With Santa Rosa being the epicenter for outdoor enthusiasts, it’s no wonder the Astro Motel caters to the bicycle crowd. Owned and developed by a group of cycling enthusiasts, the Astro features a “bike lounge” where guests can use hotel-provided tools to fix tires, make repairs, adjust gears, get trail or ride recommendations. Guests can even have their own bikes shipped ahead and assembled in their rooms when they arrive. The Astro also provides a high-end American-made brand of loaner bikes called Shinola Bikes. They are town-style cruisers, making them more appealing to a broader tourist base.
“We love Shinola Bikes because they have been reinvigorating the American brand by returning to standards where American manufacturing began,” said Sam Hamby, day manager at the Astro and resident “bicycle sommelier.”
The Astro Motel is located just south of the entrance to the Prince Memorial Greenway and less than half a mile from a conjoining entrance to the Joe Rodota bike path, which extends to Sebastopol. Hamby points out that riding a bike allows guests to explore more of the community. “(They) can go where cars can’t go and slow down their pace and be able to experience more of their surroundings without being distracted by the responsibility of driving a vehicle,” said Hamby. “It’s safer for them –– and getting on a bike really brings out the kid in all of us.”
“It’s really more fun to get on the bike than to get in the car,” said Andy Hampsten, a former Giro d’Italia cycling champion and minor investor in the Astro Motel who has frequented Sonoma County since 1980. “I just fell in love with Santa Rosa as a cyclist –– the terrain is really wonderful,” said Hampsten. “The climate, the flora, and fauna are very similar to my second home in Italy, and it’s really remarkable to me how much it reminds me of the Mediterranean climate.”
Santa Rosa continues to define itself as a cycling destination and hosting a variety of cycling events like the Amgen Tour of California, freshly minted triathlon’s IRONMAN Santa Rosa 140.6 and 70.3, and local pro cyclist Levi Leipheimer’s charity GranFondo ride has only added to this defining characteristic as an outdoor enthusiast’s paradise.
The Astro Motel is located at 323 Santa Rosa Avenue, Santa Rosa, CA 95404 – Call (707) 200-4655 for reservations.