Frequently Asked Questions
First Time Guest? We Can’t Wait to See You!
Please read through the information below to learn more about how we do things at the Ranch. If you have any additional questions that aren’t answered below, you can reach out to our Ranch Concierge.
Is a deposit required to make a reservation?
To confirm your reservation, a two-night advance deposit (pre-tax and service fees) is required. Advance deposits are refundable, (minus a transaction fee of $150.00 per room), if canceled at least 30 days prior to your arrival date. Your full deposit amount is non-refundable for cancellations or changes made within 30 days prior to your arrival. We encourage you to speak with a Reservationist to find a package that works best for your family and your desired travel dates . You can also visit the Vacations Packages area for more information.
I’ve booked my reservation – what are the next steps?
We’re so excited you’ve decided to join us at the Alisal Guest Ranch. We can’t wait to welcome you with a big “howdy!” Be on the lookout for an email from our Ranch Concierge roughly 30 days prior to your arrival. Your personal Concierge is here to assist you with booking activities, answering questions you may have about your trip, and putting together your itinerary. This process can simply be booking dinner times or the Concierge can be as involved as you would like in planning your trip.
Are meals included? Are you able to accommodate dietary restrictions?
Being out in the country, guests seem to work up a big appetite, so our standard nightly rate includes breakfast and dinner, (although we have other packages available depending on the time of year.) Our meals are hearty, tasty and feature the freshest local ingredients. We understand that you may have special dietary needs. Our menus are designed with you in mind. Many of our dishes can be made gluten-free, vegetarian, nut-free and dairy-free. In addition to our delicious meals, starting on Memorial Day 2020, beverages will also be included in the room rate. Beer, wine, standard well drinks, smoothies, sodas, premium coffee drinks are no extra. So, come thirsty, we have you covered!
Meet our executive chef, explore our restaurants, view photos of our mouthwatering ranch cuisine, and even watch video recipes in the Dine area of our website.
What activities are included in the rate? What activities are available for kids?
The Alisal offers an array of complimentary activities for youngin’s and the whole family. There are cuddly critter activities in the barnyard, children’s lead around pony rides, arts and crafts, and guided evening nature walks, plus plenty of other no extra-charge, fun stuff, you won’t want to miss! We offer packages that include activities like Golf and Horseback Riding, to learn more about these packages, visit out Vacation Specials & Packages area. To learn more about our seasonal activities and pricing, visit our Activity Guides area to see what’s happening at the Alisal.
Are gratuities included?
Your gratuities and amenities (except for Spa treatments) are included as part of the 20% Nightly Service fee that is added to your base nightly rate. This means you give your wallet a rest with no tipping required and the staff is still compensated. For a la carte food/beverage purchases there is an 18% gratuity automatically added to the bill.
What amenities are in the room?
We want your stay at The Alisal to feel like home, only more relaxing. Each guest room has standard in-room amenities like shampoos/conditioners, blow dryer, fan, iron and ironing board. In keeping with our authentic Western tradition, our rooms do not have phones, TV’s, or Air Conditioning. However, phones are located throughout property as indicated with a phone icon on our property map. AC units are reserved for guests with Medical conditions.
Is there cell phone service/Wi-Fi?
There is complimentary Wi-Fi throughout the property. Verizon wireless phones get great service across the Ranch, while other carriers have very limited service. We encourage guests with other carriers to connect to the Wi-Fi and enable Wi-Fi calling through their phone settings. You can stop by the Front Desk with questions and an agent will be mighty happy to assist you with setting up your phone! In addition, we have Alisal cell phones that can be loaned out for the duration of your stay.
Are pets allowed?
Because The Alisal is a working ranch, with mighty big cattle and horses roaming the property, it is not safe for you to bring your personal pet. The last thing we want is for our livestock to get spooked and hurt you, your pet or another guest. The Alisal of course, does allow documented service animals.
Is there a golf course?
If you have a hankerin’ to hit the links, you’re in luck! We have two Championship Golf Courses – The River Course and The Ranch Course. The River Course is open to the public and the Ranch Course is private to guests and members. Be sure to view photos and video of our courses.
