The Santa Ynez Valley is located about 45 minutes north of Santa Barbara over the Santa Ynez Mountains. With its scenic beauty, wineries, horses, shops, events, Indian casino, mountains, river and streams, fishing, hiking, camping, bicycling, proximity to beaches and Southern California, and excellent climate, it is a very desirable place to live. As a result, there are numerous Santa Ynez celebrities.
The valley’s attractive features and location are reflected in the cost of homes. The median price of a home in the Santa Ynez Valley exceeds $500,000 despite being located about a half hour form the ocean, 2.5 hours from Los Angels, and about five hours south of the San Francisco Bay.
The valley has a near perfect climate. It is just inland enough to be largely out of the coastal fog and cooler weather. It has winter high temperatures usually in the upper 60s and summer temperatures in the low 90s. The central California coast town of Pismo Beach is located one hour north, and San Luis Obispo, which was named by several magazines as the “happiest place on Earth” is about an hour and fifteen minutes away to the north.
Numerous celebrities have called the Santa Ynez Valley home including: David Crosby (from Crosby, Stills & Nash music group), John Forsythe (actor), Bo Derek (actress/model), Jimmy Connors (pro tennis star), Doc Severinsen (longtime band leader on The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson), Robert Carradine (actor starred in Revenge of the Nerds, Noah Wyle (actor from ER) Steven Seagal (action movie star), Kelly LeBrock (actress/model and Seagal’s former wife), and the deceased Richard A. Harris (actor).
But the most famous celebrity of all to ever live in the Santa Ynez Valley was international pop music star Michael Jackson. Jackson’s Neverland Ranch is located about five miles north of the small community of Los Olivos on Figueroa Mountain Road.
Less than ten miles south of the valley in the Santa Ynez Mountains, former U.S. President Ronald Reagan had his famed Rancho Del Cielo. President Reagan used the ranch as a vacation home and hosted world leaders there such as former Soviet Union President Mikhail Gorbachev.