Montecito’s 9,000 residents, making up some of the most famous people in Santa Barbara County, enjoy a luxurious lifestyle just outside the city of Santa Barbara. Residing between East Camino Cielo Rd., Ortego Ridge Rd, and the Pacific Ocean, Montecito was once home to the Spaniards in the 18th Century. The Spanish left the region to move farther west into Santa Barbara thus paving the way for bandits and highway robbers in the 19th century. These bandits would attack traffic going through the coastal area into the developed town and missions in the area. However, just as brief as the Spanish, the bandits were gone from the area by the 1860’s giving way to Italian settlers. The land reminded Italians of Italy and they built farms and gardens on the land. Finally, in the 19th century wealthy tourists from eastern and western United States started to buy land in the area and move to the location. Nearby Santa Barbra offered convenient essential services while still offering a secluded feel along the beautiful California coastline.
Today Montecito’s Mediterranean climate offers moderate temperatures and warmer weather year round. Visitors and residents experience fine dining and shopping on Coast Village Road and Upper Village. Montecito’s social and retail district, along with tree-shaded lanes, gives the opportunity to sit back and relax on a sunny restaurant patio where you might even see a famous face or two pass by. Accompanying the great restaurants and shopping are a number of hikes in the hills of Montecito where one will find amazing views of the Channel Islands and Santa Barbara and maybe even run into a natural hot spring. Don’t forget all the wonderful beaches along the coastline either, Fernald’s Point or Miramar Beach are a great place to take the family or catch a wave at one of the surf points like Hammond’s Point.
Next time, when in the Santa Barbara area, make some time to stop by Montecito and see all it has to offer. With the appeal of solar and the interest in the area you might even spot a few Brighten Solar Co. installations from one of the amazing viewpoints!!