Hotels in Santa Barbara, restaurants ready for Thanksgiving

SANTA BARBARA, Calif .– We’re only a week away from Thanksgiving.

This year, things should be quite different for hotels and restaurants in Santa Barbara.

At the Ritz-Carlton Bacara, Santa Barbara, its 358 rooms are already fully booked for the upcoming holiday weekend.

“We are very happy to be fully open this year compared to last year,” said Derek Kokinda, Senior Marketing Director of The Ritz-Carlton Bacara. “As far as occupancy is concerned, we are fully booked for the weekend. “

With its indoor dining area back in full force, the luxury resort’s Thanksgiving brunch is also already full.

So much so that the Ritz-Carlton Bacara added additional feasting from Friday November 26 to Sunday November 2.

“Thanksgiving Day brunches are actually full, so we’ve added additional brunches at all of our outlets to meet demand,” Kokinda explained.

Next week marks the start of the winter vacation season, so the Ritz-Carlton Bacara has added more staff.

“We want to make sure our guests are taken care of,” Kokinda said. “So we worked on staffing throughout the year and hiring hundreds of new employees. “

Across town, at Harry’s Plaza Cafe, the staff are getting ready to have many people over for Thanksgiving.

According to general manager Kevin Hebert, the restaurant has already secured more than 700 reservations.

“Last year there was only outdoor seating and take out,” he said. “This year, with full capacity, outside seating and take out, we expect it to be a big year for us.”

Despite the nationwide turkey shortage, Harry’s planned ahead while ordering nearly 90 total turkeys well in advance.

“Traditionally, we make the turkey with the house stuffing, mashed potatoes, gravy and homemade cranberry sauce,” Hebert said.

For Bob Nelson, a regular at Harry, this week has been difficult as his wife Joanne has passed away.

Still, that won’t stop the 87-year-old from stopping by his favorite spot for Thanksgiving.

“Although she’s not here anymore, all the other people I have as friends are here,” Nelson said. “Harry’s is so unique and so special, I love it.”

Nelson won’t be dining on his own on Thanksgiving, as some of his family plan to travel down from Orange County to sit with him in Harry’s iconic red leather booths.

Harry’s Plaza Cafe will be open from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Thanksgiving Day. To book, you can click here.

Thanksgiving Brunch at the Ritz-Carlton Bacara, Santa Barbara will be served on Thursday, November 25 from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m., 4:00 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. and 6:30 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. will also take place from Friday November 26 to Sunday November 28 from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

To book this dining experience, you can visit their website.

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