- Mark Sep 24, 2001 10:56 AM
Has anyone eaten at Bacara? I understand they have a couple of restos and a good wine list. I might be visiting there this fall and need some feedback. Thanks
I've eaten there a few times and while it's good, it's not great and the service is less-than polished. The first time I was there, the waiter at the casual "Bistro" completely forgot our appetizer and was somewhat nonchalant about it. The second time, on my honeymoon, we stayed there for a couple of days and it was a little better. The more "upscale" restaurant, "Miro" was pleasant enough, but red is just not conducive to relaxation (check it out at bacararesort.com). The breakfast at "The Spa Cafe" was excellent though and the service was prompt. We also had a drink in the lobby bar which was nothing exceptional -- the martini wasn't prepared well and the obnoxious piano bar was irritating. Additionally, the spa treatments were overpriced and not worth it. The resort is nice enough, they just need to get some well-trained staff on board so they can compete with Ritz/Four Seasons-caliber hotels. They just aren't there yet. If you're going to Santa Barbara, I would highly recommend the Ojai Valley Inn and Spa (ojairesort.com). I like the spa better and the food is excellent. Plus, although Bacara is on the water, the view is blocked by an unattractive oil rig and if you walk on the beach, your feet get black from all the oil on the sand... All in all, I'd give the entire resort a 7 out of 10 (mainly for the architecture, great décor in the rooms, the 40s style pool areas and the Kiehl's products in the rooms).
Had Thanksgiving at the Spa Cafe last year. It was okay, but not outstanding and not worth the money, by any means. Good service, though. I agree with the other poster that there are probably much better options if you're looking for something upscale. San Ysidro Ranch is nice.
I stayed there for a night or two on our HM and loved the expderience. I've never eaten at Miro, but honestly, I hear a lot of mixed reviews on the restaurant. I think we'll try it out because the hotel is so nostalgic for us (and it IS a fabulous resort). I've eaten at their mid-range restaurant (forgetting the name, it's by the pool). It was delightfully tasty, but definitely not exceptional.
You're paying for the experience. The staff is young and relatively new at this, I would presume.
The owners of the Bacara are suing the contractors who built the Bacara- because all the rooms have some type of structural problems- bad door jams, flooding isues- you name it. At the same time, they are aking for permission from the City of Goleta to build up to 150 timeshare condos. They are in the process of closing access to the beach east of them- Haskells- to the public- even though they guaranteed they'd never close Haskells to the public, and it was a huge hurdle in Bacara getting the permits to build- leaving Haskells open to the public.
Bacara was a mistake from the get-go and I can see why Hyatt backed out of the original development once they learned how foggy the coast can be for much of the year and the irritating daily "marine layer" that cools down outdoor living very quickly in the evenings.
Whenever I have visited this place, either noisy planes are going overhead landing at the near by airport or their is a foul stench from the oil refinery next door.
Bacara is overrated. You would have a better, less expensive time at any of the restaurants in downtown Santa Barbara.