Santa Barbara Welcomes Visitors

Clear Skies, Sun Return for Lineup of Events, New Openings

Visit Santa Barbara:
Karna Hughes, Director of Communications
(805) 966-9222, ext. 112 or [email protected]

Santa Barbara, Calif. (January 25, 2018) — With the reopening of Highway 101 and the community recovering from the tragic Montecito mudslides, Santa Barbara is ready to welcome visitors with a lineup of signature events and offers, as well as new local properties for travelers to experience.

“We are heartbroken for the families, neighbors and businesses in Montecito impacted by the recent tragedy,” said Kathy Janega-Dykes, president/CEO of Visit Santa Barbara. “We are deeply thankful to the first responders and clean-up crews for all they did to protect and help the community recover.”

“In addition, we are grateful for the outpouring of support we’ve received from around the world these past few weeks. Thankfully, the cities of Santa Barbara and Goleta were not in the environmental impact zone, although the temporary highway closure did have a negative effect on local businesses.

“However, our community spirit is stronger and more resilient than ever. One of the best ways for visitors to support the Santa Barbara South Coast is through their patronage of local businesses, restaurants, and shops. Now is a remarkable time of year to visit.”

Visitors to the Santa Barbara South Coast (including the communities of Santa Barbara, Goleta, and Summerland) can partake in a wide range of popular attractions, from local restaurants and shops to outdoor excursions like sunset cruises and bicycle rides. Many Montecito-area businesses, such as those along Coast Village Road, are planning to reopen in February. Travelers planning to visit Montecito should call ahead to confirm hours and availability of businesses.

Travelers who visit Santa Barbara through March 31, 2018 can take advantage of “Revive & Thrive” lodging packages, featuring a complimentary third night or 20 percent off reservations at 17 participating Santa Barbara South Coast hotels. Go to for full promotion details and links to participating hotel partners.

Visitors can also plan their getaways to experience one of the following events:
7th annual Winter Wine Classic – Jan. 27
Held at The Fess Parker: A Doubletree by Hilton Resort, visitors can experience one of the largest gatherings of California’s ultra-elite wine-making masters for tastings, pairings and live music.
33rd annual Santa Barbara International Film Festival – Jan. 31 to Feb. 10
Brings the best of independent and international cinema to Santa Barbara. Film enthusiasts will enjoy special panels, award ceremonies and 200+ films at some of the city’s most historic theaters.
Santa Barbara Restaurant Week – Feb 23 to March 4
Travelers will feast at restaurants they’ve been dreaming of with prix-fixe menus at reduced rates for lunch and dinner menus priced at $25, $35 and $45, making Santa Barbara’s exceptional culinary scene accessible to all.
Inaugural PuppetPalooza – March 1 to 4
Puppets will take over Santa Barbara for this family-focused event that includes more than 20 performances and events by 30 talented performers.
73rd annual Santa Barbara International Orchid Show – March 9 to 11
Thousands of blooms in every imaginable shape, color, pattern and texture will be showcased at one of the country’s largest and oldest celebrations of orchids.

In addition, Santa Barbara has welcomed a variety of new developments in recent months, from the acclaimed Wolf Museum of Exploration + Innovation (MOXI) to Hotel Californian, a stunning luxury resort spanning three city blocks. In Goleta, new hotels Hilton Garden Inn and The Residence Inn Santa Barbara Goleta by Marriott are bringing more options for visitors and meeting goers traveling to the area near the University of California Santa Barbara.

Culinary enthusiasts will enjoy new eateries, such as Smithy Kitchen + Bar by home designer and hotelier Steve Hermann, and Blackbird at Hotel Californian, whose executive chef, Alexander La Motte, has previously worked for restaurants run by culinary giants Thomas Keller and Daniel Boulud.

Other recent developments include a new MTD fleet of electric shuttles and Cat Therapy, a cat café where animal lovers get to gently pet and play with well-cared-for, adoptable shelter cats in a chic coffee-house-like setting.

For more information, a complete calendar of events and itinerary suggestions, visit


Visit Santa Barbara’s complete high-res photo and video library can be found by registering at Contact [email protected] for additional information.