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The Ultimate Family Vacation at Hotel Del Coronado

By Holly Rosen Fink, GoGirlfriend Contributor

Beachside enjoyment on the Pacific Coast

When I was invited to experience Hotel Del Coronado in San Diego to experience its lodgings, restaurants, and activities, I have to admit I was just a little bit more than excited. I have beautiful memories of staying there around twenty-five years ago with my mother and sister, so I already knew it was a very special place. I remembered the views, the food, the togetherness we were really able to experience at the resort.

the beautiful beachside Hotel Del CoronadoHotel Del Coronado is the kind of place where you sit on the beach together; the kind of place you look forward to waking up; the kind of place you really let the rest of the world go. I was also excited because one of my favorite movies in the world, “Some Like It Hot,” was filmed there in 1959, and I have always pictured Marilyn Monroe, Tony Curtis, and Jack Lemmon frolicking on its sands. Other films shot there include “My Blue Heaven,” “K-9,” and “The Stunt Man”.

Hotel Del Coronado is a hotel with history. I was eager to go back.

Hotel Del Coronado, Curio Collection by Hilton

Hotel Del Coronado has been open for more than 130 years. It was built in 1888 and was designated a National Historic Landmark in 1977. landmark designatedIts founders wanted to build a seaside resort that everyone would talk about, and I’d say they achieved that goal! Since then, the resort has been visited by celebrities, dignitaries, and U.S. Presidents.

The resort is located across the bay from downtown San Diego and has convenient valet parking if you want to take or hire a car with you. There are 757 guestrooms, and its latest addition is called Beach Village, which features an enclave of 78 luxurious cottages offering concierge services, private chefs, and oceanfront dining.

Here’s the low-down on our family time at Hotel Del Coronado.

Luxurious Accommodations

My family, which consists of two teenagers, ages 14 and 16, stayed in a glorious room in the Beach Village. We had access to all the Hotel Del Coronado roomsresort’s amenities which include three pools, three Jacuzzis, cabanas on the beach (for an extra fee), exclusive breakfast at Windsor Cottage and the resort’s many restaurants, some of which are seaside. We had views of the sea from our room, and the most comfortable chairs on the deck with plush cushions. We loved sitting out there after a dip in the sea with our fuzzy robes on. The bed linens are also super luxurious, and we all sunk into our beds at night and got long, deep sleeps with a scent of sea air coming in through our windows.

Other Beach Village amenities include fireplaces, outdoor soaking tubs, and firepits. We also had access to a personal concierge service, who did all our activity bookings, and an in-room chef. The Beach Village also features club-like amenities for visitors including beach cabanas a patio to relax with a viewstocked with local snacks and a large screen on the beach (on which the resort shows feature films). Our bathroom featured luxurious amenities, including bath salts, perfect for a long bath after a day out in the sun.

Less expensive accommodations are offered in the hotel’s historic Victorian building. Rooms in the Ocean Towers and California Cabanas are more contemporary and have private balconies or patios. The truth is, you won’t be spending much time in your room, anyway, so choose a room that works for you and your family.

Dining Suggestions

There are a number of restaurants onsite. We had lunch at the Beach Shack where they serve sublime cocktails and fish tacos. We managed to find tacos for every member of the family (vegetarians and non-vegetarians), and sat facing the sea, which made for the best afternoon. That night we had dinner at ENO Pizzeria & Wine Bar, an artisan s'mores at Hotel Del Coronadopizzeria by the sea with community-style seating centered around fire pits. The pizzas, served Neapolitan style, are as basic or as fancy as your kids like, and mine were more than satisfied. If you can, partake in one of their wine flights.

