Thursday, May 24, 2012

Summer Photo Contest

Calling all former guests of Columbia Cliff Villas Hotel!  Starting June 1st, 2012, send us your favorite photo from your vacation in Hood River at Columbia Cliff Villas and you will be entered to win a 2 Night Getaway to Columbia Cliff Villas along with Wine Tasting for 2 and White Water Rafting with Zoller's Outdoor Odesseys!  Send your entries to:

Monday, May 14, 2012

Spring is here!

Spring is in full swing in the spectacular Columbia River Gorge.  Wildflowers are everywhere, waterfalls are at peak flow, golf courses are in perfect condition, the new release wines are uncorked, and the westerly winds are back to bring colorful sails and kites to the river!  There's literally something for everyone to enjoy in Hood River this spring.  Included in this newsletter, find an updated calendar with special events taking place in the Columbia Gorge along with some special offers and a photo contest exclusively for guests of Columbia Cliff Villas.

We hope you are enjoying the spring weather and that you will find the time for a memorable stay with us in Hood River soon!

Friday, March 23, 2012

2 Great Cooking Classes at Columbia Cliff Villas

During the month of April, Columbia Cliff Villas has partnered with two of Hood River's best chefs to bring our guests two special cooking classes.  These cooking classes are part of Hood River County's Travel to Learn Program.  These classes offer guests the opportunity to learn cooking techniques from local chefs as well as the opportunity to enjoy great food and wine.

Columbia Cliff Villas is offering guests an opportunity to attend these classes for FREE when staying at our hotel.  For guests staying in our fireside suites, we will provide each room with one free admission and a second person can attend for $50.

Due to high demand, please register as soon as possible to guarantee your spot in the class

Here's more information on these great classes:

Cooking From Spring's Bounty 

April 14th from 10am to 1pm

Class is three hours from 10:00am  to 1:00pm, and includes the lunch YOU prepare along with local Gorge wines to drink. Some of the year's most luscious vegetables come to our plates in spring: fresh peas, artichokes, chives, spinach and spring onions. In our spring cooking class, you'll be using these spring delights to learn some valuable kitchen techniques, such as:
  • Make your own fresh pasta
  • Create and spice hand-made aioli
  • Make a fresh, quick soup that retains all those bright green spring colors
  • Create a super-elegant frozen dessert that takes no last-minute fiddling, a real blessing when you're entertaining

Class is taught by local chef and owner of Nora's Table: Kathy Watson

  • Spring artichoke soup with curried aioli
  • Pappardelle pasta with fresh shell peas and snow peas, pancetta, cream, parmesan and a fresh farm egg
  • Lemon semifreddo with raspberry sauce
Class is three hours, 10:00 to 1:00, and includes class' prepared lunch and served with local Gorge wines to drink.

Click here for more information or to register for our April 14th Cooking Class

Cooking in the Pacific Northwest:

Applying French Techniques to Local Ingredients

Sunday, April 22nd from 11am to 2pm

Join Celilo Restaurant's chef and owner, Ben Stenn on Sunday, April 22nd from 11am to 2pm in preparing a three-course lunch featuring food from the Pacific Northwest.  Learn classic French technique to apply to local ingredients, featuring the best of the farms in the Hood River Valley.  Prepare a three course lunch, snacking along the way.  Enjoy a recipe syllabus to take home with you so that these dishes become a regular part of your home cuisine. 
Menu Includes:
  • Outback Farms asparagus, poached and served in a chilled salad with champagne vinaigrette, pickled shallots and pink peppercorn.
  • Cast iron skillet roasted Pacific Coast mussels, with fresh fennel, garlic and extra virgin olive oil.
  • Classic risotto with Hood River Organic Farm spring vegetables.

Class is taught by Celilo Restaurant's Chef Ben Stenn

Click here for more information or to register for our April 22nd Cooking Class 

Friday, March 16, 2012

Travel To Learn

Travel to Learn - March 23- April 22, 2012

Visit the Columbia River Gorge and take advantage of a wide range of classes being offered by area businesses and residents of Hood River County. Travel to Learn—Hood River County offers exciting experiences in culinary arts, fine arts, outdoor recreation, family fun, business, and much, much, more. And where better to take a class than in spring in gorgeous Hood River? Combine your classes with a visit to Mt. Hood to ski, a tour of Gorge wine country, a trip along hiking, biking, wildflower, and waterfall trails, some great dining, and lots of fun!

