Mesa, a Spanish word meaning “table,” is a common geographical place name in the Southwest. It has been applied to the flat benchfronting the ocean along Santa Barbara’s southwestern border since mission days.The Mesa is located on the bluffs just beyond the harbor and extends from the ocean up to the top of the hill and over again down by Arroyo Burro Beach. There are both tract and custom homes, many with ocean and/or city views. The western portion of the Mesa, running to Arroyo Burro or Hendry’s Beach, as it was popularly known, formed a part of the original Pueblo Lands granted to Santa Barbara Presidio by the King of Spain in 1782. The Wilcox Property, now known as the as the Douglas Family Preserve, at southwestern tip of the Mesa was a commercial nursery, currently preserved for public use. The neighborhood between Mesa Lane and Oliver Road, while originally plotted as early as 1920, did not develop until after World War II when many veterans built homes with the help of GI loans. The epitome of “Santa Barbara Coast Living” is to be had by living on the Mesa. Many popular local restaurants like Mesa Café and organic grocery stores like Lazy Acres are located on the Mesa. City weather records show that the Mesa’s winter temperatures are 8 to 10 degrees warmer than downtown, and 8to 10 degrees cooler in the summer. Centrally located to the beach, shopping and Santa Barbara City College, this neighborhood is one of the most highly desired in all of Santa Barbara for it’s outdoor living, healthy lifestyle and walking convenience.
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