Now that the Tri-Valley region has reopened for business, the area’s many wineries, historic downtowns, beautiful parks, myriad shopping options, and award-winning restaurants have adapted modifications and guidelines to ensure that visitors will have a memorable and safe experience. For months, Visit Tri-Valley has been working behind the scenes to prepare for the reopening. This month the organization launched a number of marketing initiatives designed to welcome back friends and family, first-timers, and returning visitors who already know the Tri-Valley region as a beautiful weekend getaway.
The new campaign, called Let the Fun Begin, features an updated website, a giveaway for several lucky winners, updated and digital-friendly trails, and special offers to spur new and returning visitors to make reservations for a uniquely enjoyable experience. Visit Tri-Valley’s redesigned website continues to highlight some of the many wonderful reasons to visit a region with more than 300 days of sunshine every year. Those include delicious al fresco dining options, spectacular hiking trails, dog-friendly activities, and more.
Livermore Valley vineyards and wineries are a major draw for visitors. Located in one of the oldest wine regions in the country, local winemakers pride themselves on their connection to earlier viticultural pioneers by creating remarkable, high-quality wines. The area boasts 55 wineries with tasting rooms. Each winery offers a different wine tasting experience, one rich with history as well as flavor.
This is an especially good time to visit the area for wine tasting and more, according to Chris Chandler, Executive Director of the Livermore Valley Winegrowers Association. “It is harvest season, which means there is a lot of activity in the vineyards this time of year. With safety measures securely in place, it is great to get outdoors and enjoy the wines and experiences in the valley.”
Some wineries offer food and wine pairings, while others offer in-person and/or virtual tastings. Chandler notes that most wineries ask that visitors call in advance, and some require a reservation. Masks are required until visitors are seated. Since the wineries are required, at this point, to conduct tastings outdoors and with a reduced capacity, it is a good idea to plan ahead. Visitors can do just that by taking advantage of the special Sip ’n Stay Weekend Getaway now offered by Visit Tri-Valley.
To enjoy this offer, visitors buy a Tri-Valley Weekend Wine Pass and receive a 40% discount on four tasting flights (one flight per winery, good for 48 hours) at participating wineries as well as exclusive discounts to participating Clean + Safe Certified Hotels. All Visit Tri-Valley partner hotels are members of the California Hotel & Lodging Association, whose Clean + Safe Certification program has set the gold standard for cleanliness, safety, and security.
The hotel discounts for the Sip ’n Stay Weekend Getaway are excellent, according to Robin Fahr, Director of Marketing and Communications for Visit Tri-Valley. “It is a better deal than you could get on Expedia; it is a better deal than you could get anywhere.”
Another great deal is the You Sip, We Ship offer. Visitors who stay in one of the Tri–Valley’s 38 qualifying hotels, including Hacienda hotels Sheraton Four Points, Courtyard by Marriott, Extended Stay America, and Hyatt House, can receive reimbursement for wine purchases shipped directly from participating Livermore Valley wineries to their homes. Eligible purchases range from one bottle to three cases of wine; some additional restrictions apply. Visitors simply submit hotel and winery receipts to WineShipsFree@VisitTriValley.com, and Visit Tri-Valley takes care of the rest.
As part of the welcome back celebration, Visit Tri-Valley is also giving away a weekend in the Tri-Valley to one lucky Grand Prize winner. The Let the Fun Begin Giveaway includes a two-night hotel stay and gift cards to some of the area’s most appreciated local businesses. Runner-up prizes include a Caffeine Trail Gift Card, a Wine Tasting Gift Certificate, a Beer Trail Gift Card, a Restaurant Gift Card, and other great prizes. Entries must be submitted before midnight on November 22, 2020 and restrictions apply.
“All the research suggests that the Tri-Valley is perfectly poised for a tourism recovery,” says Fahr, who notes that travelers are moving away from exploring large cities, which makes the Tri-Valley region especially attractive. Its location is perfect for travelers, close to iconic city sights and on the way to the popular tourist destination of Yosemite. “We have affordable lodging rates. We have the vineyards, the breweries, the great restaurants. The Tri-Valley is a foodie destination and much more. Having lots of space to explore, without crowds, is a really higher value proposition right now.”
According to Fahr, research indicates that visitors take Covid-19 seriously and want to know that the hotels, stores, and restaurants where they travel also take it seriously. That concern is reflected in a host of ways by local businesses as well as in the redesigned website for Visit Tri-Valley. “We have been ready for this,” notes Fahr. “We have always been clean and safe, that is nothing new. But we are letting you know that we have really done everything possible to protect our visitors.”
The staff at Visit Tri-Valley started working on the redesigned website last summer and finished it long before it was needed. “We found the best thing was to have everything ready to go and just put it in storage,” says Fahr. The organization already had its completed website redesign ready and could implement the changes as soon as reopening became official.
Last August Visit Tri-Valley also made it safer and easier to collect points for the organization’s caffeine trail and ice cream trail by making it a digital-only process. Participants no longer need a paper passport to win a prize. Instead, they simply go to four locations on either trail and then send corroborating photos to visit Tri-Valley to get either a Tri-Valley ice cream scoop or Tri-Valley coffee mug. As a result, “the caffeine trail has just blown up,” says Fahr. “We have sent out seventy mugs, mostly to locals. The locals have been keeping us going, and we are so grateful.”
The Tri-Valley Beer Trail is a curated collection of exclusive deals and discounts from the best breweries, alehouses, and taprooms in the Tri-Valley. The Beer Trail has been elevated into a digital process as well. Participants get a digital passport (no app required) and win a prize by checking in at 10 locations on the trail. Those who visit all 16 stops win a Tri-Valley Beer Trail 64-ounce growler container.
The reopening in October has brought new energy to Visit Tri-Valley. “I am excited because it is an opportunity to throw out the old playbook and start anew,” notes Fahr. “Now we can get the attention of people who want a really clean, lovely getaway without going broke on it.”
For more information about Visit Tri-Valley, please visit www.visittrivalley.com.
For more information about the Livermore Valley Winegrowers Association, please visit www.lvwine.org.