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It’s possible to walk down the intriguing Pacific Beach pier lined with blue-roofed cottages and never know you were strolling the courtyard of the Crystal Pier Hotel. This collection of renovated 1930s-era cottages bends the conventional definition of “hotel.” The relaxing ocean soundtrack is piped in through the floor, courtesy of the Pacific Ocean. The kitchen, living room, and bedrooms are separate, and the entire pier is gated off exclusively for residents at 8 p.m. Consider the daytime yours to explore nearby shopping and the sunset your private light show. With rooms starting at $235, the hotel-on-a-dock is so in demand that reservations are recommended four to six months in advance during the winter season and eight to 11 months ahead of summer.
4500 Ocean Blvd.
Baronial is the word for the Westgate Hotel, whose logo includes a crest and whose curtains and crown moldings smack of the palatial. Yet its down-to-earth service takes away any taint of stuffiness. The Westgate also puts its online promotions where its art is: The Arts & Culture Diversion package ($415) comes with a $100 gift certificate good toward tickets to the San Diego Opera, San Diego Symphony, Broadway San Diego, or any other local theater production. Redeem that stately reward, and you’ll receive two tickets to either the San Diego Museum of Art or to the Museum of Contemporary Art. As icing on the cake, $100 actually gets you into the symphony or the theater, and only $15 more gets you into the opera. Bravo!
1055 Second Ave.
The old adage says only the animals get into the zoo for free. But, for humans, here’s the next best thing: a unique “surf or turf” tourist promotion offered at the Pacific Terrace Hotel. Book online and, for the price of one-night accommodations, the hotel also will throw in two adult tickets to either the San Diego Zoo (a $70 value) or Sea World ($130). You’ll also enjoy freshly baked cookies and cold milk delivered right to your room, which is equipped with Internet access, a 42-inch flat screen plasma TV, on-demand movie rentals with Nintendo games, European amenities, and gourmet coffee. A wooden staircase leads you directly to a white-sand beach.
610 Diamond St.
A short toss from Petco Park, the playing field for the San Diego Padres, the Omni Hotel in the heart of downtown San Diego, is a 32-floor high-rise that’s the perfect home-away-from home for any baseball fan, as well as those who enjoy modern luxury and helpful service. The hotel also offers a number of cool baseball packages. For as little as $299 a night, you can have a deluxe room, two tickets to the Padres game, breakfast, valet service, even a peanuts and Cracker Jack box to put you in the baseball spirit. There’s also no need to wait in line, thanks to the sky bridge from the hotel that leads directly into the stadium. If the Padres are on the road, take the time to explore the historic Gas Lamp District right next to the Omni, housing more than 80 diverse shops, restaurants, bars, and clubs.
675 L Street
By Paula Conway
My last-minute trip to Louisville was also my very first — guaranteeing one delightful surprise after another.
As a neophyte, I was urged by a friend to try a Hot Brown (an open-faced turkey sandwich, smothered in cheese, with bacon), to sample a Derby Pie (a cookie stuffed with chocolate chips, walnuts, hot fudge, [...]
RUMBAR, inside The Ritz Carlton Key Biscayne, lays claims to being Miami’s only live Latin music venue. On weekends, a four-piece band in white dinner jackets will take you back to Old Havana with rhythms of vintage Cuba. Order a rum flight for a vertical tasting of Miami’s largest selection of rums from Trinidad, Barbados, [...]Read More