Robert P. Senn
From the time Robert Senn was a child growing up in Santa Barbara, he knew he wanted to be an architect. His passion for architecture began at the young age of five creating structures out of Legos. After graduation from Santa Barbara High School, Robert attended the University of Colorado in Boulder where, in 1981, he earned his Bachelor of Environmental Design. He completed his formal education at the University of Washington in Seattle, earning a Master of Architecture, which is one of only three degrees accredited by the National Architectural Accrediting Board (NAAB). During his college years he specialized in historic preservation in Colorado mining towns and Seattle’s Pioneer Square.
In 1987 Robert began practicing architecture in Santa Barbara. From 1987 through 1993, he worked as a project architect for Bollay & Associates, where he primarily designed Spanish Colonial Revival homes in the style of the great 1920’s period architects, George Washington Smith and Reginald Johnson. Robert next acted as project architect for the well known Santa Barbara firm, Warner & Gray, creating traditional homes and estates.
Since 1994, Robert has been project architect for Sorrell Design, located on Coast Village Road in Montecito. Concurrently his own firm, Santa Barbara Architecture, Inc., has completed over twenty custom estates and major renovations to fine properties in Santa Barbara, Hope Ranch, Montecito, Brentwood and Pacific Palisades. He also designed a Cape Cod inspired ranch house in central Washington State, as well as a bed and breakfast in Oregon’s wine country.
He is considered an authoritative expert on Southern California architecture, particularly the Spanish Revival movement. In an April 13, 2002 Los Angeles Times article, he noted that “the Spanish Revival movement gave birth to some of the most exquisite and classic designs, which looked to Europe for historical roots and a sense of poetry and romance.” Robert has been a featured speaker on planning and design review topics at Santa Barbara Board of Realtors seminars and is currently a member of the Hope Ranch Board of Architectural Review, Santa Barbara Contractors Association, and Built Green Santa Barbara.
Robert has traveled extensively in Europe and his work is influenced by the Italian Renaissance architect, Andrea Palladio. Robert shares Palladio’s view that a home should be part of the landscape, combining beauty and function. Robert designs energy efficient green homes with loggias, porches, thick walls, heavy overhangs and tile roofs, to keep out the sun while maintaining the views.
Robert’s work has been featured in movies and television series, including episodes of “24” and “Vegas”. He has also served as consultant to several Southern California developers interested in providing authentic, traditional, luxury homes for discerning buyers.
As a Santa Barbara native, Robert has a unique and intimate understanding of the history, lifestyle and architectural nuances that make this area truly special.