As someone who’s spent the night in thousands of hotel rooms over the years, I’m not easily impressed. So when I discover places that turn out to be more than just another generic place to lay my head at the end of a long day, I figure I ought to share the wealth.
Which brings me to these hot tips on three great lodging options I discovered on my recent visit to San Diego:
Located on the grounds of the former Naval Training Center, this year-old waterfront hotel combines an ideal location with a super-friendly staff, surprisingly attractive and well-kept rooms and public spaces, and an on-site restaurant (serving up killer breakfasts) and deli into something that’s way more than just another chain-operated airport hotel. In fact, I actually preferred it hands-down over the much pricier W Hotel downtown I stayed at earlier in the week.
If you know anything about San Diego, you know sooner or later you’re going to end up at the beach. So why not stay there? Located a couple of blocks north of the Crystal Pier in my old Pacific Beach neighborhood, this relatively small property offers huge rooms with ocean views as good as any in town, plus a free continental breakfast every morning and fresh, hot cookies every afternoon. Check out the view at their online web cam.
Okay, so technically this isn’t a hotel. But sleeping in one of the large canvas tents overlooking the San Diego Wild Animal Park’s wide-open East Africa exhibit offers amenities no hotel room can match, like the sounds of tigers roaring and elephants trumpeting as you drift off to sleep. Add some tasty grub plus walking tours and family-friendly activities and you have a lodging alternative that you won’t soon forget.