San Diego Hotels

Old Feb 19th, 2006, 10:25 AM
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San Diego Hotels

I, my wife, and my 5 year-old daughter will be vacationing in San Diego for a week in the beginning of May. I am starting to do the 'standard' research on hotels (which includes this site), and want to get a quick read on two hotels/motels that I have come across. The specific area is not that important because we will be doing many things (Zoo, Sea World, beaches, downtown, Balboa Park, etc.) over the course of the week, but it must be convenient to at least some of these things. And we want to stay in the $90 +/- $20 range. I have found decent reviews of the Super8 Bayview/Convention Center downtown and the Diamond Head Inn at Pacific Beach. Any comments on either of these two places, or places you feel are better (condition, location, amenities) for the same price? Thanks!
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Old Feb 19th, 2006, 12:28 PM
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I don't have any input on the places you mentioned, but Pacific Beach is a distance away....and the roads in that area and often congested.

Hotel Circle has a nice Comfort Suites and Old Town has reasonably priced La Quinta's, Comfort Inns and Best Westerns which are newer properties and so close to Balboa/Mission.

Priceline is another option? You'd get GREAT rates at a higher rated hotel in May since school is still in session. Just a thought. I frequently use Priceline on off seasons and get killer rates at fabulous hotels.

Have a great time.
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Old Feb 19th, 2006, 01:05 PM
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Thanks for the suggestion. I've never used Priceline before because I like having more 'control' over the situation, but maybe it's worth a shot since there are so many hotels to choose from.

FYI, we'll have a car so I don't think distances are too big of an issue, unless it's parking that's the problem. With a week to spend, trust me, we'll be seeing everything.
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Old Feb 19th, 2006, 02:51 PM
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We've stayed at the Handlery on Hotel Circle twice. It's not expensive but it's of a decent standard and, as you say, as long as you have a car you can get around OK. We enjoyed Balboa Park (including the zoo), La Jolla, Sea World etc, Seaport Village etc.,
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Old Feb 19th, 2006, 04:10 PM
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When we were there last March we stayed in Old Town. It is a great location with all freeways right there so comuting was a breeze. We stayed at a Best Western. Old town is very toursity, but nice to walk around. You are on the lower end of the price point, so a Best Western would more than likely fit the bill. I don't think you will find anything on the beach for that low price even May. Hotel circle would be my least favorite location.
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Old Feb 19th, 2006, 04:51 PM
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HI..
Did a quick search on Expedia during the times you will be going and several hotels came up in kind of your price range..I have stayed at the Red Lion, Hanalei Hotel in Hotel Circle..$139 a night. It was close to everything and decent for the price. hanaleihotel.com
Sea Lodge in LJ was $159 a night oceanfront. ljbtc.com
La Quinta Hotels are always a good bargain.. www.lq.com
I don't know about the Super8 downtown and I would not do the Diamond Inn in PB..
Try Priceline and Hotwire too..
Good luck and have fun!




 
Old Feb 19th, 2006, 06:16 PM
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I think Old Town is a good option too - budget lodging options, but also in a neighborhood so you can actually walk around. I like being someplace where there are things to walk to because sometimes after a day of sightseeing, it is nice to walk to dinner rather than drive.
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Old Feb 20th, 2006, 04:52 PM
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All, thanks for the suggestions and comments, and keep them coming. It may be a couple of days before I book anything. The more I look, the more I am tending to agree with diann in that Hotel Circle is not all that appealing. Although I'm trying to stay cheap, I'd still like to get a bit of the flavor of the city (and it seems that Hotel Circle/Mission Valley does not fit that bill). Hold your comments about why then I'm leaning towards Super8's, LQ's, Holiday Inn's, etc. That's why I'm looking at this Super8 downtown (near Little Italy). Old Town also seems to fit the bill, but I haven't found anything around $100 yet. Diann, the BW in Old Town is running ~ $150, if it's the same one you are speaking of (Hacienda Suites). Anyway, I'll keep looking and don't let me discourage you all from more suggestions. Thanks!
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Old Feb 20th, 2006, 05:09 PM
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Hotel Circle is all about convenience. Easy to get in and out of, quick access to the 5, the 8 and the 805. Or the 163 that will take you downtown.

