Paradise Retreats offers unsurpassed service to Guests and Owners of the vacation homes we represent. Our properties are beautiful and well-maintained, and have all the amenities you would expect in a luxury home.
We specialize in satisfying the needs of the discriminating customer, who expects the best in service and quality. Each of our properties offers a unique and special experience.
Please contact us with any questions
Theo Kracke, President
Paradise Retreats, World Class Vacation Rentals, LLC
16 E. Arrellaga Street
Santa Barbara, CA 93101
Theo Kracke – President
Theo Kracke founded Paradise Retreats in 2006. Using the business philosophies of Integrity, Innovation, and Value, Paradise Retreats has grown to become the leader in luxury vacation rental management in Santa Barbara County. Theo has been a resident of Santa Barbara since 1981, when he entered UC Santa Barbara. After graduating with an Honors degree in Business Economics, he founded Techstyles Sportswear in his garage in Goleta. Techstyles became a leader in the resort apparel industry, consistently shipping 80,000+ garments each month to tourist resort destinations around the country. In 2004, Theo sold Techstyles and began exploring new entrepreneurial opportunities.
In 2006, it was obvious to Theo that Santa Barbara needed a vacation rental management company that applied proven business principles to their operations. With the experience gained from his prior business, he built a company that achieves that goal.
Theo has recruited a team of competent professionals in every aspect of property management. From Property Administration, Guest Relations, Property Services, and Accounting, a loyal and hard-working staff are striving to maximize the success of every property. This is achieved while providing excellent customer service to our valued Guests, and protecting neighbors’ rights to the quiet enjoyment of their properties.Theo, his wife, and their 2 children aim to enjoy the best that Santa Barbara offers. Whether surfing from his parcel on the Hollister Ranch, regularly hiking the mountain trails of Montecito, exploring the Channel Islands on his boat, or just enjoying downtown activities with the kids, a philosophy of “work to live” permeates Theo’s lifestyle.
“I appreciate the beauty, sophistication, and creativity of the Santa Barbara community. Everyone I know is committed to a balanced life of professional work satisfaction, health, and happiness. I strive to create a company which reflects those values.”
John McWhirter – Property Administration Manager
With a background in Real Estate and Property Management, John is a perfect fit for the Paradise Retreats’ team. With a positive and energetic attitude, he looks forward to conquering challenges each day.
Originally hired as a Property Inspector in 2014, it quickly became apparent that John would be an important asset in the office. It has always been John’s desire to be a part of a fun and growing company, and it shows with his versatility, and enthusiasm for his job.
“I can’t wait to see what we do next! It’s amazing to be part of a team that works really hard, and hungers to be the best at what we do.”
John’s family has been in the Santa Barbara area for many generations, going back to the early 1900’s, and he is proud to call this special area home. John’s interests are sports and technology. He is a musician at heart, and has played in bands (and in churches) throughout Santa Barbara County.“My wife and I love being a part of this community. It is great to share it with so many people from different places all around the world!”
Tera Neumann – Guest Relations Manager
Tera has been a proud member of the Paradise Retreats team since March 2013. With a degree in Communication and Public Relations, she began her career in the hotel industry, working in Marketing, Events, and Guest Relations.
Born and raised in Wisconsin, Tera decided one day that it was time for a change. She packed up her car, and drove across the country to the gorgeous city of Santa Barbara. Although she misses her family dearly, she is proud to now call Santa Barbara home. Tera enjoys spending time outdoors and going to the beach with her wife. They both love writing and are currently working on individual pieces of fiction.
“I find such fulfillment in living in Santa Barbara – a thriving, charming, magical city, with an incredible variety of arts and cuisine.”
As the Guest Relations Manager with Paradise Retreats, she is a perfect fit for this high energy, fast moving company. She is thorough and relaxed in the face of competing priorities. She also understands the importance of innovation, which makes it easy for her to implement systems that make her department more efficient and accurate. Most importantly,Tera knows the importance of building relationships and understanding guests’ wants and needs.
“Every time I help a guest, or work on ways to make our company better, I am excited to know my effort is making a difference in every guest’s stay at a Paradise Retreats’ vacation rental.”
