Palihouse Santa Barbara

Palihouse Santa Barbara sitting room

One of the Best Boutique Hotels in Santa Barbara

Like most of you, our normal cadence of travel and exploration close to home has been rudely interrupted these last two years. California has been extremely locked down, and even now, doesn’t feel back to normal. Every time we tried for a weekend getaway, the insane prices for next to no amenities or service put a huge damper on our plans. But a few weeks ago, we had a really good excuse to get out of town—a friend’s wedding. The accommodations: Palihouse Santa Barbara.

There are plenty of luxury hotels in Santa Barbara, but it had been lacking a really cool design hotel in a more moderate price range. And by moderate, just so we’re clear, Santa Barbara is one of the most expensive cities to visit in America, so for those of you with discerning taste, prepare to get out your wallet.

But on a perfect weekend in October, when you could breathe fall in, and everything we needed was within walking distance of our hotel downtown, we were transported back to 2019 before this pandemic destroyed so much. Sure we wore a mask, but we no longer felt like corners were being cut or that we were paying more for less.

This hotel is masterfully curated and has no shortage of style for tastemakers and trendsetters. It’s cool minus intimidation; It’s luxury minus pretension.

This is the Palihouse Santa Barbara, where “Vintage-Preppy meets American-Riviera,” and it’s my newest Stylish Stay.

Entry of Palihouse Santa Barbara

What I Love: I loved the incredible attention to detail in design (all done in house)—with mix matched furnishings and vintage treasures that would feel just at home on a yacht in the South of France. There is no spa, but ask the front desk for the massage service that comes to your room on demand. They didn’t have to ask me twice. Highly recommend!

Something to Know:  The food menu is limited—especially for breakfast. What we had was very good, but you should look at the menu before you commit.

Suite Dreams: We booked a king room, which was extremely spacious with a sitting area, private patio and large (pink!) bathroom complete with soaking tub and shower. The pillows were so amazing, I had to have one. This is it and it’s only $40 on Amazon!

Cool Factor:  Upon check in, they give you a key to a little hidden “speak easy” called the Honor Bar, where you are encouraged to rendezvous after hours.

Hero Shot:  While the whole property is very photogenic, a straight on shot of the cocktail bar will make all your friends want to book asap.

Bonus Tip: Have lunch at Bettina in Montecito—some of the best Neapolitan pizza I’ve had outside Italy. You can even get gluten free crust!

Lobby of Palihouse Santa Barbara

Guest room at Palihouse Santa Barbara


PS. Another great hotel close to Santa Barbara.

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