What We Love
- Nightly lobby wine hour
- From hammocks to fire pits to poolside beds, the space is made for hanging out
- Playtime is emphasized, whether cornhole on the lawn or pics in the lobby photobooth
- No fuss, no muss service with a smile—and a relaxed noon checkout time
- Join Kimpton's Karma Rewards for perks like free WiFi
- READ MORE: 72 hours on Highway 1
What To Know
- Just north of Santa Barbara in Goleta, the hotel is the destination in this case
- It’s a few minutes from the UCSB campus so the non-guest clientele is young
- The inner garden rooms feel tucked away and are best for light sleepers
- A $25 (plus tax) resort fee per night will be collected at the property
- Free WiFi
- Parking On Site
- Room Service
The inviting interiors combine ‘70s-era macrame and historic artifacts with graphic textiles and modern photography for an adorably whimsical effect. Cramming every nook with something interesting, the hotel begs discovery. You just might learn something new, for instance that James Dean used to race nearby, or revisit something old while sitting at one of the two backgammon tables in The Good Bar. The Goodland’s organic vibe saves the nostalgia from being overwrought, and the chalkboard with the daily surf report, hanging surfboards and large art pieces from a surfing great, Herbie Fletcher, retain a sportiness that is the essence of the Santa Barbara lifestyle.
Bed and Bath
The rooms have a more rugged, undone chic look than other slicker hotels in the Kimpton boutique chain. Twee touches endow the minimalism with warmth and personality, like the portable Crosley turntable with a few classic selections from the hotel’s own archives, perhaps Fleetwood Mac’s Rumours or OutKast’s Stankonia. The shower stalls in the average-sized bathrooms have stone bottoms and a weathered mosaic wall, suggesting an outdoor shower. And, of course, you’ll find the fresh-scented C.O. Bigelow products that are Kimpton exclusives.
Outpost, the hotel’s restaurant, could be decorated by Wes Anderson, it’s that cute. Its menu reads like a list of Southern California cuisine’s greatest hits: You’ve got your fish tacos, your fresh oysters, queso, kimchi pork belly and, of course, kale salad. With all of the nibbles, don’t neglect unfussy mains like the perfectly pan-seared halibut with Israeli couscous. The lagoon pool, heated year-round, is decked out enough for an afternoon lounging on a poolside bed without being a scene. No reserved cabanas here. The Goodland emphasizes its burgeoning street art collection with a gallery off the lobby and outdoor murals. Further proof this hotel wants you to have a weekend of quirky fun? The vintage Woodie and Airstream trailer out front. (But they’re not for hire—yet.)
In the Area
Goleta is the outdoorsy “sister city” to Santa Barbara, about 20 minutes south. Commandeer one of The Goodland’s free commuter bikes for a spin on the Obern Bike Trail, which winds through the grasslands down to Goleta Beach Park. There, have lunch at the Beachside, a popular little cafe straight out of another era. In fact, cyclists have it made in Goleta with all of the road biking and mountain biking options around. Did we mention that The Goodland has a surf theme? So, there’s that, along with standup paddling at the shore. Inspiration Point is an easy hike a short drive away that features an excellent lookout over the ocean and surrounding hills. And just over those hills, find the Santa Ynez wine country about 45 minutes away.
How to Get There
This hotel is an extraordinary step back in cool. We drove up to reception with a Ford Woodie upfront and strolled into a reception straight from a 60’s surf scene motel. Loved it.
The hotel itself is an extremely tastefully updated motel in a horseshoe around a central pool. You will either get it or you will not. I think it is great that IHG are imaginative enough to offer and support this type of hotel. It is fun and cool but don’t come and expect a ‘standard’ upmarket business hotel. It isn’t but it is extraordinary, fun, imaginative and memorable.
The rooms are tastefully decorated with fun items including the record player and vinyls. They are definitely period but that is exactly the charm. Yes, the air con slightly noisy, the bathroom a little small but that is the point. I absolutely love it.
The restaurant is absolutely outstanding. Imaginative freshly cooked food, perhaps the best restaurant I have been to on the 12 night of a month long trip to California and would stand strong against many big names in London. I highly recommend the Brussel Sprouts and the Chicken Wings. I am now lying in bed looking forward to breakfast !!
Reading the reviews I am shocked to see the negatives. The service was great and the experience pretty unique. We loved it. Come with a sense of fun, you will love it.
Last year was our first stay at The Goodland and we had such a great experience that we returned again this year for a four night stay. Unfortunately standards have slipped. The hotel has a great pool and bar area but most days it is so crowded there is no where to sit. Rumor has it (and i personally confirmed this chatting with one person at the pool) that locals come and use the pool because you do not need a room key to access the pool. The only reason this was an issue for our family was because as guests, we had no wear to sit often times. My main complaint is that there did not seem to be enough staff patroling the grounds and cleaning up. Dishes and dirty towels were left by the pool all day long. Dirty glasses and trash were left outside the lobby for our entire 5 day stay. Its a shame that these details brought down our experience, because in general the hotel is great. Great atmosphere. Beautiful clean rooms. Great lobby and bar. I hope they can improve in the areas I mentioned so we can return again next year.
I spent one night at the Kimpton Goodland during the Fourth of July holiday. The property and room itself were nice. But sadly that's the only nice thing I have to say about my stay there.
Examples of the lackluster service:
- I checked in around 6pm. When I arrived in my room, I called the front desk for extra pillows and conditioner (the room was stocked with 2 bottles of shampoo but no conditioner.) We headed out to get a drink at the bar and when I stopped back into the room 2 hours later, nothing had been brought. So around 8pm, I called the front desk again and they said they would contact housekeeping again. We went to dinner and returned to the room around midnight. Again, nothing!! Ordinarily, I would be more forgiving but given the amount we were paying for just a one-night stay, this does not meet the service level that I would expect from a 4-star property.
- While sitting at the bar, I ordered a cocktail with the bartender and then I literally watched the bartender take and complete three other drink orders before he finally got to mine. Hashtag wtf...
- Ice machine was not working.
- After we checked out, we were charged for mini bar usage, which we had not touched. I called Guest Services to dispute the charge and was told that their computers were down at the moment but someone took down my information and told me they would call me back when their systems were up and running again. Surprise surprise, no one called me back! I had to call again the next day to follow up.
I know I am nitpicking, but especially given that the Goodland charges a $28 daily "resort fee" on top of the base rate, they really need to deliver on the entirety of the experience that they provide to guests and during my stay, they fell well short of a 4-star experience. Next time I'll be staying elsewhere.
Currently displaced due to the Holiday fire - called the hotel to see if they offered a special evacuee rate to help those of us in the community that can't stay at our homes, they said yes. I get to the hotel and "Zeco" says yes there is an evacuee rate & quotes me the rate I saw online as the "Easy Summer Savings" rate, so no there isn't an evacuee rate. As a Goleta local I went be coming back here to eat, drink or stay again. It bothers me this place calls itself the "Goodland" but does not actually care about the people from Goleta the Goodland.
Air-conditioner was absurdly loud and blasted an arctic current- only two modes on and off; windows are floor to ceiling and right on the walkway with inadequate privacy shades (how about bottom up? instead of top down?) So- either you have no natural light in the room during the day or you are literally on display (and at night neither was actually private if the light was on inside). Expensive price for cheap make-over which is already starting to fall apart. Music PUMPING from the restaurant in the morning so you can't really sit outside and read a book or the paper in peace. On the positive side? the bed was VERY comfortable, and the coffee was good too.