Luxury Glen Ellen inn Gaige House has joined the growing number of the California hotels managed by the San Francisco-based Joie de Vivre hotel chain.

Gaige House Inn LLC, the investment group that purchased the 23-room getaway in 2006, replaced the previous management firm with Joie de Vivre Hotels last month.

The new manager intends to improve guest services and refocus the inn's marketing efforts on California, where all of Joie de Vivre's nearly 40 hotels are located, said Eric Paul, regional vice president of operations.

"I think we are just so aligned with who they are," Paul said.

Joie de Vivre focuses on running boutique luxury hotels with character aimed at business and leisure travelers looking for unique experiences.

In the current economic climate, more people are looking to vacation closer to home, often called "staycations," Paul said. The Gaige House could benefit from this trend by properly appealing to the California market, Paul said.

"There are plenty of people down in L.A. or in the Bay Area who would love to stay at the Gaige House," he said.

Rates in the main house, built in 1890, start at $179, while a set of eight luxury, zen-inspired cottages built in 2005 run from $295 to $695.

No major changes to the creekside retreat are immediately planned, he said. The 22 employees have all been retained, he said.

It is the first move into Wine Country for the San Francisco-based chain, which was founded in 1987 by Chip Conley, a prominent executive, author and motivational speaker.

The company employs more than 3,000 people and had nearly $200 million in revenue last year.

Its closest other properties are in Marin, two in Mill Valley and one in Tiburon. Most others are in the Bay Area and Southern California.

You can reach Staff Writer Kevin McCallum at 521-5207 or


Built: 1890

Location: Glen Ellen

Rooms: 23, including 8 zen-inspired cottages

Rates: $170-$695

Owner: Investment group Gaige House Inn LLC

New manager: San Francisco-based Joie de Vivre Hotels