One of the World’s Wealthiest People Bought the Hotel Santa Barbara

••• The Hotel Santa Barbara (State/Cota), on the market for $49 million, sold for $41.9 million. According to the press release sent out by agent J.J. Gobbell, who represented both sides in the transaction, “The buyer is on the Forbes list of the world’s wealthiest individuals, and on the magazine’s Richest Self Made Women list.” Oprah? Ellen? Lynda? Nope. I asked around, and it’s reportedly RSMW #1, Diane Hendricks ($11.8 billion), who “chairs ABC Supply, one of the largest wholesale distributors of roofing, siding and windows in America,” and her Hendricks Commercial Properties. We’ll have to wait and see whether she has interesting plans for the hotel. UPDATE 12/7: The buyer issued a press release: “Geronimo Hospitality Group and sister company, commercial real estate developer Hendricks Commercial Properties, plan to begin renovations on the property in 2022 to provide guests with a seamless hospitality experience that honors the property’s rich history and timeless architecture while adding modern amenities and Geronimo’s signature style.”

••• January 2 at the Lobero: “As the Chief Official White House Photographer for President Barack Obama and Official White House Photographer for President Reagan from 1983-1989, Pete Souza was in a unique position to spend rare and intimate moments in the Oval Office observing two transformative Presidents of the United States. He shares some of his iconic behind-the-scenes photographs, along with his poignant detailed stories, all leading to a bold and dynamic depiction of true leadership.” (Below: a classic shot.) And on May 7, comedian Paula Poundstone will be at the theater.

••• The Montecito Association found nothing to the rumor that Rick Caruso, developer of the Rosewood Miramar Beach and many high-end malls, is buying Montecito’s Upper Village. Fresh vision for the Upper Village would surely be welcome, but it would be a shame if it turned into a showcase of global luxury brands.

••• The Santa Barbara Police Department has received “numerous reports” of cars being broken into, particularly “in recreational areas, the municipal golf course, city parks, beach front and other parking lots/areas.” The grammar police, meanwhile, will have some issues with the announcement….

It is believed a group of criminals from outside the Santa Barbara area are specifically targeting vehicles that have valuables inside the vehicle. Information has also been received that this network of criminals is highly sophisticated; they utilize “look-outs” observing future victim’s actions, and wait for the victim to leave their vehicle prior to breaking in.

Many victims have reported placing valuables inside the trunk of their vehicle, believing this is a secure location for purses and wallets. These criminals have burglary tools that allows them to gain access discreetly and quickly to the vehicle’s trunk, then remove only the victim’s credit/debit cards, leaving the wallet or purse behind. The victims are initially unaware the crime has occurred, even after returning to their vehicle and retrieving their property that they believed was secured.

••• Heather James Fine Art has left the building on Coast Village Road. It and the real estate office next door (also vacated) are being taken over by Cottage Urgent Care.

••• CRSVR, which I assume is pronounced “crossover,” is opening a store at 630 State Street (Ortega/Cota). From what I can tell, the company started out next door to the new location at 632 State Street. The self-description online is a bit gibberishy, but you get the idea:

Since opening in 2008, CRSVR has emerged from a traditional sneaker boutique to becoming a shopping destination for those who appreciate the premium in the lifestyle retail market. With a flagship store in Las Vegas, a co-op in Santa Barbara, and an online presence, CRSVR covers all of the essentials for the driven individual. CRSVR Santa Barbara & Las Vegas has become a haven for limited release footwear and clothing, attracting celebrity clientele from across the country. Besides stocking the best from brands like Nike, Adidas, and Jordan, CRSVR has developed their own line of apparel, cultivating from their local heritage for inspiration.


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One Comment

Leslie Westbrook

It would be a shame if the Upper Village was sold, changed or “upgraded”… some of us old timers like some things to stay the same.. or close to it. I am glad that is a rumor and i hope Norman Borgatello hangs on to the last of “old Montecito”. We like it just fine the way it is!