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There are Gazillions of Gift Cards out there: Why Buy a SageCliffe Gift Card?

Wednesday, December 8th, 2010

SageCliffe hotel and winery gift card  Why buy any gift card?  The principal benefit of a gift card is the flexibility and nice burning-a-hole-in-your-pocket feeling of having “cash” in hand.  You can hold onto that card until the time is right to purchase, and then you know you have the funds to do so.  Isn’t that the main thing with gift cards? 

So Why Buy a SageCliffe Prepaid Gift Card?

If you have visited SageCliffe–whether it was Cave B Inn, the Spa at SageCliffe, Tendrils Vineyard Restaurant, Chiwana Village or Cave B Estate Winery–you understand that this is no campground.  SageCliffe is a beautiful and premier destination resort, and its prices reflect its value to guests.  But times are tough right now, and incomes vary, and we understand that.  So, along with a constant array of packages at different price points all year long, we also offer SageCliffe Gift Cards as a way for those who have enjoyed their past stays at SageCliffe to help someone else–someone who may have never come, otherwsie–to enjoy what SageCliffe has to offer, too.  With a $100 gift card you can enjoy a wonderful meal for two at Tendrils.  Or a Spa treatment.  Or it can pay for the bulk of one of your package reservations at the Inn.  $100 can allow you to bring home a healthy assortment of fine Cave B wines.  This flexibility to use your gift card funds in whichever way, and for whatever combination of amenities, is it’s strongest draw and ultimate reason for its existence.  Everyone likes options, and to hold the reins.  Gift Cards allow you to do so.  And they allow a way for you to give the gift of SageCliffe to others in a form that is easy, convenient, no-hassle, and ultimately, very appreciated!

Why Not Just Buy a Visa Gift Card?

Credit Company Gift Cards are nice for many reasons–we all use them.  But for those among us who still hesitate a bit to give the “impersonal” present of a gift card, one very real way to make that gift card more personal is to purchase a card that relates specifically to something that person would enjoy.  If the person you have in mind (maybe it’s even you!) would like a not-far getaway with SageCliffe’s style, views and food & wine options, then a SageCliffe Gift Card is for them.  If they are Gorge concert goers, a stay at SageCliffe after a concert is a tremendous gift (you’re sparing them from the campground!)  That is why a Visa or other credit Gift Card is just not the same as a specific, travel & hotel-related gift card…because the latter shows you really thought abut the recipient–and didn’t our mothers always say it’s the thought that counts?

All the Ways you May Purchase a SageCliffe Prepaid Gift Card

We sell our SageCliffe Gift Cards in our estore, at  We also sell them by phone:  509-785-2283.  And you may also purchase the prepaid gift cards in person at the Inn front desk. 

So if you decide to take the plunge and purchase gift cards for those you care about this season, know that SageCliffe Gift Cards have an incredibly high rate of use (your friend or family member will use your gift!) and that we will take very good care of them when they do visit SageCliffe.  A win-win for both giver and receiver.

Last thing–remember:  November – December 31 we have our special SageCliffe Gift Card Rewards promotion:  When you purchase $100, $500 or $1,000 in gift cards, you receive a reward (like an immediate $20 off your $100 gift card purchase!) Because sometimes it’s nice to receive something when you give, too.

The Best Way to Enjoy Washington Wine Country this Fall?

