We stayed at Bacara 4 nights and participated in a family wedding 1 night. Although the physical setting is exquisite and the buildings are charming, service in the Bistro, the Spa Cafe and at the front desk does not measure up. The wait to get a table and then a meal in a half-full restaurant every morning was ridiculously long and the waiters have not been trained to offer cream, a spoon, etc at the same time as the coffee is presented so we found ourselves trying to flag down other staff to obtain the basic necessities. When we asked the woman who brings the food from the kitchen at the Bistro to help us with one simple request she said "you'll have to tell your waiter" (in other words, "it's not my job, don't bother me!"). The least she could have done was get our waiter but apparently this idea never occurred to her. Maybe she's overworked and overstressed but clearly she has not been trained to say, "it would be my pleasure" as are the employees at other top resorts.
Other negatives: TVs in some of the rooms in our group did not work because the remote "eye" was not properly installed; several rooms were so dark and dingy (tucked under huge overhangs) that we and others wanted to move to rooms that received at least a little natural light, but the front desk was quite inept at accomplishing our request in a timely and efficient fashion. The property also requires a lot of walking up and down stairs which can be difficult for older family members when the valets are too busy to come with a golf cart.
Positives: The beds were comfortable and once moved to the ocean side of the complex we were happy with our room. Also, the banquet staff and the conference services staff were of a much higher caliber than the staff serving the traveling public, and the above criticisms do not apply to these individuals who were extremely helpful and attentive. The valets were also pleasant and eager to assist.
As others have mentioned there's not a ton to do at Bacara unless you drive to town which can take a good 30 minutes in traffic. This combined with the less than stellar guest experience would deter me from returning.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Along the bluffs and beaches of the Gaviota coast lies a resort of stunning natural beauty and relaxed luxury. With 78 acres of oceanfront property, including two miles of natural beach, Bacara offers an expansive sun-drenched setting with endless vistas of sea and sky. The resort's innovative and artful design is in keeping with the intimacy and aesthetics of a Mediterranean village. Unwind at an award-winning 42,000-square-foot spa and fitness center or relax beside one of three zero-edge swimming pools and 26 private cabanas. The resort's 358 newly-renovated guestrooms and signature suites artfully infuse luxurious interiors with modern technologies for a true sense of comfort. Additional resort amenities include a new oceanfront restaurant, Angel Oak, four Har-Tru clay tennis courts, a Foley wine tasting room, and the adjacent Sandpiper Golf Club. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Santa Barbara Bacara Resort
- Bacara Spa Resort Santa Barbara
- Bacara Resort Santa Barbara Ca
- Bacara Santa Barbara
- Bacara Hotel Santa Barbara