Discover Arts & Antiques & Treasures

Solvang, CaliforniaSolvang has more than 150 independent and family-owned boutiques (chain stores are virtually non-existent here). There are some special places where you can discover amazing art and antiques to grace your home and office or for special gifts. At the award-winning Z Folio Gallery  be dazzled with Czech art glass, handmade designer jewelry, innovative decor and giclée nature photography along with designer trunk shows and exhibitions. Solvang Antiques  is a premier collective featuring restored clocks, music boxes, estate jewelry, American and European furniture, silver, lighting and glass. Judith Hale Gallery (within Solvang Antiques) offers paintings, prints, sculpture and other mediums for discerning collectors. A Piece of the Past is an antique and vintage mall with 4,000+ square feet with two dozen different dealers of delights. Artistic Pony Studio has quality handcrafted jewelry, pottery and glassware from 30 artists; Art Hus is a co-op artists ‘collective offering truly unique items. Be sure to check out these Solvang fine art galleries: Christopher L. T. Brown; Gerlach Photography Nature Gallery; Pavlov Art Gallery; and Thomas Kinkade: Places in the Heart. Discover more details here:http://www.solvangusa.com/explore-solvang/what-to-do/shopping/

 

Say I Do in “Little Denmark”

happy-valentines-day-everyone-vectorSince today (2/14/17) is Valentine’s Day, your thoughts can turn to love and marriage if you’re like me! Admit it, at some point, you (or someone you know) has dreamed of jetting off to Europe and tying the knot. Yet flying to Europe to get married can be time and cost prohibitive. Yet it doesn’t have to be if you “get hitched” here in Solvang, California’s Little Denmark. Combining amazing Scandinavian architecture, incredibly scenic venues, and mild year-round weather with friendly, professional services is the recipe for any memorable special event.

From just you two or 200 or so, I think you’ll “fall in love” with choice of 18 exceptional hotels plus even more places with banquet/meetings rooms and outdoor areas. Consider some of these options: the gardens at the Elverhoj Museum of History & Art, the Wildling Museum art-filled rooms; Solvang Festival Theater (private reception area under the oaks), Solvang Park (with its charming gazebo), Solvang Veterans Memorial Hall (so versatile, great hardwood floors for dancing) or Hans Christian Andersen Park (delightful shady picnic groves easily reserved) or historic churches including Old Mission Santa Ines and Bethania Lutheran (pictured at left). Solvang_BethaniaChurch

The staff at the Solvang Conference & Visitors Bureau is happy to offer recommendations and referrals. Just call 1-800-468-6765 and make your wedding dreams reality in Little Denmark! 

 

Loving Those Sweet Treats

Sweet-Solvang_1136You’re probably very well aware that Tuesday is February 14—Valentine’s Day! So, have you shopped for something special for your sweetheart (or sweetheart-to-be) yet? Sharing a treat is a delicious way to show you care—and it’s so easy to do here in Solvang since this is the place to satisfy sweet cravings year-round. So many of us crave chocolate! 2013 Taste of Solvang Pro Winner Dessert-Ingeborgs Dark-Light TrufflesDiscover family-owned/operated Ingeborg’s Danish Chocolates that has been using authentic recipes for handmade confections since 1961 (how can you possibly choose between mile or dark chocolate truffles made with filled with so many options?) Also founded in 1961 (what was going on that year?) is the Old Danish Fudge Kitchen that makes the real deal using an impressive copper pot heated over a gas-burning stove mixing 25-pound batches with all-natural ingredients; then poured onto marble tables for cooling (you can watch and sample, try the chocolate peanut butter or yummy dark chocolate and other specialty blends.) And if you can’t make it to Solvang in person right now, both of these shops will ship direct to your sweetheart!IMG_6523Tenley Fohl Photography_Taste of Solvang 2013And of course, Solvang’s five authentic Danish bakeries have plenty of options too!

If you’re really stumped, you can definitely make reservations for breakfast/lunch or dinner treats at one of Solvang’s incredibly diverse restaurants! For more delicious details, visit http://www.solvangusa.com/dining

Tempting Taste of Solvang—Tickets On Sale Now!

Solvang, CaliforniaYou definitely don’t want to miss any of tempting flavors and tantalizing events during the 25th annual Taste of Solvang this year from Wednesday, March 15 through Sunday, March 19, 2017! This popular celebration features a variety of food and beverage experiences featuring Solvang area chefs, bakers, farmers, winemakers, brewers, distillers and artisans showcasing the bounty of the region.

