by Isaac von Hallberg

I hop on the US-101, from Hollywood Hills to the American Riviera, to celebrate 101 years of the Santa Barbara resort, Belmond El Encanto. The property is, in fact, quite a little charm: spread across seven acres of secluded gardens and Spanish-style bungalows. Belmond El Encanto opened in 1918 and has been part of Santa Barbara’s lively social scene ever since. Perched high in the Santa Barbara hills, this hotel hideaway certainly presents the best views of the American Riviera. The resort is gleaming and glamorous, yet relaxed too—and tucked away. Every little bungalow is homey, yet fully equipped with modern amenities: fire place, central AC, heated bathroom floors, a bath you can dive into, king-sized beds, and French-door bedrooms. You recline poolside, breathe the ocean air, and sip crisp local wine. All activities, in fact, seem to include local wine. Even the iconic Santa Barbara Polo, which takes place every summer, offered bubbles, massages, and hors d'oeuvres. Polo, it seems, really is the sport of kings. But Santa Barbara’s downtown Funk Zone is filled with boutique tasting rooms, cafes, galleries, and shops, where you can pair your local wine with a chocolate truffle. Belmond El Encanto is at the heart of all Santa Barbara's luxuries. Don't believe me? Flip through my polaroids above. Or better yet, book your own trip to Belmond El Encanto.