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Santa Barbara's guide to what's new and undiscovered for home and garden, entertaining, style and travel. The resource guide below lists local happenings, boutique finds, travel destinations, food artisans and design professionals.

Grace Design Associates Creates Hollister Ranch Surf Retreat

Sometimes less really IS more. This small weekend surf retreat, perched on the flank of the rolling grassy coastal plain in Hollister Ranch (near Gaviota, CA), features breath-taking panoramic views of the ocean, islands, coastal plain, foothills and mountains.




The pocket-sized garden makes a titanic impact, adding cozy, intimate living space that complements the expansive scenery. Restrained plantings take their cue from the magnificent setting. Sweeps of native grasses and succulents dot the garden.





Wind protection for dining and lounging, a hot tub and a fire pit sit comfortably on the land, providing creature comforts while blending seamlessly with the larger landscape. Ancient olive trees provide shade. The cedar hot tub is tucked into the hillside and surrounded by fieldstone walls and fish-scale flagstone. A small flash water heater provides a warm shower next to the tub for de-sanding before plunging into the tub for a post-surf warm-up




The campfire circle (fueled by propane) and lanterns in the trees invite outdoor evening entertainment and complete this idyllic surf camp. A driftwood surfboard rack and a few potted succulents provide a touch of the homeowner’s personality to the composition





Meandering gravel paths and lyrical fieldstone “tole work” on the floor plane bring movement to the garden and tie the
long,  narrow space together.

Grace Design Associates, Inc. is an award-winning, full service landscape firm with over twenty-five years of experience designing and building world-class gardens. Grace Design’s forté is distinctive design executed with the values of old world craftsmanship. Working in a wide range of design styles and budgets, the company creates gardens that connect with the unique character of the site, sit seamlessly in the environment, blend harmoniously with the architecture and reflect the client’s aesthetic.

Company founder and lead designer Margie Grace is the winner of the 2009 International Landscape Designer of the Year Award, the top honor in the field.


Call 805-687-3569 to schedule a design consultation.

To view a selection of Grace Design Associates landscape projects:



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