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Dorothy
Pecos, Texas

San Diego, California

Where are the most popular areas to stay in San Diego?

We like higher end accommodations; will be with husband; traveling in September and have a week or so. We love history, art, and local foods!


4 Answers

top answer by
John from Carlsbad (California)

In my opinion, the best high-end hotels in the San Diego area, from north to south:

1.  Park Hyatt Aviara Resort:  In Carlsbad, 30 minutes north of downtown San Diego.  Self-contained resort with spacious rooms and good views of the ocean in the distance.  First-class golf course and three very good to excellent restaurants onsite with  several other restaurants within a short drive.  Good value for the quality.  

2.  Rancho Valencia:  In Rancho Santa Fe, 30 minutes from downtown.  Very expensive and exclusive Relais & Châteaux all-suite property.  Mediterranean style with two excellent restaurants and several others a short distance away.  Beautiful, luxurious accommodations on 45 acres. 

3.  The Inn at Rancho Santa Fe:  Historic property in the heart of the village of Rancho Santa Fe with spacious grounds and excellent accommodations.  Very good restaurant onsite and several others within walking distance.  A recent renovation of the property has brought it back to greatness.  Good value for the quality.

4. The Grand Del Mar:  Exclusive, expensive, luxurious property rated No. 1 in San Diego on TripAdvisor.  It's located just inland from Del Mar and La Jolla, about 25 minutes north of San Diego.  Two excellent restaurants, several casual dining venues, plus a nightclub.

5.  La Valencia Hotel:  Historic hotel in the heart of La Jolla Village, overlooking the ocean, about 20 minutes north of downtown.  Recently renovated to a very high standard.  The least expensive rooms are small.  Two excellent restaurants onsite and many others within walking distance.  One of my favorite properties in the area.

6.  THE US GRANT, a Luxury Collection Hotel, San Diego:  Downtown San Diego.  Historic hotel with an excellent restaurant and within walking distance of everything downtown.  Excellent restaurant and bar.

7.  The Westgate Hotel:  A downtown hotel which is unlike anything else in San Diego.  The antique-filled lobby has the look of a luxurious hotel in Paris.  Large elegant rooms, an excellent restaurant, a great bar, afternoon tea in the lobby, and the best Sunday brunch in the area. 

8.  Omni San Diego Hotel:  A modern downtown hotel adjacent to the Gaslamp District and overlooking Petco Park.  Many rooms have views of the bay.  Walkable to many restaurants.

9.  Manchester Grand Hyatt San Diego:  Large, modern, high-end hotel on the Bay with magnificent views from upper floors.  Many restaurants a short walk away.  Excellent location.

10. Coronado Island Marriott Resort & Spa.  On Coronado, just across the Bay from downtown.  Terrific views from the bay view rooms across the Bay to downtown.  Coronado has a small-town feel and several excellent restaurants, just minutes from downtown.

Historic sights and Museums to see:

1.  Balboa Park is a 1200 acre jewel adjacent to downtown.  It contains more than a dozen museums, including the The San Diego Museum of Art, the San Diego Museum of Man, and the Timken Museum of Art.  The park has open space areas, natural vegetation zones, green belts, gardens, walking paths, several theaters, and the world-famous San Diego Zoo.  



2.  Downtown San Diego is also the home of the Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego, the USS Midway Museum, and the Maritime Museum of San Diego.  

3.  The Cabrillo National Monument commemorates the landing of Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo at San Diego Bay on September 28, 1542, the first time that a European expedition arrived at the west coast of the USA.  There are excellent views of the bay, downtown, and the coastline down to Mexico, an old lighthouse, a visitors center with exhibitions, and hiking paths.  

4.  Mission San Diego de Alcalá, the oldest Mission in California, was established by Father Junipero Serra in 1769.  The Mission site includes gardens, graveyards and ruins of the original structure, as well as a serves as an active parish church, the fourth on the location.

