Gorgeous Gardens at this Classic California Spa Resort
The caring, attentive staff makes it another reason to visit. From the first moment you drive up to this luxurious oceanside property, right on Butterfly Beach in exclusive Montecito, you are greeted like a family member come home.
Landscaped meticulously and cared for like a precious heirloom, the architecturally brilliant craftsmanship can be seen throughout the 75-year-old site. With its seamless integration of old and new building, a stunning display of Kentia palm trees, Hong Kong orchid trees, Silk Floss trees and Australian tree ferns, this Four Seasons is a flagship property of masterfully designed and maintained beauty.
A Botanical Guide is available in every guest room, and self-guided tours are encouraged. A newly designed pool and courtyard gardens seamlessly integrate this historic property with its surroundings. Small fountains trickle into a meandering water garden teeming with papyrus, water iris, calla lilies, lotus and exotic, night-blooming water lilies. If you think youve stumbled into a forgotten Monet garden, you wouldnt be the first.
Gifted Therapists at California Spa Resort
Rest assured that your spa experience will be as personalized and attended to by as professional a staff as that which cares for the precious landscaping detail. Relax. Youre in not just good hands, but great hands. My amazingly gifted certified therapist was trained in basics as well as more exotic treatments, including JAMU, a Balinese technique.
The Spa, in a separate wing from the main building, is found along a meandering brick path. As you enter into the serene space, you will most likely be greeted by Spa Director Elena Lammerding, who reports that visitors flock to the ten treatment rooms for a variety of body treats and superb facials. Couples, too, find themselves drawn to suites that offer dual treatments and a large tub for soaking.
After changing and storing possessions in one of 26 keyless lockers, don one of the softest robes ever, and glide upstairs into the Relaxation Lounge Area before your treatment.
Ocean Views at Santa Barbara Spa Resort
Youll find 13 ample-sized chairs created with teak and other exotic wood, complemented with earth-toned pillows. Purposely decorated with no hard edges, the Feng-Shui designed Lounge includes two meditative-inspired bowls filled with lavender seeds arranged to a soothing, spiral-shaped designed.
The Lounge is not enormous, it just feels expansive thanks in part to the open design and expanse of the ocean just in front of you. This is why you dont feel lost in space, just cozy.
You may not want to leave, since the ocean view, salt spray and herbal teas may be all you need. But let yourself be drawn away once you are called, because you can always revisit the Relaxation Lounge after your treatment.
Before your appointment, a therapist might quietly offer you a hot herbal tea served in a cast iron pot with its own built-in diffuser. I suggest leaving this delight to after your spa treat. Its a good excuse for returning!
After being in such a serene spot, the treatment itself was the icing on the cake. I was suffering from a full blown sinus infection and the JAMU massage, accompanied by long strokes and acupressure, provided a respite from the throbbing in my head.
Attention to Details at Four Seasons Santa Barbara Spa
One of the nicest surprises was the gentle fabric that covered the face cradle. Now this might seem like a minor detail, but its one that women will appreciate. Too often, face cradles are covered in washcloth-like material, often scratchy and not soft at all. And when your treatment is done you end up with cradle-face red marks. Not so here. The Kashmere fabric is custom fitted (like a bottom sheet) to the face cradle. The faux-cashmere material feels like the softest chenille you can buy.
This Spa has been granted a top Mobil Guide Award for good reason. With its soaking whirlpool tubs, private balcony and botanicals that define the Santa Barbara region, the Serene Spa at Four Seasons Resort Santa Barbara is a must-visit when you find yourself in this California spot.
Naomi Serviss is an internationally published travel/entertainment writer specializing in spas.
1260 Channel Drive
Santa Barbara, California, 93108
Telephone: 1 (805) 969-2261
Room Reservation: 1 (805) 565-8299
Reservation Fax: 1 (805) 565-8329
Santa Barbara Municipal Airport: 20 minutes
Los Angeles International Airport: 90 minutes