Summer getaway recap--Part 3

We wanted to give you one last opportunity to take a look at all that Santa Barbara County and the Simpson House Inn have to offer so you can plan your own trip. As we mentioned in Part I and 2 of our vacation recap, the Simpson House Inn is a great choice for a weekend getaway, especially when you live in nearby busy and noisy Hollywood as we do.  We enjoyed relaxing and enjoying the beautiful gardens but we were also able to get out and hike the many trails that are nearby and even enjoyed a solitary day on Carpinteria State Beach.

Carpinteria State Beach Martin Pierce Hardware

We also found time to visit a spot we often come to when we are in Santa Barbara, the Botanic Gardens.  The historic man made dam which is the life spring of these gardens was created back in 1807 to supply the local mission with water.  It remains as part of the gardens, which were developed in the 1930's.

We have visited these gardens twice before over the last 15 years but have never seen them as dry as we did on this visit due to the drought in California.  However, the one watering hole we did find was home to a turtle who obligingly posed for a portrait shot.

Santa Barbara Botanical Gardens Martin Pierce Hardware

Alas, as you can see in the photo below, water was not present in the creek and this poor tree was left suffering from soil erosion and exposed roots.

Santa Barbara Botanic Garden Martin Pierce Hardware

However, there is still plenty of plant and wildlife to enjoy as this little sparrow proves; offering Martin plenty of enjoyment as well as design inspiration.

Santa Barbara Botanic Garden Martin Pierce hardware

We were also able to take a longish hike along the Cold Springs Trail that takes one high into the local Santa Ynez Mountains.  We had escaped the heat of LA and exchanged it for the cooler climate of Santa Barabara.  But even this terrain is showing the effects of the drought as we found boulders and exposed tree roots in areas where the creeks should be flowing.

Cold Springs Trail Martin Pierce Hardware

The trail was almost empty on the eastern ascent and we saw few hikers.  Predictably , after our 90 minute hike we returned to Simpson House Inn for their cold lemonade.  The perfect finish to a perfect day!
To view our entire collection of architectural hardware, many pieces inspired by trips like this, please visit our site at