At 139 years old, downtown’s McClelland-Priest house has long reflected Napa’s past.
Today, the home could get a new owner, adding a new chapter to its future.
The 1879 Victorian-Italianate mansion, operating as the McClelland-Priest Bed & Breakfast for the past 27 years, has been listed for sale. The asking price is $3,995,000.
Owner Celeste Carducci–Ahnfeldt said she decided to sell the 4,099-square-foot home, located at 569 Randolph St., because “it’s time to pull back a little.”
“I love it but … I’m looking at a few new opportunities,” she said. “It’s been a beautiful career experience for me … and I know someone else could take it to the next level.”
The large home features six bedrooms, seven full baths, a “grand scale” dining room, and many period details, including parquet floors, ornately decorated ceilings, stained glass windows, elaborate lighting fixtures and wood paneling.
“It’s a beautiful place,” said Carducci–Ahnfeldt, who has owned the home for 30 years. She raised her three children in the home, and some of them helped operate the inn at different times. The B&B has been open since 1991.
“For me, it was running it like a family business,” Carducci–Ahnfeldt said.
These days, Carducci–Ahnfeldt has a few other projects she’s involved in with her husband, Bruce Ahnfeldt. Those include a tasting room called Uncorked at Oxbow, Ahnfeldt Wines, Provocative Wines and Carducci Wines.
Carducci–Ahnfeldt also teaches classes, such as kinesiology, at Napa Valley College, and owns Napa Hot Yoga.
“I really want to focus on building that business,” she said of the Yoga studio located at 1660 Silverado Trail.
Carducci–Ahnfeldt said another factor in her decision to list the property is noticing that other longtime downtown B&Bs have changed hands, including the recent sales of the Beazley House and La Belle Epoque, and earlier sales of the Cedar Gables Inn and the Inn on Randolph.
Who would make a good buyer for the B&B? Perhaps a group that already has a handful of small boutique hotels, said Carducci–Ahnfeldt. Or a winery group that wants to have a place to host wine club members or other guests, similar to wine industry entrepreneurs John and Michele Truchard who bought the Beazley House in June for $4.35 million.
Her advice to that next owner is to continue to network with the wine industry, stay on top of lodging industry trends and use social media.
Don’t go into the hospitality industry uninformed, she warned. “You will get burned out.” The hospitality industry runs 24/7, she noted.
“If you are going to saddle up on the horse, you need to hold those reins tight,” she said. “Just put your head down and work through it. If you have to decrease rates, you decrease rates to get that business.”
Even though her B&B has been officially listed for sale, there’s no guarantee it will sell, she said. “I’m very prepared to wait for the right buyer,” she said. “I’m not going to give the place away.”
And she’s definitely not leaving Napa.
“I love Napa. This community is my community,” she said. “I feel the vibe of the new Napa and I think it’s great.”