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Ablitt House - Art Meets Architecture in Downtown Santa Barbara

Ablitt House - Art Meets Architecture in Downtown Santa Barbara


Property Details

Updated: Dec 20, 2014
1 Bedroom, 1.5 Baths, Sleeps 2-4

The Ablitt House is a wacky, wonderful, work of art!

With a sense of humor and adventure, this one-of-a-kind home is the creative collaboration of architect Jeff Shelton and contractor Dan Upton. Both had complete design control over the entire project, and the result is a spectacular example of "less is more"!

The award winning interior consists of intricate custom tile, original art, and stone carvings representing the work of six local artists. Each and every room in the home boasts panoramic views of the city lights, coastline, and Santa Ynez Mountains. Strong Mediterranean and Moroccan themes play out with colorful exotic tiles, white stucco walls, custom shaped key-hole windows, hand sculpted surfaces, and custom iron work. The signature hand carved black walnut hand rail is 108 feet long and winds up 77 marble steps that ascend the 5 floors of the tower.

Located down a private alley, this whimsical residence sits on a 20 by 20 foot lot in the heart of Old Town Santa Barbara, where the sights and sounds of city dwelling are palpable. Overlooking local eateries, night clubs and an eclectic mix of retail businesses, the location invites guests to park their car and explore the city on foot. Local beaches, Stearns Wharf and the Harbor are just a quick 10 minute walk, with something for everyone to see along the way.

Enter the home on the ground floor where a cozy garage offers laundry facilities and convenient parking for 1 compact car. An additional outside parking spot is designated for a second vehicle. Take a moment to read the plaque that dedicates this home to the people of Santa Barbara for their support of this unique project.

On the second floor, the nautical feeling of the Master Bedroom is like that of the Captain's Quarters on a yacht. Tall windows offer plenty of fresh air and sunshine. Storage is smart and compact with drawers under the queen-size bed. Two "reach-in" closets with hanging space and drawers flank the Bathroom entry.

The Master Bathroom features a walk-in shower and contemporary ceramic sink set in honed marble.

The hand rail now leads up to the third floor where the Kitchen is bright and fun with a variety of colors and textures. Professional style appliances make meal preparation effortless, and custom glass lighting over the rustic wood dining table echoes the whimsy found in the rest of the home. Views through tall windows reach beyond the red tile roofs of the city to the foothills of the Santa Ynez Mountains beyond.

Up the stairs to the fourth floor, the Living Room features a custom queen-size sofa sleeper. Imagine the expertise of clever installers to get this special piece up 4 flights of stairs! Once seated in the black leather chair and looking out the wall of key-hole windows, the city below seems to disappear, offering the illusion of vast open space between the viewer and the mountain landscape. A convenient half Bath is located on this floor.

Well worth the vertical efforts of the uphill climb, the ultimate views will be from the roof top Terrace. 360 degrees of spectacular panorama offer a bird's eye view of the entire city, stretching south to the ocean and sweeping around to the mountain vistas in the distance. An outdoor Kitchen area features a gas grill with side burner, prep sink and refrigerator. From sunrise to sunset, this perch is spectacular.

The Ablitt House is one of the most unique vacation homes in the Paradise Retreats collection, offering guests the fantastic opportunity to experience the remarkable blending of art and architecture. Bring your imagination, a camera to capture every design detail, and comfortable shoes!

(Note: Due to the location of this unique home, noise and activity associated with retail businesses, night clubs with live music, and restaurants should be expected. The home is located on a public shared alley behind these types of establishments as well as a Holiday Inn Express.)

More Details
  • Sleeps 4
  • 1 Bedroom
  • 1 Bathroom, 1 Half Bath
  • Parking
  • Barbecue
  • Internet
  • Dish washer
  • Washing machine
  • Towels provided

Recent Review

About the Manager

Paradise Retreats

World Class Vacation Rentals, LLC

16 E. Arrellaga Street

Santa Barbara, CA. 93101

+1 (805) 275-1851

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Calendar last updated:
December 20, 2014

Guestbook comments from the manager

(Transcribed from guestbook at the property)

We came to this lovely home for our son's graduation from Brooks. The art and style of the Ablitt house fit right in with our guests and celebration. So peaceful and breezy with the windows open. Best sleep ever. Thanks to my sister and her husband for joining me and sharing this special occasion. The seagulls, the patio on the roof at night is spectacular!

