Fairmont Sonoma Mission Inn and Spa is among the nominee finalists for the 2022 Historic Hotels of America Awards of Excellence. The Sonoma property has been nominated within two “categories of excellence” — Best Historic Hotel and Best Historic Resort — and joins finalists from around the country, including renowned East Coast hotels that were built in the 18th century. The winners will be announced Nov. 17 at an awards ceremony and gala at the Grand Hotel Golf Resort & Spa in Point Clear, Alabama.
“We are delighted to be among some of the country’s most iconic destinations,” said Fairmont Sonoma Mission Inn and Spa in a statement on Facebook.
The awarding body, Historic Hotels of America, was founded in 1989 and is the National Trust for Historic Preservation’s official program for “recognizing and celebrating the finest historic hotels” in the country. Today, the program includes more than 300 hotels. (A hotel must be at least 50 years old, recognized as having “historic significance,” and a National Historic Landmark or eligible for listing in the National Register of Historic Places to be nominated and selected for membership in the program.)
The Sonoma Mission Inn, a Sonoma County historic landmark and member of Historic Hotels of America, was built in 1927 on the the 360-acre Bigelow Ranch. Located in Boyes Hot Springs, the ranch had previously been the site of the Boyes Hot Springs Hotel, a popular resort that was destroyed by a wildfire in the fall of 1923. When the new Spanish Mission-style hotel opened on the property in August 1927 it too was named the Boyes Hot Springs Hotel but changed name to the Sonoma Mission Inn in February 1928.
The location for the Sonoma Mission Inn was designated as sacred ground by Native Americans, who utilized its hot springs for medicinal and spiritual purposes long before it became a wellness destination for vacationers. During World War II, the hotel served as a U.S. Navy rehabilitation facility for sailors and marines returning from combat duty in the Asiatic-Pacific Theater. The hotel returned to civilian use in October 1945. In the late 20th century, following an extensive renovation, a new thermal mineral water source was discovered more than 1,000 feet below the property. The Sonoma Mission Inn then changed ownership a number of times before it was acquired in 2012 by Fairmont Hotels, which had managed the property since 2002.
Click through the above gallery for photos of the historic property.
Fairmont Sonoma Mission Inn & Spa, 100 Boyes Blvd., Sonoma, 707-938-9000, fairmont.com/sonoma