Travel slowly, staying in vacation rentals (villas, farms, cottages, apartments)
Review 3491: Owner, Sycamore Cottage
Studio, Santa Barbara, California
April 2008, 3 nights
It is a studio cottage for two located in Santa Barbara. It is in a quiet residential area overlooking a private wooded area. A perfect romantic retreat.
Downtown Santa Barbara is about 10 minutes away. You will find several local restaurants near by along with several grocery stores.
It is a large open Craftsman-style studio. From a gate on the side of the owner's home, you walk through a wonderful garden to the entry though the red gate. It is very quiet and peaceful.
The garden is wonderful. There is a interesting metal wall built in a style similar to Richard Serra sculptures which lines the path to the cottage and separates the owners outdoor area from the rest of the garden. After passing through a red gate, you step down on to a large private deck. Oak trees overhang and you can catch glimpses of the hills surrounding Santa Barbara. The deck provides a patio for the cottage with deck chairs, lounge and outdoor dining table. It is a great place to take your coffee and listen to the birds.
The cottage is basically a large studio. It is decorated as early 1900 craftsman's bungalow in warm tones of gold and red. It is very cozy and romantic. There is a comfortable sofa and large chair. It is well lit with many lamps. There is a TV, stereo, DVD player. Two large French doors open out onto the deck. It is very clean.
The bed is located in an nook off the main seating area. It is a romantic retreat with a comfortable queen bed. The leaded glass window above the bed overlooks a hidden slope up to the garden and the slope is filled with interesting succulent plants.
The bathroom has a claw foot tub and shower and is stone tiled.
The kitchen is located in half of the large studio room. There is a half-refrigerator and a full stove. There are enough dishes for dinner for two. There are adequate pans although we didn't cook. It was easy to pickup take out at the near by supermarket deli. The owners provided a welcoming bottle of wine, sparkling water and coffee. The dining area is located in a nook and overlooks the garden.
Agency and Representatives (and price)
The owners are great to work with. David responded right away to my email and phoned us before we left to confirm when we would be arriving. The contract was clear and we provided a rental deposit and security deposit. We paid the remaining in cash when we arrived.
The website gives a good description and pictures of the cottage. They provide a large book with information on restaurants and local stores. We were interested in gardens and they provided us with information on interesting local gardens and nurseries to visit.
Do you recommend this vacation rental to others?
Absolutely. We would love to stay there again. Spring is a wonderful time to visit with the green hills sparkling in yellow from the wild mustard. Fall would also be very nice time to visit.
Things to do in this area
We came to visit the gardens. I highly recommend visiting Lotusland garden. You can only visit by appointment and it is well worth it. If you are interested in wine, you can follow the "Sideways" wine tour through Los Olivos and the Santa Ynez Valley, which is just about one hour drive north.
There are many interesting stores in downtown Santa Barbara. We ran out of time and did not get a chance to explore. You can also go to the beach or take a tour out to the Channel Islands. If you are interested in hiking, there are many local hikes in the hills behind. See Santa Barbara Hikes website for more information on hiking.
This review is the opinion of a Slow Travel member and not of slowtrav.com.
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