The view from the new Sunset Magazine gardens at Cornerstone Sonoma

The view from the new Sunset Magazine gardens at Cornerstone Sonoma

This post was contributed by Lisa Crovo Dion

I drive the stretch of Arnold Drive in Sonoma often, taking my kids to visit their grandparents in the Wine Country. Above the constant bickering over what music we jam to and who has the iPad, I always point out certain landmarks—the raceway, horse farms, magnificent roses at Klein Winery, the Vintage Aircraft Company and the over-sized Adirondack chairs at Cornerstone Sonoma.

Succulents growing at one of the Sunset gardens.

Succulents growing at one of the Sunset gardens.

Every time I whiz by those enormous, whimsical chairs, I chastise myself for not having visited in a while because Cornerstone Sonoma is one of grooviest spots in around. And, it just got better.

The marketplace is possibly best known as the showroom “laboratory” of Artefact Design & Salvage, with its quirky, museum-like assortment of objects certain to inspire architectural and design fantasies for any space you live, indoor and out. The stylish Park 121 Café and Grill, where you can sip wine and lunch al fresco is also one of Cornerstone’s anchor tenants. There are tasting rooms to sample wines from Poseidon Vineyard & Obsidian Ridge and Meadowcroft Wines, retail spots like Eurasian Interiors and my personal favorite, Nomad Chic, which is my idea for aesthetic paradise, offering an evolving collection of women’s fashion, jewelry, furniture and home accessories culled from around the world.

So how could this slice of lifestyle heaven get even better?

The recent addition Sunset Magazine’s gardens and outdoor test kitchen just pushed the location at the juncture of Hwys 121 and 116 into overdrive. The 117-year-old national lifestyle magazine relocated its main test gardens and outdoor test kitchen to the Arnold Drive location.

The gardens are open to the public, include the “farm” producing ingredients for recipes, a cocktail garden, an orchard and one devoted to sustainable flowers used for arrangements.

The Sunset flower garden.

The Sunset flower garden with views of Sonoma Valley.

Next weekend, May 14 and 15, Sunset will host Celebration Weekend at Cornerstone Sonoma from 11am–5pm. The event will include demos from chefs including Ayesha Curry (Warrior superstar Steph’s lovely wife) and Mustards Grill’s Cindy Pawlcyn, garden presentations from tree experts, landscape designers, designers and horticulturists plus wine and travel seminars and programs on the Home Stage that range from design trends to bath and kitchen remodels to the new minimalism. Mingle with celebrity chefs, lifestyle experts or kick back with a local vintage at the Airstream Lounge.

Go here for ticket more information and ticket packages.