More about Hotel Andalucia
A Romantic Weekend Getaway
You can drive straight into their private driveway, where the bell boys promptly open your car door and help you with your luggage. As you check in, the staff at the front are extremely friendly and helpful. The hotel isn't big, but you feel the coziness from the moment you walk through the doors. The rooms are clean and comfortable, with a king size, four poster bed with fluffy pillows and crisp white sheets. The rooms each have their little balcony doors that open to the view of a side of Santa Barbara. Canary provides you with the best service and will attend to all your needs. I would definitely recommend this hotel to anyone who is going to Santa Barbara and wants a little bit of pampering and luxury. There is a great roof top pool and jacuzzi that you can spend your afternoons lounging by. Amazing 360 degree view of Santa Barbara.
Our wedding took place last Saturday (Memorial Weekend 2006). Our family members comprised nearly one-third of the hotel guests. We received no discounts for ourselves or any of our guests. The staff of Andalucia were amateurs. While I never felt that they were being malicious, the level of service was extraordinarily bad. It is hard to believe that Hotel Andalucia and Shutters On The Beach are related! Here are some of our complaints:
Our Wedding Night Suite
A month before, we booked the presidential suite and received a confirmation code. We wanted to entertain in our room and make sure that the hair and makeup crew had enough room to care for us and the bridal party. Only two weeks before the wedding, we were told that there was a mix-up and that that suite was taken. They accomodated us by giving us two adjoining rooms that didn't even equal the square footage of the presidential suite. The only thing that stayed the same was the price!!!
In addition, they were to make it up to us by giving us a complimentary breakfast in our room for the bridal party and ourselves. However, the staff failed to make any arrangments. We invited the bridal party over at the prearranged time, but the food never arrived. After calling the lobby, some bread rolls and coffee arrived after 10am, but the damage had been done. We felt so embarrassed after many left the room to get breakfast.
On our wedding day, half of our registered family members were to arrive. Four of their reserved rooms were released. Upon passing through the lobby, all we could see was chaos. Everyone was coming to us to see about their reservations... adding even more stress to our wedding day. We had to ask our family members to share rooms since all the nearby hotels were booked for the Memorial Holiday.
The following morning we found ourselves downstairs bidding farewell to friends and family that stayed at the hotel. While we were saying good bye to my sister, we found that her luggage had been loaded into a complete stranger's car by mistake. My sister was mortified! Luckily, she learned of the mistake before the other guest's car pulled off. What a fitting end to a horrible stay.
Very nice hotel but a few kinks
I stayed at the Andalucia for one night in Feb 2006. I booked the hotel very last minute (the night before) and was chuffed to have even found a room as it seemed like most other comparable places were sold out for the long weekend following Valentine's Day. Keeping in mind the last-minute nature of my booking, the price of the standard room was quite high. After valet parking and taxes, etc. the tab was just about $450 for one night. Ordinarily, I'd have little problem paying that price for a top quality hotel but in the case of the Andalucia, I have a few suggestions that would have made my stay more pleasurable because I'd really have to define my stay as merely "average".
First, when checking in I was told that I had booked two nights, which I hadn't (and the confirmation email -- which unfortunately hadn't been printed and brought with -- later showed this to be true). The night desk clerk said no problem, they needed the room anyway as they were booked solid. Well, next morning at checkout, the day desk clerk was not as relaxed or polite. He reiterated the fact over and over that there's no way the hotel would have approved a reservation for one night -- apparently they had a two night minimum in effect for that weekend. Well, no one told me that when I booked over the phone, sorry. The guy seemed pretty annoyed with me but finally relented and removed the charge for night two after a long huff. (Postscript: When I got home I forwarded the confirmation email and pdf -- which showed the one night booking -- back to the hotel with my feedback and I have not received a reply.)
The facilities are lovely -- the view from the rooftop pool and deck area (complete with outdoor fireplace) is something to behold. The common areas and lobby were also lovely. The guest room we had was nice, though the window overlooked a fairly busy street across which was what we thought was a bus station or emergency room or hair salon -- couldn't quite tell after dark. Beds were very comfy, etc. A couple minor complaints -- the shower had quite poor water pressure, there were stains of indeterminate origin on some of the furniture in the room, and I seriously question the sanity of whomever would put louvered doors on the bathroom: quite odd! Some of us prefer a bit more, um, privacy...
Overall, the Andalucia is a very nice place (with a few issues, but hey who doesn't have issues); I would probably stay there again if I could find a rate that offered better value for money, because in my opinion this hotel really is not worth $450 a night.
(A small note for those driving to the hotel coming from the south on the 101. The hotel is on Carrillo Street. You'll see exits for Cabrillo, Castillo, and Carrillo. If you're not paying a lot of attention it can catch you a bit off guard!)
Suite or not suite??????
This seems to be able to be a charming hotel, personnel and staff were very helpful but we were totally disappointed in the "room". We booked a suite at the price of $580.00 and upon checking into the hotel were given our keys. Upon entering the "suite" it is no more than a average size hotel room with a 3' wall dividing it in two rooms. There was one tv on the bed side of the room and another tv on the sofa side of the room.....why 2 tvs when they were less than 3 feet from each other? To pay $580 for a room that isn't even that plush or large is a total ripoff. There are too many beautiful hotels in Santa Barbara to pay these prices and get nothing in return.