Nate Nienhuis – Accounting Manager
Originally from Grand Rapids Michigan, Nate graduated with a degree in Business Administration from Azusa Pacific University in May 2012 and immediately came to work for Paradise Retreats.
As the Accounting Manager, Nate understands the importance of detail and loves to continually learn to help improve the company. He is a hard worker with an upbeat and enthusiastic approach to each day. Nate attributes his drive and motivation to his experience as a college athlete.
He loves the city of Santa Barbara, and especially appreciates the beauty of the properties he helps to manage.
In his free time, Nate enjoys spending time with his wife. Together, they share a love of soccer, surfing, and spending time with their families.
When it comes to his job at Paradise Retreats, Nate’s greatest satisfaction is when a guest has a “hassle-free” vacation, and departs Santa Barbara feeling happier than when they arrived.
Joseph Bounds – Property Services Manager
Joseph joined the Paradise Retreats team in the Summer of 2015, bringing a wealth of knowledge to his position.
He is no stranger to the rigors of management in a fast-paced company. As a General Manager, Operations Manager, and Sales Manager in the Fitness Industry, Joseph has a vast background to draw from as our Property Services Manager. He is fully versed in impeccable customer service, and is a strong and clear communicator.
Having worked in construction, Joseph is a “hands-on guy”. He enjoys the satisfaction of taking a project from beginning to end, whether it’s building large office infrastructure, or a simple home improvement project!
Family is paramount to Joseph. Along with his wife and 3 children, he makes it a priority to get outside and explore the beauty of the central coast, visiting favorite places like Ellwood Butterfly Preserve, the Natural History Museum, and the Botanic Gardens. With pride, Joseph claims he has hiked every single trail (on and off the map!) in Santa Barbara.
“I am excited to lead a strong Property Services Team at Paradise Retreats. I take great pride in building and maintaining valuable relationships with staff, property owners, and visiting guests. I’m committed to making a positive difference in this fast-growing and fun company!”
Support Team – Property Administration
Angelica Furstenburg – Property Administration
Angelica joined the Paradise Retreats team as a Property Inspector in March 2016. After a year, she was promoted to the Property Administration Department. Angelica has enjoyed each of the roles she has played in this growing company, and is excited to continue her experience in the many facets of Property Management.
Raised in Madera, California, Angelica joined the Army National Guard in 2012. By 2015, she had moved to Santa Barbara for school, and to seek career opportunities. She found Paradise Retreats, and it has been a perfect fit for her! As a Property Administrator, Angelica’s goal is to help owners prepare their homes for success as short-term or long-term rentals. Angelica confirms that all the home details are correctly represented, and that each home is set up to provide Guests and Tenants an excellent rental experience.
When she’s not working, Angelica loves to hike, go to the beach, and enjoy the beautiful weather Santa Barbara has to offer.
“I am thankful to have co-workers that are professional, but also make me feel like I am part of a family. One of the things the military has taught me is that you will not be successful if you do not work hard as at team. Our department (and the company as a whole) flourishes because we strive to work as a cohesive unit.”
Scott Gibson – Scott Gibson Photography
Scott is a Santa Barbara based photographer specializing in real estate, portraits, and a wide variety of corporate and commercial projects. He has the #1 postcard company in the area, and his work is proudly displayed on scenic postcards racks throughout Santa Barbara County.
With his depth of experience, Scott enjoys sharing his wealth of information. He has branched out into teaching workshops for photographers who want to diversify their range of professional photography services.
Over the years, Scott has become a valuable member of the Paradise Retreats team, and his photographs fill the web pages of the Paradise Retreats website. His signature style offers a unique and beautiful visual presentation that has contributed to the great marketing success of Paradise Retreats.
“Working with Paradise Retreats has been a lot of fun. It is so gratifying to complete a photo shoot at these fabulous locations, and then be able to take a few minutes to relish in the beauty of where are live and work. It’s awesome!”
Sheri Mize – Interior Designer and Stager, Sheri Mize Designs
Sheri and her team have been styling and staging Paradise Retreats’ properties since 2007. She enhances the appeal of each property with her impeccable style and an attention to detail. Sheri’s talent for creating comfortable, harmonious and beautiful spaces perfectly compliments our approach to providing a world class vacation experience to our guests.
