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“A dainty little room”

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The Secret Garden Inn
Ranked #10 of 18 Santa Barbara B&B and Inns
Los Angeles, California
Level Contributor
60 reviews
22 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 30 helpful votes
“A dainty little room”
Reviewed 23 May 2007

I am a school teacher, who won a weeked for two from a fundraiser at my school. The Grand prize was a gift certificate to the Secret Garden Inn. My wife and I had a nice quiet weekend. The host, Dominique, for the most part, was amiable, but a little cross with the employees.
Each morning a wonderful French quiche was provided, and the outdoor area was fun to eat in. The room we stayed in was a little cramped, but the outdoor, private spa, more than made up for the tiny room. Once we figured out that we could park in the back, travel in and out was easy. Not sure I would stay again, but my wife probably would....

  • Liked — Outdoor, private spa.
  • Disliked — To many dogs.
  • Stayed May 2006, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Rickety_Rick
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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191 reviews from our community

Traveller rating
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See reviews for
26
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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (49)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Portuguese first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
New York, NY
Level Contributor
62 reviews
27 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 60 helpful votes
Reviewed 9 November 2006

We stayed at the Secret Garden Inn during a recent wedding in Santa Barabara after staying the first night at the Fess Parker Doubletree Resort. It became a joke to the wedding participants that where we were staying was not that much of a secret!!! The bathroom and plumbing were terrible. Our room the largest of the available cottages was very small. The decorations were cheesy and we had the Anniversary package although it was not our anniversary which required massages. The massage therapist for my wife did not show up so we cancelled the whole event. This was a terrible stay and the owner due to embarassment or outright shame never contacted us to apologize for this outright poor experience. We stay in B&B's exclusively all over the World and this one we would NOT RECOMMEND!!!!!!

  • Liked — The garden in the back of the main house was beautiful.
  • Disliked — No inout into breakfast meals prepared and very small room
  • Tips/Secrets — Always provides reviews for insight for other travelers
  • Stayed October 2006, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
4 Thank RBryan1011
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
New York
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 18 October 2006

This little spot is a winner! Loved the cottage, with hot tub! Very romantic. They hosted a dinner for our family on the grounds, and it was lovely. Highly recommended!

  • Liked — Very Private! Very romantic!
  • Disliked — Loved it all!
  • Stayed September 2006, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Mutabaruka
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Los Angeles, California
Level Contributor
59 reviews
37 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 60 helpful votes
Reviewed 13 June 2006

My husband stayed here for one night over the Memorial Day holiday weekend. After a couple of tastings at the Fess Parker and Firestone wineries in Los Olivos, we made our way back to Santa Barbara to check into our room. As soon as we saw the Inn, we knew we had discovered something special!

Hidden by trees and painted in a cheerful yellow, the main house and surrounding cottages do make you feel like you're in a secret place even though you're actually in the middle of a residential neighborhood!

We stayed in the Oriole room and were delighted by its decor, French doors and deck (complete with hot tub). We brought our two Pomeranians, and though it was small, the layout wass great and we never felt like we needed more room.

Dominique and the Innkeepers were very friendly and helpful, and the snack hour and breakfast were yummy. The Inn is close to State Street, and a great coffee shop is right around the corner.

We will definitely go back!

  • Stayed May 2006
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank lomigirl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
San Francisco, ca
Level Contributor
12 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
Reviewed 21 February 2006

We stayed at the secrect garden inn this past weekend. Dominique the owner and the inn keepers were very friendly and helpful. The service made up for the flaws in the room. The place is 4 blocks from State street(where all the action is). You could walk it up during summer, but not during cold season. The breakfast was good and so were the snacks.The room was okay - not too great. It wasn't too clean, the rugs looked very old and the room was small with a tiny TV. The room was noisy, we could hear everything from our neighboring rooms.
There were 4 other couples who stayed in the house during our stay, they were friendly and nice. Overall I would rate this place - average (not bad).

  • Stayed February 2006
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank nithu
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
A TripAdvisor Member
Reviewed 5 December 2005

With its yellow exterior and lovely gardens, the Secret Garden from the outside looks like a gem. However, you are not sleeping in the garden, you are sleeping in their crappy rooms. We stayed in the Kingfisher room and found out immediately, that "quaint" means the size of a postage stamp. It's so small in fact, that the french doors could not open all the way because they hit the end of the rock hard bed.
Did I mention the rock hard bed? My husband and I felt like we were sleeping on cement all night... Cement and mildew scented pillows. Very sexy.
The bathroom was filthy...black rings of scum on the drain in the clawfoot tub and a pink rug around the toilet that was so worn out and flattened that you would be a fool to let human skin touch it. The battery for the remote control was held together by two weathered bandaids that had black dirt around the edges. In the closet we found a bottle of whiskey, a knife and and old copy of Rolling Stone. We also found a strange hole in the floor larger than a half dollar that we religiously covered each night, for fear of what might climb up. Maybe this is what the knife and the whiskey were for. Sunday's breakfast was a huge vat of stewed prunes and yogurt. A real "yummy" treat after a long night of pain and agony. If you don't mind feeling like you want to be scrubbed down with comet, this is your kind of place. Unfortunately, my curiosity of bed and breakfasts has ended here.

  • Stayed November 2005
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
6 Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Pasadena
Level Contributor
28 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
Reviewed 29 September 2005

I have been going to Secret Garden inn before it was named the secret garden inn. It was originally the Blue Quail Inn. I have been go yearly since 1988. Sometimes twice a year. That is a lot of times, 23 times to be exact. I love this place. It is like home without the kids. I have slept in every room and feel all are fabulous. The staff is always kind, helpful and so friendly. I am now planning another trip in April 06 with the same 9 other couples who attend with us. This is the place to bring back the love in your relationship. It has always worked my husband and me.
Don't listen to these other people who bad mouth this wonderful place. Listen to this one who has been to many B&B's and this is my favorite.
Rose Pasadena Calif

  • Stayed April 2004, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank rose1961
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about The Secret Garden Inn

Property: The Secret Garden Inn
Address: 1908 Bath St, Santa Barbara, CA 93101-2813
Region: United States > California > Santa Barbara
Amenities:
Beverage Selection Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly )
Hotel Style:
Ranked #10 of 18 B&Bs / Inns in Santa Barbara
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:3 star — The Secret Garden Inn 3*
Number of rooms: 11
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Secluded behind high hedges, hidden pathways, and romantic gardens in Santa Barbara, lies the Secret Garden Inn and Cottages, built in 1905 and now owned and run by Dominique Hannaux. Stay in a main house guestroom, a cottage room or suite with or without private hot tub, or our completely private house. Surrounded by the Inn's gardens, all of our accommodations are romantic and peaceful. Enjoy the delicious Buffet Breakfast which includes: Dominique's French recipe quiches, fresh-baked scones, muffins, sweet breads, fresh fruit, coffee, tea and juices. Our rates also include wine, cheese and hors d'oeuvres at 5 pm and brownies and hot cider later in the evening! All our rooms have a TV-DVD, a private bath and shower and a hairdryer. Many fine restaurants, shops, museums and sights of beautiful Santa Barbara are just a short stroll or a quick bike ride from the Inn. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Secret Garden Hotel Santa Barbara

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