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Southern California Close-Ups: The gentle and genteel Santa Barbara
Southern California Close-Ups: The gentle and genteel Santa Barbara

If all of California had been created by a romance novelist, it would probably look like Santa Barbara -- whitewashed walls, red-tile roofs, gentle slopes, lapping waves, swaying fronds, stately churches and private estates suitable for Oprah, Rob Lowe and the crowned heads of Europe. Alas, most of California was built with only limited romance-novelist input. So Santa Barbara stands apart, its seaside location and Spanish Colonial glamour luring legions of weekend tourists and wintering gazillionaires. To understand what draws so many visitors, the only sensible thing to do is to become a Santa Barbaran,, at least for a few days. Hence these 11 micro-itineraries, which are the latest...

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