I had fond memories of a trip to Casa de Fruta 2 years ago with an RVing group so made reservations again for a week in January. The weather cooperated and I didn’t have any neighbors until the last night before I left. It was a peaceful week of long dog walks and shopping at the various Casa de shops and restaurants. If you aren’t used to California Bay Area prices, it might seem a little expensive for what you get — at almost $50 a night — not many amenities other than a clubhouse and a swimming pool. But the property does have other things going for it.
For a dog owner, probably the best thing is that Casa de Fruta hosts the NorCal Rennaisance Faire every year and the property is adjacent. This property is fenced in, large and grassy, and empty most of the year. It’s the perfect place to let your dogs run. Mine had a blast as we walked over every morning about 10:00 a.m. for a run through the grass. In addition, to the grassy faire area, there is an unused frontage road that is lined with antique farm equipment. It makes for a lovely peaceful, safe walk with your canine friends.
The shops and restaurants are just a short walk away past the Chevron gas station and truck stop. I went one time by myself and several times with the dogs. It was easy to tie the dogs up to an outside out-of-the-way tree or table and go inside to do my shopping or get something to eat. Nobody seemed to mind the dogs at all. You do hear the highway traffic night and day from the RV park.
I do have two complaints and I don’t complain very often at all. The first issue is with the 24 hour restaurant and the second was with the campground laundry room. I met some friends at the restaurant on Thursday for a late lunch. The food was decent but the service was so awful we made jokes about the waitress being on opioids. I was willing to give them the benefit of the doubt and tried the restaurant again a few days later. This time I sat at the counter. No one ever greeted me at all. I couldn’t figure out who the waiter/waitress was supposed to be. After 10 minutes, I left and went to eat at the deli. Much better choice. As an aside, the next day, I was walking by and saw a huge cockroach tent covering the restaurant. All I could think was “ew” and I’m glad I didn’t eat there.
For a campground that has 300 spaces, about 100 of which seem to be month long or extended stay types, the laundry room is in sore need of updating. Out of 9 machines, 4 of them have “out of order” signs. On two different days, dryers I tried just weren’t working properly, after 40 minutes and many quarters, clothes were still wet. They did offer my money back but it’s the time I spend. I don’t plan on spending 3 hours going back and forth to do a load of laundry.
Here are some notes on things you can do —
- Free wine tasting — you are allowed three different 1/2 oz. glasses at a time. I went back on two different days. I bought one bottle of apricot and one bottle of orange muscat and both are very good.
- Buy bulk gourmet candy at either the sweet shoppe or the fruit shed. I indulged a little and satisfied my sweet tooth with bridge mix, chocolate covered berries, and licorice.
- Get a burrito or taco salad at the Casa de Burrito in the Chevron station and have a picnic outside
- Visit the herons, peacocks, and turtles in the pond area by the carousel.
- Walk along the frontage road between the restaurant and the campground and enjoy all the antique farm machinery lining the road.