Biking, Santa Barbara-style

With Alma del Pueblo homes offering a number of unique amenities, including bike storage, we thought we’d explore just what a bike-friendly lifestyle can mean. Whether you’re tooling down to the beach or zipping across town to meet a friend for coffee, Santa Barbara on a bike is a special experience.

A few doors down from Alma del Pueblo’s sales office is Open Air Bicycles, a family cycling center selling all disciplines of bikes. We chatted with Open Air’s owner Ed Brown about what the casual bicyclist should look for when choosing a bike.

1. Beach Cruiser
For the very casual user looking for in-town riding, there is the Beach Cruiser. It can be outfitted with a basket for beach towel and beach attire. Cruisers come in a single speed, 3-speed or 7-speed. They’re big and comfortable.

2. Sport Comfort Bike
This one is a hybrid. Part mountain bike, part road bike, with smooth tires for the street, but with gearing like a mountain bike. According to Ed, this bike is outfitted with comfort features found in a cruiser, such as a thicker, padded saddle and a suspension seat post and maybe a suspension fork to take up the shock, for a smoother ride.

3. City Comfort Bike
Similar to a sport comfort hybrid, but outfitted with 700C wheels versus 26-inch wheels. “Those are larger, Euro-size wheels, giving the bike an easier motion, so it rolls with less effort,” Ed explained. The larger wheels are good on pavement and for city-type touring.

4. Performance City Bike
Often, these bikes are outfitted with handlebars slightly lower than the other bikes, for wind resistance. They also have a smaller saddle and are designed for speedier cruising and covering some ground. Lighter weight without a suspension fork or suspension post, these bikes are for a longer ride.

Prices for these bikes range from $350 to $1,000. Ed notes that when you purchase a bicycle from Open Air, one of their bike specialists will fit you for the bike, an important step in ensuring a good biking experience.

When you’re next strolling down State Street, stop by Open Air Bicycles at 1303 State, near Victoria and let Ed know that Alma del Pueblo sent you.

Stop by our sales office at 1321 State Stree (805 845 4393), Wed-Sun, 12-5. And join us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter as we share the latest news, events and glimpses of what’s going on at Alma del Pueblo.