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Hotel del Coronado: Grand beach luxury minutes from San Diego

Written By | Jun 12, 2018

Coronado, California– The Hotel del Coronado is perhaps the most well-known landmark in San Diego. The turreted red roof capping the gleaming white structure is the jewel in Coronado’s crown. Designated a National Historic Landmark in 1977 almost 90 years after its 1888 opening, it was once the largest resort hotel in the world. Mary Pickford, Babe Ruth, Thomas Edison, L. Frank Baum (Wizard of Oz) and Marilyn Monroe have all stayed here.

North Island, accessible from San Diego by the iconic San Diego - North Island Bridge is home to Naval Air Station - North Island and one of America's Grand Dame hotels, the Hotel Del Coronado.

The Hotel Del Coronado from the lawn @Ron Stern All rights reserved

The Del, as it is locally known, was the first hotel to utilize electric lighting and had the world’s first electrically lit outdoor live Christmas tree. It is also one of the few surviving all-wooden Victorian era beach resorts with redwood and white oak used for a large portion of the structure.

San Diego, Hotel Del Coronado

The Hotel Del Coronado dining room with its “Wizard of Oz” inspired chandeliers. @Ron Stern All rights reserved

The Crown Room, which hosts the property’s famous Sunday brunch, is made from Oregon sugar pine and pegs and glue— no nails!
The original landscaping was created by American botanist and landscape architect Kate Sessions, and the grand Windsor Lawn overlooking the Pacific makes it an ideal venue for celebrations. Victorian Building suites and rooms with ocean views or views of the resort are available.

There is also a subdivision called The Beach Village as well as Ocean Towers suites.

Amenities at the Hotel Del Coronado

Amenities abound at The Del. You don’t have to leave the property to enjoy a full-service salon and spa, ocean view dining, shopping, or the beach. 1500 OCEAN, Sheerwater, ENO Pizza, Babcock & Story Bar, and Sunset Bar all provide unique dining experiences.

San Diego, Hotel Del Coronado

Sun Set Bar and Grill = The Hotel Del Coronado @Ron Stern All rights reserved

Start with a craft cocktail at the Sunset Bar before venturing into 1500 OCEAN where Master Chef Patrick Ponsaty has prepared a four-course dining adventure.

Sheerwater offers a large breakfast buffet, lunch, dinner, and a kids’ menu. Local seafood, smoked meats, sandwiches, and salads are all popular favorites.

ENO has artisanal pizzas like the Aglio Bianco consisting of garlic cream, fontina, sausage, bacon, and black pepper. They also have a wine bar and outdoor seating around fire pits. The dessert menu includes Italian favorites like tiramisu, affogato, and cannoli, as well as flourless dark chocolate cake.

Babcock Story & Bar serves cocktails, beer and wine and what they tout as Nibbles like Korean Pork Sliders and Ahi Hamachi Poke.

The Spa at The Del

Spa at The Del provides separate areas for men and women to enjoy the spa experience, be it a massage, facial, or salon services. Specials like Mimosa Monday and Treat Yourself Tuesdays as well as military appreciation discounts Sunday through Thursday are offered. There are also couples activities like massage, a S’mores Couples Package and Starlight Services.

San Diego, Hotel Del Coronado

Gelato – a welcome vacation treat @Ron Stern All rights reserved

Shops on the premises include clothing boutiques, eyewear, confections, jewelry, gelato, a children’s play store, and the gift shop Est. 1888 in the lobby.

San Diego, Hotel Del Coronado

The Hotel Del Coranodo @Ron Stern All rights reserved

The Del also offers a variety of fun activities like movies on the beach, painting classes by the ocean, bonfires, yoga, spinning classes by the sea, and the Delventure for kids. Add to these the ambiance of this grand historic hotel, plus diverse dining and shopping options and you’ll find the perfect beach getaway.

For more information:
Hotel del Coronado
Visit California
Visit San Diego

Accommodations and meals for this review were provided at no cost. All opinions herein are the authors.

Ron Stern

Ron Stern aka "The Global Gumshoe," I am a travel photojournalist and the author of hundreds of international and domestic travel articles. I am the Denver City Guide Editor for The Daily Meal, and a staff writer for Communities Digital News. My articles have appeared in The Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune, Baltimore Sun, San Diego Union-Tribune, Sun Sentinel, Yahoo News, MSN, and others. Magazines include Shape, Cruise, AAA Motorist, Visit Los Cabos Guide, Destinations West, Key Biscayne and La Jolla Today. My contributions have been noted by PBS, Mobil Travel Guides and my photography/ videography has been used extensively by entities such as tourism boards and public relations firms.