This Southern California Luxury Resort Has a Private Wildflower Bloom — and Only Hotel Guests Can See It
All the flowers, none of the crowds.
Wildflower blooms are popping up across the nation just in time for spring. With cactus flowers in California, bluebonnets in Texas, and cherry blossoms in Washington, D.C., there’s a flower event happening in every corner of this country. But if you’re looking for a more personalized flower experience — and a responsible one to boot — look no further than The Ritz-Carlton Bacara, Santa Barbara.
The gorgeous resort, tucked along the coast of California, is home to 78 private acres of pristine landscape that come to life in the spring. And guests can explore every inch of it with the guided nature hikes offered through the hotel's Ambassadors of the Environment program.
"Guests of The Ritz-Carlton Bacara, Santa Barbara choose to visit because of its unique location on the bluffs of the Gaviota Coast and its proximity to the surrounding environmental areas,” Nicholas Gagnon, an on-site naturalist at the resort, tells Travel + Leisure. “By joining an 'Ambassadors of the Environment' hike during the super bloom season, guests from all over the world can expect to learn more about the specific flowers native to the hotel and the greater Santa Barbara region.”
According to Gagnon, not only does the team do its best to bring guests to all the finest bloom sites, but it also educates everyone on the science and history of these natural wonders. That includes lessons on “how weather patterns affect the bloom each year, the role wildfires play in setting the stage for super blooms, and how these phenomena can be connected to the region's original inhabitants, the Chumash Native Americans.”
So, which wildflowers can you spot? Gagnon tells T+L that from February to June, visitors can check out the California brittlebush and the California blackberry blooms. From February to May, they can find the ever-popular California poppy blooms. And from April to July or August, they're likely to see black mustard blooms and black sage blooms.
There are other ways to see blooms in the area, too, including on some of the area's best hikes. Hotel guests can even hop on one of the property’s e-bikes to ride into town, checking out all the blooms along the way.
Gagnon hopes that guests have both a lovely stay and come away with a deeper appreciation for this beautiful land. As he shares, “We hope that guests leave not only having experienced one of Southern California's wonders, but also understanding the biology behind it which can make the experience even more miraculous."
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