Belmond El Encanto
What We Love
- Jetsetter 2014 Best of the Best Finalist: Best Comeback
- The spectacular views from the Channel Islands Terrace
- Free bicycles for guests are motorized to assist in getting back up the hill to the property
- Zero-edge pool with views of the Pacific (and poolside service), and a fitness center built under the pool
- Vegetables and herbs for the restaurant’s California cuisine are grown in the hotel gardens
What To Know
- The hotel reopened on March 18, 2013
- Although bike rentals are free, you’ll want to rent a car to really explore the area
- A $35 resort fee per night will be collected upon check-in at the hotel (and includes WiFi, bottled water, daily newspaper, coffee/tea, access to spa/gym facilities and shoe shining)
- READ MORE: 72 hours on Highway 1
- Free WiFi
- Kids Club
- Parking On Site
Nestled amid seven acres of beautifully landscaped gardens in Santa Barbara’s exclusive American Riviera neighborhood, this hideaway’s 92 suites and bungalows mix Craftsman and Mission styles, providing a secluded retreat for couples, solo travelers looking for tranquility, and (well-behaved) families. The meticulously restored gardens—plants and trees were stored and saved while the renovations took place and put back from whence they came—include camellias, tulip trees, begonias, roses and more amidst a lily pond canopied by a 100-year-old wisteria vine.
Bed & Bath
Belmond El Encanto’s California bungalow-style buildings feature two main interior styles — Craftsman or Spanish Revival Mission. All are light and airy with wood floors, and many feature fireplaces and patios or porches with space for dining al fresco. Mission-style furnishings are a mix of wood and leather couches, glass and iron tables, marble-topped minibars and wooden desks. Craftsman-style rooms are fitted with linen and wicker furnishings and wooden headboards hand-painted with cherry blossoms. The marble bathrooms are a treat, with separate rainfall showers, deep tubs, double sinks and organic amenities.
The chefs blend artisanal ingredients with rich flavors at Belmond El Encanto’s signature restaurant, incorporating locally-sourced seasonal produce of the Santa Barbara region into his inventive California Coastal cuisine. Expect herbs directly from the chef’s garden and Belmond El Encanto cheese, each block made from the milk of Ellie, the resort’s cow. No matter what you order, the Santa Barbara–specific wine list will wow any oenophile. Also on offer? A zero-edge pool, spa, fitness room, sundry shop and a book-filled library with a fireplace.
In the Area
Jazz crooner Luca Ellis entertains guests in the cozy, modern Lobby Bar several nights a week. Grab a cocktail and take a trip down memory lane with tunes from the Great American Songbook. Catch up on your West Coast history at the “Queen of the California Missions,” the historic Old Mission Santa Barbara. Be sure to listen for the ringing of the church bells. The Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History and the lovely Santa Barbara Botanic Garden are great places to take the kids. The Riviera Movie Theater, which shows first-run art films, is within walking distance.
How to Get There
Loved this place, it has wonderful views of the ocean, great place for a wedding, it would be nice if the hotel added a drive way in the back so that cars could drop off people to the ballroom below the restaurant. Loved all the cute cottage like rooms and lovely staff.
This is our second time staying here. Having been to Santa Barbara many times, this hotel stands out from the rest. If you are looking for something special, then this is your hotel. It feels like a small resort with a relaxed atmosphere. It is up in the hills of Santa Barbara in a nice neighborhood. The grounds are lush and shaded with a hammock here and there. The views are spectacular and the food is clean and made with care. The staff is professional and friendly. The rooms are well appointed, the bed is comfortable and it's quiet. I just love this place.
My wife and I dined on the outside patio on a nice summer evening. We were seated at a 2 top located on the perimeter of the patio which overlooks the city, harbour and channel islands in t he background. This is the perfect place for catching a sunset.
Our food has been consistently good here. The wait staff is well trained, efficient and attentive. The kitchen has had and still has a timing problem getting the courses plated within a reasonable amount of time.
The wine list is globally outstanding although pricy and they serve decent stemware to compliment various wine choices.
The ambience is the hallmark. The grounds are beautiful and the vistas are magnificent. This area is affectionally called the Riviera, appropriately so.
Parking is via valet only.
First and foremost, thank you for always taking such great care of us! My husband and I try to go to the El Encanto a few weekends each summer as it never disappoints! The grounds are stunning, there is not a single bad room, the service is impeccable, great restaurant, wonderful pool, we love the spa, good gym, and everyone is so so sweet to our boxer!
We had the best time at the Belmond. The service was amazing, the hotel was beautiful, and the views were gorgeous. We couldn't have picked a better hotel or room for our wedding weekend. What really made our stay special was the friendly staff. They were so kind and attentive to all of our needs. The two that really shined out to us were Paul and Nate. They both offered such great service and hospitality. We really felt special all weekend because of these two. We'll definitely try and come visit as much as possible. Our only problem was that the Belmond ruined other hotels for us. Every other place we stayed didn't compare to our time at the Belmond El Canto!