My parents live in Santa Barbara, so we drive north more than the average San Diegan. People always ask me where to stay, but I never have a great answer since we usually stay at my parents house. Except, last time we parked ourselves at Four Seasons Resort The Biltmore Santa Barbara. La Jolla Dad was in Peru, so it was just a girls weekend for La Jolla Girl and I.

We had a hard time getting on the road and accidentally left the house without La Jolla Girl’s suitcase. My stress levels were managed by knowing exactly what to expect once we arrived at the hotel (having lived in a Four Seasons Hotel) and a quick stop at the Camarillo outlets.

Quiet Location

The Four Seasons Biltmore (as Santa Barbara residents call it) is actually located within walking distance to the shops of Montecito and away from the busier State Street beach area in Santa Barbara. Hotel guests can use the lovely private beach at the Coral Casino. However, we had to give the beach a pass, because La Jolla Girl still had her cast on from breaking her wrist. In fact, I almost completely cancelled the vacation, which would have been a huge mistake. The resort itself is quite large with lots to do and, in the end, we were just fine.

Comfortable Spanish Style Rooms

We were upgraded to an amazing suite. I had a tough time with camera angles in the bathrooms (yes, plural) but the tiles were stunning. The master bathroom was complete with steam shower and radiant heat in the flooring. Amenities were the usual L’Occitane, which always seem to nourish my post swimming pool hair.

Here’s the living room. Don’t you just want to move in? The entire hotel is Spanish style and I kept marveling at the giant orchids in unique containers that were everywhere.

The Spa

The hotel scheduled mother/daughter manicures and pedicures for us. I got a kick out of seeing La Jolla Girl’s eyes light up in the spa lounging area. She couldn’t believe that there were bottomless snacks and lemonade available, along with her favorite Kashwere blankets (a memory from our residence at the Four Seasons Hotel Hong Kong). The therapists were great with her.

Spectacular Food

Seriously, it was delicious. We ate our way through the resort, literally. Santa Barbara and Montecito have fantastic restaurants, but if you have a 4-year-old that doesn’t like to leave luxury hotels, this is the place to be. Below is the ahi tuna from Bella Vista. It has truffle oil on it and is one of the best appetizers I’ve ever eaten.

Four SEasons Santa Barbara Bella Vista

Two Swimming Pool Areas

Hotel guests have access to the Coral Casino, which is an otherwise private beach-front club. The pool is enormous and perfect for swimming laps. The kids pool has the best view in the house. I just wanted to lay there and soak up the ocean breezes.

The resort has its own pool area too, complete with an old school drinks cart, underwater music, spa and smaller heated pool that was perfect for La Jolla Girl.

Other Family Activities

The hotel has bikes (and a trike for young kids) available if families would like to take a leisurely ride along the beach or into town. They’ll even pack a picnic for you to take along or to just enjoy in the numerous grassy open spaces all around the resort. If you need some spa time, there’s a kids club where you can drop the little ones. I saw the kids out playing croquet on one of the massive lawns and doing art in the play room. Normally, La Jolla Girl would have been participating in kids activities but we were just having a great time chilling out together.

What To Do In Santa Barbara With Kids

Aside from the gorgeous beaches, there actually is a decent amount for kids of all ages to do in Santa Barbara. See my post today called Zoo, beaches, petting the fish and historic missions in Santa Barbara on Have Family Will Travel.

Anything else you’d like to know about Santa Barbara? Just ask.

Katie Dillon is the managing editor of La Jolla Mom. She helps readers plan San Diego vacations through her hotel expertise (that stems from living in a Four Seasons hotel) and local connections. Readers have access to exclusive discounts on theme park tickets (like Disneyland and San Diego Zoo) and perks at luxury hotels worldwide through her. She also shares insider tips for visiting major cities worldwide, like Hong Kong, London, Paris, and Shanghai, that her family has either lived in or visits regularly (or both).

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