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History of Santa Barbara

The City of Santa Barbara realized the cultural and economic value of preserving its historic buildings much earlier than most American cities.  Because of this early intervention, original Spanish Colonial and Mexican-era adobe structures still exist, providing a window to the City’s past.  With a spectacular setting nestled between the mountains and the sea, bathed in a mild climate, the City has also become a world-class tourist destination.  However, what sets Santa Barbara apart from other California coastal cities is the unique thematic Spanish Colonial Revival and Mediterranean Revival architecture found throughout the business district.  In addition, Santa Barbara’s thematic business district is surrounded by a collection of residential neighborhoods, each featuring unique architectural styles.  These vary from the Victorian styles including Italianate, Eastlake and Queen Ann found on the City’s Lower West Side, to the period revival styles of upper State Street, the exotic revivals of the Upper East Side, and the significant collection of Craftsman houses throughout the city.

Last Updated: Jul 23, 2014