Santa Barbara Shopping: Boutiques, Bookstores and More in the San Roque Neighborhood

Have you been to the San Roque neighborhood of Santa Barbara? It's where a lot of regular, wonderful locals live, and, as a result, it's where a lot of rather wonderful stores are hidden. 

If you've exhausted the shopping in downtown Santa Barbara (which is great, by the way), head uptown to San Roque to see what it's all about. Sure, you'll have to drive a little more since there's no central hub, but there are some magical places to discover.

Chief among them is Chaucer's, Santa Barbara's best local bookstore since 1974. If you even kind of, sort of like books, you will love this store. There are stacks upon stacks of volumes, including novels, nonfiction and DIY manuals. There's also an amazing children's section. Looking for a gift? You will love their free gift wrapping services. 

Is luxury more your style? Pop into Tiffany & Co in La Cumbre Plaza for baubles that sparkle and shine. Or visit Purrmission Lingerie for designer unmentionables and swimwear. 

Other stores in the area include treats for gourmands, like the amazing French loafs at Our Daily Bread or the delicious cheese and charcuterie at Whole Foods. 

From women's wear and camping gear to rare liquors and fancy olive oils, San Roque has it all. So grab your wallet and your reusable bags and get out there!


CircaTerra Travel Outfitters is your Santa Barbara resource for quality travel products and friendly, knowledgeable staffStaff here are passionate about finding the appropriate solutions for your travel needs. This travel amenities store carries a carefully chosen assortment of quality luggage, locks and tags, packing organizers, handbags and shoulder bags, electrical adaptors for 150 countries, comfort cushions and hats, shirts, and pants that protect you from UV rays and bugs. They even stock a full line of Deet and Deet-free insect repellents and water/air purifiers for third world travel! Just the stop you need to make before any adventure, exotic or otherwise.

Recommended for San Roque's Best Shopping because: You're a world traveler, and you need to be outfitted. CircaTerra is ready to help!

Geneva's expert tip: Visit their website for helpful travel advice before you plan your packing list.

Read more about CircaTerra Travel Outfitters →

Looking for some booze? We feel ya! Whether you're in the mood for wine, beer or something stronger, this hidden gem of a liquor store has you covered! Tucked along the side of upper State Street, not far from other shops and restaurants but just far enough away from downtown, is San Roque Market & Liquors, a haven for booze hounds of every inclination. You like tequila? They have oodles. In the mood for craft beer? Belgian beer? Sour beer? You'll find it here! They also sell snacks, magazines and other sundries. One of the best liquor stores in Santa Barbara. Find free parking on the street out front or in the lot around back.

Recommended for San Roque's Best Shopping because: This is the best liquor store in San Roque for sure, and certainly one of the better ones in Santa Barbara as a whole.

Geneva's expert tip: Can't find what you're looking for? In town for a few days? Ask the person behind the counter. They're very resourceful here.

Read more about San Roque Market & Liquors →

Our Daily Bread has been a Santa Barbara favorite since it first opened its doors in 1981. Beloved for their fresh-baked breads and crazy good pastries, Our Daily Bread is a great stop whether you're shopping for bread to accompany a gourmet meal or you're just looking for a little snack. You can take warm loafs, cookies and more to go, or stay and enjoy breakfast or lunch on their sunny patio. Breakfast is served Monday through Friday mornings and all day on the weekends. Pair your meal with a piping hot espresso or chai latte made from scratch. Lunch sandwiches are served with a side salad and on your choice of bread. They also have gluten-free breads and pastries, all of which are also vegan.

Recommended for San Roque's Best Shopping because: Are you a baker? We sure aren't. Let someone else do the heavy lifting and pick up bread for your next dinner party here.

Geneva's expert tip: Go for some bread, stay for a meal! In addition to selling fresh baked goods, Our Daily Bread also serves breakfast and lunch.

Read more about Our Daily Bread →


You're sure to find something new with each visit to the Whole Foods Market in Santa Barbara. The deluxe grocery store sells gourmet food items, fresh seafood and meat, locally grown vegetables, sustainable beauty supplies and so much more. Hot and cold bars serve up convenient prepared food for hungry people on the go. There is even a beer and wine bar (with its own menu) located inside the store! A great shop to try for breakfast, lunch and dinner, as well as for ingredients to make your own meals. Beautiful fresh flowers and juices too. Free parking right out front.

Recommended for San Roque's Best Shopping because: Who doesn't want to visit a ridiculous olive bar or try squid ink pasta? The place to pick up gifts for foodies.

Geneva's expert tip: Stop by the Buzz Hive before, during or after your shopping trip. This hopping beer and wine bar is located right inside Whole Foods.

Read more about Whole Foods Market →

Fancy baubles? Check. Diamond rings? Check. Giant splurges? Also check. When you're looking to splash out on a little luxury, look no further than Tiffany & Co. in La Cumbre Plaza, just a short drive from downtown Santa Barbara. This stunning showroom is the perfect place to pick out something a little extra special for that lucky person in your life... even if that person is you! Duck in to check out statement pieces in silver and gold, as well as housewares and other items. La Cumbre Plaza is home to other great shops, like J.Crew, BCBG and Pottery Barn. Plenty of free parking right out front.

