The Miramar Hotel Project has been Approved, yet Construction has still not began nor are any of the original structures being retained...

This website is intended to recognize the historical significance
of the Miramar By The Sea Hotel in scenic Montecito (Santa Barbara), California. The Miramar closed
for renovations on September 10, 2000. Since then, it has been an eyesore for Montecito
residents as well as thousands of past guests. In 2007, Los Angeles developer Rick Caruso purchased the property from Ty Warner and was
planning to begin renovating the hotel by early 2010. Due to financial reasons according to Caruso, the project remains on hold.

LATE 2012 / EARLY 2013 UPDATES: Demolition of all historic Miramar structures on the property has begun.
However, no "ground breaking" is currently scheduled due to conflict between Caruso Affiliated and Local SB/Montecito Government.
Sadly, even when the property (maybe) eventually is built -- it will never be the historic Miramar it once was.

Caruso Miramar Website Down? It appears that "" (Owned by Caruso Affiliated) is down.



The Miramar history began in 1876 when Josiah and Emmeline Doulton purchased the 20 acre ocean front property in Montecito. In 1889 the Doultons built a separate cottage for visiting friends, which soon served to accommodate outside guests. Originally called Ocean View Farm, a friend/guest at the hotel suggested that the name of the destination be changed to “Miramar”, meaning “behold the sea.” Mrs. Doulton was immediately taken with the name and ordered signs the following day. Over the years, the hotel was expanded and by 1910 there were 29 structures on the property. The Miramar struggled during the Depression and the Doultons eventually sold the hotel to Paul Gawzner on November 3, 1939. Gawzner owned the Miramar until September 1998, when Ian Schrager purchased it for $31.7 million. The hotel closed its doors on September 10, 2000 to begin renovations and was set to reopen in about 18 months. Five years later, the partially demolished Miramar Hotel still sat vacant on some of the most valuable property in California. On April 29, 2005, TyWarner Hotels purchased the hotel from Schrager promising to renovate it in the near future. Less then 2 years later, no renovations had been made. Finally, in January of 2007, Rick Caruso of Caruso Affiliated purchased the Miramar for an undisclosed price. He plans to begin renovations by the beginning of 2010.





Click Here for a Recent News piece with a Link to the Blueprints.



The Historic Miramar:

Anyone who has visited the Miramar while it was open, knows of the historical significance the Miramar offers that other premier hotels cannot. The Miramar is over 100 years old, and provides a warming atmosphere to its guests. The bungalows, the railroad car diner, the private beach, tennis courts, etc. So many things made the Miramar a unique destination so much different then hotels American have grown use to. The reason I am developing this site is because so much of the Miramr Hotel is its history, if its history is forgotten, the Miramar will just join the rest of the five-star hotels around the country. But the Miramar is truly one of a kind. I sincerely hope Mr. Caruso will focus on the historic miramar during his upcoming renovations.


Bits of History:


National Embassy #1205
Most guests of the Miramar did not know much about the old railroad car in the parking lot of the Miramar The inside of the car was not opened after Mr. Gawzner's death in 1984. In 2000, Morgan's Hotel Group (Ian Schrager) donated the car to the Santa Clarita River Valley Railroad Historical Society. They are now the proud owner. It is very unfortunate the car will never see the Miramar again, however a Railroad historic society will surely be the best possible new home for this unique piece of history.

Here are some pictures of the car being moved from Montecito to Fillmore:

At the Miramar just as it sat when the Hotel was open.

Being put on a truck, it's last minutes at the Miramar.

Moving Day at the Miramar


Santa Fe-Amtrak Railcar Diner

If you had ever stayed at the Miramar, I am sure you have had at least one good meal at the Santa-Fe Amtrak Railcar which sat adjacent to the beach. I personally ate lunch there each day of my many stays at the Miramar. Unfortunately, it too is no longer on site. It is now owned by Burger Depot in Bakersfield. I have not visited it yet, so I do not have any pictures unfortunately. However, I do plan on making a trip to Bakersfield within a few months to visit the car.

Note: I have additional pictures of the car which are not presently online, I will post more as soon as they are scanned and I have visited the new location in Bakersfield.



Ian Schrager's Plans

Drawing from Ty Warner




Last Update: January 2, 2013



This website is not affiliated with the Miramar Hotel, Caruso Affiliated, Ty Waner Hotels, Morgans Hotel Group, Santa Clarita River Valley Rail Historic Society, or Santa Barbara / Montecito officials. This page is intended to gain public attention and offer an alternative to demolition of a HISTORIC PROPERTY.


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