From the well-appointed rooms to the colorful lobby and sleek rooftop bar, this urban-chic Marriott has a lot to offer, including a prime location. The modern high-rise is set at the edge of the historic Gaslamp Quarter, right next to Petco Park where the San Diego Padres play. From Altitude, the hotel’s lounge on the 22nd floor, you can see into the ballpark, though the views of the city, bay, and Coronado Island are also worthy of attention. From the Marriott, it’s a 5-minute walk to the Convention Center and trolley station.
YOU SHOULD KNOW There’s no pool if that’s a dealbreaker but the rooftop terrace has plenty of places to bask in the sun.
On the small side but very comfortable, the guestrooms are on-brand for the Marriott, with attractive but unobtrusive contemporary decor like honey-tone wood furnishings, a palette of neutral hues, and a few pops of warm colors and patterns. Upgrade to a view room if you can, especially on the higher floors.
Standard bathrooms feature tile walls, wood vanities with granite counters, and a shower-bathtub combo.
The colorful lobby makes a great first impression, with a light fixture that nearly spans the foyer and elaborate floral arrangements. Chairs with multi-hued plaid cushions complement a grid-like wall unit with objects backlit in bold colors.
The Marriott’s 900-square-foot fitness center features a good selection of cardio equipment, strength-training machines, and free weights.
Soleil @K, named for the hotel’s street, pays homage to California’s wine country and Napa Valley cuisine.
Perched on the 22nd floor, Altitude Sky Lounge features panoramic views of the city skyline, the bay, and Coronado Island. Even cooler? You can see right into Petco Park on game days. The spacious rooftop bar features ample seating and a large fire pit. On weekends, it gets packed.
Drinks don’t come cheap here, but you get what you pay for with those views.
With the Convention Center trolley station a mere 5-minute walk away, guests can see a lot of sights without a car. The trolley’s Green Line services the Gaslamp Quarter, the Santa Fe Depot (home to Amtrak and the Coaster, which services coastal communities to the north), Little Italy, Old Town, and the world-class Fashion Valley shopping center. Interstate 5, a major north-south freeway, is about a mile from the hotel; follow A Street east; I-5 connects to other highways that cover the sprawling region.
The Gaslamp Quarter is home to more than 100 restaurants and bars, so good luck if you’re indecisive. For breakfast, The Mission (10-minute walk) is a San Diego classic, the kind of place locals stand in line for on weekends. Go on a weekday (you’re on vacation!) and you’ll get right in. The large menu includes items like eggs and rosemary potatoes, breakfast chilaquiles, strawberry banana pancakes, and surprisingly delicious soy-chorizo dishes, as well as excellent drip and frou-frou coffee drinks (the Mission also serves lunch). On your way there, pop inside the dome-topped Central Library -- the views from the top are unparalleled in downtown San Diego. Right across from Petco Park, Basic (5-minute walk) is anything but. Housed in a former 1912 warehouse replete with roll-up garage doors, brick walls, and exposed ceilings, Basic serves delicious thin-crust pizza straight from the brick oven and also has a good bar scene. Don’t even think about going before or after a Padres game.
Surrounded by sleek urban high-rises, Half Door Brewing Company (7-minute walk) is hard to miss. Tucked inside an old two-story house with a wraparound porch, the bar looks like it’s been there forever, with herringbone wood floors, inset hex tile, and a gleaming carved wood bar with brass footrests, but it actually was built just a few years ago with salvaged goods from as far as Ireland. The beer is brewed on-site in a high-tech, compact 10-barrel system. Cafe Sevilla (5-minute walk), a longtime Spanish restaurant and bar with tons of character, is known for its delicious sangria, flamenco shows, and nightly live music. On the ground floor, the Hard Rock’s 207 Nightclub (2-minute hotel) has a decent scene -- it’s not the best dance club in town, but it’s right there. The hotel’s rooftop Float lounge, a weekend scene hotspot, features chic seating, fire pits, and panoramic bay and Gaslamp Quarter views. During the summer, the bar hosts Intervention Sundays, a daytime pool party with DJs.
WHY WE LIKE IT
Marriott regulars will feel right at home at this Gaslamp Quarter location. It doesn’t have as many amenities as nearby hotels like the Omni and Hard Rock -- there’s no pool or spa -- but the contemporary hotel offers comfortable, upscale rooms, many with views, and the hotel’s rooftop scene is one of the hottest in town.