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San Diego Hotels

Porto Vista Hotel & Suites

  • 1835 Columbia St. Map It
  • Little Italy
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  • New decor in common areas, some guest rooms, and the fitness center
  • Airport shuttle


  • Spotty service
  • Small rooms, some still in need of updating

Updated 10/17/2014

Fodor's Review

This former budget motel has transformed into a contemporary hotel-motel with updated furnishings, a stylish restaurant and lounge, and a fitness center. All rooms are outfitted with pillow-top beds and interesting wall art; suites offer wet bars and some have marble bathrooms with whirlpool tubs. The on-site restaurant, the Glass Door, has fourth-floor harbor views, a stellar weekend brunch, and late night happy hours. Complimentary shuttle service is available to the airport, cruise terminal, and convention center.

Hotel Information


1835 Columbia St., San Diego, California, 92101, United States

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Hotel Details:

  • Credit cards accepted
  • 198 rooms, 6 suites
  • Rate includes No meals

Updated 10/17/2014

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Fodorite Reviews

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May 1, 2013

Worst Check-In Experience Ever

this is the first review I have written for a hotel, and I hope it serves others well. firstly, we booked through an online booking site, for $85 which included breakfast, the normal rate is higher, which is bad considering you don't get what it appears you are receiving. parking: the first thing you are greeted by is a tiny entrance leading directly to VALET parking. the hotel 'kindly' offers it's guests valet for $22 a night. there is NO free

parking. It is$22 or parking on the street (which is enforced by a 2he limit). I tried to avoid it, but it is futile. add $22 onto whatever your rate is. why charge your own clients to park!? check-in: secondly you will be greeted by pompous, overdressed clerks who do not book properly, so that reservation you had has to be hand entered as you wait. once the elevator to go to your room's door opens you see the 'backside' of the hotel. Not very flattering, and the elevator(only 1) takes forever, usually faster to go by stairs. breakfast: when we checked in, the employee welcomed us to enjoy complimentary breakfast from their legendary 'glass door cafe'. what he failed to do was check us in properly, so we were denied at the door (yes, only certain rooms get free breakfast, I great it's close to $15 if not. after arguing with checkin, I was granted access.. Hoping for something great, all they offer is three buffet trays. One has scrambled egg, one old potatoes, one round sausage / bacon.. That is it! From an overtly ambitious restaraunt? econo lodge had biscuits, bagels, cereal, waffles, Danish, etc.. Not here! bottom line: the appearance and reality are night and day, I give the employees credit for putting on a nice show, and the one star is due to the fact you are sitting on little Italy.. I left my car in valet and walked. EDIT: 5/1/13 Gets better.. they double-charged me! Despite the room being paid in advance, my check-in troubles get worse. I checked my account statement today and see they 'kindly' helped themselves to another $95 when I checked in, which is ODD, as the only receipt I ever signed / received was for the $22 valet. I will update with how they handle this.

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Aug 10, 2010

Porto Vista Hotel & Suites Review

My party of 6 arrived with confirmation number in hand for 3 deluxe King w/balcony rooms. We had double-checked with the hotel 3 days earlier when we started out by car and the front desk confirmed our reservation. We arrived road weary the first night and were told that they had only one of the rooms we reserved, the other two being the “cozy queen.” "Cozy” is an understatement. 2 suitcases and 2 men couldn’t walk around the room. One

person would have to stay on the bed to let the other move to and from the bathroom. THERE IS A REASON THE ROOM PICTURE ON THE WEBSITE IS OF THE CORNER OF THE ROOM. We repeatedly asked for a manager and were told none were available in person or by telephone and concessions could not be made with out the approval of a manager. We were concerned that the last arriving couple was not going to be able to fit in such tight conditions as he was 6'4 and 270 and needed a king bed to be comfortable let alone fit his wife. Despite much pleading and complaining about how we had confirmed, we were told they couldn’t accommodate. We went to the car and searched another hotel nearby that had kings and went in to cancel the reservation and magically they had a room the third part of our party could have at no additional charge. If we could just be patient and accept the upgrade to a suite, all would be made good in the morning when a manager was available to discuss concessions. The next morning we were made to feel like we were granted the privilege of having our reservations honored but no apology was forthcoming for the terrible room that we had stayed in and for having to wake up extra early to have time to deal with the hotel management. Mr. Johnson, the front desk manager, told us that we would all be comp'd the parking expenditures for the poor customer service we had received and that the third couple would be "allowed" to stay in the suite for the remainder of the stay. During the stay the rooms were not well cleaned and refreshed, one room didn’t get toilet paper restocked and we had to call and get some brought to us. After 3 calls, an extra roll was donated from another room. The extra toilet paper was eventually delivered to the wrong room. The mirrors would fog from the shower and reveal pornographic images left by a previous guest; the refrigerators would not cool anything to below 57 degrees. You could not drink the complimentary coffee in the room because there were no cups in one room and only decaf another. The TV's were a different brand and size in each room, all circa 2000, no flat screens, no digital reception and the color tint function was broken in our room so we watched TV in blue and orange. Breakfast was included with the stay but if you slept past 8am there was no French toast, bacon or sausage. They bill themselves as a "Hip Hotel near Sea World | Zoo"...anyone paying attention to anything "hip" knows you better have bacon. This all culminated in a phone call from Mr. Johnson to my cell phone after leaving and 80 miles out of town telling us that it turns out since one of our party got the room they wanted, no one would be compensated for that first night and parking charges were added to two of our credit cards. DONT STAY HERE unless you want to pay good money for a renovated broken down motor lodge, right off the loud freeway, directly under the flight path of landing jets to the San Diego airport and the worst customer service. They fail to realize that it’s not about the money; it’s about customer service and being played by management.

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