Studio X’s Second Pilates Studio Opens This Week

••• Opening September 27 at Caldwell Snyder in Montecito: recent paintings by John Gibson. Above: a detail from “Crux.”

••• Studio X‘s second Pilates studio opens September 29 at Magnolia Center.

••• H. asked whether there’s an update on when the Sonoma Fit gym will be opening (at State and Cota), so I reached out to the company; it’s shooting for March.

••• According to the consent agenda for the September 27 meeting of the Historic Landmarks Commission, improvements are coming to Cabrillo Boulevard: “Proposal to install new landscaped median with Rectangular Rapid Flash Beacon at Cabrillo Boulevard/Anacapa Street crosswalk and to add new landscaping to existing medians at Cabrillo Boulevard/Chapala Street and Cabrillo Boulevard/Bath Street.”

••• Visit Santa Barbara released hotel performance data for August: “The Santa Barbara South Coast hotel occupancy rate declined 6% in August 2023, compared to August 2022. Hotel occupancy reached 77% in August 2023. The average rate for a Santa Barbara South Coast hotel room in August 2023 was $400 a night, down 5% from the same month last year. Revenue per available Santa Barbara South Coast hotel room was $308 in August 2023, falling 11% compared to the same month last year.” Maybe it’s a sign that hotel rates—not just here, but everywhere—are finally coming back to earth.

••• Asher Market has opened a shop in Santa Ynez (to go along with the original on State Street). From the release: “While Asher Market is best known for women and children’s clothing and alpaca wool throws, ponchos and scarves, the brand features an array of men’s clothing, decorative home goods, jewelry, shoes, children’s books, toys and pet accessories. Products are designed locally in Santa Barbara and handmade in Peru, with an emphasis on sourcing the softest, highest quality fabrics and craftsmanship. The brand’s dedicated children and baby line, Asher Baby, includes popular gender-neutral designs featuring math prints, llamas and more.”

••• Commercial real estate agent Caitlin Hensel reports that Belong Church has leased 1925 State (between Mission and Pedregosa). It’s short-term, as the building and its neighbor to the south are part of a hotel development—which involves a nice makeover—in the permitting process.


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If, in the peak of summer, our hotels are only 77% full, why do we need more hotels? Why is the city approving more hotels? Has that ever been articulated?

Jeff B.

If, in the peak of summer, our bars and restaurants are not 100% full, why do we need more bars and restaurants? Why is the city approving more bars and restaurants? Has that ever been articulated?

Dan O.

How about you give her an answer rather than parroting her with condescending questions?


Because the property owner wants to put one in and the government arbitrarily denying one property owner the ability to build something when it isn’t prohibited by law would be a takings in violation of the Fifth Amendment. If the city wants to stop hotels being built, then they need to rezone the zone districts or change what those zone districts allow to be built within them to exclude hotels, rather than picking on one property owner and telling them they don’t get to build a hotel, when the land use codes say they can.

tammy hughes

Erik, I fear that hotel rates are not down in SB because of a general fall across that market, but more that there is less interest in visiting Santa Barbara. We’ve tarnished our long held brand of a crown jewel beach community wedged between the mountains and the sea. Downtown has lost its charm and elegance. In it’s place is a dirty and vacant mishmash of a ‘pedestrian promenade’. I think there is less appeal for people to spend their hard earned dollars here.


I work in a high end children’s shop in Solvang- half of my visitors are day tripping from SB hotel stays….I never hear negative about SB other than “its foggy!”. My personal experience agrees with you, but visitors love it- and the traffic coming in of folks just passing thru are on their way or coming from SF- most report enjoyable visits there, though they were/are weary of cars being broken into- with the latest being while stopped on freeway ramps- getting hit then!