Reviving The Essence of a Classic Downtown Santa Barbara Condo

Reviving The Essence of a Classic Downtown Santa Barbara Condo



Nestled in the heart of enchanting Downtown Santa Barbara, a remarkable vacation rental condo has undergone a stunning transformation, turning it into a modern coastal haven. In an interview with Abel Ramos and Christine Cowles, the visionaries behind the property's transformation, we unveil the thoughtfully crafted design features and choices that make this rental property a truly unique and inviting retreat.



A Shared Vision

At the heart of this project were the aspirations and visions of its owners, who were seeking a seamless transformation of their property. Inheriting this condo from their father, the owners knew they wanted to spruce it up before putting it on the vacation rental market. Living out of state made project management difficult, so they hired Abel Ramos for full project oversight. To complete the project, Abel brought in Christine Cowles, a seasoned interior designer, who played a pivotal role in bringing this vision to life.


Christine explains her role in the project: "My goal as a designer is to truly understand how our clients live in a space, their preferences, and their lifestyle. We wanted to combine their personality with the existing architectural elements, which in this case, were inspired by Santa Barbara's Spanish heritage."



The Marriage of Functionality and Style

One of the standout features of this vacation rental property is its ability to effortlessly blend the old Spanish style with new updates. Christine elaborates on the challenges they faced and the design choices made: "Our primary challenge was to make the space feel light and airy. It was quite dark with original 70s elements, so we introduced durable quartz countertops, removed upper cabinetry, and added a beautiful patterned tile backsplash to infuse a touch of Santa Barbara's Spanish charm."


The focus on creating a California casual design concept was also a key aspect of the project. "We opted for lighter floors, natural wood elements, and incorporated eucalyptus leaves and driftwood-inspired artwork. Painting the walls a bright white was a pivotal design choice that enhanced natural light and reinforced the California casual feel," says Christine.



Designing with Renters in Mind

Given the property's dual purpose as both a vacation rental and a second home, the design had to cater to the needs of renters. Christine elaborates: "Designing for renters involves considering materials that are not only stylish but also easy to maintain. We carefully selected performance fabrics and materials that could withstand wear and tear, ensuring the property remains pristine for every guest."



A Successful Collaboration

The success of this project can be attributed to the seamless collaboration between all parties involved. Abel Ramos reflects on the project: "Having the right team in place is essential for a successful remodel. Christine's expertise was invaluable, from selecting handles to sourcing furniture and appliances. It truly wouldn't have been possible without her."

Christine adds, "Abel did a fantastic job assembling a top-notch team. Effective communication and a shared vision made this project not only successful but also enjoyable."



In conclusion, this Santa Barbara vacation rental property stands as a testament to the power of collaboration, vision, and thoughtful design. It seamlessly merges the architectural heritage of Santa Barbara with modern functionality, creating an inviting and unforgettable oasis for travelers. If you're considering maximizing the value of your second home, the winning combination of a skilled team is ready to turn your vision into reality.


To explore similar projects, please subscribe to our Youtube Channel. For more information on this remarkable transformation, contact Abel Ramos with Compass or Christine Cowles with Vacation Rental Design. 

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