A hotel is proposed for 926 Indio Muerto St. in Santa Barbara
A hotel is proposed for 926 Indio Muerto St. in Santa Barbara. Santa Barbara Architectural Board of Review members voted recently to continue the project indefinitely. (Brooke Holland / Noozhawk photo)

The proposed hotel at 926 Indio Muerto St. has not yet secured final approval from the Santa Barbara Architectural Board of Review, which again gave notes on the project at a recent meeting. 

ABR members have said they prefer “a bit less whimsy” for the 45-foot-tall hotel off Milpas Stret near East Beach.

Pacifica Hotels Inc. plans to build 111 rooms and a 115-space, semi-subterranean parking garage with supportive amenities. Pacifica operates the Wayfarer on East Montecito Street in downtown Santa Barbara and Pacifica Suites along Hollister Avenue in Goleta.

The project — by applicant John Cuykendall of IWF SB Gateway LP — would build an approximately 55,000-square-foot hotel on a 38,122-square-foot parcel near the Union Pacific Railroad Tracks.  

ABR members voted to continue the project indefinitely so the applicant can work on the design, and gave notes asking to simplify some design elements.

They gave notes on proportions of exterior windows, balconies, parapets, and overall lack of a “unified theme,” among other suggestions.

The project on Santa Barbara’s Lower Eastside would first demolish an existing 12,000-square-foot commercial building to construct the three-story hotel.

The Planning Commission and ABR have approved the hotel, but the project required “substantial conformance” with the project design approval plans that were approved last year.

Assistant city planner Kelly Brodison said this item has gone before the ABR several times and most recently reviewed plans in July 2018. 

Architect David Thiel presented design renderings of the building’s exterior and elevation at Monday’s ABR meeting, showing the balcony plans, lighting fixture details and the entry arch with stucco and limestone.

“We have put a tremendous amount of work into this,” Thiel said. “We are prepared to submit for a permit.”

ABR member David Watkins said the project is moving in the right direction but that he did not see a cohesive theme in some design elements, which was echoed by other members. 

Noozhawk staff writer Brooke Holland can be reached at bholland@noozhawk.com. Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.