Tuesday, August 31st, 2010

….Stay in a luxury yurt.  Have you never put Washington wine country, harvest season and round dwellings begun by nomadic Mongolian tribes together in one sentence, yet alone one experience?  That’s what we thought…and that’s one of the reasons we’ve added our 25 Chiwana Village luxury yurts to SageCliffe resort.  With September beginning tomorrow, so to0 does the harvest season at SageCliffe.  For a destination winery resort, this means the most exciting, dynamic, and true-to-nature season of the year…and this year you can experience the food, wine, amenities and festivities of SageCliffe in an entirely new way…with a yurt stay.  There is simply something divine (no pun intended) about staying in a beautiful, comfortable and conversation-worthy yurt while you enjoy a weekend of harvest activities (our Harvest Festival runs October 15-17 this year), or a mid-week mini-trip to enjoy a grape-inspired spa treatment or signature Chef Joe Ritchie meal at Tendrils.  There’s something great about leaving your yurt and walking the short distance through beautiful vineyards heavily laden with ripening grapes to experience a wine tasting in the Cave B Estate Winery roundhouse, or glimpse the winemaker and his team at work loading the crusher with newly-picked grapes. There’s something “best” about the fact you can gaze at the sunset over the gorge from your yurt patio, and sip your coffee from the same as you watch the sun rise the next morning.  Surrounded by vineyards at their prime, a working winery, delicious, seasonally-inspired meals, the utmost in spa relaxation, ruggedly beautiful and dramatic gorge hiking trails and viewpoints, with your personal, beautiful yurt and the great Chiwana Village Hosts at your disposal, this may very well be the absolute best, most creative and inspiring way to enjoy Washington Wine Country this fall.

Chiwana Village Yurts in AAA’s Journey

Tuesday, August 31st, 2010

Thank you to AAA for this nice write up on Chiwana Village….we agree; our luxury yurts are not the yurts of yesteryear!

Best Gorge Concert Lodging Around? We think so.

Tuesday, August 10th, 2010

Planning on attending an upcoming show at The Gorge?  Have you camped just one too many times, or groaned as you realized that after your wait to get out of parking post-concert, you’ll still have a drive ahead of you to your hotel?

We understand.  And we think just maybe we’ve kept SageCliffe a little bit too much of a good secret.  Because  did you know?  It’s right next door to The Gorge Amphitheater.  And it has not one, not two, but three different kinds of lodging options.

Just this summer, we added 25 luxury yurts to SageCliffe’s lodging options, which already included beautiful Cave B Inn, with its Cavern rooms (built right into the cliff), three suites in-lodge, and 15 ultra-cool stand-alone Cliffehouses.  The yurts are part of Chiwana Village at SageCliffe, and are just a stone’s throw from Cave B Inn & Spa and Cave B Estate Winery, nestled among vineyards and with a beauty all their own.

But what of the cost, you say?  You won’t be paying camping costs.  But…you won’t be camping.  And we have all sorts of special packages happening all the time, to help provide both great value and that signature SageCliffe “something special.”  Right now Chiwana Village has three special package offerings.  You can see them here.  And Cave B Inn  has a whole bevy of options for you as well.

Just think:  After the Gorge concert is over, you only need to take a short walk or a shorter drive a few minutes away, and voila–you’re at your accommodations.  No tiredness behind the wheel; no hassles.  And then in the morning, there’s Tendrils Restaurant, the pool, the sun, the gorge, the trails–all the amenities–just waiting for you.  Now, we call that the ultimate Gorge concert weekend.  Why settle for the same Gorge experience each time?  Try us out….SageCliffe is owned by the same people who built and started The Gorge Amphitheater (anyone remember when it was called Champs de Brionne Summer Music Theater?) so you get to take part in a little bit of The Gorge history simply by staying at SageCliffe, too!  And to help you visualize your ultimate Gorge Concert Getaway, here’s the concert line up:

Aug. 14:  Vans Warped Tour
Aug. 28: John Mayer & Keith Urban
Sept. 3-5: Dave Matthews Band
Sept. 11:  Brad Paisley
Oct. 2:  Jack Johnson

We know:  It’s hard to choose.  But we feel we can say with some certainty that no matter which Gorge concert you choose to attend, you’ll make it just that much more fun, and that much more enjoyable, if you try a stay at SageCliffe.  Your friends will think that you’re the rock star.

