Photo Credit: San Ysidro Ranch
Asking yourself why you should visit Santa Barbara in November? The real question should be, why wouldn’t you? While the rest of the country is layering up for winter, Santa Barbara’s warm days continue well into November, making visitors wonder if summer ever really left.
This Month's Highlights
To make it easy to enjoy one more moment of summer, November in Santa Barbara offers that summer-time feeling without the crowds and the most unbelievable sunsets you will ever see. Do we have you convinced? Great.
Now that you’ve made the decision to visit Santa Barbara in November, we’ve compiled a list of ways to stay, play, eat, and of course, repeat.
Before heading our way, pick a place to call home while in Santa Barbara. For the month of November, San Ysidro Ranch is offering special mid-week rates that include continental breakfast for two at The Stonehouse. If you choose to book two nights or more, a bottle of champagne will greet you upon arrival and two 80-minute Swedish Messages will send you into a vacation state of mind. From there, we recommend making reservations for dinner at The Stonehouse, honored with Wine Spectator’s Grand Award for the past four consecutive years.
Book Your Stay
The highly anticipated opening of Hotel Californian is finally upon us and doors are wide open to welcome travelers to this one-of-a-kind property. Come camera ready and be prepared for jaws to drop the second you step foot onto one of the two million imported tiles. Floor to ceiling, the luxurious Hotel Californian is a breathtaking mix of California Spanish Colonial Revival architecture and stylish, Moorish-themed interior designs by celebrity designer Martyn Lawrence Bullard. No need to wake from your daydream, every inch of this luxury property is oozing with Santa Barbara style and class, raising the bar for vacationing in California.
Two of our favorite hotel amenities include the Spa Majorelle and the stunning roof-top view. With its proximity to Santa Barbara’s Waterfront and The Funk Zone, guests are treated to 360 degree views of what makes Santa Barbara, The American Riviera®. Did we mention there is a roof-top pool? Grab us a cocktail, we’re moving in.
Findings Market: Get a head start on holiday shopping and gift your loved ones a piece of Santa Barbara. On November 11, local artisans will set up shop at The Guilded Table at The Waterline, for a pop-up experience in Santa Barbara’s Funk Zone. From 11 a.m. – 6 p.m., support local creatives and brands from Santa Barbara, Ojai and Ventura at this highly curated market.
Thanksgiving Day Pumpkin Smash: First comes stuffing, then comes pumpkin smashing at the Santa Barbara Zoo. Guaranteed to be a smashing’ good time, animal lovers are encouraged to get the kids out of the house on Thanksgiving Day and venture to the Santa Barbara Zoo for one of the seasons most entertaining events. Instead of pumpkin pie, make a new Thanksgiving tradition from 10 a.m. – 3:30 p.m., as you watch the elephants, gorillas, and other Zoo animals play and interact with pumpkins. Free with regular Zoo admission.
8th Annual Santa Barbara Chowder Festival: Don’t be afraid to chow-down at this chowder showdown. Now in its 8th year, The Fess Parker – a Doubletree by Hilton Resort welcomes the return of the Santa Barbara Chowder Fest on November 5. Get your fill of chowder, chili, wine and beer at this tasty event.
3rd Annual Ramenfest: Sipping and slurping are highly encouraged at the 3rd annual Ramenfest on November 12. Set at the ultra-stylish Goodland Hotel in Goleta, you’re guaranteed to go home will a full tummy after devouring your way through ramen tastings from each of the participating restaurants. Accompanying the delicious noodles, Young’s Market Company will be showcasing Japanese beer, sake and whiskey, while DJ Darla Bea spins some tunes. Help crown a top ramen and leave with a happy heart, as a portion of the proceeds will be donated to No Kid Hungry.
Dining at Hotel Californian: More than a hotel, Santa Barbara welcomes two new dining options with the grand opening of Hotel Californian.
For casual fare, Goat Tree Café offers quick bites and grab-and-go goodies to purchase before exploring Santa Barbara. Encouraging al-fresco dining, choose between fresh salads, sandwiches, paninis, and sweets on their pedestrian-friendly patio, or opt to personalize a picnic basket, perfect for a day at the beach, just a few steps away.
Once night falls, head to Blackbird for a sultry dining experience at Hotel Californian’s signature restaurant. Featuring local produce, seafood, and wines, treat your taste buds to a mouth-watering meal of Mediterranean-influenced cuisine with an emphasis on Santa Barbara-sourced, hyper-seasonal ingredients. Led by Executive Chef Alexander La Motte, previously at the French Laundry, your night out is in expert hands.
James Beard Celebrity Chef Tour Dinner: The Fess Parker – a Doubletree by Hilton Resort will be taken over by an incredible line-up of chefs on Friday, November 17. At Santa Barbara’s Second Annual James Beard Celebrity Chef Tour Dinner, not one but six award-winning James Beard Foundation chefs will please your palate with their unique culinary creations. The Santa Barbara dinner will begin with a cocktail reception followed by a one-night-only, multi-course dinner with wine pairings, and end with a decadent dessert course and a Q&A session with the evening’s chefs. This year’s culinary talent includes Graeme Cockburn, Laura Cole, Kirk DeLong, Bruce Kalman, Kristen Kish, and Nancy Silverton.