Full of mystique and grandeur, history and beauty, Montecito, approximately eight square miles of hidden neighborhoods and expansive estates, has been the destination of choice for celebrities and millionaires for over one hundred years.
Located a couple of miles east of Santa Barbara, "Montecito", which is Spanish for "little mountain", first received attention from wealthy Easterners and Midwesterners, in the late 1800's. These early settlers developed large and lavish estates.
Today, Montecito offers many and varied options for residential living, such as an easy-care condominium just steps from the beach, a hidden cottage down a tree-shaded lane, as well as large estates on many acres, both old and new. The pace of life here is unhurried, and it is easy to see why Montecito has become a desirable second home location for big city dwellers. Whether you're a famous movie star or a curious traveler, you'll find Montecito to be truly a lush paradise.
Prices range from $850,000 to $30,000,000 +.
From 1888 until the 1920's, the Pacific Improvement Company shaped the destiny of Hope Ranch, molding it into its present image as a wealthy suburb of Santa Barbara. Many of the amenities offered to members of the Hope Ranch Home Association since the 1930's include cabanas for a private beach club fronting the ranch, a polo field, archery range, skeet-shooting facility, tennis courts, and 30 miles of bridle paths.
Space prohibits a full account of Hope Ranch's outdoor-living background, shared by middle-class families as well as the affluent. As a result of this independent spirit, Hope Ranch continues to maintain the lofty standards of suburban living which have been in effect since the late Harold S. Chase advertised his "sun-kissed, ocean-washed, mountain-girded, island-guarded Hope Ranch" more than half a century ago.
Prices range from $1,350,000 to $38,000,000.
City planners regard Eastside as perhaps the most important factor in Santa Barbara's growth. More undeveloped space and a higher percentage of older one-family homes exist in the Eastside than in other city neighborhoods. The upper Eastside has been identified as a bailiwick of the wealthy elite since 1895.
Santa Barbara's famous community playhouse, the Lobero Theater, located in Upper East, was built in 1924 and known as the cultural center years ahead of Los Angeles and San Diego.
Prices range from $850,000 to $5,500,000.
Bridging the 2 mile span that separates Mission and Sycamore Canyons, the sylvan uplift which padres knew as the "mission ridge" has for the past 65 years been known as "the Riviera" due to its resemblance to slopes along the Mediterranean coast of France and Italy. Santa Barbarans lucky enough to live on this ridge attach premium value to their homes because of their unsurpassed views of the city, mountains, sea, and islands.
The Riviera is famous for its semitropical appearance. The flowing curves at the west end of Alameda Padre Serra today mark the old streetcar right of way, the curves being essential to provide a gradient which electric cars could negotiate.
One of the older and more stabilized neighborhoods in the city, the Riviera also ranks as one of the wealthiest and best-educated. "We know how lucky we are not to have to go to Europe to enjoy the Riviera life-style," one cosmopolite commented. "We've got a better Riviera right here in Santa Barbara."
Prices range from $925,000 to $5,000,000.
Ethel Barrymore, the late empress of stage and screen, once told a friend, "Fortunate indeed is the person who can live in Santa Barbara, and doubly blessed if his home is located in Mission Canyon."
American newcomers during the 1850's were quick to appreciate the sylvan beauty of Mission Canyon, and they began to move in and build homes. Above them were a series of rocky cascades known as The Seven Falls. Homes in Mission Canyon range from the humble adobe, to magnificent mansions like Glendessary, on the shady lane of the same name. This sprawling half-timbered Tudor manor house was one of the fine homes built before the turn of the century by Christoph Tornoe, a gifted Danish artisan.
Prices range from $750,000 to $4,500,000.
Few residential neighborhoods of Santa Barbara can boast the rich historical background of the San Roque and Rutherford Park areas. The neighborhood got its name when the first white men arrived in 1769 with Governor Portola. They camped at the mouth of the San Roque Creek, which they named to memorialize the patron saint of invalids, saint Roque, a Carmelite friar of the 14th century.
Now a built-up, economically stabilized suburb, it is admired for its sweeping curved streets, its luxuriant landscaping, and its harmonious blend of many architectural themes - Spanish Colonial, English Tudor, French Normandy, California Redwood, Italianate and American Colonial, mostly built since 1925.
With shopping and banking facilitated at their very doorstep, residents of San Roque feel they are living in one of Santa Barbara's choicest residential neighborhoods, where investing in home or business property guarantees future security.
Prices range from $700,000 to $2,500,000.
Samarkand meant "the land of heart's desire" in the archaic Persian tongue. As the dominating landmark of a hilly, elevated neighborhood, the Samarkand gave its name to an area bounded on the east by Oak Park.
The Samarkand neighborhood could point with pride to one of America's most beautiful and prestigious retirement centers, originally a hotel. The Samarkand District Improvement Association, one of the most active in the city, reported that Samarkand has one of the lowest population densities in Southern California.
Prices range from $650,000 to $1,750,000.
Mesa, a Spanish word meaning "table", has been applied to the flat bench fronting the ocean along Santa Barbara's southwestern border since mission days. The Mesa is one of the oldest historical areas in the city; paradoxically it is one of our youngest residential districts.
Artists and writers have a special affinity for the Mesa as a carefree place to live. City weather records show that the Mesa's winter temperatures are 10 to 12 degrees warmer than downtown, and 10 to 12 degrees cooler in the summer.
This climatic attraction, plus the spectacular marine views, caused a housing boom after World War II, building the Mesa Improvement Association, dedicated to protecting the Mesa life-style as one of the most envied in the South Coast Area.
Prices range from $750,000 to $2,750,000.
The "Westside Story" of Santa Barbara is laid in our city's first suburb. Cottage Hospital and its surrounding laboratories, rest homes, professional buildings, clinics and other medically-oriented satellites, has made it very convenient for the local residents.
City Hall recognises the Westside as the oldest established residential area in town: six out of ten houses were built prior to 1940. Santa Barbara's Westside is one of the last frontiers for that great American tradition, one that is daily becoming scarce - the single family home.
Prices range from $550,000 to $950,000.
Tucked between lush green hillsides and the sparkling Pacific lies Goleta Valley. Just minutes from downtown Santa Barbara, the Goleta community is characterized by comfortable single family homes, and outstanding public elementary and secondary schools. Plan on enjoying the many recreational opportunities, historic sites and seasonal festivals. Combining all that the area offers with a mild year-round climate and idyllic natural surroundings, it is easy to see why Goleta is the place to be.
Prices range from $625,000 to $3,500,000.
The Carpinteria Valley is located in the southeast corner of Santa Barbara County. It's a little piece of coastal paradise tucked midway between Ventura and Santa Barbara, seeming to shy away from the glare of tourism's spotlight, but at the same time welcoming all who chance to discover its charms.
Carpinteria's splendid natural setting and small town charm remain relatively undiscovered. Enjoy the small town pleasures, where tree-shaded streets, parades and craft shows evoke a gentle way of life. Dozens of antique stores, small shops and restaurants are clustered along the main streets of Carpinteria and nearby Summerland, making the area a browser's paradise.
Carpinteria is home to a world-renowned surfing area off Rincon Point, and a beautiful swimming beach. Nature smiles kindly on the Carpinteria Valley, making it home to many nurseries.
Prices range from $600,000 to $5,500,000.