Hotel Santa Barbara Rating: 3.0 Pearls
Santa Barbara, California, United States

Oyster Review Summary

Photos and Review by Oyster.com Investigators

Pros

  • Historic hotel with charming interiors and original features like a beautifully tiled staircase
  • Central location on State Street allows easy access to restaurants and shopping
  • Pleasant rooms have Keurig machines, flat-screen TVs, and mini-fridges
  • Two meeting rooms for up to 30 people
  • Free daily continental breakfast
  • On-site Starbucks
  • Laptops available for loan
  • Valet parking (for a fee)
  • Freebies include Wi-Fi throughout and fruit, tea, and coffee in the lobby

Cons

  • No on-site restaurant, bar, pool, or fitness center
  • Fee for parking

Bottom Line

The 75-room Hotel Santa Barbara is a historic mid-range property centrally located right on Santa Barbara's famous State Street, known as a popular destination for shopping, dining, and nightlife. Charming historic details are met with modern comforts, and tasteful, if small, soft-hued rooms feature an array of conveniences including Keurig machines, mini-fridges, flat-screen TVs, and free Wi-Fi. Property features are limited, but a free continental breakfast is offered and there’s a Starbucks on-site, and business travelers are catered to with two meeting rooms and laptops available for loan. Although the State Street location is convenient, guests might also want to consider the often similarly priced Hotel Milo, which faces the ocean and has two pools and a fitness center.

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Oyster Hotel Review

 Scene

Historic hotel from 1926 with classic interiors

This classic hotel dates back to 1926 and has had a long and colorful past, with several incarnations and a string of different names and owners. As the Saint Barbara, the property indulged in not so saintly activities that included serving liquor during Prohibition and offering gambling in a secret gaming room, while in later years the Barbara Hotel was a getaway for Hollywood stars. Most recently renovated in 2013, the property stays true to its tagline of “Historic Charm, Contemporary Comfort,” combining original details and Old World elements with modern comforts and furnishings. Nostalgic accents and historic details such as archways and pillars, old photographs and oil paintings on the walls, and vintage pieces fill the inviting lobby, which is doused in neutral cream and brown hues accented by fresh bursts of green plants. Skylights illuminate the space, while patterned Oriental rugs cover the tiled floors. Details like a staircase covered in rich decorative tiling is a charming addition that adds character. The property attracts leisure tourists attracted by the central location as well as (some) business travelers who can appreciate the meeting rooms and free Wi-Fi. 

 Location

Central Santa Barbara location on State Street close to shopping and dining

Hotel Santa Barbara is centrally located on State Street, known for popular shopping, dining, and nightlife. It's home to the Santa Barbara Museum of Art, and is a short drive to both the wharf and harbor, where guests will find whale watching and sailing. Santa Barbara is an affluent community in Santa Barbara County, home to five colleges and universities, as well as a large yachting population. Swaddled between the Pacific Ocean and the Santa Ynez Mountains, this charming town is known for its Spanish-inspired architecture, surfing, and the nightlife dotting State Street.

  • Nine-minute walk to Santa Barbara Amtrak
  • 12-minute walk to Santa Barbara Museum of Art
  • Three-minute drive or 12-minute walk to Stearn's Wharf
  • Four-minute drive to Condo Express whale watching
  • Six-minute drive to Santa Barbara Sailing Center
  • Eight-minute drive to municipal golf course
  • 14-minute drive to Santa Barbara Municipal Airport

 Rooms

Pleasant but small rooms with flat-screen TVs, Keurig machines, and mini-fridges

Clean, classically styled rooms are cloaked in cream and beige shades and have traditional wooden furnishings. The soft, neutral hues include large beige headboards framing beds topped with crisp, white linens and cream-colored, patterned bed runners. They're a big bland and some are small, but all in all they're perfectly pleasant for the price. All rooms have flat-screen TVs, mini-fridges, Keurig coffeemakers, work desks with ergonomic chairs, fluffy bathrobes, and free Wi-Fi. Bathrooms are generic and typically a bit tight, but clean and renovated, with shower/tub combos, vanities offering ample storage space, wall-mounted hairdryers, and a small range of toiletries.

 Features

Free breakfast, Starbucks in the building, two meeting rooms, and free Wi-Fi throughout

A free continental breakfast is served in the lobby area and includes fresh pastries, fruit, cereal, yogurt, waffles, juices coffee, and tea. Fresh fruit, coffee, and tea are also available throughout the day in the lobby. There’s also a Starbucks in the building, though no full restaurant or bar. The hotel has two meeting rooms that can accommodate up to 30 people. Valet parking is available with a fee and Wi-Fi is free throughout, plus guests can loan laptops from the front desk.

 Bottom Line

The 75-room Hotel Santa Barbara is a historic mid-range property centrally located right on Santa Barbara's famous State Street, known as a popular destination for shopping, dining, and nightlife. Charming historic details are met with modern comforts, and tasteful, if small, soft-hued rooms feature an array of conveniences including Keurig machines, mini-fridges, flat-screen TVs, and free Wi-Fi. Property features are limited, but a free continental breakfast is offered and there’s a Starbucks on-site, and business travelers are catered to with two meeting rooms and laptops available for loan. Although the State Street location is convenient, guests might also want to consider the often similarly priced Hotel Milo, which faces the ocean and has two pools and a fitness center.

Things You Should Know About Hotel Santa Barbara

Address

  • 533 State Street

Room Types

  • Standard Queen

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Hotel Features

Number of Rooms: 75
Internet: Yes
Cribs: Yes
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Hotel Information

Location: Santa Barbara, California
Address: 533 State Street
(See Map)

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