May 30th, 2013
Changes at The Casitas
Last fall we began our most ambitious project list since we moved here 5 years ago. Pat and I have made many changes for your enjoyment.
1. New Casitas Logo and Sign - We loved our old sign but we heard over and over
again that for some, “B&B” doesn’t say ‘privacy’ and as you know, our houses do
offer that. It was also important that the sign was easier for our guests to read
and see from both directions, still with understated elegance. Know that our gourmet
breakfasts and commitment to make your stay wonderful remain the same-just new branding!
You can see a picture of the new sign at the top of this newsletter.
2. Poolside bocce ball court and Under The Sea garden - The best pool in the Arroyo
Grande valley just got better. We installed a bocce court that overlooks the farmland
and vineyards below. Inspired by Sunset magazine, Pat also designed an “under the
sea” succulent garden at one end of the pool. The color and selection of succulents
really makes you think you’re looking at a coral reef.
New Casitas Sign
3. Our Estrella Syrah Vineyard, larger back lawn and Ceremony Site - Located just
West of the pool is our new ceremony lawn and vineyard that accommodates up to 180
seated guests for weddings and events. Please do pass along our new site for Central Coast events and weddings, www.casitasestate.com
But even if you are just a one night lodger, you’ll enjoy the beauty of our new
vineyard. The year old vines were planted a a month ago and our sunny days have
some of them growing out of their protective sleeves! The bad news is we have to
wait 3 years before we can make great wine out of the grapes. Being just two miles
from world famous Alban Syrahs, we can’t wait to learn more about the process firsthand
and literally share the ‘fruits of our labor’ with you!
June 27th, 2012
Yesterday was a lovely day on the Central Coast, 75 degrees, and I was out running errands. Driving home on Orcutt Rd. in the Edna Valley I passed a group of cows who obviously “get it” when it comes to the local lifestyle. I had to stop and take a picture to share. Yo ho, yo ho, the cows life for me.
- “We can lay down AND make milk at the same time.”
May 22nd, 2012
The 2012 wedding season is off to a rousing start. Josh & Kate were married at The Casitas earlier this month. They could not have asked for better weather, it was warm during the day and cooled off nicely in the evening. We could not have asked for a nicer bride and groom to share our home with. Kate and Josh’s family and friends were wonderful and helped make the day special for the newlyweds. Wedding days always belong to the bride and this was no exception, Kate stole the show, she was beautiful. Josh now answers to “Mr Lucky”, the picture below will tell you why. It was a fun group and Pat and I were happy to see that everyone was having a great time celebrating the new Mr. & Mrs.
Josh and Kate, congratulations and best wishes for a long and happy marriage from Pat, Tony & Kona.
Josh & Kate, we should all be this happy!
March 22nd, 2012
The warmer than normal winter has brought Spring to The Casitas about a month ahead of schedule. Normally the casita courtyard wisteria blooms around April 1. This year it started blooming the second week of March! The wisteria should be in bloom for about another month or so but the peak will be in the next two weeks. Come on down and stay with us, you might even be here when the second sign of spring, the swallows, return to their nests here at the casitas!
Sarchi deck, wisteria and hillside
October 6th, 2011
Wish he was with us for one more thing
It’s funny how the passing of someone you never knew personally, but yet was a part of your personal life can affect you in a way that is surprising. This was the case for me and hundreds of millions people when the world learned of Steve Jobs death yesterday at the age of 56. One of the things Pat and I made sure of when we were putting together The Casitas was that “guests have something into which they can plug their iPods or iPhones into”. It was part of the business model, a must have.
In school when I learned about the likes of Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci, Benjamin Franklin and Thomas Edison I wondered what it would be like to live in a time when one person was responsible for history changing innovation. Well guess what, now I know. Steve Jobs made having “the best” something to strive for. He brought families together in ways maybe only foreseen by him. How many parents have looked at the songs on your children’s iPod and been surprised, maybe even shocked, to find many of the same songs that you listened to when you were their age and are on your playlists? Raise your hand if that’s the case. BTW, both of mine are up.
Steve Job’s was the very rare individual that created passion on both sides of the buying equation. People loved working for him and more importantly, people who didn’t couldn’t wait to see what new device he was going to introduce that they couldn’t live without. Pat got up at 5 in the morning to wait in line at the Apple store in San Luis Obispo three times in the hopes of getting an iPad2. This was after 4 “normal” attempts at getting to the store at 8 in the morning.
That was the genius of Steve Jobs, creating the passion and then delivering, time after time. He was no one hit wonder, he was the Beatles of our, my, generation.
Thank you Steve, wish you had time to share “one more thing” with us.
January 24th, 2011
We are always trying to improve the experience our guests have when they stay with us at The Casitas. A big part of that experience is the breakfast we serve you in the morning. Recently we made changes to the recipes of two of our personal favorites, the Challah French Toast and the Egg Souffle’.
The changes are minor but they really deliver in the taste department. The French toast is now crisper outside but with a creamier texture inside. This is achieved using 80% less egg than before!
On our souffle’s, we’ve replaced the black forest ham with ground up fresh breakfast sausage. The sausage is sautee’d with the onions and it causes the entire souffle’ to be infused with a nice smoky flavor. Of course, for those guests that don’t eat meat we are always happy to make vegetarian souffles’.
Come see us soon and let us know what you think about the new recipes!
September 1st, 2010
After a dinner out, we stopped into Gather Wine bar last night down in our cute little historic town of Arroyo Grande. We had a nice glass of wine with our “VP of Innkeeping” Don, who some of you have met—great friend, chef, gardener and host when we need some extra help here at the Casitas.
Don making a fresh batch of scones in The Casitas kitchen!
Kari, the proprietor, was glad to see us since we’ve been so busy here all summer and finally got a night out. We just enjoyed a really nice dinner again at Novo under the trees creek side, a post celebration of Tony’s birthday. I loved my glass of Luminesce Petit Syrah and of course, their amazing Curries. Kari even had one last bottle of it at Gather last night when I was dishing about dinner and she shared that the winemaker is local, living right here in AG! We bought that last bottle and invite the winemaker for a private tour of the Casitas, anytime—just bring us more of your yummy wine please!
While relaxing and catching up, we learned there is a new chocolate shop that will be located next to Branch Street Deli—we’ll fill you in more on that as soon as we have details. Kari also shared that she is teaming up with Chef Rick www.chefrick.com who has catered here at the Casitas and makes the most delish Cajun and Southern fare. Gather is offering a La Paulie dinner later this month that includes wine provided by many of our own local winery faves: Laetitia, Saucelito Canyon, Talley Vineyards, Carlson and Phantom Rivers—all representing our Arroyo Grande Region! Check it out as well as other wine and music events that Kari has lined up at http://gatherwinebar.com/events.html It’s a great cozy place to have a nice glass of wine, beer and now meals too! And I told Tony, we need to get out more…we are so lucky to live here on the Central Coast!