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The Inn at the Tides, Bodega Bay

As a world traveller and photographer, I like to recognize places where we travel, where we stay, and where I believe we were treated above and beyond the minimum.

Located in Bodega Bay, The Inn at the Tides is by the ocean and very convenient to Sonoma County and Marin County.

This hotel is about 40 miles north of San Francisco.

We went there on the weekend of President’s Day and Valentine’s day. As we left San Fransisco and took the Pacifica road 1, we were in and out of service with our phones and my reservations with Expedia did not go through over and over. I try to call the Inn at the Tides and literally each times after I introduce myself to ask if my reservation went through with Expedia, I would hit a bad service spot and the connection was lost. I must of called back at least 1o times, and the person at the front desk , never lost her patience.

When we finally were able to get an entire conversation we found out our Expedia reservation and payment as predicted had not go through. We were going to call back Expedia and the receptionist told us not to worry about it, that she would match the price we had.

We arrived late around 9pm. We were jet lag, wired, excited and hungry.

We went to our “room”. It was an absolutely incredible setting. Set as little Cottages, we were very pleased to see our rooms. We were welcomed by a complimentary bottle of wine, that was wonderful.

The pillowtop bed came with down comforters and was so comfortable.

The wireless Internet access was complimentary. We had a beautiful flat screen TV with cable programming. The very spacious bathroom had complimentary toiletries and hair dryer. There was a spa and an outdoor  pool right outside of our cottage.

Breakfast was complimentary at the Tides restaurant across from the Inn. The menu had many choices.

The restaurant was also incredible, and for those that know me, I do not easily giving compliment on a restaurant. The view on the water, very clean, good service and fresh food.

This is really a place I would recommend anybody to stay!


Village of Northern California Bodega Bay

Bodega bay sunrise, California

Bodega Bay is a very shallow, little port in the Sonoma County Valley. We drove there from San Fransisco and we stayed in a charming little place call the “Inn in the Tides”. It is approximately  40 mi from San Fransisco.

The bay is a marine habitat used for navigation, recreation, and commercial and sport fishing including shellfish harvesting.

Of course seafood was excellent there and I discovered that some of the movie scenes from the birds were filmed there.

Charming little village away from everybody.

We woke up so early that morning to catch the sunrise on the water. How peaceful and beautiful!


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Sausalito, California

This is the view from Sausalito of San Franscisco.
Patrick drove through so many neighboroud to get me to the best place to get good photos.
It was incredible to see all the people biking there by the water.

Incredible view of the city.Here are photos edited…

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Fun weekend with kids

The weekend before we left for California we had the girls. We decided to stay home after church, and play the game Cranium we laughed so hard!

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We loved it so much that when we got together with our friends the Whitlows 3 days ago for a wonderful dinner they made for us we decided to play with them. We laugh so hard! Another memorable afternoon/evening.

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Trip to Sonoma Part 2

Again those are just photos that were taken very quickly with our phones. I have not yet started to edit yet the many photos that I took on this trip.

I think we left off Part 1 of the trip to the driver taking us from San Fransisco to Sonoma.

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We got picked up in this beautiful black SUV. We went through San Fransisco City

We were at the Fairmont Mission Inn and Spa by 2 pm. We checked in our room, and then went to register at the Aetna counter. We got our tags and the itinerary  of the trip.

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February_2015_Iphone_sonoma_trip_0152 copyWe then got ready for the welcome cocktail dinner they had for us.

The dinner was so wonderful. Wonderful fish, pasta station, meat station, mash potato martini bar, and desserts included macaroons and creme brûlée. Delicious! The company also offered each of their winners and their +1 a pair of Maui Jim sunglasses with the Logo Aetna on the glasses holder/box. The little glasses cleaner inside was printed with the Aetna medicare Gold Circle.

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The next morning we woke up at 7 and were at a breakfast at the restaurant “Sante” . Incredible buffet of croissants, fresh fruits, omelette station and much more.

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By 8 Patrick was in a meeting and I had sign up for a bike ride in the town of Sonoma, and in the wineries. It was a almost a 2 hour ride.

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When we got back Patrick was getting out of his meeting and the Aetna team had giving us the choice between spa treatments for the 2 of us, zipline or the wine trolley.