You can get pretty decent prices here for a room with queen beds, mostly, and under $100. Not sure you will find anywhere else with some ambiance for around $100. You might also need to consider parking fees. Downtown and Old Town can charge up to $18 a night for a car so that will take your costs up.

We have stayed in many hotels in Hotel Circle, usually on the way to or from the airport, or there for a quick overnight for a Dr.'s apt or shopping. We just stayed at the Kings Inn. Not bad, queen beds. I found it noisy, though if people walk by your room, talking at 2 a.m.

Handlary isn't so bad either. Holiday Inn Select used to have good prices, haven't checked in a while.

We love the Red Lion. A little pricier but all rooms are good sized and have a balcony (so husband can sit and read and get away from the rest of us). We stayed at a Fairfield Inn (free breakfast) and the BW Seven Seas, I think, also is queen beds. I don't think any of these charge for parking except the Red Lion ($10, which adds up if teen brings her own car). Hope this helps.

For breakfast you must try Adams Steak and Eggs (Albees by day) if you stay in the area. Great breakfasts, reasonbly priced and very nice service. We eat here all the time. They make a good bloody Mary too...
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Old Feb 20th, 2006, 06:40 PM
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OK, I may start to get annoying, but here are two more. I found a Comfort Inn Airport At Old Town (off of I5 between Old Town and Downtown) and Pacific Inn Hotel and Suites (downtown near the bay) that are $100-110/night. They got pretty good reviews on Orbitz and look to be in better locations than Mission Valley. Any input on either of these two? Thanks again!
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Old Feb 20th, 2006, 07:32 PM
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Old Town designation has quite a range in distance...from donwtown to the Old Town tourist State park area... something I can never figure out living in San Diego.
Anyway Confort Inn Old Town looks good..never stayed there but have stayed at others across USA. Seem consistant. Ok location to all the things you want to do.
As for Old Town State Park tourist area..previous poster is way off. Old Town was taken over by another vendor approved by the State of CA and is no longer the same Restaurants and ambience it once was. Quite disappointing. Our favorite Mexican Restaurant is now relocated to a East County shopping mall.
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Old Feb 20th, 2006, 07:35 PM
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Diamond Head Inn is a very nice hotel with great views of the ocean, and great service.. We loved our stay there.. with that said, it's not really close to anything but the beach, it's a 15 min drive to downtown in light traffic. We didn't go to the Balboa Park area, but I don't think it's too close to that either.. Good luck and have fun. I LOVED our trip to San Diego!
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Old Feb 20th, 2006, 07:40 PM
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I agree that the Comfort Inn Old Town looks quite nice, BUT it's right next to the freeway and can be noisy. Please check reviews on www.tripadvisor.com. I'd rather stay there than Pacific Highway, though. The Pacific Inn & Suites has the main Amtrack line running right behind it. If you specify rooms at the front it might be OK.

I don't understand your aversion to Mission Valley and Hotel Circle. I completely agree with Heavens about that area.

Unfortunately, 1JAR is right about Old Town. It's not the fun place it used to be, but the Guadalajara Grill is still there in the former style.