Not worth the price
First, some good points: location, rooftop pool, and comfortable beds. I was traveling with three children, and it was great to be so close to the beautiful downtown shopping and restaurants. The kids' favorite part of our trip was the rooftop pool and hot tub. Even though it was quite cool in the end of March, the pool was heated nicely.
On the other hand, the hotel is much too expensive for what you're gettting. As someone mentioned before, don't be fooled by the hotel's "suite." It's just one not-so-big room with a small divider between a pullout couch and a bed. We had an adjoining room as well, but we paid $475 for it. The suite was $585. Much, much, much too expensive for not enough space or amenities.
The service was pretty grim: front desk clerks who couldn't recommend restaurants, maids who didn't clean the rooms for the entire day we were gone, and no bellmen at all to help with luggage.
As other people have said, the shutter-like, non-locking bathroom doors are a very bad idea--especially when you're traveling with kids, and you'd like those 5 minutes when they can't get to you!
The food, although tasty, was very expensive. We had an $80 breakfast!
All in all, we loved the pool with those gorgeous views, but I wouldn't stay at this hotel again or recommend it to others.
Small Rooms / Lack of Service
Hotel was understaffed with very young kids who had little understanding of service.
Rooms are small and bathrooms poorly designed. Bathroom wasn't clean and bedside lamp didn't work.
Asked front desk about getting a late check out and was told "I can't authorize that"..... It's the front desk, if they can't make arrangements for a late checkout who can???
Rooftop pool / patio area was closed most of the two days of our visit due to private parties. And if the it wasn't closed workers were setting up for the next party.
Valet/bellman left my bags sitting unattended outside the hotel. NOTE: Santa Barbara has a very large homeless population and this hotel is across the street from the Bus station.
This is not a luxury hotel, It's just a OK.
Very poor customer service
We went to a wedding here and the service was terrible through and through. The hotel provided DJ got upset and yelled at the bride in front of other guests when he "heard" that she didn't like some of the songs he played - very unprofessional. When the food came it was cold and the hostess blamed the bridal party for taking too long to take pictures - no apologies offered. Rooms were VERY expensive and small. No views to be had. Drinks were also very expensive. $9 for a glass of wine I wouldn't even use to cook with. I would recommend the Motel 6 over this place.
What a disappointment
I wish I had read the reviews here before we plunked down $386 per night for a room here. The facilities are nice and there were many aspects we enjoyed, but the service was horrible. It is evident that there is no one running the store here. We had issues with the valet service. They could not find bags that we had checked with them and briefly "misplaced" our car. We got no housekeeping service on one day of our stay - we were out all day and came back at 4:30 to see that the room had not been attended to. We called and asked that they at least provide fresh towels. They arrived hours later and then neglected to provide any washcloths. Strange. We had awful, inattentive service at the bar in the lobby. It was Saturday night and they had one person working the bar who was serving the bar as well as all the drink orders for the restaurant. When we finally got service, we were told that they were "out" of the wine we ordered. I also overheard them telling someone at the bar that they were "out" of one of the food items on the bar food menu.
The kicker was that there was a large wedding/reception going on at the hotel on the room, which also happens to be where the pool and jacuzzi are. Knowing that the event was going on (we saw the bride in the elevator), we called the front desk to ask if the jacuzzi/pool was open. We were told yes (the wedding was never mentioned) and proceeded to head up in our swimsuits, only to exit the elevator directly into the wedding - in our swimsuits!! Then the jacuzzi was not hot and unusable anyway. We embarrassed ourselves and intruded on someone's special day. Awful. All interactions with the front desk were met with a complete lack of service orientation.
I would never stay at this hotel again and intend to call the GM and try to get some of my money back!! Try another spot. This place has too many kinks to work out.
Bad front desk service.
Valet's very cordial, but upon checking in the desk staff was on the phone and did not even look-up to acknowledge we were standing there waiting. When we left the gentleman standing behind us was still waiting to break his twenty.
When we got up to the room the key did not work and when we called down they suggested we come back down and swap the keys. After saying we just checked in and it would be nice if they came up to swap the keys, they did very quickly.
The room was small for what we paid, but the bed was extremely soft with its great pillow top mattress. Bathroom doors were slatted, which does not leave much to the imagination when you are trying to use the w/c. Our view looked down onto the valet parking and up to the mountains. It was a beautiful day so we had a very clear breathtaking view.
The drinks upstairs on the roof were very over priced $10 for a glass of wine, so we walked across the street to the Ralph’s and picked up our own bottle of wine and snacks to enjoy for the evening. Later we found out the drinks downstairs were a few dollars less. I guess you pay for the view on the roof on top of the $$$ for the room itself.
During our stay we continued to receive very poor service from the front desk staff. Think they need to learn about the Fish Philosophy and Making the Customers Day.
Next time I will stay at the Holiday Inn down the street, the beds are not as soft, but they make up for it in customer service by leaps and bounds.
Need a scent free place to stay (late July)
I am coming to Santa Barbara late July and need to stay one night in a Bed & Breakfast, lodging or anyplace with a bed and shower that uses no scented cleaning products, laundry detergents, etc. Hotels are out of the question. I don't want to sleep in my car. Any ideas?
Re: Need a scent free place to stay (late July)
I'm pretty sure you can request a non scented room at the Canary Hotel. I had a roommate that used to work there and I'm almost positive she said that you can request that there. You can call them at 877-468-3515 to be sure. It is pricey, as it is a 5 star hotel.
Hope that helps!