Trip Time: 2-3 days
Nestled in the Inland Empire, Rancho Cucamonga is a great destination whether you decide to stay a few days or you’re just passing through to Southern California. Believe it or not, one of the oldest wineries in California is located right in the heart of Rancho Cucamonga. For more than 87 years, the Joseph Filippi Winery and Vineyards has produced some of the finest wines in California, winning more than 200 awards in the past 30 years. Today, the winery continues to advance an industry that has long been a part of Rancho Cucamonga’s rich and colorful heritage. Visitors of all ages can learn the history of winemaking, learn the science behind the art of making wine or take a tour of the winery – adult visitors can taste some one-of-a-kind vintages produced exclusive for the Filippi family.
Since there is so much to see and do in Rancho Cucamonga, visitors often extend their stay in the area. You can cozy up in a turn-of-the-century landmark Victorian home, the Christmas House . Built in 1904, the quaint bed and breakfast offers afternoon tea in the parlor, lets guests relax with a book in the library, or play a game of chess in front of one of seven fireplaces. Guests can also relax on the spacious veranda or enjoy a stroll through the beautifully landscaped gardens after breakfast.
On the opposite end of the spectrum, for the true urban loft experience, there is the Aloft Ontario-Rancho Cucamonga hotel, a Starwood property concept hotel. In addition to the Aloft, there are also several business-class suite hotels that frequently offer special weekend deals.
The Maloof Residence and Gardens is a living museum where visitors can view examples of the style and craftsmanship of one of the most widely admired contemporary furniture craftsman, Sam Maloof. Maloof, entirely self-taught, was one of only a handful of furniture designer craftsmen to make his livelihood working full time with his hands, and was revered as the greatest woodworker who ever lived. Maloof’s work has been exhibited in the Smithsonian and there are pieces in the homes of three former U.S. presidents. His historic residence and workshop is located in the north part of Rancho Cucamonga.
The Rains House , built in 1860, lets visitors step back in time to the era of land grants and large ranchos. Originally an $18,000 show piece when it was built, the Rains House served as the home of the second owner of the Cucamonga Rancho. The house was built with bricks made from the red clay on the site. The flat roof was made waterproof by tar from the La Brea Tar Pits in Los Angeles. Water from a spring traveled via a flume through the kitchen, the patio and then under the house to the orchards keeping the house cool in the warmer months of the year. Today the Casa de Cucamonga Historical Society has furnished the house with period items, and docents welcome visitors during open hours. The house provides a unique opportunity to experience life in those years in what has now become the City of Rancho Cucamonga. Special programs for families are offered throughout the summer months.