We love love love this place. It was so special. Everywhere we looked a new surprise. Best place to celebrate our Brookie and his success!
Apr 2014
  • 1 of 18

3 Reviews

Ablitt House - Art Meets Architecture in Downtown Santa Barbara
-(805) 275-1851(California, USA)
Santa Barbara Santa Barbara County
Los Gatos, CA

Great place, but the neighbors are loud.

  • 4 of 5
My wife and I stayed at the Ablitt House to celebrate our 15 year anniversary last weekend. The property was exactly what we were looking for. Different then a hotel and right in the heart of Santa Barabara.

The house itself is a real work of art. It was great to get a meet and greet from the property managers to give us the tour and to show us how everything works. We loved every level of the house. It was also funny to see tourists come down the alley specifically to find the house. We even gave two sisters a tour just for fun. You will not be disappointed in the property if you are looking for a fun eccentric place to stay.

The location is great too. Just off of State St. We enjoyed walking to Funk Town to do some wine tasting as well as walking to some nice dinners in town. We never took the car out of the garage.

The only negative was the noise. The bar across the alley is quite loud on weekends. We were OK with it and if you are a bar hopper, it would be no big deal.
  • Submitted: Oct 14, 2014
  • Stayed: Oct 2014
  • Source: VRBO, from HomeAway
Recommended for:  Adventure Seekers, Girls Getaway, Tourists without a Car, Sightseeing, Romantic Getaway
Ablitt House - Art Meets Architecture in Downtown Santa Barbara
-(805) 275-1851(California, USA)
Santa Barbara Santa Barbara County
Santa Fe, NM

ablitt house

  • 2 of 5
The house is absolutely as pictured, a genuine work of artistic beauty.
I suspect would be perfect for family gatherings, small weddings, parties.

Sleeping is another story.
I wondered why the owners chose to rent out such a beautiful home, rather than live there.
Then I stayed there for 4 nights.
The noise level from the bars next door is extraordinary.
It wouldn't be a problem if you go to sleep after 2 a.m.
Other than that, a wonderful place.
  • Submitted: Jul 18, 2013
  • Stayed: May 2013
  • Source: HomeAway
Ablitt House - Art Meets Architecture in Downtown Santa Barbara
-(805) 275-1851(California, USA)
Santa Barbara Santa Barbara County
Burlington, CT

Excellent Location, Dreamlike Digs

  • 5 of 5
This is definately one of the most unique vacation rentals we have had the pleasure to appreciate. The architecture and furnishings are so special that they could probably charge money just to have people walk through the house. The upper deck, BBQ and bell area affords a 360 degree view and it is just delightful to sit in any room and enjoy the ambiance and windows. The management company was a bit difficult to work with but ultimately they helped us to change our dates at the last minute when we were faced with a family emergency, and we were quite greatful for this. Staying in the Ablitt House was a fabulous and unique experience which we highly recommend.
  • Submitted: Dec 28, 2012
  • Stayed: Nov 2012
  • Source: VRBO, from HomeAway
Recommended for:  Tourists without a Car, Sightseeing, Romantic Getaway


Activity and Interests

Nearest Airport : Santa Barbara Airport at 12 Miles Nearest Golf : Santa Barbara Golf Club at 4.5 Miles Nearest Train : Santa Barbara Amtrak Station at 0.25 Miles Nearest Motorway : Highway 101 at 0.25 Miles Nearest Beach : West Beach at 0.5 Miles Car: recommended

Wine Tasting, Shopping, Local Spas, Coffee Shops, Restaurants, Clubs, Stearn's Wharf, Sight Seeing, Channel Island Tours, Whale watching, Antiquing, Bird Watching. For detailed info on all local leisure activities, please visit our website.


