Bacara Resort & Spa, recognized as one of the finest resorts in the world, is honored to partner with renowned artist David Shelton to create a one-of-a-kind Christmas Tree Art Installation.

Showcased in Bacara’s festively-adorned lobby, the 12-foot sculpture combines dramatic contrasts of whimsically-sculpted steel from David Shelton Studios with hand-blown glass by Saul Alcaraz. The tree is not intended to compete with a natural tree but rather offer a playful interpretation of one.

“It’s a visual dance,” Shelton said.

More than a tree, the eco-friendly art installation will serve as the focal point of Bacara’s new holiday tradition.

“This tree is a beautiful reflection of innovation and community collaboration,” said Kathleen Cochran, general manager of Bacara Resort & Spa. “We are honored to partner with David to create something truly magical for our guests that they can enjoy with their loved ones for years to come.”

Under the artistic direction of Bacara’s creative director, Lorrene Balzani, the theme of this year’s tree is “Monarchs in Flight” in honor of the nearby Ellwood Butterfly Preserve.

Monarchs, much like Bacara’s guests, retreat to the resort to bask in the sea and sun of the Gaviota coast. To help protect its natural coastline, beautiful brass butterfly ornaments on the tree are available for purchase and benefit the Gaviota Coast Conservancy.

“Butterflies seem to ignore gravity,” Shelton said. “The luminous color of their fluttering wings captures the sun in their random flight like jewels; this year’s tree pays homage to their beauty.”

Resort guests and locals are invited to view Shelton’s masterpiece at the resort’s Winter Solstice Ceremonies from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. Dec. 14-15 and Dec. 21-24. Led by master musician Jim Grippo, the ceremonies will begin with a “ringing of the bells” leading into a special collection of winter solstice music traditions from around the world, followed by the lighting of the tree. After, guests can relax with complimentary hot cider and cookies while enjoying Grippo’s enchanting solstice sounds.

In addition to the Winter Solstice Ceremonies, Bacara is embracing the holidays with spectacular Christmas dinners, designer tea and trunk shows, fun-filled family activities and a New Year’s Eve Midnight Masquerade. Guestroom rates start at $325 a night.

Click here for more information on all of Bacara’s holiday festivities.

— Anne Stephany is the director of marketing and communications for Bacara Resort & Spa.