Unique, eclectic, and bizarre architectural gems against a backdrop of rolling mountains, sweeping forests and cobalt oceans, all in the midst of flowering blooms and a sweltering Mediterranean heat – such illustrates the scene of Santa Barbara, a city along the west coast of the United States.
Situated between the Pacific Ocean and the Santa Ynez Mountains, this Californian city is also known as the ‘American Riviera’, and for good reasons too! More than anything, Santa Barbara embraces its roots in Spanish colonialism. While the city offers many cultural experiences centered around these origins, perhaps the love for culture and heritage lies most evident in the buildings, with ubiquitous examples of Mediterranean architecture, from the city streets to the suburbs.
While you’re in Santa Barbara, why not immerse yourself in this historic charm? Here are seven historically-influenced HomeAway and VRBO vacation rentals for you to live the magic of Santa Barbara’s heritage.
Looking to stay in the heart of the city while exploring its heritage? Find your HomeAway in this historic townhouse! Hand-built over half a century ago, this residence was initially intended as a tribute to a mission church in the (now dead) town of Las Trampas but has since evolved to be a unique convergence of history and contemporary elements.
Ancient elegance meets vibrant novelty within this home’s living space – look how well the striking hues of these furnishings work with the white adobe walls!
The dining room is no less feisty; where possible, unique lighting, traditional Spanish artworks, rich colours, and wooden cabinets bring an exciting warmth to anyone who enters this area.
Relive the excitement of a day well spent as you bathe in this lively bathroom, enclosed in talavera tiles!
Can’t sleep with so many intense colours? Worry not! Enter your bedroom, a queen-sized space of brown and gold sure to lull you into a good night’s sleep.
Architectural Gem In The Heart Of Downtown Santa Barbara
Address: 321 E Canon Perdido St, Laguna, Santa Barbara, CA 93101, USA
Price: from 423 USD
Number of Guests: 6
Places of Interest: Presidio State Historic Park (4-min walk), Santa Barbara Historical Museum (5-min walk), Mission Santa Barbara (6-min drive)
Maybe you’d like something a bit more modern to get you in the mood of the Funk Zone, Santa Barbara’s growing arts community. If that’s the case, why not opt for an eclectic stay in this quirky townhouse? With its whimsical, buoyant appearance, this vacation rental should prove a fun stay for both the young and old alike!
Enter the main quarters of this home, the Green Cabana. True to its eccentric nature, the residence’s interiors house an entirely different, albeit calmer, traffic-light colour scheme. Lounge on the red settee and admire the Talavera flooring.
Or, step out onto the deck, where you can enjoy a chat over some coffee, a book on the cushioned armchairs, or even a nap in the alcove!
Of course, the alcove doesn’t quite do it if it’s cold out, or if your back hurts easily. In that case, there’s always the master bedroom, where a zany scheme of yellow, blue, and grey adorns the sheets on a king-sized bed.
If the Green Cabana doesn’t quite do it for you, head off the courtyard into the Lobster Studio, where stronger tints of red add a rousing excitement to your stay. Curl up on this comfy sofa for a good read.
Or settle down for a nap on this luxurious queen-sized bed. Despite the exhilarating shades of your surroundings, oceanic paintings above the head of this bed provide a sense of tranquility to this abode.
If you’re sharing the studio and a queen-sized bed makes too intimate a sleeping space, worry not – step into the second bedroom, where you can bid each other goodnight from the comfort of two single beds.
Downtown 2br /2 bath house with stunning views and amazing Architecture
Address: 522 Garden St, Lower State, Santa Barbara, CA 93101, USA
Price: from 351 USD
Number of Guests: 6
Places of Interest: Santa Barbara Historical Museum (7-min walk), Casa de la Guerra (9-min walk), Presidio State Historic Park (9-min walk)
Perhaps simpler, stronger testaments to Santa Barbara’s heritage can be found in her suburbs. Take for example this Spanish mission-style home in one of its neighbourhoods. It’s modest at first sight, but home to more than initially meets the eye.
Spacious yet elegant interiors await beyond the front door. Step across polished parquet floors and lounge on the generous couch, or turn up the heat with the Pueblo-style fireplace.
Sick of the indoors, but too tired to travel out? Take a dip in this tiled pool in the backyard of the house! Find some repose from the heat in its cool waters.
And wash up later in this beautiful bathroom. With warm lighting, subtle arches, and deeply-hued Talavera tiles, this bathroom provides a mellow yet exotic atmosphere for you to unwind in.
Once the day is done, retreat to the earthy hues of this bedroom. And, after a good night’s rest, wake up in the morning with Mother Nature right outside your windows!
Beautiful Spanish/Style House close to Dwntwn
Address: 1163 Calle Del Sol, Alta Mesa, Santa Barbara, CA 93101, USA
Price: from 271USD
Number of Guests: 8
Places of Interest: Santa Barbara downtown (9-min drive), Mission Santa Barbara (9-min drive)
Yet another example of the city’s heritage lies in the architecture of this vaction rental, situated in the suburban neighbourhood of Westside. Travel back in time with this century-old casa, built in a Spanish-colonial style, which was the trend in the time of the 1925 Santa Barbara earthquake.
Settle down and seek warmth in the comfort of this living room, complete with towering plants and a Pueblo-style fireplace.
