We spent our wedding night at the Santa Barbara Biltmore on December 30, 1957, and returned for the first time, for three nights (two separate stays), in December-January 2013-2014. This is one of the most spectacular hotels in which we have ever stayed. The rooms are in a number of separate wings with lush gardens surrounding them. Large beautiful trees and beautiful flower gardens are everywhere. (The temperature rarely goes below freezing, so it is possible to grow flowering plants in midwinter.) The bathrooms have beautiful Spanish tile floors. Our honeymoon suite would cost more than $1,300 today, and we opted instead for a Premier Room for a little less than half the price. These rooms have king size beds and fireplaces, and are definitely worth the small extra money compared to the basic room.
We ate in the lunch area twice, once indoors and once outdoors, and the food was absolutely wonderful. The kitchen staff went out of their way to give us what we wanted when we wanted it. We also ate in the dining area across the street, which was equally good.
The Biltmore has an Olympic size pool with lanes for serious swimmers in the area across the street and next to the beach. This is spectacularly beautiful, as is everything about the Biltmore, and we wished we had brought swimming trunks since it was mostly empty. The beach is easily accessed from the pool area and it is possible to go for beautiful walks along the beach. There is very little surf at this beach because the whole Santa Barbara area is protected by the Channel Islands about 25 miles off shore. I grew up just 3½ miles from the Biltmore, and as a boy I swam in the ocean about two miles away many times in summer although the water will seem a little cool for people accustomed to warmer waters.
My wife inadvertently left a valuable necklace on the observation deck above the pool. We missed it only some hours after we had checked out of the hotel, but it was returned to us by hotel security when we went back eight hours later.
Fifty-six years separated our first and second visits to the Biltmore, but we will return often to this truly paradisiacal place.
A Primier Room is woth the extra dollars
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.