Reminiscent of the most exquisite Italian villa, Montecito's ''Villa Bencistà'' is a world-class estate offering serene privacy, robust amenities, and spectacular ocean and mountain views. From the stately iron-gate entrance to the striking architecture of the main residences to the expansive lawn and beautiful orchards, this stunning property conjures visions of Montecito's iconic early 20th century estates. Offering more than 12,200 sq. ft. of living space, the 10,300+ sq. ft. main residence and two matching +/- 1000 sq. ft. poolside guest houses were substantially renovated in 2012. The truly breathtaking grounds also include a beautiful pool, spa, sport court, gazebo, an additional detached 2-car garage, and acres of diverse trees and landscaping.
The entrance to the main residence is surrounded by an expansive cobblestone motor court. Dramatic glass-and-wrought-iron entry doors and a welcoming gallery add to the estate’s aristocratic ambiance. A grand central staircase with clerestory windows leads to the rooftop terrace with a fireplace and stunning 360-degree views.
Inside, impressive details abound: custom wrought-iron chandeliers and lighting fixtures; floors of marble and polished wide-plank hardwood; hand-carved fireplace mantelpieces; soaring, open-beam ceilings and masterful woodworking; graceful archways and impressive French doors; and numerous Loggias, terraces and Juliet balconies which offer breathtaking viewpoints of the Pacific Ocean and the Santa Ynez Mountains.
The living room and formal dining room, imbued with Old World charm, open via French doors to the loggia overlooking the 20-meter pool, ocean view and impeccable grounds. A completely rebuilt library/office features dramatic dark-stained cabinetry with custom lighting, a hand-carved stone fireplace mantel, and a c.1840 French alabaster chandelier.
The expansive kitchen has undergone a significant transformation, with top-of-the-line gourmet appliances, designer fixtures, custom cabinetry and counter tops, an immense center island, and a butler’s pantry. The adjacent family room offers an inviting space to gather family and guests.
The primary bedroom suite—a luxurious retreat located on the entry level—features a lovely antique French Provincial fireplace mantel and c.1850 chandelier, while French doors open to both a private terrace and spacious loggia. Two lavish bathrooms feature abundant marble, designer fixtures, a shared shower, spacious walk-in closets with custom cabinetry, and a balcony overlooking the estate’s private forest.
The lower level of Villa Bencistà begins in the gallery hallway, complete with a custom entertaining bar. Further exploration reveals a wine cellar, a craft or playroom, and a beautiful theater room featuring a fireplace, a professional-grade Crestron sound system, and a Stewart Curved Cine 5 Super Screen. There are 4 spacious guest suites on the lower level, each thoughtfully renovated with a distinct style and amenities to ensure maximum comfort for family members or guests.
The estate’s landscaping is nothing short of extraordinary. A vast lawn, a diverse array of trees—including majestic cypress, olive, avocado, citrus and stone fruit—and a rose garden invite moments of serene enjoyment at nearly every turn, all watered by the estate’s own 9,000-gallon fresh-water well. The sparkling pool is flanked by twin pergolas—one adjacent to a charming guesthouse, and the other adjoining a pool house, which also hosts a complete gym and two shower rooms.
Modern in its offerings yet classic in its timeless design, Villa Bencistà estate offers residents and guests a safe, secure, and private world-class refuge mere minutes from all the pristine beaches, cultural events, and recreational opportunities Montecito and Santa Barbara have to offer.