Good location but amenities do not justify the cost. Very basic hotel with terrible service. Multiple different front desk people were inhospitable and acted like I was a nuisance for asking for a coffee recommendation.
Set against the handsome Pacific Coast, nestled in the shadows of the Santa Ynez Mountains is the picturesque Santa Barbara's Hotel Californian (HC). Poised on a beachfront stretch, this property is smack-dab on the front door of the vibrant Funk Zone with its boutique wine tasting venues, art galleries and within walking distance of Stearns Wharf, a wooden pier with shops and restaurants. The exterior of the HC embraces a Spanish revival architect with white washed walls topped off in terracotta tiles creating ' Mr. Clean' looking buildings. The hotel embellishes Moorish architecture through keyhole arches, plush drapes, hanging lanterns and other enticing design elements. Fun Fact: the HC is endowed with almost a 1,000,000 tiles over the entire property. This 121 room seaside destination sports accommodations that are uniquely designed but all feature a Mediterranean-style with a Moroccan influence for a modern take on seaside Santa Barbara. I was delighted with my Granada digs outfitted with tufted headboard, leather bench and cool Moroccan themed tile with pops of colour. The room was lavishly decorated with the likes of cobra scones and oil-rubbed bronze fixtures and not to forget walls interspersed with contemporary artwork. The bed was like sleeping on a cloud, no need to count sheep here. The star amenity was the balcony which afforded panoramic views of the landscape. The bathroom was furnished with a deep-soak bath tub big enough to sail the Mediterranean Sea, a luxurious shower, double sink and marble countertops. The Californian has a number of distinctive dinning and drinking haunts. The Djinn Library Bar is a great place to enjoy an artisan cocktail concoction or read a book or both. The Blackbird also offers inventive cocktails and an expansive wine list that pairs with a menu of contemporary fare. I enjoyed the handcrafted drink called 'Anyone for Tennis' that came with everything but a racket. I enjoy the West Coast oysters but the star food was the Wagyu Steak.....lip smacking fare. The Goat Tree, an airy market-style cafe that serves up breakfast, lunch and dinner in a Mediterranean menu format. I liked their smoothies. Ah the Spa.......the Majorelle is a 2500 sq. ft. luxurious Moroccan inspired spa , a wellness sanctuary with geometric hand painted tiles which provides an oasis for exotic treatments, steam room sessions and beauty therapies. I went for a Funk Zone Massage, a treatment with agents specific for sun damaged skin. I felt amazing afterwards. So, if you are looking for a lovely seaside destination, with gorgeous spa, distinctive cuisine and on the steps of Santa Barbara's Funk Zone.......then try the...................Hotel Californian......A Southern California Mecca.…
See email. Extensive commentary provided in the email. Great location, beautiful property, untrained staff with respect to the AMEX Platinum packages. Valets and concierge extremely friendly. Front desk staff require training.
It's the perfect location for Santa Barbara. You can walk everywhere, all of the food on the property was delicious and the spa was so chic. Plus the rooftop pool is a nice little escape. It's also a 2 minute walk to the beach. Will be staying there again.
Do not have your wedding or event here. Period. The hotel made an error and double booked my wedding rehearsal dinner, canceled my wedding rehearsal dinner reservation four (4) days prior to my wedding. The hotel did not notify me. I found out they had canceled the reservation by pure chance when I called to check on something. The hotel acknowledged their mistake, and promised to take care of everything. Then the hotel spent the next 2 days trying to get me to agree to pay double what the lavish meal was originally going to cost–effectively holding my rehearsal dinner hostage to charge excessively. Moreover, the events person (Samantha) also demanded I pay thousands of dollars for my guests to walk around the hotel or use the amenities, even though I had bought hotel rooms for all of my guests (so they had every right to use the amenities); Samantha insisted on that for two days. I had to drive down to Santa Barbara personally, the day before the event, to talk to the hotel director Chris, who only agreed to waive some (but not all) of the additional charges. Even though the hotel management acknowledged the last-minute cancelation of my rehearsal dinner was entirely their fault, they still insisted on charging me much more. And then when my guests were here, the events staff harassed my guests and tried to keep them from sitting by the pool—even though the hotel director had given me his word that would not happen. You learn a lot about someone based on their actions when things go wrong. An honorable person will do the right thing. I learned that Hotel Californian–despite its beautiful decor and glittering promises–lacks substance, customer service, or honor to their word. The hotel management made sloppy errors, made my life a living nightmare, and then failed to correct their error or make any serious attempt to take ownership of their mistakes. Instead, they sought to add further stress by hiking up excess charges when I was in a vulnerable position, as there were no other venues available on such short notice; and they harassed us at our event even after we agreed to the increased fees just to salvage their mistakes. Do not make the same mistake I made by trusting such an important time of my life to people who cannot be trusted to have your back when they make a mistake. …
Make sure you check your reservation carefully. Do not depend on any service from hotel that you do not have to pay for. Even coffee you make in the room was $4 a cup. No kidding. It was a mini bar charge. There is no car service. Cabs are super expensive. Its a nice hotel, but not worth the price of admission.
If you are looking for the ultimate Santa Barbara experience, book at The Californian. It's perfectly situated in the heart of The Funk Zone, walking distance to many great wine and dining spots. The accommodations are luxury yet not stuffy, comfortable, and very California chic. The service is above and beyond, and you will feel well taken care of. If you are looking for a special treat, this is the destination!
Santa Barbara is a place unlike any other. It is laid back and most of all peaceful. The Hotel Californian is in the top hotels we have stayed. The decor has me wanting to redo my house, I loved every aspect of this place!
Great trip and good time. However, as someone who’s been coming to Hotel Californian since it opened, it’s definitely lost step. Particularly noticeable post pandemic. Still overall a great experience and it’s location in the Funk Zone is ideal. However, not the 5 star experience it once was, in my opinion. Which is disappointing, considering the inflationary significant increase in rates.
We love the Hotel Californian and glad we chose to stay here on our first trip to Santa Barbara. The hotel is beautiful and kept so clean. We will be back and recommend to family and friends. ❤️ 😍 💖 😍❤️