Yurt at Chiwana Village at SageCliffe
Cave B Inn

Luxury Yurts Q & A at SageCliffe

Wednesday, August 4th, 2010

yellowflowers_sage_vineyard_cliffs.JPG   Now that almost all 25 luxury yurts at Chiwana Village at SageCliffe are up and running, it’s time for a quick Q & A.  Ready?  Here we go:

 Q.  So I know what a yurt is, but what the heck is a luxury yurt?

A.  A luxury yurt is not just a yurt with high-quality, ultra-comfy & good looking interior design and features; a luxury yurt is really the entire lodging experience:  it means you’ll be enjoying the close-to-nature aspect inherent with a yurt (they are canvas walls, after all, and you will hear the wind, the birds…) while at the same time enjoying the comfort and ease of a premium resort; its amenities, service and tremendous setting.

Q.  To be honest, I’m not sure what a “premium resort” really means, either.

A.  A Premium Resort is a place where the guest is #1:  Where service is everything, and every detail is designed to give you an unique, relaxing, engaging and high quality guest experience.  Although there are many rating systems used for resorts (think stars, think numbers…) a premium resort is really about how each individual guest feels.  A Premium Resort has done its job if it not only meets your expectations, but exceeds them.

Q.  Okay.  So if I stay in a yurt at Chiwana Village, how is that different than staying in a yurt at a state or national park?

A.  You’ll have a king-size bed with plush mattress and dreamy-soft bedding and pillows.  A sink-your-feet-into it carpet in front of the bed.  A full-size brown or red leather couch in front of beautifully-draped windows (that look out on the SageCliffe views–speaks for itself).  The bathroom is an airy, sizeable room and has those great, soft, pure-white “hotel towels” that we all wish we could steal when we stay at a resort (but please don’t…) A bamboo-framed mirror, blond-wood accessories and accents.  You’ll enjoy your own private shower and the happiness of knowing all you need to do is walk out the bathroom door and you’re right back into your beautiful yurt living/bedroom. Throughout the entire yurt you’ll walk on the coolest colored concrete floors, and you’ll have a huge, clear sky-dome above the bed that you can open and close at whim.  (Star-gazing while lying in bed, with a cool breeze flowing over you…sound good?)  And, when you can get yourself to leave your luxury yurt, you’ll have a chance to sit on your own personal patio and gaze northwest at the vineyards, the cliffs in the distance, the grounds of SageCliffe and, if you’re in a River View Yurt, the stunning Columbia River and gorge.  Then you can jump on a courtesy cruiser bike, feel the wind in your hair as you bike down a vineyard row or path to Cave B Inn and have simply one of the most creative, deeply satisfying meals you’ve ever had at Tendrils Restaurant.  Then you can walk or bike to Cave B Estate Winery nearby and wine-taste through some spectacular (8 medals were awarded this year at Seattle Wine Awards!) wines by Winemaker Freddy Arredondo.  And don’t forget the Spa…The Spa at SageCliffe is between the Inn and winery, and the treatments there are simply divine (no pun intended…well; maybe a little.)  From grape-inspired treatments to your basic-yet-wonderful aromatic facials and the rest, the spa is just waiting to send you back out into the world (or back into your yurt) ultra-refreshed, ultra-relaxed, and feeling like you’ve had a long, delicious, restful, luxurious vacation.  What else?  Marked hiking trails down into the gorge (you can go all the way to the river…ahhhh) The Chef’s Garden, and our seasonal events (Harvest Festival weekend is mid-October this year).

We think this all makes it pretty different than a camping yurt at a state or national park.  Don’t get us wrong; we love those, too.  They’re just not what you’ll find here.

Q.  I’m feeling relaxed just reading about it.  But I’m really a nature-lover, and I care a lot about the environment.  Won’t all those yurts change the peace and beauty of SageCliffe? I love how the Inn, Winery & Spa don’t stick out from their natural surroundings.