Enter your travel dates
Updated: Dec 20, 2014

Rental rates

Convert Currency
Rate Period Nightly Weekend Night Weekly Monthly Event
Summer - Holiday
Dec 19 2014 - Jan 1 2015
7 night minimum stay
Jan 2 2015 - Mar 31 2015
3 night minimum stay
Spring - Fall
Apr 1 2015 - May 14 2015
3 night minimum stay
Summer - Holiday
May 15 2015 - Sep 15 2015
7 night minimum stay
Spring - Fall
Sep 16 2015 - Oct 31 2015
3 night minimum stay
Nov 1 2015 - Nov 20 2015
3 night minimum stay
Summer - Holiday
Nov 21 2015 - Nov 28 2015
7 night minimum stay
Nov 29 2015 - Dec 18 2015
3 night minimum stay
Summer - Holiday
Dec 19 2015 - Jan 1 2016
7 night minimum stay
Jan 2 2016 - Mar 31 2016
3 night minimum stay


  • From $300 - 3 night minimum


Property Type

  • house


  • Family
  • Tourist Attractions


  • Clothes Dryer
  • Garage ...
  • Hair Dryer
  • Heating
  • Internet ...
  • Iron & Board
  • Linens Provided
  • Living Room
  • Parking ...
  • Telephone ...
  • Towels Provided
  • Washing Machine


  • Coffee Maker
  • Dishes & Utensils
  • Dishwasher ...
  • Kitchen ...
  • Microwave
  • Refrigerator ...
  • Stove
  • Toaster


  • Dining Area ...


  • Books
  • Games
  • Satellite / Cable
  • Television ...


  • non smoking only
  • pets not allowed

Location Type

  • Downtown


  • botanical garden
  • churches
  • cinemas
  • festivals
  • library
  • live theater
  • marina
  • museums
  • playground
  • restaurants
  • winery tours
  • zoo

Leisure Activities

  • antiquing
  • beachcombing
  • bird watching
  • horseback riding
  • photography
  • scenic drives
  • sight seeing
  • walking
  • whale watching

Local Services & Businesses

  • ATM/bank
  • groceries
  • hospital
  • massage therapist
  • medical services

Sports & Adventure Activities

  • cycling
  • deepsea fishing
  • equestrian events
  • fishing
  • golf
  • hunting
  • jet skiing
  • mountain biking
  • paragliding
  • pier fishing
  • roller blading
  • sailing
  • snorkeling
  • surf fishing
  • surfing
  • swimming
  • tennis
  • wind-surfing


  • 1 Bathroom
  • 1 Half Bath
  • Master Bathroom - toilet, shower, 2nd floor Master Bathroom w/walk-in shower, sink, toilet
  • 4th Floor Powder Room - toilet, 4th floor enclosed toilet with common sink area
  • 2nd floor Master Bathroom w/walk-in shower, sink, toilet 4th floor enclosed toilet with common sink area


  • 1 Bedroom, Sleeps 4
  • Master Bedroom - 1 queen, Master Bedroom with queen-size bed
  • Master Bedroom with queen-size bed Living Room w/full-size sofa sleeper


  • Balcony ...
  • Outdoor Grill ...


  • Guests provide their own meals

Learn more about this vacation rental at the owner's website


  • Award winning 5-story Artisan home, Roof top terrace with 360 degree views, Outdoor Kitchen, In-town location just off State Street, No elevator, Viking 4 burner range with single oven, Sub-Zero Refrigerator/Freezer drawers, Miele Dishwasher, Microwave, Toaster, Blender, Coffee maker, Cooking utensils 3rd floor Kitchen area with dining table seats 6, Roof top terrace bistro table seats 2, 4th floor Living Room w/sofa sleeper, Miele Front-loading Compact Washer / Dryer, Flat screen TV, Compact Stereo (Living Room)m Flat screen TV (Master Bedroom), Outdoor Kitchen w/gas grill, side burner, refrigerator, sink, Parking in garage for 1 compact car, Designated alley parking for 1 car, Street parking available, High speed Internet (wireless), Telephone (free national long distance), Half block off State Street with access to Santa Barbara's shopping, theater, and restaurant corridor. Due to nature of this home, no infant/toddler supplies provided
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