Besides sunny beaches and historic charm, Santa Barbara now can boast being home to one of the largest design showrooms between San Francisco and Los Angeles. It’s the brainchild of Michael Kourosh, the affable, dapper owner of the recently opened Santa Barbara Design Center.
A visit to the 25,000 square foot shop, done in hip warehouse chic with Tuscan and Spanish chandeliers dotting its high ceilings, delivers a multi-textured exercise in the eclectic.
“At any one time, we have over fifty styles of furniture here,” Mr. Kourosh explains. He shows off his MK Sofa collection that carries the label, “made in California;” rugs that are hundreds of years old; fabrics by Robert Allen, Ralph Lauren, and Kravet; and tables handcrafted by a New York designer from recycled woods. “I love people and beautiful things,” he admits.
Mr. Kourosh moved to Santa Barbara in 1990, an émigré from Germany. Within two years he had opened a small, elegant shop selling imported collectable rugs across from the Santa Barbara Museum of Art.
Success led to his own company, Ziegler Rugs, where he learned the art of manufacturing. “From there, it has been a natural evolution,” he points out. “Today, we build custom furniture to exact specifications and we are a handy resource for interior designers, stagers, and do-it-yourselvers. Some bring trucks and complete their decorating choices in one stop.” The smart organization of the thousands of furnishings makes selection easy and fun, and in-home consulting is also available.
At the heart of SBDC are the beautiful rugs that started it all, endorsed by the Four Seasons , San Ysidro, and Montecito Valley Club and which grace to the world’s most expensive homes from London to Berlin and Kuwait City to Hong Kong.