A highlight of our culinary experience at the Del Coronado was definitely after sunset when we roasted marshmallows on the beach over a bonfire. We took our shoes off, put our toes in the sand, and sat by the sea roasting marshmallows in cozy beach chairs. We were provided with bags of Hershey chocolate and graham crackers for the ultimate s’mores. Fire pit reservations must be made through the hotel, pre-paid in advance, and guests are given one-hour each. My teenage daughter was in her element.

special Easter treats at the Hotel Del CoronadoWe happened to be at the hotel during the Easter holiday, so we were invited to a special Champagne Easter Brunch in the Crown Room. We put on our best clothes for what turned out to be a very fancy do. It was very comparable to a wedding luncheon. The annual brunch features regionally inspired dishes, international cuisine, and carving stations. I enjoyed drinking mimosas, and the kids enjoyed the well positioned dessert bar, and my husband enjoyed the live jazz band. The Easter Bunny was on the Garden Patio and the hotel was hosting a colorful egg hunt on the Windsor Lawn. It was a day to remember for all of us.

There are other restaurants we didn’t get to - from Sheerwater to Babcock & Story Bar to Sun Deck Bar & Grill to the Sunset Bar - and I am sure they are all excellent. Patrick Ponsaty took over as Executive Sous Chef last year, and he has since elevated the hotel as a culinary leader.

Spending Time at Hotel Del Coronado

poolside relaxation at Hotel Del CoronadoDays at Hotel Del Coronado are like no other. You want them to last forever. As comfortable as the rooms are, we loved whiling away our time in the hotel’s secluded pools and jacuzzis. We took walks on the beach, and my son and husband took out bikes and rode all around Coronado on a six-mile trail. My teenage daughter and I experienced a Beach Spin class on the resort’s lawn, overlooking the Pacific. That was something we had never experienced before. The hotel also has watersport opportunities including surfing, paddle boarding, skim boarding, boogie boarding, volleyball, and boating. They offer tandems, kid’s bikes, and surreys as rentals. Look for the sandcastle man on the beach - he starts early in the morning, so seek him out after breakfast.

My kids are teenagers, but if they were younger, I would have jumped at the chance to use Kidtopia, the hotel’s childcare program for kids ages 4-12. It offers daytime and evening adventures such as Tahitian nights, future chefs, dinosaur digs and beach Olympics. so much to do at the Hotel Del CoronadoFor adults who can take a break, head to the resort’s Spa - it has an adults-only pool and a long list of spa treatments.

The hotel offers a Haunted Happenings Tour at night (for an extra fee), as the hotel has a bit of haunted history worth exploring. The world’s most infamous ghost supposedly lives in room 3327. Her name was Kate Morgan and her visit was in 1892. After shooting herself, she was given the name “Beautiful Stranger”. There have been reported sightings of her ever since. Important to note: The tour does not go into private guest rooms.

What We Liked About Hotel Del Coronado

  • The hotel’s extraordinary (and haunted) history.
  • Exemplary service from hotel staff.
  • multiple pools to check outFree high-speed Internet.
  • Available onsite parking.
  • Comfortable rooms with modern technological features.
  • The amenities on Coronado Beach such as cabanettes, sturdy umbrellas, lounge chairs, and waitstaff who can bring snacks, sandwiches, margaritas, bottles of champagne and more.
  • Available discounts can be found online to make this an affordable family vacation for just about anyone.

Check out their property online at the Hotel Del Coronado, their reviews on TripAdvisor, their Facebook and Twitter feeds and find the Hotel Del Coronado offers here. Want a tease … check out their live webcam of the Pacific beachside. We always recommend you book early to reserve your next getaway opportunity.

Have you stayed at the Hotel Del Coronado as you enjoyed the west coast surf? We'd love to hear about Hotel Del Coronado enjoyment. Drop a comment below and connect with us on Facebook and Twitter.

Disclosure: Holly’s stay and meals were provided by the hotel to facilitate this review, but all opinions are her own.

About Holly Rosen Fink

@hollyrosenfinkHolly Rosen Fink is a Marketing, Communications, Public Relations, Branding and Social Media expert and writer based in Larchmont, New York. She is a current contributor to Trekaroo, OffMetro, Family Vacation Critic, and Women and Hollywood.

 

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