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Old Feb 20th, 2006, 08:35 PM
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You might consider Hampton Inn downtown. Pros: easy walk to Harbor and tour stops; easy walk to Little Italy; quick getaway to anywhere in San Diego; close to the airport; good service and best of all quiet hallways, no all night roamers; free breakfast saved us time and money every morning; parking; cons: early morning train serves as early wake up but not bad up front. We were there in Dec. and this location worked great for us. Minutes from downtown, Balboa park, old town, and Seaport Village.
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Old Feb 21st, 2006, 04:35 PM
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All, thanks very much. I got much more response than I anticipated. I think with all of this info and the researching I've done, I can make an intelligent decision. Barbara, without having been there it was a bit unfare of me to have an aversion to Mission Valley, but being from Austin, that area kind of sounded to me like all of Dallas looks (here comes the barage of people in Dallas ) ... hotels, malls, chain restaurants, etc. While I want to stay cheap, I also want a bit more flavor of San Diego. I've done that successfully in many areas of the country and world, so I thought I'd give it a shot in SD, too. If I got a wrong impression of it, I'm sorry. Thanks again!
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Old Feb 21st, 2006, 04:46 PM
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You didn't get the wrong impression of the Valley. That is exactly what it is as you describe. If one reads what Paulg is saying that is exactly what she isn't looking for. On the other hand it maybe the best option for your price range. Yes it was Hacienda Suites I stayed at in March 04. Old town isn't the same?? It was nice to come back there and then walk around the town at night and have breakfast outside at the outside cafes. Loved it! Anyway the Hanaelei is at the end of the Hotel circle. Just be careful about the location of the rooms as the freeways run along there as well. Just be sure to check tripadvisor.com before making any plans.
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Old Feb 21st, 2006, 05:46 PM
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I just wanted to re-comment on the $80-100 a night price range for a hotel/motel in May in San Diego..
I understand you want some color and flavor of SD but I have to tell you that if you are going to some of the places that you are set on..you are going to get alot more than you bargained for..it is called Sketch..
I think bang for the buck would be Hotel Circle..Alot of decent hotels for close to $100 and you are minutes to the beach and all the places you want to be. Red Lion direct was $119.
The Motel 6 in Hotel Circle is very popular and under $100 too.
Hacienda Hotel in Old Town is nice but Old Town is not the same after a Delaware Company took over.
The Comfort Inn in Old Town is on the freeway..Backs right up to it.
If you were travelling by yourself it would be different but you have a wife and a 5 year old.
We just want you to have the best experience without breaking the bank and enjoy your time in San Diego!

 
Old Feb 21st, 2006, 06:27 PM
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Much appreciated, TahitiTams. The Red Lion does look very nice ... just can't find it for under $140 for two beds. Maybe I'm not looking in the right places. So I've got it down to Old Town Inn (Pacific Highway, not found on most discount travel sites, but gets rave reviews on TripAdvisor) and the original Super8 Bayview (which also gets very good reviews on TripAdvisor). Both can be had for < $90. I think Old Town Inn might be the gem I was looking for, but we'll see. Now that I've made you all jump through hoops for me, I'll have to post a trip report when we get back.
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Old Feb 21st, 2006, 07:08 PM
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HI Paulg..
I kept on thinking where is the Old Town Inn and then I remembered it is by one my favorite Breakfast, Lunch place called Perry's...
Do not stay on Pacific Highway..Please...it is underneath Highway 8 and next to a huge industrial area and homeless people hang out in the area..Big Time!
Found a great deal for your family..
Comfort Suites Mission Valley/Sea World
on Expedia it is $113 a night for a seperate bedroom and a kids suite..
Free breakfast and parking and much better..you can go to Perry's which is excellent and cheap (voted#1) and see what you were missing out..
Please go to Old Town Mexican Cafe for lunch or dinner its great and go to the Whaley House too.
Just wanting you to have the best time!!
 
Old Feb 21st, 2006, 07:42 PM
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diann, the Old Town State Park concessionaire changed in May 05. You were there before the end of the Bazaar Del Mundo. It no longer exists. 1JAR mentioned his(?) favorite Mexican restaurant which I'll bet was the Casa de Bandini. Diane Powers, who made Old Town into one of the most popular State Parks and who had the concession for thiry years, was ousted in favor of a company from out of State, Delaware North. This is the same company that has the Yosemite concession now. I have not been since the changeover, but from what I read it's not very popular. Maybe TahitiTams has seen the new stuff.

TahitiTams and I actually live in San Diego and we have no interest in pushing you to stay in some low-life, trashy area. Diann did hit it on the nail when she suggested that with your budget, Mission Valley may be your best choice.
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