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SOURCE: Temecula Valley Convention and Visitors Bureau
Old Town Temecula’s New Top 10 includes intriguing history, dining, culture, and shopping. Stay and experience midweek for appealing savings on guestrooms and group rates.
Temecula, CA (PRWEB) January 10, 2013
“New perspective from unique, Temecula Valley experiences is transforming to individuals, couples, family, friends; tour/travel, business, corporate, and association groups. An intriguing combination of history, dining, culture, and shopping contributes to newest recommendations for the midweek, Old Town Temecula Top-10,” shares Kimberly Adams, Temecula Valley Convention & Visitors Bureau president and CEO. “With special, Sunday-through-Thursday (better-than-weekend) hotel-motel-resort guestroom- and group-rates, visitors enjoy appealing savings that can become additional resources for Old Town activities.” The casual, picturesque valley is 1-hour from San Diego, Orange County, Palm Desert; 1½-hours from Los Angeles. With natural gifts of climate and geography, bolstered by Pu’eska Mountain, Temecula hotels-motels-and-resorts are conveniently located minutes from Downtown Old Town Temecula; Temecula Valley Wine Country; Pechanga Resort & Casino.
1-Walk Historic Old Town Temecula
Southern Emigrant Trail’s first travelers to Temecula were trappers-hunters, explorers, gold-prospectors. In 1858, Temecula became a Butterfield Stage-stop. In 1882, first railroad-line was completed; new town-site established (Old Town dining-shopping-entertainment district-location today). Some ‘railroad years’ structures still exist. Visitors Center (Third Street/Mercedes) provides ‘free’ Old Town Historic Walking-Tour maps/brochures. 1890 Welty Building was hotel with bar, pool tables, boxing-ring (heavyweight-champions Jack Dempsey, Jack Sharkey reportedly sparred); structure today: Temecula Olive Oil. 1891 Mercantile is The MERC (art-displays, live-music). 1914 First National Temecula Bank is Bank Mexican Restaurant. First Temecula church (1917) is wedding Chapel of Memories. Walking-tour brochure includes additional historic-properties. Old Town’s locally quarried, 150-ton-granite “They Passed This Way” monument reveres early explorers/pioneers (legendary-scout Kit Carson, mountain-man Jedediah Smith). Nearby, Temecula Valley Museum honors history with exhibits (Luiseño Indians to modern-day); docent-guided Old Town walking-tours (oldest landmarks, most-colorful characters; 10+ people by advance-reservation).
2-Savor the Old Town Temecula Tasting Trail
‘Midweek’ means potential conversations with talented merchants/artisans/vineyard-and-winery-owners at palate-pleasing family-owned-and-operated, artisan-food and Temecula Valley wine-tasting establishments. At Temecula Olive Oil’s complimentary-daily-tasting-bar, visitors experience fresh, 100%-California, 100%-extra-virgin; hand-blends. Also tempting: Old Town Spice Merchants’ herbs, spices, sea-salts, teas; Old Town Sweet Shop’s fresh-homemade fudge, caramel-apples; Old Town Root Beer’s family-recipe/namesake-beverage, crazy-variety classic/nostalgic-sodas; trendy-friendly-relaxed Lorimar wine-tasting room’s premium, handcrafted-wines.
3-Shop Old Town Temecula
Less-busy weekdays mean more-personalized attention at 60+ independently owned, specialty-stores, like Temecula Lavender Company (pure, small-batch, signature-products); Old California Lavender (pet-products); Granny’s Attic (one-of-a-kind collectibles/antiques); Farmer’s Wife (classic-knits, accessories, journals).
4-Marry, Elope, Renew Commitment
Old Town’s Wine Country Wedding Chapel is newest testament to romance. The advance-appointment-24-7, wedding-cottage provides same-day marriage licenses, ceremonies.
