brought a 74-pound dog along for my stay, I can attest to the fact that the campus is incredibly accessible for dogs of all sizes, even Lazeaway Club’s outdoor patio.)
Encouraging local residents to visit, the resort has a discounted California Resident Rate. The savings are up to 20 percent depending on the season. To book your stay at Flamingo Resort, visit www.flamingoresort.com.