A.  Chiwana Village is still in its infancy, so that means it doesn’t have the “camouflage” characteristic of all the SageCliffe buildings quite down yet.  But it will–and soon.  And more than that:  The reason we chose to go the luxury yurt route was principally because of the environmentally-friendly nature of yurts.  We chose yurt manufacturer Rainier Industries because they’ve received premier certification for environmental sustainability.  We are not going to surround the yurts with Western-Washington-like sweeping lawns, because this is a high-steppe region, and acres of green grass do not grow naturally here!  Already located within Cave B Vineyards, we’re planting more vineyards which will run right through Chiwana Village.  The plants are small this first year…but they’ll grow.  And they’ll be true, producing vines with grapes that will go towards making those fantastic Cave B wines.  And we’re putting in a water feature in the Village.  But don’t fear…it will have water in it only when the vines are being irrigated; this means that no extra water is being used solely to beautify; it means reduced water waste and sticking to what the natural environment dictates. 

Q.  So does this mean this first season, Chiwana Village will have little to no landscaping?

A.  It means for all seasons, Chiwana Village will hve little to no landscaping…instead there will be the vineyards, and beautiful basalt rock from the property, and the stunning (see pic) natural wildflowers, sage and tumbleweed, which we will let grow back in and around the yurts.  We know that letting the SageCliffe be its own, natural self is the very best way to beautify Chiwana Village…nature always does it best.

Q.  25 luxury yurts is a lot of yurts….will I hear my neighbors talking?

A.  Maybe. They are canvas walls, but they’re not wall-to-wall like a hotel.  And they’re not in a busy campground.  So far, guests have told us they’ve predominantly noticed the birdsong in the morning.  We also have a sound ordinance, and a two people per yurt policy, to protect the peace and serenity.

Q. Will the yurts be open year-round?

A.  No; these are best used when the weather’s nice, so they are open July-October of 2010.  But starting next year, they’ll have a longer season:  May-October.

 Q.  I’ve only paid about $35 for a yurt stay at a park.  These are much more expensive.  Why should I stay in a Chiwana Village yurt instead, and pay those higher prices?

A.  If you think you’d enjoy the luxury yurt experience as described above, then this is the place for you….and the price is amazing, as you are receiving the accommodation, amenity and experience level of a premium resort.

Q.  I want my kids to have a luxury yurt experience, too.  But you have a two person per yurt policy.  Are kids okay to bring?

A.  We’ve created a special Friends & Family Package designed specifically for those who’d like to bring their entire family, or friends.  This allows you to book a second and third yurt for 50% off the regular rate, when you book a regular-rate yurt.  How much fun would that be….all your important peeps in a yurt cluster…it would be like creating your own little village-within-a-village!

Q.  But what if we’d like to have a romantic couples experience?

A.  We recommend one of the three River View Yurts…they’re on the far western end of the village, have stunning river views and great peace & privacy.  We also have a  package great for those love-birds out there:  Serenity Now.  (You can see all the packages and Chiwana Village info on our webpage.)

Q. Were the yurts principally added to SageCliffe to accommodate the concert-goers at The Gorge?

A.  Although we absolutely welcome concert attendees (and love that we can now offer more Gorge Amphitheater lodging to concert-goers), the primary reason we added Chiwana Village was to simply provide more rooms, while striving to make those “rooms” unique, environmentally-friendly, and, ultimately, beautiful.

Q. Why did you call the luxury yurt village “Chiwana Village at SageCliffe,” instead of just “The Yurts at SageCliffe?” Isn’t that creating another brand?

A.  SageCliffe is the entire resort…the entire property. We keep “SageCliffe” as part of every entity…Cave B Inn at SageCliffe, The Spa at SageCliffe, and Chiwana Village at SageCliffe.  The winery is different (everything about wine is different!)  It is Cave B Estate Winery.  But one of the two labels the winery produces are its “SageCliffe” wines.

