The Astro: Santa Rosa by Way of Outer Space - NBC Bay Area
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The Astro: Santa Rosa by Way of Outer Space

The freshly refurbished motel has retro sass to spare.



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    The freshly refurbished motel has retro sass to spare.

    SENDING A FRIEND ON A DETOUR, the same friend who is taking a cool road trip to a special destination? We've all done it, if we have opinions about towns and eateries and roadside stops, because knowing that a particular pal will be passing a place they're sure to love is too irresistible (in the sense that it must be mentioned, and a new itinerary drawn, all so your friend can experience the attraction you dig). But would you send a friend to outer space first, should they be heading out on the road to visit Santa Rosa and The Astro motel? You might suggest to your buddy that they swing by Jupiter, and Saturn, too, on their way to Santa Rosa, should they want that zazzy, cool experience of space-cool retro-ness. Of course, they should skip the space detour, if a swing by Neptune'll take too long, and head straight to this recently refurbished motel, which just opened at the beginning of 2018. And, anyhow, there aren't colorful motel room doors on Neptune Jupiter, or nifty artworks, or mid-century light fixtures, at least that we know about, but...

    THE ASTRO... definitely has those, plus other panache-filled details. A framed snapshot of songstress Joni Mitchell, a photo of Muhammed Ali boxing underwater, a space-age sign, '60s-era concrete breezeway blocks, sunburst clocks, and lots of pieces created by local artists give the stylish motel its oomph. Adding more oomph to the building, which began motel life in 1963? An "on-site bike repair shop," complete with a "bicycle sommelier." Adding even more oomph to the mid-century modern stay-over spot? It's close to some mighty historic sites, like the Luther Burbank Home & Gardens. Adding even more amazement to the property, this time of the edible assortment? The Astro was opened by the team behind The Spinster Sisters, the nearby restaurant (mmm, Thai red curry mussels, mmm, butternut squash gnocchi...).

    IT'S A SWEET SPOT, made sweeter by the fact that it served as a spot for fire evacuees to stay during the fall fires of 2017, ahead of its opening. Stop by The Astro, say hi, and skip the whole outer space detour; you'll want to get there as fast as your rocket can take you.