5.  Old Town San Diego State Historic Park preserves and recreates Old Town San Diego as it existed during the Mexican and early American periods, from its settlement in 1821, through 1872.

Have a great trip!


Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Park Hyatt Aviara Resort (hotel)
  2. Rancho Valencia (restaurant)
  3. The Inn at Rancho Santa Fe (restaurant)
  4. The Grand Del Mar (hotel)
  5. La Valencia Hotel (hotel)
  6. THE US GRANT, a Luxury Collection Hotel, San Diego (hotel)
  7. The Westgate Hotel (hotel)
  8. Omni San Diego Hotel (hotel)
  9. Manchester Grand Hyatt San Diego (hotel)
  10. Coronado Island Marriott Resort & Spa (hotel)
  11. Balboa Park (attraction)
  12. The San Diego Museum of Art (attraction)
  13. San Diego Museum of Man (attraction)
  14. Timken Museum of Art (attraction)
  15. San Diego Zoo (attraction)
  16. Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego (attraction)
  17. USS Midway Museum (attraction)
  18. Maritime Museum of San Diego (attraction)
  19. Cabrillo National Monument (attraction)
  20. Mission San Diego de Alcalá (attraction)
  21. Old Town San Diego State Historic Park (attraction)
3 thankscomments (1)


answered first by
Krista from San Francisco

Hi Dorothy,

San Diego is fantastic! I have a few favorite areas:

  1. The Gaslamp Quarter. You'll find some great restaurants, bars and shops here, along with the House of Blues. I suggest dining at Rei Do Gado Brazilian Steakhouse and Café 21. If you're up for trying San Diego's best casual fare, opt for Nico's Mexican Food - the California burrito is said to be one of the best in the city (and state)!

  2. Mission Bay A beautiful place to walk along the water. Also very close to attractions like SeaWorld, if you and your husband are considering visiting.

  3. My favorite beaches are in La Jolla - which is also home to La Jolla Cove, a place where you can get up close and personal with the famous sea lions(I did)! La Jolla also has some amazing art and great food, so be sure to check out Peter Lik Gallery and Martin Lawrence Galleries, along with The CottageGeorge's At The Cove and NINE-TEN Restaurant & Bar. For a casual breakfast, I loved Coffee Cup Cafe - and Dr Juice smoothies were a great snack!

    Enjoy! :)

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Gaslamp Quarter (neighborhood)
  2. House of Blues (attraction)
  3. Rei Do Gado Brazilian Steakhouse (restaurant)
  4. Café 21 (restaurant)
  5. Nico's Mexican Food (restaurant)
  6. Mission Bay (neighborhood)
  7. SeaWorld (attraction)
  8. La Jolla (attraction)
  9. La Jolla Cove (attraction)
  10. Peter Lik Gallery (attraction)
  11. Martin Lawrence Galleries (attraction)
  12. The Cottage (restaurant)
  13. George's At The Cove (restaurant)
  14. NINE-TEN Restaurant & Bar (restaurant)
  15. Coffee Cup Cafe (restaurant)
  16. Dr Juice (restaurant)
3 thankscomments (1)


answered by
Ellen from Dallas

If you've never stayed at the Hotel Del Coronado, you're missing a lifetime, iconic experience on so many levels. We were there again last year and it's only gotten better over time. This is the hotel featured in Marilyn Monroe's Some Like It Hot (though they said it was in Florida). If you can't stay there, at least go for lunch by the beach. The Fish & Chips is so fresh and delicate that you'd want to return just for that alone. (Sigh)


Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Hotel Del Coronado (hotel)
1 thanks


answered by
Sandy from Memphis, Tennessee

In La Valencia Hotel, San Diego, Hotel Del Coronado( you will not be disappointed.


Mentioned in this answer:

  1. La Valencia Hotel (hotel)
  2. Hotel Del Coronado (hotel)
1 thanks




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