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We had chosen the trolley. We had an incredible time as we first went to the restaurant ” El Dorado kitchen” on the Sonoma square. Food was incredible there.


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We then went to the first winery tour at Buena Vista where we had the luck to meet the French Owner. So much history and I will cover the specifics after I edit all photos.


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We then went to a second winery called Ravenswood. So different and yet so incredibly interesting also.


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This photo above was given to me by Allison, she took this photo and loved it so much, she sent it to me.

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We then went back to the hotel where we showered and got ready for the award diner. I was so proud of Patrick receiving the award.

Here is a link to the video that Kathi so kindly took for us of Patrick receiving his award:


The next day I went on a hike at the Botanical gardens while Patrick was in a meeting. So interesting even if the flowers were not in bloom.

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We then had chosen to go on the horseback riding in the wineries…We went to Chalk Hill and that was incredible.

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Iphone_trip_california_0032 copyWe enjoyed a private sitting of wine tasting after the horseback ride. Laughter, no stress, fun getting to know new people.

We then ended up at our last meal in the Cave, winery of Bezinger. Wow….!!!

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Next morning we headed home…back in San Fransisco first and then the airport.


What an amazing trip! I will make a post in details about each place/activity after I edit photos.

I am grateful and very privilege to have been asked, invited and to be at the side of such an incredible man.



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Where and how to start blogging after coming back from a trip. Trip to Sonoma Part 1

It can be very overwhelming to edit, post and blog after a trip.

This is even harder I feel when you are a photographer and can not share online most photos unless they are rejected by the stock company. I always have to wait to share with you guys the photos from a trip as I am waiting for the approval of the stock company for they want or need. The rest or the one rejected I usually share with you.

The one the company takes, and accept I usually post on my professional blog where you can subscribe of course : http://www.katiasphotography.com/blog/

So this is how I am going to do this trip: I will give you an overview of the itinerary we did and I will post all the iPhone photos, photos of my phone, and Patrick’s phone, including the fun Selfies we did.

I then will as I edit make a post of each location with the history behind it and the photos.


Part 1

Patrick earned a trip with his company AETNA. He helped make the North Carolina team number one in the country. As a broker manager he was 4th in the country. He earned him a trip to Sonoma County and was able to take the person of his choice.

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We had to be on Sunday by 3pm at the Fairmont Mission Inn and Spa in Sonoma to check in. The Fairmont Mission was an incredibly beautiful facility.

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We decided to leave couple of days early versus late as the girls were with their dad the weekend before and therefore, we would not take on the time we have them to go on vacation.

We arrive in San Fransisco on thursday and went to rent our car. We had rented a tiny little car.

By noon (western time) we were on the road. We had decided to get out of the city and go along the road all the way to Bodega Bay.

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Well of course, suddenly I am remembering my wonderful time 20 years ago with my French friend Isabelle and I am wanted to show Patrick Lombard street, the Fisherman Wharf, Sausalito, the hydroplane…

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Well we made it out of the city finally and went to Muir beach, where we watch the sunset there. We then arrived that night in Bodega Bay. We had a reservation that we had taken through Expedia. Wonderful little place call the Inn in the Tides.

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Next morning we left to go visit Fort Ross and go along Pacifica one. We learned all the history of the Valley of the Russian River and saw seals.

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On Saturday, Valentines day, we woke up super early and I took Patrick to the McPhail Winery and then to the Francis Ford Coppola winery, since he loves movies. We then heading to couple of wineries in the Alexander Valley and had a late picnic there. From there we left toward Saint Helena to go visit the C.I.A ( Culinary Institute of America) before heading back to San Fransisco.

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Next morning Sunday we were at the airport to rerun our car and waited for our driver from Aetna that took us to Sonoma.

This leads us to Part 2 of the trip….coming up soon

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Snow fun after a full day back at work

We just got back from Sonoma last night very late.

We were up very early to work, that way we could spend some time with the kids today…yes vacation are fun but work piles up when you are gone and there is a lot of catching up to do.

We worked non-stop while the kids were outside on their sled in the snow. We finally around 5h45 took a break and went with them for 30 minutes. We laughed so hard, we were cold, we fell and last but not least we hit trees.

Here are photos from our escapade outside with the kids as they did not have school today.