Sheri has a background in fashion and merchandising, and a degree in Interior and Exterior Design. A native of Southern California, she has had the pleasure of calling Santa Barbara her home since 1983.
Sheri feels blessed to be working alongside the wonderful team at Paradise Retreats. “It’s a joy to work with such a wonderful, supportive and respectful crew. Despite the long hours spent getting just the right shot, each project ends with gratitude and hugs.”
Jane Harper has been Sheri’s Lead Assistant since 2014. She has a background in Business Administration and Customer Service as well as the experience of years of international travel. “I never take living in Santa Barbara for granted. To also be surrounded in my work by wonderful people is a gift.”
Support Team – Guest Relations
Jean Sargeant – Reservation Specialist
Jean has been working with Paradise Retreats since 2006, and has played an integral part in building Paradise Retreats to what it is today.
Jean presently works as an off-site Reservation Specialist, which she enjoys very much. With prior careers in Interior Design and Real Estate, Jean understands fine quality and the importance of impeccable service. Her strong work ethic makes her a valuable part of the Paradise Retreat team. Jean’s effectiveness is based on her kind demeanor, which she successfully combines with “no-nonsense” business skills.
While at home in Palm Springs, Jean enjoys hiking, golf, music and theater performances. She and her husband participate in the many wonderful cultural and artistic events in their community.
In Jean’s words, “It is with a feeling of great pride and pleasure that I have the opportunity to work with the professional staff of Paradise Retreats. I am happy to be an integral part of the growth of this truly “World Class” company.”
Carol Broderick – Reservation Specialist
Carol, or ‘CG’ as she is known to friends and co-workers, has contributed to the success of Paradise Retreats since February 2011. Supporting the company with her role as an off-site Reservation Specialist, she manages bookings, answers inquiries and questions with enthusiasm.
Born and educated in England, she now resides in Sonoma County, California where she spends her spare time entertaining guests at her home, tending to her garden, starting/finishing a new interior home project, planning her next trip with her hubby, or relaxing with the latest book club pick!
Prior to Paradise Retreats she worked in advertising for 22 years as a media buyer in Los Angeles and San Francisco while raising her two daughters. Now that the girls have graduated college she appreciates working in the hospitality industry making arrangements for guests looking to relax and cherish their stay in beautiful Santa Barbara County.
“Santa Barbara County is a place of style, romance and family serenity. It is a destination that offers something for everyone. What I love about the area is the interesting architecture, sandy beaches, the choice of local restaurants to enjoy, as well as the small town feel. I am proud to assist in making your trip unforgettable and look forward to booking your return”.
Kimberly Peterson – Guest Relations
Kimberly is the perfect fit for this fast-paced company! She always has a smile on her face, and she greets guests with a positive attitude, whether it is over the phone, by email, or in person when guests walk into our office! Kimberly worked in the Hospitality Industry for several years before joining the Paradise Retreats team. She loves to help cultivate memorable experiences and journeys for all guests and travelers. She is always looking for a way to create the ideal environment for guests’ comfort and pleasure.
Raised in rural Kingsburg, California, Kimberly graduated high school in 1994. She then moved to LA, looking for the “big city life” in Hollywood, where she lived for 15 years. After living in Hollywood, she moved to a more peaceful location, where she currently resides, in the Ojai/Ventura area.
When she is not at work, Kimberly loves to spend time frequenting estate sales, collecting antiques and vintage items to furnish and decorate her home. She also loves to visit local art exhibits and museums with her daughter, Neeve. The two of them love to go on adventures and explore the wonders of California’s great big backyard!
“Whenever I help a guest find the perfect property for their stay, I feel a sense of belonging and satisfaction. It is always my goal to create the ideal vacation for all of the wonderful travelers who visit and stay in our beautiful city.”
Kim Mitchell – Guest Relations
A native of Santa Barbara, Kim joined the Paradise Retreats family in January 2017 and has thoroughly enjoyed her role as Guest Relations Specialist. She supports the Guest Relations Department by approving and confirming reservations, processing reservation payments, answering guest questions by phone and email, responding to guest comments, and by completing many other miscellaneous administrative tasks. Kim is extremely detail-oriented, so this position fits her perfectly!
