Perched at the top of the hill just North of the town of Sonoma, Exclusive Resorts’ Norrbom Estate is a magnificent home that really represents the best of the wine country. The house sits on a beautifully landscaped 5 acres of gently rolling hills with spectacular vistas over the Sonoma valley, Glen Ellen and Kenwood.

After driving up a winding single lane road, you enter the property through a large iron electric gate, follow a peaceful tree line driveway and then after a left turn the house comes into view resplendent behind a large circular lawn and spectacular rose garden. Sitting on a ridge line, both the front and back of the house look over valleys with an array of vineyards as far as they eye can see and farms and horse stables.

You enter the home through a majestic foyer with a large chandelier and a sweeping double staircase that already feels like it should be like something out of a Hollywood movie.

A key feature of almost all the Exclusive Resorts homes are the living and dining areas that are set up for entertaining. Norrbom has a large kitchen with a huge central island that is perfect for entertaining large groups or for a private chef experience. The dining room comfortably seats eight people and the lounge has plenty of space for relaxing after a long arduous day visiting the vineyards.

The house has two large master suites and two peaceful guest suites that get the morning sun, all have their own en-suites. It also has a nice quiet study area that I have used quite often this year to work remotely whenever I have had the opportunity to stay at Norrbom, it has been a great place to sequester.

The pool area at the back of the home is spectacular. The pool gets the afternoon sun and looks down over the Sonoma Valley across the vineyards towards Glen Ellen and is surrounded by trees and a beautiful rose garden. It also gets the breeze that is carried up the hills, and with valleys on each side it is a great place to watch the birds and hawks as they soar along the ridge line on Summer afternoons.

The pergola has a large shaded table that easily seats 8 people and is the perfect place for al fresco dining and to savor a glass of wine as you watch the evening sun set across the valley. I have enjoyed some fabulous evening sunsets from Norrbom. It is also perfect for cocktails by the pool before heading out, or for a private chef experience at the house if you feel like a respite from the restaurants and wineries.

There are plenty of areas for the family to explore on the 5 acres of land, with some wonderful quiet places to retreat, wander lost in thought or escape to read a book. The pool is deep and wide for leisurely laps and there is a gravel bocce ball court that has amazing views across the valley.

There are also plenty of hidden treasures. On the drive up to Norrbom there is a ‘tree-of-shoes’ which is really fun for the kids to watch out for on the drive up to the house, it’s not easy to spot and is just on the right side before you reach the top of the hill. Once you arrive at the house there is a Knight in Armour that stands guard among the trees along the driveway and in the rose garden a maiden collects flowers as she looks wistfully across the Sonoma Valley.

Located only a few minutes drive from Sonoma town center, the Estateis also in easy access of some excellent restaurants that include The Girl and the Fig, El Dorado and The Depot Hotel. The Sunflower Cafe is perfect for morning coffee, and if you venture up to Glen Ellen don’t miss Les Pascals Patisserie, where Chef Pascal has his wife Pascale have been running the quaint patisserie for 40 years, everything is fresh daily, but go early as they sell out by lunchtime and don’t miss the amazing macaroons. The Star Restaurant in Glen Ellen is also an excellent choice, and if you like spicy food, The Yeti restaurant is one of my personal favorites.

Norrbom is very accessible for day trips to Napa, Healdsburg, The Russian River and the Alexander Valley. There are also plenty of fun activities including kayaking at Tomales Bay, rafting the Russian River or taking a drive out to Point Reyes to visit the Light House and beaches.. Make sure to stop at Point Reyes Station, which has some wonderful small cafes and the famous Cowgirl Creamery – don’t miss the Mt. Tam Cheese.

Our dedicated Exclusive Resorts Concierge is available to curate your entire trip, from provisioning the home with groceries and your favorite food and wine before you arrive through to arranging activities, day trips, wine tours and even private chef experiences.

And well, if that all just sounds a bit too strenuous, there is nothing quite like just sitting and enjoying the afternoon sun with an Aperol-Spritz by the pool.

Or a glass of Cabernet or Pinot Noir as you watch the sunset before retiring for another day of exploring the wineries and spectacular scenery of Northern California.

It is a tough life being so active in the wine country, but someone has to do it.

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Photographs by James Henderson