Lodging in Santa Barbara, California (III)

Tag: Santa Barbara

Lodging in Santa Barbara, California (III)

Santa Barbara is the county seat of Santa Barbara County, California, located in Southern California. If you’ve planned a tour of the Central California Coast, then Santa Barbara is definitely the best overnight destination. This articles series will reveal everything you need to know about lodging in Santa Barbara, California:

 

Lodging in Santa Barbara, California: El Capitan Canyon Resort – Upscale camping by the beach

 

Want to commune with nature but don't want to pitch a tent? Sleep on comfy beds with linens and duvets in safari tents or cedar cabins, sprinkled along the banks of El Capitan Creek. 

 

The 300-acre site includes a pool, spa treatment area (book a massage beneath the oaks and sycamores), a market stocked with gourmet foods and hiking trails. El Capitan State Beach sits just below the resort near the mouth of the creek. 

 

On Saturday evenings, May through September, guests and visitors gather on the green for outdoor blues, jazz and bluegrass concerts. Admission is free to overnight guests; you can buy barbecue dinner for $18 per person ($12 per child). 

 

Traditional camping is available at the resort's sister property next door, Ocean Mesa Campground.

 

 

Lodging in Santa Barbara, California: El Encanto – Luxurious hillside hideaway

 

El Encanto dates back to 1915 and is one of Santa Barbara's most iconic and beloved properties. Over the decades, the peaceful retreat in a residential area in the hills above the Mission has welcomed many a celebrity, from Hedy Lamarr and President F.D. Roosevelt to Barbra Streisand and Prince Michael of Kent. Legions of locals have also come here to enjoy some of SB's most stunning views while dining and imbibing on the hillside terraces. 

 

Orient-Express, Ltd. purchased the 7-acre property in 2004 and poured more than $100 million to restore it to its original glory and then some. The 92 rooms and suites include two bungalow types: Craftsman and Mission. 

 

Stroll along paths through the colorful gardens, hang out in the spa facility and gaze at the ocean below while standing in the infinity pool. Even if you don't stay here, follow local tradition and come for sunset drinks or a meal in the Restaurant & Bar at El Encanto.

 

Lodging in Santa Barbara, California: Solvang Gardens – Green retreat, inside and out

 

In the last decade, Solvang Gardens Lodge remodeled the entire property, room by room. 

 

The owners recently changed the name to Solvang Gardens — A Boutique Country Inn. It's now a sparkling collection of buildings, including as small spa, set amid well-tended English gardens. It's also a county-certified Green Business.

 

Many of the 24 rooms have marble baths, and some have stone fireplaces, microwaves, and fridges. Rates include Wi-Fi and continental breakfast. This is a good and fairly affordable choice if you want to park your car and walk around Solvang.

 

Lodging in Santa Barbara, California (II)

Santa Barbara is the county seat of Santa Barbara County, California, located in Southern California. If you’ve planned a tour of the Central California Coast, then Santa Barbara is definitely the best overnight destination. This articles series will reveal everything you need to know about lodging in Santa Barbara, California:

 

Lodging in Santa Barbara, California: Canary Hotel – A Spanish-Moorish nest in downtown Santa Barbara

 

In the early 2000s, an aging building in the heart of downtown Santa Barbara was demolished to make way for a luxury hotel. Hotel Andalucia rose from the ashes in this primo spot, with easy access to SB arts, culture and nightlife. 

 

In 2008, the folks who own Casa del Mar and Shutters on the Beach in Santa Monica gave the Andalucia a makeover and a new name to align it with its step-siblings down south. 

 

The Canary — named after the Canary Islands — is now a Kimpton Hotel. It looks like a Spanish-Moroccan island getaway, complete with African rugs, yoga mats and candles.

 

If you stay here, be sure to spend time up on the 6th floor Perch, where some of SB’s best views unfold in all directions. Finch & Fork restaurant and bar on the main floor serves locally sourced, bistro-style comfort food (think grilled fish tacos and sheep’s milk ravioli). If you’re a shellfish fan, don’t miss the fresh seafood raw bar, with lobster, crab, shrimp and ceviche.

 

 

Lodging in Santa Barbara, California: Chumash Casino Resort – Vegas without the glitz

Set within the Chumash reservation in rural Santa Ynez, the Chumash Casino Resort attracts visitors from all over the southland.

 

The casino (must be 18 years old to enter) has 2,000 slots and video machines, plus blackjack, poker and other gaming tables, and bingo. 

 

The resort's main draw is the Samala Showroom, where you view world-class stars up-close from the 1,400 riser-style seats. 

 

The adjacent hotel has a full-service spa, pool, hot tub and fitness center — a great place to chill while friends and family members hit the slots, or when you need a break from the action. Room rates range from $180 to $550. 

 

When hunger pangs hit, choose among three eateries: The Willows (dinner), an all-you-can-eat buffet (breakfast and lunch) and a casual cafe that serves quick meals round the clock.

 

The casino operates free shuttles from Goleta, Lompoc and Santa Maria — visit their website for schedules.

 

Lodging in Santa Barbara, California (I)

Santa Barbara is the county seat of Santa Barbara County, California, located in Southern California. If you’ve planned a tour of the Central California Coast, then Santa Barbara is definitely the best overnight destination. This articles series will reveal everything you need to know about lodging in Santa Barbara, California:

 

Lodging in Santa Barbara, California: Bacara Resort & Spa – Posh Mediterranean resort on the beach

 

The Bacara occupies 78 acres of prime beach-and-bluff property about 15 miles north of downtown Santa Barbara. 

 

The Spanish Colonial "village" includes 350 guest rooms and suites, each with private patios or a balcony deck. It also has three pools, nature trails, a Kids Club and activities (seasonal), tennis, and a huge spa with 36 treatment rooms. Sandpiper Golf Course is just down the street.

 

The Bacara edges Haskell's Beach – a local favorite. But don't expect soft, white sand á la Cancun. It's a "natural" stretch of beach with kelp, driftwood, shore birds and lots of wildlife.

 

The three on-site restaurants include the Bistro (California-Italian meals) and Miró, a high-end restaurant known for its excellent wine country dishes from around the world and extensive wine list to match. There's also a snack bar on the beach.

 

The Foley Wine Society opened an on-site tasting room at the Bacara in May 2013. They plan to offer many wine-themed events and excursions to Santa Barbara County wine country, less than 40 minutes from the resort.

 

 

Lodging in Santa Barbara, California: Ballard Inn & Restaurant – Wine country’s most romantic dining room

 

Budi Kazali grew up in Santa Barbara, became a chef and worked, among other fine restaurants, at Blue Ginger with Chef Ming Tsai. He and his wife Christine bought the Ballard Inn in 2004 and established what quickly became one of the nicest B&Bs in Santa Barbara wine country. The 12-table restaurant with fireplace and candles consistently wins accolades as the most romantic restaurant in the region and has won awards as the #1 restaurant in the county.

 

Budi's creative French-Asian-California dishes reflect his eclectic background and experience. The seasonal menu typically has a just handful of delectable appetizer, entree and dessert options; examples may include Thai curry kabocha soup with whipped coconut cream, or grilled squab with spaghetti squash, pomegranate demiglace and truffled watercress salad. Budi can advise you on great wines to pair with each course. 

 

The B&B has 15 rooms – rates range from $245 – $315 and include Budi's exceptional breakfasts.