Creative Stereo & Video, in Upper Village

For the more than 30 years that Roger Kritz has lived in Montecito, he has owned and operated Creative Stereo & Video, his spacious State Street emporium for home entertainment products and services. During that time, it has always been his expressed wish to create a presence for his business in Montecito, but he could never find the right timing or deal. Until just recently.

Kritz has just taken over Creative Stereo & Video a small store space in Montecito’s Upper Village that will serve as a sort of satellite station for the Downtown “mothership.”

“We see this location as a springboard for the State Street operation,” says Sean Hausken, who runs both stores. “What we’re trying to do is make an impression, make a handshake and go out to someone’s home for consultation.”

What this means is that the second store has much less inventory, but it will double its commitment to service, Creative Stereo’s hallmark. So, it’s still a good place to go if you’re looking for a 52-inch plasma, flat-screen television, or any video or audio equipment in the $5,000 to $50,000 gamut, for that matter. But the business’s real specialty is doing walkthroughs and consultations for home installations and remodels. Creative Stereo has an in-house crew for home installations and will contract out to other teams for large-scale projects.

Kritz can be found running the Montecito shop during morning hours, but most of the operation has been turned over to Hausken, who is 32 and has been working with Kritz for the past 12 years. Hausken is a bona fide home entertainment expert and fanatic, having worked in the business since he was 15 when he began as a delivery boy in Orange County. Today he recognizes that his services are of certain value to “people who have worked hard their entire lives and want to enjoy the fruits of their labor.”

Creative Stereo & Video (695-8108) is located at 1470 East Valley Road, Suite T. It is open Monday through Friday 10:30 am to 5:30 pm, Saturday 11 am to 4 pm, and it is closed on Sunday.