How do I get to the Lake and what can you do there?
Our Private Lake is a shimmering jewel tucked into the hills and is only accessible by our scheduled Lake Shuttle trips. (Hours do vary, so please refer to your Ranch Daily to see the exact shuttle time). Because we are an honest-to-goodness working cattle ranch, cows are grazing and horseback rides are going throughout the day (near the road) – so it is not safe to walk, bike, or drive to the Lake on your own. If you head up to the lake, expect to have fun! There is fishing (largemouth bass and bluegill) either with a spin rod or fly rod. You can cast from the dock, take a boat out on your own, or hire one of our awesome guides. Explore the lake by paddle-board, canoe, pedal boat, or kayak. We also offer Archery and Air Rifle classes at the Lake.
Is there wine tasting nearby?
We’re located in the heart of one of the most celebrated wine regions in the world! Only minutes from the Ranch, you can enjoy the fine wines and the breathtaking beauty of the Santa Ynez Valley Wine Country. A leisurely tour of our local wineries can be arranged from a half-day to a full-day tour. Alisal guests enjoy wine-tasting specials at many nearby wineries.
What should I pack? What is the weather like?
Average temperatures vary throughout the seasons, but it is important to know that we have a large variance in temperature in the day versus the evening (one of the reasons such amazing wine is grown here in the Santa Ynez Valley.) If it’s not summer, plan on bringing a sweater or light jacket for the mornings. In the colder months, we do recommend that you pack layers and a warm jacket.
For horseback riding you will want to wear long pants, preferably jeans, and boots. (Tennis shoes are ok, but boots with a small heel is preferred). Helmets are provided.
The Golf Course dress code does not allow jeans. Golf or tennis shoes, and a polo shirt required.
Dress code for dinner requires a jacket for gentleman over 16, no ripped jeans, or shorts.
Is there a dress code at The Alisal?
At the Alisal, we encourage you to wear whatever you find comfortable for your planned activities throughout the day. Whether it is a polo shirt for golf, cowboy boots for riding, or a swimsuit cover up as you head over to the pool. We are country casual, so you will fit right in! The one exception is dinner attire. Since the opening of the Ranch in 1946, it has been a tradition to dress up for dinner (think “country formal”). Gentleman 16 years and older are required to wear a sport coat and collared shirt and ladies wear a dress, or a blouse with nice jeans.
Are there laundry facilities?
We have two complimentary laundry facilities available for guests. Complimentary detergent is available in the laundry rooms. Same-day professional laundry and dry-cleaning service may be arranged by contacting the Front Office. Please place garments in the laundry bag located in your closet and bring to the Front Office before 10 a.m., Monday-Friday (excluding holidays). Garments will be returned to your room by 6 p.m.
What is the closest airport and how long is the drive?
There is a small municipal Airport in Santa Ynez, but most guests fly into Santa Barbara Airport (SBA) about 30 minutes away, or Los Angeles International Airport (LAX), about 3 hours away. Whether you, fly, drive, or bike, we look forward to seeing you soon.
What are Alisal’s Reservations Terms?
Rates are based on double occupancy.
Two-night minimum is required.
Saturday check-ins or check-outs are not permitted.
Rates are subject to change without notice.
What is the Cancellation Policy?
Any cancellations, deletion of nights, and/or date changes, within 30 days, may result in a forfeiture of your deposit. All group reservations are subject to a six-month cancellation policy.
What Time is Check-in and Check-out?
Check-in is 4:00pm and check-out is 11:00am.
Can We Get Into Our Room Early
You may be able to check in to your room prior to 4:00 p.m. if the room is ready for occupancy.
Can We Request a Late Check-out?
If the room you are occupying is not scheduled to have an arrival on your day of departure, we can extend your check-out time as late as 1:30 p.m., upon request.
Can I Request to Have My Room Cleaned at a Specific Time?
If you prefer to have your room cleaned at a specific time, we will do our best to accommodate your preference.
What Size Cribs Do You Have?
We have full-sized and small cribs. Pac-n-Plays are also available upon request.
Do You Have Additional Questions?
Please use the form on our Connect page or contact a Ranch Concierge by phone at