|Tim & Donna Egan at |
Vintage Inn's opening in 1985
|Kerry Egan, Tim & Donna Egan with Slow Living's Sally James|
A YOUNTVILLE STORY -
It was their great love of wine country and a vision of the future for the little hamlet of Yountville that brought brothers Timothy and Michael Egan to the Napa Valley in 1976. In that year, they joined with long-time friends and associates Michael Sandbach, Dino and Mario Ghilotti, and other now former partners to become the Vintage 1870 Associates partnership and purchase the landmark Vintage 1870 (now V Marketplace) specialty shop complex in the heart of Yountville.
Under their guidance, this historic property was carefully and methodically improved, maintaining the 19th century charm of its buildings while blending a mix of upscale retail shops, galleries and restaurants that would hold a universal appeal for local residents and out-of-town visitors alike.
|The Vintage Estate's Historic V Marketplace Retail Complex|
Driven by the romantic lure of the wine industry, visitor travel to the Napa Valley in the early 1980's grew rapidly. It became clear that the addition of an upscale country inn was the linchpin to connect the overnight visitor with the Yountville experience. The Egan and Sandbach families were joined by friends Mario and Dino Ghilotti and other investor-partners for this new venture. Along with town officials, the group shared this vision of Yountville as a visitor "destination."
|(Left to Right) |
Tim Egan, Mark Power & young Kerry Egan review
construction plans for Vintage Inn in Yountville, circa 1984
By 1983, the design and development plans for the multimillion-dollar hotel were underway. In June of 1985, the 80-room Vintage Inn opened to rave reviews. On the basis of quality standards and daily room revenues, the property was ranked by the Lodging & Hospitality Association in the top 100 most profitable hotels in the United States and Travel+Leisure Magazine’s Top 500 Hotels in the World. Even its landscape architecture reflects a totally unique aesthetic style. The inn's landscape designer, Thomas McCormick, was honored by the National Association of Landscape Contractors of America for his design work at the Vintage Inn.
Says partner Timothy Egan, "The development of Vintage Inn furthered the partnership's commitment to the local community through the advancement of the ‘overnight destination' concept. Our goal was to create a project that would produce the lowest impact on local services yet deliver the highest return in transient occupancy tax revenues to the Town of Yountville." It was a promise fulfilled. The Vintage Inn and V Marketplace venues, collectively known as The Vintage Estate, would comprise not only the largest joint visitor destination in Yountville, but also the most profitable. The combined local taxes generated by the sister properties contributed more than a third of the Town of Yountville's general operating fund.
"Yountville is a small town, and in a place like this, 'success' is a measurement of the long-term commitment that you make and you uphold," notes Egan. "We own businesses here and we own homes here. Our commitment is one that we've made to our families, our partnership and the community," he adds.
The opportunity to demonstrate this commitment has presented itself more than once. In 1986, when the hundred-unit Vintage Subdivision project started by another developer in 1981 fell into bankruptcy, the partnership took action. Sensing the immediate community need, the partnership, which included the Egan and Sandbach families, negotiated with the bank to purchase and complete the final twenty-nine units of the project. The original plan for the final phase of development called for construction of duet-style attached dwellings; a design that the partnership felt would create an imbalance in the residential profile of the community. So the decision was made. The partnership would redesign the plan and seek town approval to build detached single-family homes.
Tim Egan recalls, "As developers, we took the more costly route by opting not to build the final twenty-nine units as duet-style townhomes in favor of the single-family detached houses. However, the original design plan didn't offer Yountville what it needed in residential improvements. Experience just told us that the design change would give the community greater residential diversity, and in the end, a better balance."
On October 16, 1998, the partnership opened the doors of the third Vintage Estate sister property, the 112-room Villagio Inn & Spa. Addressing guests at Villagio’s opening event, then California Senator Mike Thompson called the project "an exciting new asset to the Yountville community and the Napa Valley." Thompson lauded the Vintage Partners, and Timothy Egan personally, for demonstrating a continuing commitment to the improvement and enrichment of the community with the quality of their projects.
|Villagio Inn & Spa|
Even before earning its AAA Four Diamond Award rating in February 2000, Villagio Inn & Spa was acclaimed by such publications as Town & Country, San Francisco Examiner Magazine, Los Angeles Magazine and Travel+Leisure Magazine, with awards that have since included Travel+Leisure’s Top 500 Hotels in the World and Top 50 Resorts in the United States & Canada.