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“Great Location/Value for Dog Owners”

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The Fess Parker - A Doubletree by Hilton Resort
Ranked #29 of 52 Hotels in Santa Barbara
Level 4 Contributor
41 reviews
39 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 260 helpful votes
“Great Location/Value for Dog Owners”
Reviewed May 20, 2005

I live in los Angeles and visit this hotel often to escape the heat. I remember when it was a Red Lion (and the chekout time was 1 p.m.) While I can't argue with some of the complaints below, the housekeeping really is lackluster, overall I find it to be a good hotel. Particularly for folks with dogs.

The ocean views are the best in Santa Barbara. ALL ocean view hotels are across busy Cabrillo and the low walls and incredible landscaping provide an excellent buffer. I have stayed in many SB hotels and this one has the best ocean view in the City Area. As to the train, it runs behind ALL the ocean area Hotels in the city including the Four Seasons. Live with it or don't stay near the beach. One can't blame the hotel for the train or escape it elsewhere.

The rooms are huge and nicely furnished, but the 13 inch tv is awful and the channel selection spartan. But hey, get outside. The grounds are impeccable and full of blooming plants. Not just grass though there is plenty of that too.

I am perplexed about the pool complaints. It is huge, warm. surrounded by massive shade structures and a lovely trellis at one end. There are the usual screaming kids on the weekends so don't get a pool view room if you don't like noise. That goes for almost any resort these days.

The workout room is cramped with second-rate equipment but I still can get a good cardio-wrokout there. The best bike path in SB is right across the street. The SB area is a bike riders paradise.

For anyone with pets this place rocks! Our dogs love it there and they get treats, and other gifts on arrival. At present there is no charge. There is also not resort fee and a very reasonable parking fee. As to the people that object to dogs, I object to loud, out of control kids, which are much more common but I would not ask the Hotel to ban children. I have found the resorts canine visitors to be better behaved than some of the human guests.

The rooms service food is excellent and quite fairly priced. The food service staff seems to stay and they remember us.

I have stayed at the Four Seasons and it is great too. They also allow dogs in the cottages but charge for it. They have the train noise and almost no rooms with an ocean view. The rooms are nicer there and the level of service is much higher... as are the prices. I regularly comapre the hotels rates and find the Bilmore to be at least 200 dollars more a night than the Doubletree. For one with unlimited funds and a pet the Four Seasons is the best, but remember no ocean views.

The Doubletree is not perfect, but overall I find it best combination of location/cost in the SB area when traveling with my pets. I can't count the times I have set on the Patio and watched the beachfront come alive.

For me this is like a vacation home without the hassels.

  • Stayed April 2005
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
8 Thank billyar
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed May 15, 2005

I just got back from this diaster. Unfortunately we paid 365.00 for a King Beachfront Balcony. First I requested the balcony, they had us on the ground floor. After long "discussion" they moved us upstairs. The entire lobby (both sides) are being renovated. The carpets are a disaster. The room was very plain. Bed was nice. But that is all that was good. Bad water pressure. And then there was "the view". First off, the balcony has a ledge facing the ocean. Therefore, the view is obstructed when sitting on the lounge chairs OR from the bed inside. You have to be standing at the ledge to enjoy the view. Topping it off there was a bushy tree obstructing the view as well. The service seemed summer employeeish as opposed to at will employees. The pool was ok and guests seemed to enjoy it. No complimentary Bikes. You must pay a rental fee over 10.00. I will say this... The valet parking was only 9.50/day. Cheapest I have seen for a "decent hotel" We will never stay there again be assured.

  • Stayed May 2005
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3 Thank Bionictrad
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
A TripAdvisor Member
Reviewed April 29, 2005

I agree with many of the reviewers. The advertising and promotional materials are completely misleading. My room in the Camilla Building fronted the train tracks and the city parking lot for the trash trucks. The trains DO run all night and we heard every one as the whistles/horns are blown each time a train comes through. The front desk does NOT stock earplugs. The double pane windows do nothing to abate this noise. When we arrived, we found the lobby and restaurants under renovation - something the hotel decided not to divulge ahead of time; Breakfast ($$$) was available in the Steakhouse. Severly understaffed, we left after wating 45 minutes for food to arrive and having to get up and get our own coffee and water. The "resort" areas are pathetically small and outdated. If Fess Parker decides to look in on the hotel that bears his name - he'd probably remove his name. The worst insult is that no one on the staff cared about our noisy sleepless night or disasterous breakfast. They also seemed to lack knowledge of the property ie; pool hours. The rates of over $200 night are a pure ripoff.

  • Stayed April 2005
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
6 Thank A TripAdvisor Member
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

Property: The Fess Parker - A Doubletree by Hilton Resort
Address: 633 East Cabrillo Boulevard, Santa Barbara, CA 93103-3611
Phone Number:
Location: United States > California > Santa Barbara
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 Spa Hotel in Santa Barbara
#10 Business Hotel in Santa Barbara
#10 Luxury Hotel in Santa Barbara
#10 On the Beach Hotel in Santa Barbara
#25 Romantic 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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