Santa Barbara's oceanfront spa oasis
11 Treatment Rooms
Pure luxury sums up the look and feel ofs this oceanfront spa, whose design echoes the Spanish colonial style of it home, Four Seasons Resort The Biltmore Santa Barbara. The spa debuted in 2002, but the building was erected in the 1970s. Careful attention was given to making it blend in seamlessly with the rest of the historic 1920s Spanish colonial revival property. With interiors designed by Peter Marino, who was mentored by Andy Warhol, the spa is as comfortable and relaxing as its beachside location. Treatment rooms come with kiva fireplaces, French doors that give you a glimpse into the garden or the water, and handcrafted ceramic tiles. Plus, there are amenities outside of the 11 treatment rooms — rent beach cruisers for the family or request an appointment with the onsite trainer.
The spa’s gym is outfitted with state-of-the-art Technogym treadmills that allow you to upload any exercise apps that you already have on your smart phone. They are also equipped with air-conditioning units and touch screens that let you jog virtually in specific places filmed on location, such as San Francisco. Afterward, hit the free weights or schedule a private yoga or Pilates class. For a pre- or post-workout respite, the garden by the entrance with its three-tiered fountain and views to the beach is perfect.
The Forbes Travel Guide Four-Star spa offers three outdoor pools all flanked by lush vegetation. The main one is heated to 86 degrees and has an underwater sound system. There are also two smaller whirlpools. One is filled with mineral water drawn from the property itself and is set to a toasty 104 degrees. The other, which keeps at 94 degrees, is ideal for kids and uses non-well water. During the summer months there is poolside service, including treats from Santa Barbara’s oldest ice cream shop, McConnell’s.
Begin your day in the Santa Barbara spa’s relaxation lounge, a quiet room on the second floor that offers dried fruits and nuts, a fireplace in the corner and ocean vistas visible from plush, comfortable chairs. The treatment rooms with clear maple wood flooring are designed for singles, though there are couples suites. For the best rooms, book one of the four master suites, which come with an outdoor patio and overlook the water, a Jacuzzi tub and two massage tables. Though, hotel guests can have in-room massages and nail services (the spa will also send a therapist to your guest room to give your dog a massage, too). The locker rooms include dry saunas and separate steam rooms with mist that’s infused with menthol, which is strong but not potent and helps with clearing the sinuses. The showers in the locker rooms, as in all of the spa, have rain bars, allowing you to get only your body wet rather than your hair and face, and rain heads if you prefer the full deluge.
It’s no surprise that you can get most anything you want, from massages (stone work, Swedish and maternity) to facials. The treatments employ botanicals that are plucked from the hotel’s own gardens. One of the most popular menu items is the Grape De Vine scrub, which uses grape seed directly from Santa Barbara wine country. For pure luxury, order some bubbly as well — champagne can be incorporated into any service.