Recommended for San Roque's Best Shopping because: Diamonds, rubies, platinum, gold and more... when you're ready for a posh indulgence, this is where you should go.

Geneva's expert tip: Have a piece of Tiffany jewelry already? Bring it in for a free cleaning.

Read more about Tiffany & Co →


J.Crew is a preppy shopper's mecca, ideal for ladies who lunch (and ladies who want to lunch). Stop in here when you want a fresh new outfit from head to toe. They stock socks, shoes, pants, shirts, dresses, handbags, hair accessories, jewelry and more. This location sells women's clothing only, but we're hoping they'll include menswear at some point, too. Located in La Cumber Plaza, with many other shops nearby including Tiffany's, Macy's and more. Lots of free parking out front. Visit the Winehound just across the street for a nice Chablis to go with your cash, or hit the Habit for a tasty burger after you try on some new jeans.

Recommended for San Roque's Best Shopping because: J.Crew is one of the best places to shop for women's fashion in San Roque.

Geneva's expert tip: Visit their website to see what sales might be happening in store before you go.

Read more about J.Crew →

Life can't be lives in sweatpants alone! When you're looking for something a little more saucy - and a little more supportive - visit Purrmission Lingerie in the charming San Roque neighborhood of Santa Barbara. This intimate boutique is bursting at the seams with intimates of all stripes, from the practical to the positively frilly. Stop if for nighties, bras, panties, swimwear and more. Not sure what your size is? (You're not alone.) Ask a staff member for a professional bra fitting... we promise you it will be life changing. Free street parking out front or in the parking lot across the street. A few other shops, bars and restaurants are within easy walking distance.

Recommended for San Roque's Best Shopping because: Find designer lingerie and swimwear in all sizes, shapes and models at this intimate boutique.

Geneva's expert tip: Stop in for a free bra fitting any day of the week! Well, except Sundays (they're closed).

Read more about Purrmission Lingerie →

Vices and Spices
Photo courtesy of Vices and Spices

Vices and Spices is a gem of a shop that has been a neighborhood favorite for decades. Settled in on upper State in the San Roque area, this specialty cafe and store serves up delicious beverages (caffeinated and otherwise) in a relaxed, welcoming atmosphere. They have a large selection of loose leaf tea sold by the ounce here, as well as a wide variety of coffee beans. As their name suggests, they also have many spices to choose from. In addition, they have candies, tea pots, cards, candles, locally made jewelry and other great gifts for sale here. Whether you need a vanilla bean, vanilla tea, candies or a vanilla latte, this is the place! Indoor and outdoor seating available.

Recommended for San Roque's Best Shopping because: Buy loose leaf tea by the ounce, fresh spices and sweet candies too! Oh, and did we mention there's coffee and gifts as well?

Geneva's expert tip: Order a drink to enjoy while you make your tea, coffee and gift selections. Their coconut pouchong latte is absolutely dreamy.

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il Fustino is the place to get specialty cooking oils and vinegars in Santa Barbara. Its name is Italian for "the tank," referencing the stainless steel containers that their oils and vinegars are stored in. This traditional bulk storage method allows you to sample the merchandise, ensuring you select just the right flavor profile for whatever recipe you have in mind. In addition to their award-winning oils and flavored vinegars, il Fustino also sells pastas, bruschettas, olives and more, making it the perfect one-stop shop for hostess and holiday gifts. Bring in your own bottle or purchase one you can refill for a discounted price in the future.

Recommended for San Roque's Best Shopping because: Sample amazing flavored vinegars and olive oils before you buy. A great place to buy impressive hostess gifts!

Geneva's expert tip: Try their 25-year old balsamic vinegar. It's so heavenly, you'll want to eat it by the spoonful.

Read more about il Fustino →

Chaucer's is THE bookstore in Santa Barbara. This independent book seller opened it's doors in 1974, and it's only gotten better as the decades roll by. Whether you're looking for a mystery novel, an art book, a work of nonfiction or something else, you will find what you're looking for on their brimming shelves. Chaucer's also sells cards, notebooks and magazines, as well as fun gifts and toys for kids of all ages. In fact, a large area of the store is set aside especially for children's literature. Chaucer's is located in the center of town, easily accessed from most areas. There's plenty of free parking (and lovely free gift wrapping services, too).

Recommended for San Roque's Best Shopping because: Chaucer's is the best bookstore for miles, hands down. There's something for everyone here.

Geneva's expert tip: Check out their website for upcoming readings by visiting authors!

Read more about Chaucer's Bookstore →


Meet Geneva Ives

Geneva Ives moved to Santa Barbara in 2000 on a whim (ok, and to go to college) and never looked back. She loves Santa Barbara because it’s really one of America’s greatest small towns - it...  More About Geneva