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“Great resort in a fantastic location” 4 of 5 stars
Review of The Fess Parker - A Doubletree by Hilton Resort

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The Fess Parker - A Doubletree by Hilton Resort
4.0 of 5 Resort   |   633 East Cabrillo Boulevard, Santa Barbara, CA 93103   |  
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Ranked #30 of 61 Hotels in Santa Barbara
Luxembourg City, Luxembourg
Top Contributor
235 reviews 235 reviews
98 hotel reviews
Reviews in 68 cities Reviews in 68 cities
225 helpful votes 225 helpful votes
“Great resort in a fantastic location”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 20, 2013

There are some locations which make you fall in love at first sight... and Santa Barbara is definitely one of them. It's got it all; the fantastic South California climate, the blue Pacific ocean, beautiful beaches, wildlife (pelicans, seals and seahorses as well as dolphins abound here), the islands in the distance... the beautiful mountains... the lush, manicured gardens everywhere... beautiful houses, posh shops and restaurants...

The Fess Parker is totally in line with what you'd expect from a resort in this area. The complex consists of a number of houses spread around a very nice garden organized around a central pool area. It is worth noting however, for the attention of future visitors, that like all hotels in Santa Barbara, access to the beach is only possible by crossing a four-lane road... As other reviewers also noticed, it is quite close to the railway tracks, so you should expect some noise... But there's not much choice in Santa Barbara I guess, if you want to be close to the sea you'll be close to the tracks as well... and honestly those trains are not such a big nuisance.

Rooms are very large and comfortable and include a terrace or balcony. They may need some updating though, as carpets and furniture appear to be a little tired. Curiously the bathroom, as is often the case in US hotels, is rather small and basic, with no separate walk-in shower. Some details are a bit irritating, like the incredibly inefficient hair-dryer, which is in addition hidden in a drawer or the absence of bathrobes and slippers... On the positive side there's a safe and a minibar in the room, and you get complimentary water bottles at check-in.

The main building and its lobby is very grandiose, and includes the breakfast area as well as bars and restaurants. Access to the parking lot is through a slightly dodgy business centre at the back of the building, and parking is an additional charge... The only available parking is indeed a public car park at the back of the hotel, which may be rather hard to find if you arrive at night as entrance is through one of two side roads.

Good choice for breakfast, even if rather expensive.

Overall this is a very pleasant place to stay, whether you're staying for business or holidays.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled on business
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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1,735 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (321)
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Sydney, Australia
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 19, 2013

Arriving at this large resort was like stepping back in time to the 50's/60's - but in a good way! The large reception area with adjoining bars/restaurants is a great place to sit and take in the ambiance of the place. The pool area is great with plenty of space. All staff were friendly and helpful. Rooms were large enough for a family of 4 with teenagers. Furnishings could be modernised (room was very clean) but they actually add to the whole feel of the place. Being able to do own laundry at a reasonable price was excellent. Santa Barbara is a short drive away which brings me to my only complaint - parking. This sprawling resort has acres of parking but they still charge $19 per day!

Stayed December 2012, traveled with family
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
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Torrance, California
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 17, 2013

I don't know where to start. I haven't been back in almost 7 years and i was lucky enough to revisit after all this time. I'm so glad that I did because the service was unmatched. From the time I drove in, the valet, I think his name was Dave to the time I checked in with Jeff, it was just perfection. I don't know how their cheeks don't hurt all the time from smiling so much. They were just so sincere and I felt it. Everyone that i encountered, it was smiles from cheek to cheek. Service is everything to me and i was glad to see that service was emphasized strongly at this resort. Overall, The property was beautiful, breakfast was quick and easy and most importantly, service was top notch. Thank you and I will definitely be back.

  • Stayed January 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Los Angeles, California
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 17, 2013

Went for my big 4.0 with my girlfriend and had a great time! We got in pretty late so I'm used to getting the "B" squad elsewhere, but the staff here was still immediately attentive and friendly. "A+!" Dor at the front desk was gracious and offered us water and cookies upon greeting us. This was our first time at the hotel and we found it to have a great resort feel. Couldn't have asked for a better time, location or quality staff. Definitely will be going back!

Room Tip: Get a beach view if you can. Well worth it waking up to!
See more room tips
  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Vancouver
Senior Contributor
26 reviews 26 reviews
13 hotel reviews
Reviews in 15 cities Reviews in 15 cities
22 helpful votes 22 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed January 17, 2013

This hotel is in need of an update and it seems that it's coming which is good. The rooms were all very spacious, the furniture and beds were comfortable but the carpeting, paint, wallpaper, lamp shades, etc are all worn out and need to be replaced. The bathroom in our room also needed a good cleaning on the back on the door and in other spots that the usual housekeeping doesn't get to. I would compare the state the rooms are in to a decent Best Western, nothing special and if they want to continue charging the rates they do they need to improve.

Still can't believe hotels still charge $12 per day, per IP address for wireless internet.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
mlavine, General Manager at The Fess Parker - A Doubletree by Hilton Resort, responded to this review, January 18, 2013
We appreciate your feedback and thank you for your comments. I was very sorry to learn that our housekeeping team missed an area in the bathroom of your guestroom. Your comment will assist our management staff when they review this with our housekeeping team. We are excited about the major renovation in the planning stage right now and hope you will return to experience the improvements and give us another opportunity to serve you..
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San Dimas, California
2 reviews
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 16, 2013

I visited Fess Parker for the day on my boyfriend's birthday and I absolutely loved it! I was taken care of by Dor who was very friendly and wonderful ! Room service was prompt, food was delicious and the lady at the front was so sweet whose smile was contagious. Great staff!! The hotel is gorgeous and only steps away from the beach ! I loved it ! I'm definitely going back soon!!!!

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
rep of ireland
Senior Contributor
25 reviews 25 reviews
15 hotel reviews
Reviews in 17 cities Reviews in 17 cities
27 helpful votes 27 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 16, 2013 via mobile

Very friendly at check in and once they found out we were honeymoon couple they upgraded us to a lovely ocean view room and granted free parking. The room was lovely and comfortable and its a nice stroll into town. There is also a lovely pool and the laundry room is handy for those of us doing a bit of traveling.

We didn't eat there so can't comment.

  • Stayed January 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Fess Parker - A Doubletree by Hilton Resort

Address: 633 East Cabrillo Boulevard, Santa Barbara, CA 93103
Phone Number:
Location: United States > California > Santa Barbara
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#8 Business Hotel in Santa Barbara
#8 On the Beach Hotel in Santa Barbara
#8 Spa Hotel in Santa Barbara
#9 Luxury Hotel in Santa Barbara
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4 star — The Fess Parker - A Doubletree by Hilton Resort 4*
Number of rooms: 360
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Fess Parker - A Doubletree by Hilton Resort is steps from the beach and convenient to Santa Barbara's waterfront and downtown. Oversized rooms all feature balconies or patios; families and pets are warmly welcomed. Amenities include a year round heated Olympic sized pool, Spa, fitness center, salon, tennis courts, bike rentals, putting green, shuffle board, weekend wine tasting, 2 restaurants, ocean-view bar and 24 acres of grounds. Complimentary airport/Amtrak shuttle service available daily. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Fess Parker`s Doubletree Hotel Santa Barbara
Doubletree Santa Barbara
Doubletree Fess Parkers
Fess Parkers Doubletree Resort

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