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, as 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. Cliff Drysdale Tennis manages the complex, and have installed Luis Vallecillo as director. A collegiate player at Howard Payne University, he takes over the tennis program at Bacara after heading the junior tennis program at the Omni Amelia Island Resort in FL. He currently offers clinics and private lessons, though there are plans for tennis and wine getaways once conditions permit. The Drysdale management and the club's 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.
Santa Barbara offers horseback riding, biking, hiking and other activities. Rentals and tours are available through the on -site Bacara Adventures.
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Travel Instructions. By Air: The nearest major airport is San Francisco International (SFO), 24 miles to the north.
General Tourist Information. For specific information about the immediate area, visit the Experience Half Moon Bay website; for information about the region, visit the Santa Cruz County Conference & Visitors Bureau website.