Where we’re at: I’m recapping my summer of 2018, which included this trip to California in July.
No kidding — this hotel was one of the reasons I wanted to go to Santa Barbara in the first place. Well, that and the wine. And the ocean. And the incredibly manageable travel time from Los Angeles. Okay, there were a lot of reasons.
I’m all about laid-back boutique hotels that are heavy on style and light on snootery. The surf-inspired California-chic design of the Kimpton Goodland was everything my East Coast heart could have hoped for, with curated local art, hand-painted longboards hanging from the ceiling and native area succulents planted throughout the lobby. They’ve even got an airstream out from named Rita, guys. Swoon!
But this place goes beyond style to substance, too. And by substance, I obviously mean kissing up to my dog. What else could I mean, right? The entire point of this trip was a pet-friendly getaway with world’s most charming cocker spaniel Tucker, and I’ve yet to find a destination more suitable than Santa Barbara, on the whole.
Next up: read more of my pet-friendly travel posts here.
Kimpton Goodland was the perfect base for my little buddy — they warmly welcome pets, no size limits and no crazy fees. And they truly roll out the red carpet with water bowls scattered throughout the property, and dog beds, bowls, food and treats all provided at check in, upon request.
We arrived to incredible welcome bags from our host, Visit Santa Barbara, for both Tucker and his human companions — though don’t think Tucker tried to trick us into giving him a few of those chocolates, too.
We were thoughtfully placed on a ground floor room to make life easier for our geriatric dog (sorry Tucky, it’s true!) and squealed when we walked into our stylish suite. Our favorite detail? A vintage record player with vinyl on loan in the lobby from the appropriately named VNYL, the hotel’s onsite record shop. Keeping with the theme, the spring and summer weekend pool parties are soundtracked by a record-spinning DJ.
The smartly tiled bathroom made my tree-hugging heart happy with its refillable toiletry bottles — filled with premium products, the conditioner snob in me might add!
We loved that Tucker didn’t have to stay sequestered in our room — he was more than welcome in almost all the hotel’s many common areas. And of course, being the world’s most stuffed animal-like dog, he was constantly being lauded for his cuteness along the way.
Pretty much the only area Tucker wasn’t allowed was the pool, which was understandable but a bummer. Tucker hates water, so he totally would have just chilled under our chairs, but I know that the temptation would be too much for some aquatically inclined breeds. As a result, we didn’t spend too much time at the pool.
Nor in the “movement room,” the posh name for the hotel’s gym. Erm, yes. Let’s mark that down as the reason.
I was shocked when I read the hotel has 158 rooms — it truly felt about half the size. That may have had something to do with the fact that we were there over the week, when, sadly, the hotel has reduced service in its onsite dining venues.
We did grab breakfast from the limited grab-and-go menu at Outpost Restaurant one morning, but we’ll have to return to try out the famed weekend brunch (they do also serve lunch Monday through Friday, and dinner all weeklong.) Another reason to come back? The fare at Good Bar, which we were only able to peek into due to renovations, but normally is open every night throughout the week. Luckily Santa Barbara is spoiled for dog friendly restaurants.
Another perk for those sans four legged friend — two free wheels! Kimpton guests have access to adorable bright red beach cruisers with which to tool around town (though, granted, it would be a forty-five minute ride into downtown Santa Barbara, there’s plenty closer to explore.)
In fact, the fifteen drive from downtown is one of the only drawbacks we clocked at Kimpton Goodland Santa Barbara, which is technically in neighboring Goleta — and it might be a plus for some travelers. We were also bummed to miss out on so many of the hip happenings at the hotel — check out Kimpton Goodland’s social calendar for activities ranging from s’mores nights to poolside yoga — we will simply have to return for a weekend next time to get the full experience.
Cause dang, did we have a dog-gone good time here. (Sorry, couldn’t resist.) Looking for more dog friendly Santa Barbara travel tips? Don’t miss my full pet friendly Santa Barbara guide, including the best wineries, off leash dog trails, beaches and restaurants (I had you at wineries though, right?)
Happy tails and trails! What’s the most dog friendly hotel you’ve ever stayed at?