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Historic South Coast Adobe Now Home For Non-Profit And Museum

It’s a downtown Santa Barbara building which at first glace looks like many other adobe style structures in the city. But, there’s nothing average about what’s known as the Hill-Carrillo Adobe near the corner of State, and Carrillo Streets. The nearly 200 year old adobe is one of the oldest buildings in the state. And now, the foundation which owns it is using it as an event space for non-profits, as well as a museum.

Michael Redmond is a longtime Santa Barbara author and historian. Redmond says Daniel Hill built, and owned it for years, and then Santa Barbara’s famous Carrillo family took over ownership. After that, it went through a series of owners, at one point serving as a Chinese school.

At one point in the early 1900’s, it became run down before it was restored. And, in the late 1920’s it was almost torn down to become the site of a movie theater,  but it was ultimately saved. For more than 80 years, it served as the home of the Santa Barbara Foundation.

The Hutton-Parker Foundation bought the Hill-Carrillo Adobe in 2014. Tom Parker is President of the foundation. The foundation gives money to hundreds of non-profits a year. One of its big priorities is providing working space for community groups. But, the foundation also has been restoring the building, and working with the Santa Barbara Historical Museum into turning its public areas into a museum.

The complex includes historic artifacts and photos, as well as exhibitions paying tribute to Santa Barbara County’s philanthropists past and present.

The new museum in the adobe on East Carrillo Street is open during normal business hours on weekdays, and admission is free.