Q.  What if I still have more questions about luxury yurts, or Chiwana Village at SageCliffe?

A.  We have truly wonderful hosts at Chiwana Village (they are just so nice…) Their names are Bob & Mary Jammerman, and they’ll take very good care of you.  You can call them at 509-785-3291 (Bob prefers talking to people on the phone…he’s a self-described People Person!)  or email them at

 Q.  Are we done?

A.  For now.  We hope to see you soon!

Chiwana Village at SageCliffe in Seattle Times

Friday, July 16th, 2010

Writer Jackie Smith stopped by our Chiwana Village open house last Wednesday, and the result is a mention in the Seattle Times’ Weekend special travel section.  We enjoyed meeting Jackie and taking her through the yurts and on a tour of the entire SageCliffe property.  Thank you to Jackie & the Seattle Times.

 One blog editor’s note:  Heat & AC were mentioned in the article…the yurts do not have (or need) heat, and AC, although planned, will not be in place this first season….with fans and the open-able skydome, the yurts are comfy!

Cave B Webstore Goes in New Directions

Friday, December 4th, 2009


Before Christmas season launched its merry, festive face, we were working to revamp the Cave B Webstore, making it more user-friendly with different wine and gift categories, and more production information.  But knowing that product info alone is not enough; after all, we all want products we desire, right?–So we also stocked the store with a whole bevy of new offerings and great holiday deals:  First we added a Nov. 1-Dec. 31 wine shipping and handling special (free shipping on 6+ bottles sent anywhere in WA State!-see webstore for details), 10% off on all wine gift baskets, bonus gifts and discounts on SageCliffe Gift Cards, and an entire array of SageCliffe Experience Gifts. 

What exactly are Experience Gifts?  We’ve found through the years that those who visit SageCliffe often wish they could come back with a spouse, best friend, their mother, their children….they wish to share the experience of the winery, the Inn, the Spa, Tendrils and the amazing landscape, with others.  Experiences Gifts are packages we’ve put together to allow you to do just that:  you can purchase a winery a la carte activity for your loved one, like a wine blending activity, a Stump the Chump Experience, or personal barrel tasting.  Or, for the foodie in your life, there’s the opportunity to purchase admittance to this spring’s SageCliffe Chef’s Weekends (think Iron Chef-type competition and working side by side with some of the Northwest’s best chefs!) And the Experiences Gifts go on….with SageCliffe Gift Cards another way to purchase the SageCliffe Experience while letting the recipient put together their very own kind of SageCliffe visit.

 And last but most certainly not least, we have the tremendous Cave B and SageCliffe wines available, along with quality wine accessories that you will use again and again.  With full tasting notes available in the store for every wine, we’ve taken the mystery out of your wine-buying decision:  you can find just the right wine for your loved ones, your holiday celebration (Ice Wine or Blanc de Blanc, anyone?) or for your boss or coworkers. (How about the Seattle Wine Awards Gold-winning 2008 Cave B Riesling?)

 We love what we do here at Cave B, and doing what we can to make your Cave B & SageCliffe experience as easy, relaxing and enjoyable is what we’re all about.  We welcome you to visit our Cave B Webstore, click on the pages, browse at your leisure and enjoy the fruits of your search…the smiles on the faces of those who receive your Cave B gifts!  A very happy holiday to each and every one of you.  ~The Cave B Family.

Singer Kim Virant plays at The Cellar Friday, June 12

Tuesday, June 2nd, 2009

The Cellar, our small and dynamic music venue adjacent to the Cave B Estate Winery tasting room, is ready for Kim Virant! A veteran singer/songwriter from the Seattle area, Kim will perform a lively acoustic rock show, accompanied by Cellar-returnee guitarist Gary Westlake, on Friday, June 12. 

Show time is 8:30 p.m., with tasting room doors open beforehand, and the beautiful grounds to lure you outdoors for a walk among the vineyards or a view of the stunning gorge laid out before you.  When you hear the instruments warming up, come on inside to our room that’s been blasted out of gigantic basalt boulders–it’s not a room you’ll soon forget, and neither will you forget the music!  Kim has a way of connecting with her audience that is truly special. 

