From what to wear to where to stay—explore how you can make the most of this exciting summer event

Wine connoisseurs and music lovers take note: the 14th annual Festival Napa Valley kicks off in Northern California this weekend. The summer soiree brings together unforgettable musical performances, culinary events, and wine country views. Catering to a global audience, the festival puts the best of Napa Valley’s musical talent, food, and wine on display. Consider this your definitive guide of what to expect (and what to know before you go):

It’s a 10-Day Affair

The festival takes place from Friday, July 12 through Sunday, July 21. You can pick and choose which events strike your fancy, but be forewarned--the most exclusive events are available by invitation only. 

It Kicks Off with Opera Under the Stars 

To celebrate the start of its new season, Festival Napa Valley is throwing an alfresco dinner under the stars at Meadowood on Friday, July 12 at 6:30 p.m. Come for a gourmet feast prepared by the Meadowood staff (which is perfectly paired with some of the finest Napa Valley wines), and stay for the standout musical performances. Soprano Joyce El-Khoury, tenor Francesco Demuro, and Grammy Award-winning baritone Lucas Meachem will perform with the Festival’s Blackburn Music Academy Orchestra on the Redwood Fairway. 

There will be plenty of other musical events throughout the festival as well, from a joint performance by cellist Sheku Kanneh-Mason and pianist Ista Kanneh-Mason to a closing concert inspired by the 50th anniversary of the moon landing

There are Culinary Events Galore

From vintner luncheons to wine tastings, there will be plenty of culinary events designed to make foodies’ hearts soar. Meet the co-founder of Grgich Hills Estate, Austin Hills, at the Vintner’s Luncheon hosted by Austin and Sara Hills. Held in the 18th-century painted European salon at the couple’s art-centric estate, the private luncheon will pair fine wines with delectable courses. 

You can also attend vintner’s luncheons hosted at Rombauer Vineyards, Solage Napa Valley, Lail Vineyards, Luna Vineyards, and other local wineries. If a sit-down dinner is more your speed, you can attend gourmet offerings at V. Sattui Winery, Far Niente, Castello di Amorosa, and other wineries.

Casual Napa Attire Is Encouraged

Laid-back dress attire is the name of the game here. Men are encouraged to wear lightweight slacks with collared shirts during the day and sportcoats and ties at evening events. Women are encouraged to bring a wrap or sweater since outdoor events can get a bit chilly at night. Practical walking shoes are recommended for everyone. 

Where to Stay

From Calistoga Ranch to Meadowood to Auberge del Soleil, Napa Valley has no shortage of high-end resorts at which to stay during the event. After a long day of enjoying the festivities, there’s nothing better than relaxing at one of these premier destinations.


Looking for a more permanent spot in Napa Valley? Contact Ginger Martin today. As an experienced realtor with a comprehensive knowledge of the Napa Valley real estate scene, Ginger can answer any questions you have about the home buying process and help you find a property that’s right for you.