20110517-Solvang_FarmersMarketRemember, there’s the popular Farmers Market Chef Walks on Wednesday, 3/15—this year choose from Chef Pink of Bacon and Brine or Chef Steven Snook of First & Oak; a Learn To Blind Taste Like a Sommelier at Wandering Dog Wine Bar on Thursday, 3/16,; Sip + Savor Opening Night with 25 Santa Ynez Valley chefs, bakers, caterers, winemakers, and brewers on Friday evening 3/17; Tasting Trail with 32+ taste stops around the village on Saturday afternoon 3/18; the popular Beer & Wine Walk on Saturday & Sunday with extended hours. New for 2017 . . . on Saturday evening, there’ll be a Buttonwood Farm Winery Winemaker Dinner at Cecco Ristorante AND on Sunday morning, choose from Sunday Brew Brunch at The Backroom at Valley Brewers or Sunday Brunch at Mad & Vin at The Landsby.

Purchase your Taste of Solvang ticket package OR individual event “ala carte” tickets well in advance since these palate pleasing events are alwaytaste-of-solvang-ca banners sell-outs. (And if you’re looking for a great Valentine’s gift for your special someone–think Taste of Solvang!) Get more delicious details and buy your tix here: www.solvangusa.com/taste-of-solvang-2017

Solvang Wishes You a Happy Chinese New Year!

1920x1080_chinese-header-china-v1__heroSolvang welcomes many Chinese visitors year-round yet this time of year is special! Did you know that similar to our Christmas /Julefest holidays, Chinese New Year is celebrated by 20% of the world’s population and an estimated 200 million Mainland Chinese travel long distances during this holiday—many of them here to California and Solvang.  Chinese New Year (The Year of the Rooster) is Saturday, January 28, 2017 with festivities beginning on Chinese New Year’s Eve and running run through Thursday, February 2, 2017.  For the first time this year, you may see Welcome signs (pictured at right) in Mandarin Chinese in Solvang shops as well as restaurant menus translated into Chinese—all part of the Solvang Visitors Bureau and Chamber of Commerce’s new “China Ready” outreach to share our Danish-American hospitality to our fastest growing group of visitors.  For more details, visit http://www.solvangusa.com/group-tours/china-ready .

Xīnnián hǎo (Happy New Year in Mandarin)!

Forks at the Ready for Restaurant Week–Savor Dining Sensations for $20.17

forksFrom Sunday, January 22 thru Saturday, January 28, 2017, you can savor special 3-course menus for only $20.17 per person (excluding tax, tip and beverages) at many of Santa Ynez Valley’s most popular restaurants. The 7th annual Restaurant Week  is sponsored by Visit the Santa Ynez Valley throughout all six communities here.

restaurant-week-syv-solvang-santaynez-valley__sideIn Solvang, consider these establishments and some of their special menus temptations including Cecco Ristorante, First & Oak at The Mirabelle Inn; Fresco Valley Café (Gorgonzola Walnut Salad, Rosemary Seasoned Ground Lamb Patty on a toasted Brioche Bun, and Mixed Berry Crème Brule); The Bistro at Hadsten House (Mixed Green Salad, Top Sirloin Medallion With Demi Glacé; Bread Pudding); Mad & Vin at The Landsby (entrée choices of Herb Crusted Salmon; Short Rib Skillet of braised beef, or fresh pastas); Root 246 at Hotel Corque; Solvang Brewing Company; Succulent Café Wine Charcuterie and Toscana.  The Wandering Dog Wine Bar is offering a flight of 3 Wandering Dog wines each paired with a gourmet cheese and charcuterie for only $20.17.

Naturally, dining hours vary by restaurant and reservations are definitely recommended. So make your plans now to tempt your taste buds and pamper your palate during Santa Ynez Valley Restaurant Week! For more details, visit http://www.solvangusa.com/events/santa-ynez-valley-restaurant-week/  

New 2017 Destination Guide Now Available

solvang-2017-vgYou love being in the know—so I’ll bet you’d like to see and know all the great info in the brand new official 2017 Santa Ynez Valley & Solvang Destination  Guide— a full-color FREE magazine encompassing the communities of Ballard, Buellton, Los Alamos, Los Olivos, Santa Ynez and Solvang, of course! The 2017 Destination Guide is filled with beautiful color photos featuring attractions, architecture, lush vineyards and historic sites as well as a “Resource” sections that feature attractions, farm stands, unique wedding & event venues, dining and lodging.  Maps include hotels, points of interest and wine & beer tasting rooms open to the public. You can get your FREE copy by mail by calling 1-800-468-6765 or get your copy in person at the Solvang Visitor Center located at 1639 Copenhagen Dr. (Open 9:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m. daily) or even easier, order or view online your new Destination Guide at http://www.solvangusa.com/request-a-visitors-guide/