5-Dine Old Town Temecula
Hip-and-historic district hosts two-dozen, family-owned-and-operated restaurants-bistros-cafés; many: advance-arrangement group-friendly. Baily’s fine-dining has ala-carte, uber-customizable prix-fixe, California/Continental cuisine; Front Street Bar & Grill, gourmet-burgers, salads, sandwiches; Palumbo’s Ristorante, truly authentic, homemade Italian-cuisine. Also recommended: Soro’s (hummus, kabobs); Texas Lil’s (original ranch-style steakhouse); Mad Madeline’s (cheeseburgers, porch seating); Sweet Lumpy’s BBQ (savory ribs); Gambling Cowboy (upscale, classic-steak-and-seafood menu); Nitza’s Pizza (cowboy-themed pizza, spaghetti); The Bank (albondigas-soup, carnitas; call-ahead: dine-in The Vault); Rosa’s (flame-grilled carné-asada); Robin’s Nest (fresh, made-from-scratch dessert).
6-Experience The MERC; Gallery at The MERC
With tall 19th-century brick-walls, The MERC’s intimate, club-style performance space has excellent acoustics; Sunday-afternoons, classical chamber-performances; Thursday-evenings, live jazz (artists like Delfeayo Marsalis, Peter Sprague). Gallery hosts artwork by talented, local artists.
Temecula Stampede is popular Old Town dancehall: music, dancing, bull riding; free-admission/no dance-cover nights: Mondays/Thursdays.
8-Picnic on Temecula Town Square
Campini’s is perfect for lunch-to-go (excellent sandwiches, fresh-baked rolls, fresh-made salads, authentic-Italian cookies). Ideal-picnic-destination is Temecula Town Square; westerly view, lawn, trees, Luiseño basketry-inspired fountain, benches.
9-Old Town Temecula Events: Arrive-Early/Extend-Your-Stay
Year-round, Old Town hosts festive, signature events. To better enjoy, visitors-in-the-know arrive days before/stay after; Temecula hotels-motels-resorts offer special, Sunday-through-Thursday (better-than-weekend) guestroom- and group-rates. Saturday mornings are California-certified Farmers Markets (fresh, seasonal fruits/vegetables, artisan-foods, fresh-baked goods). Spring (celebrated daily as Springfest), sees Spring Rod Run, Bluegrass Festival, Western Days. During Summerfest: Street Painting Festival, Plein Air Festival, 4th-of-July Parade, Hot Summer Nights. Autumnfest: Outdoor Quilt Show. Winterfest: Santa’s Electric Light Parade, Winter Wonderland (real-snow), Town Square ice-skating; Theater productions: Nutcracker ballet, Scrooge: The Musical. New Year’s Eve: live-music/entertainment, dinner-celebrations, Great Temecula Grape Drop.
10-Stay Conveniently Nearby
All Temecula hotels-motels-and-resorts are conveniently nearby vibrant, 12-block Old Town. Within walking-distance are Motel 6, Palomar Inn (circa 1927; low-rates), Rodeway (across from Stampede). Quarter-mile from northern Old Town Gateway Arch, are Hampton, Springhill; at primary Wine-Country route, Embassy Suites. Less than 5 minutes from Downtown, Old Town are (to the south) Ramada; (to the north, Uptown Temecula), Best Western, Holiday Inn, Extended Stay, Fairfield, La Quinta, Quality. Temecula Parkway leads to far-from-the-everyday (yet within 5-to-10 minutes) resorts: Temecula Creek and Pechanga.
*Information believed accurate but subject to change.
The Temecula Valley Convention & Visitors Bureau, the region’s official resource-for-visitors is online at VisitTemecula.org; Facebook, “Temecula Valley Southern California Wine Country”; and Twitter, @Visit_Temecula. The Temecula Valley Visitors Center (Old Town Temecula, Third Street/Mercedes, adjacent Temecula Civic Center) is open-7-days. For visitor information-and-assistance, call 888/363-2852, 951/491-6085.
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