Get to Know Vicci Martinez: Tacoma News Tribune Article

Tuesday, March 17th, 2009

Charting her course

In Vicci Martinez’s world, creative freedom and long-term happiness always trumps shortcuts to stardom.
That’s why the singer-songwriter opted out of an appearance on the inaugural season of “American Idol,” wary of the hit show’s contractual restrictions. (And she returned to reality TV in 2003, anyway, with a pair of appearances on “Star Search.”)

In 2007, Martinez was seemingly on the brink of a commercial breakthrough again when she signed with manager Bill Leopold. His most high-profile client is Melissa Etheridge, a rock star who Martinez often drew comparisons with when she was getting started.

But Martinez walked away from that deal last year, too, instead opting for the creative freedom that recording new CD, “From the Outside In,” on her own dime afforded.

“It’s kind of that story again of I could have been on ‘American Idol,’ but I said no,” said Martinez, 24. “And I’m happier that way.”

Martinez said she and Leopold had different ideas on what she needed to record to get to the next level. Ultimately, Martinez and her band – drummer Darin Watkins, bassist Jeff Leonard, guitarist Rod Cook and keyboard player Eric Roberts – parted ways with Leopold, determined to record songs they had written and were passionate about.

“The band and I have gotten closer now by doing this project alone,” Martinez said. “The guys are excited for me to take it on and be confident enough that we can do it. They definitely were excited about the management deal, but they wanted to see progress. But they weren’t seeing any, and neither was I.”

The new album showcases an increasingly eclectic sound, with soul, blues, country and even a bit of reggae incorporated into its rootsy tapestry.

“Everybody got to put their little flavor in it as the songs were being written,” Martinez said. “I can do my stuff solo or whatever. But I always go back to Dave Matthews, and I love his unit that he’s got goin’ on right there. And I just wanted to apply that to my band and give them the opportunity to showcase their style.”

Among the songs that are most personal to Martinez are “Rain,” an acoustic ballad that closes the CD. Martinez said she sang it at her father’s bedside when he was dying of cancer in 2005 but lost the lyrics and didn’t return to it again until last summer.

“I think I kind of put them away subconsciously on purpose,” Martinez said. “I just didn’t want to go back to it. It was kind of an intense song. Like, I could never sing it and not cry, so I just didn’t even want to go there. And then I felt when I decided to let go of that myself, things that were hindering me, it just came into my head. So I just rewrote some of the lyrics, and used some of the ones I used with him.”

Martinez unveiled the new songs for Tacoma fans on Friday at Jazzbones (many having been set staples for two years.) Her next Tacoma performances are schedule for March 25 and April 8 at The Swiss downtown.

And don’t be surprised if you hear her on the big screen in the near future, too. Martinez recently returned from a songwriting jaunt to San Francisco, where she collaborated with Bay Area performer Blair Hansen on material that may appear in “Mosquito y Mari,” an independent film directed by Aurora Guerrero.

Recipe #3 by Chef Scriver ~ Very Valentine!

Thursday, February 12th, 2009


Chardonnay French Toast

3-4 eggs
3-4 slices french bread
(cut from loaf, about 3/4 inch thick)1 tsp nutmeg
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 cup half and half
1/2 cup Chardonnay


Gently whip eggs, seasonings, half & half and chardonnay in a shallow pan. Soak bread at least 1 hour per side (use French bread -it doesn’t get soggy). Pan fry in margarine or butter until golden brown on each side.
Place in warmed oven until ready to serve.


White Cheddar and apples

Apple Conserve:

2/3 cup (about 1 medium apple), peeled and diced granny smith apple
2/3 cup (about 1 medium apple), peeled and diced red apple
1/2 cup firmly-packed brown sugar
1/3 cup golden raisins
1/4 cup coarsely chopped walnuts
2 tablespoons balsamic or apple cider vinegar (experiment with both!)

In a small saucepan combine all ingredients except the cheese. Cook over medium-low heat for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat and let cool.

Layer the conserve in between two slices of White Cheddar and sprinkle the walnuts on top.

Both recipes serve two…very Valentine!