Kim has a BA in Literature and Creative Writing, and in the past has worked in graphic design, marketing, commercial real estate, and as a legal assistant. In her free time, she enjoys spending time with family and friends, camping, walking on the beach, hiking, and attending concerts in the area.
“I really appreciate the atmosphere at Paradise Retreats. Everyone is really down to earth and genuinely enjoys contributing to the success of the business. We work as a team and it feels really good to know we’re all in this together. It’s very satisfying to hear that people have had a memorable experience with family and friends at one of our properties.”
Support Team – Accounting
Emily Bohnett – Accounting Assistant
Emily joined the Paradise Retreats family in the Summer 2015. She graduated from San Diego State in 2010, and has steadily worked in the accounting field before settling into her current role as Paradise Retreats’ Accounting Assistant. Together with the Accounting Manager, Emily interfaces with staff and property owners. Her valued skills keep things running smoothly in our accounting operations.
Born and raised in Santa Barbara, her roots go back several generations with much of her immediate family still living nearby! She loves this city and is proud to call it home. Emily enjoys spending time at the beach collecting sea glass with her daughter. She also enjoys reading, cooking, and exploring the beautiful county of Santa Barbara.
“I love working in an office that feels like a family. Everyone works together to succeed and grow the business. We’re all committed to doing our best with a collective spirit of excellence.”
Support Team – Property Services
Daniel Gutierrez – Property Services Coordinator
Daniel has been with Paradise Retreats since October 2015. Having been born and raised in beautiful Santa Barbara County, he is no stranger to the local area and could not be prouder to call Santa Barbara home.
As Property Services Coordinator, Daniel is an important part of the property maintenance process. He enjoys working alongside a great motivated team that puts the satisfaction of property owners and guests above all else. Daniel’s willingness to complete any task given to him ensures that the high standards of the company are maintained. Daniel comes from a customer service background in the fitness and vitamin industry, and is very familiar with fast-paced working environments. He understands that impeccable customer service is key to success.
Daniel’s life outside of the office revolves around physical fitness and nutrition. His real passion is enjoying and exploring the outdoors in Santa Barbara County.
What is the best part about working at Paradise Retreats according to Daniel?
“Not only am I fortunate enough to assist in the management of stunning properties, but I also get to meet interesting guests from around the world!”
Beth Evick – Property Services, Inspector
Beth has been a member of the Paradise Retreats team since August 2013. With a degree in Hotel Management/Convention Planning from Bowling Green State University, Beth puts her own spin on hospitality. With a professional skill set, and a desire for impeccable service, her job as a Property Inspector with Paradise Retreats is a perfect fit. Her attention to detail, and willingness to say “yes” to any task, is welcomed. Her quick wit and sense of humor always keeps things lively and fun!
Beth and her husband met in college, and have lived in Santa Barbara for 23 years – together they have two happy and busy children, Sydney and Christian.
As a part-time Inspector, and full-time mom, she is also passionate about Interior Design.
“Inspecting the beautiful homes Paradise Retreats manages is a distinct pleasure. It feels satisfying to help our property owners maintain their homes, and to assure our guests have a flawless experience. I often get great design ideas too!”
Jenny Thomas – Property Services, Inspector
Jenny joined the Paradise Retreats team in 2013. The job has turned out to be the ideal role for this Santa Barbara native. Her job as a Property Services Inspector blends beautifully with the life she has created with her husband of 34 years, Michael, and their six amazing children, four grandchildren, and wonderful In-laws!
Jenny’s exacting organizational skills are perfect for a job that requires attention to the fine details. She has been invaluable at inspecting homes, meeting guests, and firmly has her finger on the pulse of inventory control of the vast supplies that are provided for all Paradise Retreats guests.
Jenny brings a friendly smile and positive attitude to everything she does. Her loyalty and dedication to her job are evident, always.
“I love people, and have always been interested in Real Estate. Being a team player, I feel like this job is the perfect fit after having raised my children.”
With a busy life, Jenny still manages to enjoy cooking, exercising, and spending time with family and friends. With a love of animals, she loves her “furry friends” too!