If you’re yearning for a breath of fresh air, step out to this blissful backyard. Sit back on the chaise lounge of the patio, or converse with your friends on the Adirondack chairs as you take in the beauty of the garden.
If you and your other half require some romantic time together, get away to this bench in the heart of the garden. Cuddle close beneath streaks of sunlight, flourishing greenery, and mellifluous birdsong.
Can’t get enough of the great outdoors? Wake up with it right in front of you every morning from the comfort of this queen-sized bed!
Casa Micheltorena-Private Award Winning Classic Spanish Casita
Address: 935 W Micheltorena St, West Side, Santa Barbara, CA 93101, USA
Price: from 375 USD
Number of Guests: 6
Places of Interest: Alameda Park (6-min drive), Santa Barbara downtown (8-min drive), Stearns Wharf (10-min drive)
The beginning of your stay greets you in the form of stone-lined Mesquite gates. As rambling vines and a medieval glow herald you into this home, just what awaits you in this stay?
The first living space of this HomeAway lies in a courtyard, a cosy space lined with pristine cushioned chairs and flowery bushes. Lounge under a sky full of stars here.
Or, step indoors to an open living space. Despite its construction as an adobe, this home’s interiors lie reminiscent of a cabin, enclosed by cherry-wood walls, earthy-hued furnishings, and warm lighting all around.
Step out to the patio for an al fresco dining experience, ambient against the backdrop of Santa Barbara’s scenery.
If you’d like to immerse in a mini-camping experience or roast some food on a spit, head down to the fire pit below. Gather round the campfire and tell ghost stories amidst the air of good company and great food.
Outdoor experiences abound in this home. Can’t get enough of them? Live with the backyard right beyond your doors in this master bedroom, complete with a huge carpeted space and a king-sized bed.
Authentic Hilltop Adobe Located Between Downtown and the Beach!
Address: around W Valerio St, Westside, Santa Barbara, CA 93101, USA
Price: from 308 USD
Number of Guests: 4 (6 with guest cottage; only rented out for stays of >30 days)
Places of Interest: Alameda Park (6-min drive), Santa Barbara downtown (7-min drive), Leadbetter Beach (8-min drive)
Santa Barbara has the privilege of experiencing a warm-summer Mediterranean climate, the same type of weather that fruit trees, flowers, and other greenery can flourish in. If you’re searching for a vacation rental near the city’s sights but close to nature as well, look no further. Stay lush in this loft, located in a house in Lower State.
Rosy mornings await in the master bedroom of this loft, where a queen-sized bed sits before a soft, carpeted floor and a well-tended houseplant.
As you step out of the bedroom, grab your morning coffee and head out to the living space of this loft. Here, you can socialise at the dining table or watch some television in the living room.
Or alternatively, enjoy your breakfast on the balcony. With your host’s help, you can even pick fresh fruit from the orange, plum, and guava trees in the garden and enjoy a refreshing meal. Be sure to catch sights of local wildlife as well.
For birders; birding can even be done from the balcony. So bring your binoculars. Even had a hawk in the tree right next to the apartment. Reminder: next time bring book on California birds!! Anonymous visitor, stayed in June 2016
PAPA DUX: Romantic Luxury In the Heart of the Fun......
Address: 402 Anacapa St, Lower State, Santa Barbara, CA 93101, USA
Price: from 196 USD
Number of Guests: 4
Places of Interest: Stearns Wharf (15-min walk), Santa Barbara downtown (17-min walk), Santa Barbara Bowl (7-min drive)
At a turning point of Santa Barbara’s history, large land tracts were awarded to notable families in a time known as the ‘Rancho Period’. Though the traces of this era are no more, live within its brand of historic air with this round ranch in San Roque!
Turn the latch of the front door into this shadowed yet sunny living space. Cosy up on the couch, play a tune on the piano, or tend to the fireplace in case of chilly weather.
Embrace the home’s unique, round architecture as you step towards the dining room, kitchen, and doorway to the porch. There’s no need to go outdoors for nature when there’s greenery right within these walls!
Run free in the fields beyond the backyard patio! With this exuberant space, there are so many possibilities for you and your companions: camp outdoors, stargaze, play some catch, or soak up scenic views of Santa Barbara.
Views of the city and Pacific Ocean lie just beyond those palm trees!
Of course, what is a lovely stay without a touch of luxury? Never bid the amazing views farewell with the master bedroom, complete with parquet flooring, a king-sized bed, and the Santa Barbara skyline right beyond your windows and doors.
Ranch home retreat with panoramic views of the ocean, islands and mountains
Address: off N Ontare Road, between Jesusita Ln and Santa Teresita Dr, Foothill, Santa Barbara, CA 93105, USA
Price: from 200 USD
Number of Guests: 6
Places of Interest: Santa Barbara Botanic Garden (12-min drive), Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History (12-min drive), Inspiration Point Start (15-min drive)
Sultry, sublime Santa Barbara
Whether you’re in Santa Barbara for its individualistic Funk Zone, discovering the local sights and cuisine, or hiking up the Santa Ynez Mountains, don’t let the walls of your vacation rental form a boundary between you and this utopian atmosphere! Live amidst the Santa Barbara air with these exquisite HomeAways.
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