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Chumash Properties Continue AAA Four Diamond Award Streak

The Chumash Casino Resort Hotel, The Willows restaurant and Hotel Corque have all once again earned the coveted AAA Four Diamond Award, which is awarded to only the finest hotels and restaurants.

This is the 11th consecutive year that the hotel at the Chumash Casino Resort received the award, the 10th year in a row for The Willows and the 4th consecutive year for Hotel Corque.

“The AAA Four Diamond Award is a respected benchmark in the industry, and we are proud to be among the best hotels and restaurants on the list,” said Vincent Armenta, tribal chairman of the Santa Ynez Band of Chumash Indians. “The fact that we are continuously recognized in this way is a great achievement by our dedicated staff.”

Only 5.4 percent of the more than 29,000 hotels approved by AAA make the Four Diamond list and only 2.3 percent of the nearly 30,000 restaurants approved by AAA receive the honor. 

“To receive the AAA Four Diamond Award so consistently is a testament to the tribe’s commitment to these properties,” said John Martino, the tribe’s executive director of economic development and hospitality. “Chumash-owned properties are always well-maintained and uphold the highest standards of Chumash hospitality.”

The Willows received a makeover in 2015, giving the fine-dining restaurant an emphasis on relaxed elegance with private dining rooms available for small or large parties.

The Chumash Casino Resort Hotel has remained open throughout the tribe’s recent casino-hotel expansion project. Upon completion in May, the hotel will feature 330 rooms, including 55 suites. The crown jewel will be the 12th-floor, 1,700-square-foot Chairman’s Suite. 

For 80 years, AAA has used professional inspectors to conduct in-person property inspections. AAA offers the only rating system using comprehensive, on-site professional hotel and restaurant evaluations guided by member priorities.

With a far greater inventory than any other rating entity, AAA’s rating system covers the U.S., Canada, Mexico and the Caribbean.

California is the state with the most Four Diamond establishments — more than 250. Additionally, Chumash establishments are usually among only a handful of properties within the Santa Ynez Valley that are consistently included in the elite rank of AAA Four Diamond Awards.

Located on Highway 246 in Santa Ynez, Calif., the Chumash Casino Resort is owned and operated by the Santa Ynez Band of Chumash Indians. The tribe also owns Hotel Corque, Root 246 and the Hadsten House in Solvang and two gas stations in Santa Ynez. 

As the largest employer in the Santa Ynez Valley, the tribe employs more than 1,700 residents of Santa Barbara County.

Mike Traphagen is a public relations specialist for the Chumash Casino Resort.

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