Here's the classes that we are offering at Columbia Cliff Villas:

Cooking Northwest Foods with Chef Ben Stenn
Columbia Cliff Villas
April 22, 11am-2pm 

Fee: $75/Non-hotel guest
Join local chef Ben Stenn for a special cooking class featuring local foods.
Cooking from Spring’s BountyApril Rains Bring Spring Greens
Columbia Cliff Villas
April 14, 10am-1pm 

Fee: $65/Non-hotel guest
Join chef and owner of Nora’s Table, Kathy Watson, for a special cooking class.
       Golf: Learn the Game, Play the Game
       Columbia Cliff Villas/Indian Creek Golf Course
       Call for Reservations and Appointment 

       Fee: $499/2 Adults, 2-night stay w/round of golf and lesson
       Grab your golf clubs and head to Hood River for either a beginner golf lesson or swing           

       analysis at Indian Creek Golf Course, and stay at the beautiful Columbia Cliff Villas.

Click here for more things to do in the Gorge!

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Grab your golf clubs and head to Hood River

Course conditions at Indian Creek Golf Course are some of the best in the State this time of year.  Greens are near perfect and the course plays very dry year around.  Did you know that the Hood River receives only about half the annual rainfall of the Willamette Valley?  Spring sunshine brings out the blooms and really makes the snow-capped mountains pop against the blue sky.  Indian Creek is rated 4-Stars by Golf Digest - come stay with us and see why.  Columbia Cliff Villas' guests enjoy discounts on green fees.

Click here to see our great spring golf packages!

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

3 Bedroom Pinnacle Suite for Sale

3880 Westcliff Drive Unit #3 
Hood River, Oregon 97031 
3 Bedrooms | 3.1 Baths | 2,448 sq.ft. 
Offered at $995,000 
MLS 11196637 

Columbia Cliff Villas is situated along the beautiful Columbia River Gorge and this 3 Bedroom, 3.1 Bath Condominium features a spacious and open floor plan.  Featuring 3 fireplaces, gourmet kitchen, beautifully appointed fixtures and appliances, this is truly a gorgeous home.  Whether your considering a new home or a second home, be sure to consider this condo at Columbia Cliff Villas.

Click here to inquire about purchasing this unit!

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Romantic Restaurant with Historic Charm

One of the things I personally love about Hood River is the great restaurants and fabulous food.  Hood River is fortunate to have a wide selection of wonderful restaurants and local chefs.  Last night my husband and I had "date night" and an incredibly delicious dinner at Stonehedge Gardens.  This historic house turned restaurant is a must for anyone who's never experienced the ambience of Stonehedge Gardens and their amazing food.  Stonehedge Gardens offers a fine dining experience you can't find elsewhere.

For the entire month of February, Columbia Cliff Villas will be partnering with Stonehedge Gardens to offer our guests a variety of Romantic Escape Packages to Hood River.  Guests of Columbia Cliff Villas will receive a gift certificate to dine at Stonehedge Gardens when they purchase one of our mid-week or weekend Romantic Escape Packages.  To give guests a small taste of our February promotions, I thought I'd share my dining experience from last night at Stonehedge Gardens.

Tucked away amongst six acres of lush gardens and forest land, Stonehedge Gardens is an old historic house that was once a very popular Inn.  Mike and Shawna Caldwell, the owners and chefs, purchased this property in 2000 and have since converted the old, 1898 historic house into a romantic restaurant with intimate dinning.  Last night my husband and I were seated in a small sitting room that looked out to one of the gardens that was beautifully lit with strands of lights creating a very romantic ambiance.  Immediately we were warmly welcomed to the restaurant by Mike Caldwell.

Last night Stonehedge Gardens was serving homemade French Onion Soup and even the broth was made from scratch.  The consistency and flavor of this soup was better than any French Onion Soup my husband or I had previously tasted.  After savoring every last sip of our soup, my husband and I both chose last night's special Halibut for our main course.  The Halibut was served with fresh pieces of king crab legs on top and was absolutely delicious.  On the side was a wonderful bed of rice and flavorful vegetables.  Also on the side was an incredibly tasteful zucchini cake.  Although already full, my husband and I decided to share a piece of homemade flour-less bourbon chocolate cake.  Like everything else we ate last night, it was perfect and wonderful.  We had a wonderful meal and savored every bite.

Stonehedge Gardens truly offers a unique dining experience that you do not find in most towns.  When planning your visit to Hood River, you will certainly want to make sure you leave time for a special meal at Stonehedge Gardens.

For those who are not familiar with Mike Caldwell, he has a very extensive wine and restaurant background.  In 1997, while working for Cathedral Ridge Winery, Mike wrote the book Varietal Tendencies (as shown below).  My husband and I had the opportunity to purchase this book and have it signed by Mike himself last night.  When you visit Stonehedge Gardens, be sure to ask Mike about the book!

Varietal Tendencies by Mike Caldwell, 
owner of Stonehedge Gardens

"If you're a fan of Oregon wine, you'll get a kick out of Michael J. Caldwell's novel, Varietal Tendencies. It is a war story, love story, winemaking saga, and antic meditation on the metaphysical characteristics of winegrape varietals. It spans three generations of a winemaking family, from Italy during WWII to Sonoma in the Sixties to present day Eugene, Oregon." 
-- Oregon Wine Magazine