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Ritz-Carlton, Bacara
Courtesy Ritz-Carlton, Bacara

Ritz-Carlton, Bacara

Santa Barbara, California

By Roger Cox, Editor

Bacara perches atop a bluff overlooking two miles of beach, a little north of Santa Barbara. Architecturally it resembles a Spanish Colonial village, Bacara Resort and Spaas winding pathways connect low-slung buildings with open balconies and courtyards with fountains. Within its 78 acres are 311 rooms and suites, a 42,000-square-foot spa, a fitness center, 3 rimless swimming pools, and 4 Har-Tru tennis courts. Its connection to a 1,000-acre lemon and avocado ranch adds more dimensions, like horseback riding, hiking and mountain biking. Golfers, meanwhile, have privileges at local courses.
Four courts is a modest number for a hotel this size, but they stand out for their location near the ocean and their talented tennis director Wayne Barnes. Barnes has a history of catering to those who choose upscale resorts, having spearheaded the programs at the Phoenician in Arizona and the J.W. Marriott Ihilani in Hawaii before coming here in 2000 when the resort opened. It's not that he has a wealth of programming beyond daily adult and junior clinics&emdash;four courts really don't allow that&emdash;it's that he strives to ensure that any guest looking for a game finds one by drawing on local residents to fill in as opponents when none can be found among the guests. That and the soft courts, a relative rarity in southern California, give Bacara a higher tennis profile than its modest court complex suggests.

The Ritz-Carlton Bacara, Santa Barbara guests can swim in three pools, surf or sail at the beach, receive one-on-one attention from the resident tennis pro, play a round at the adjacent championship golf course or walk the on-property nature trail. Santa Barbara is also home to a thriving arts community, festival circuit and winery region, inviting guests to explore beyond the resort to discover more of what the area has to offer.


Santa Barbara’s three 18-hole championship golf courses include Sandpiper Golf Club, located next door to the resort. Tee times at all courses can be arranged through the resort.


The resort’s four Har-Tru clay composition courts host adult and junior clinics, matches and private and semi-private lessons. Equipment is also available for rental.


Set on 78 acres, the resort offers two-mile natural beach, three zero-edged saline, heated pools with private cabana rentals and watersports including surfing, kayaking and paddle boarding. Learn more about our Pool Cabana rentals.


Santa Barbara offers horseback riding, biking, hiking and other activities. Rentals and tours are available through the onsite Bacara Adventures. 

Drysdale 2019 Programs

Join the Cliff Drysdale Tennis team for a tennis and wine weekend at the Ritz-Carlton Bacara, Santa Barbara. This unique camp will bring you the ultimate tennis experience where you can relax and unwind while playing tennis on the California coast. The weekend includes 9 hours of tennis instruction and play, a private wine tour and tasting at the award-winning winery, and luxury accommodations for 2 nights. More information can be found online at


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Ritz-Carlton, Bacara
8301 Hollister Avenue
Santa Barbara, CA 93117

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Here's what others have had to say about Ritz-Carlton, Bacara.

  • 4-Ball Rating ""—M.S., Adv. Int., August 2021
  • 4½-Ball Rating ""—S.C., Int., August 2021

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