Santa Barbara’s Upper East neighborhood is one the town’s most desirable areas due in large part both to its proximity to the downtown and to its historic residences. Home to such landmarks as the Old Mission and Alice Keck Park, this area is marked by manicured lawns, Victorian structures and reminders of the stages of Santa Barbara’s development. Spanning the area between State Street and the mission from Sola Street at its south border, past Mission Street, to just below E. Alamar Street at the North, the neighborhood is dotted with various schools, religious institutions, parks, and museums.
Formerly the site of the El Mirasol Hotel until the 1970’s, the Alice Keck Park Memorial Gardens is a major attraction for locals and tourists alike. The park boasts a vast array of vegetation (over 75 species), a pond with turtles and koi, walking paths, and beautiful gardens. The ideal spot for picnics and weddings alike, the park hosts many events and activities yearround. Adjacent to Alameda Park and Kid’s world play structure, it is the perfect compliment to the family friendly neighborhood that is the Upper East.
Much of the Upper East neighborhood has been deemed within the parameters of the El Pueblo Viejo (EPV) Historical Landmark District, with great efforts being made to preserve the traditional flavor of the area. Homes in the lower portion of the Upper East (from Sola St. to Mission St.), as well as the Mission, the Museum of Natural History, andMission Park all belong in this classification. There are also historical mansions in the area with rich backstories recalling Santa Barbara’s heyday as the ultimate California retreat for the wealthy.
The State Street border of the Upper East neighborhood integrates business and residential structures, expanding the culture and community of the district. Close to both the downtown area of Santa Barbara at the south of the Upper East and the La Cumbre area at the north, this neighborhood is easily navigable by foot, bike, and public transit as well as a quick drive from any daily needs or attractions.