There’s a little slice of heaven in Southern California called Coronado, and if you aren’t familiar, you really, really should be. Picture white, sandy beaches, endless blue skies and postcard-perfect shops, and you’ve got this absolutely stunning jewel box of a seaside town. The crown jewel, as it were, is Hotel Del Coronado. Built in 1888 and designated a National Historic Landmark in 1977, this stunning SoCal resort has become a living legend, visited by celebrities, dignitaries and U.S. presidents. Here’s why a stay at The Del is absolutely essential to your future (and current) happiness.
- You’ll feel famous. The Hotel Del Coronado has been a vacation destination for Hollywood stars since its earliest days, with visitors such as W.C. Fields, Douglas Fairbanks and Charlie Chaplin (who was a frequent polo player during his stay at the hotel). Wizard of Oz author L. Frank Baum traveled to Coronado repeatedly between 1904 and 1910, where he usually resided at the Hotel del Coronado for months at a time. He wrote at least three books in the Oz series during that period (“Dorothy and the Wizard of Oz” 1908, “The Road to Oz” 1909, and “The Emerald City” 1910), and also is said to have designed the crown chandeliers in the famous Crown Room.
- It’s home to the best beach in America. No, really. Dr. Beach named the sandy, white perfection that is Coronado his top beach in the U.S. back in 2012. We certainly haven’t seen better. Just saying.
- It’s a feeding frenzy. There are seven-count ’em—seven dining options at The Del. The obvious choice is the glamorous seafood eatery 1500 Ocean, though we were just as happy forgoing the fine dining and enjoying the rustic charms of Eno Pizzeria & Wine Bar (a wine pairing is essential here—and educational); Sheerwater has some of the best dang poke we’ve ever tasted and the Sunday brunch absolutely can’t be missed. In addition to a stunning setting—it’s located the hotel’s piece de resistance, the Crown Room—guests can tuck into a chilled seafood bar, regionally inspired dishes, international cuisine and carving stations. Add in the custom-made Bloody Mary bar, mimosas, freshly pressed paninis and housemade charcuterie, as well as an eye-popping candy and dessert bar, and you’ve got a winner for the best brunch in San Diego. If you feel like leaving the hotel, there’s a plethora of amazing restaurants in the nearby vicinity. Our top pick would be Peohe’s, a stunning spot nestled on the water’s edge in the Coronado Ferry Landin with picture-perfect views of the downtown skyline and San Diego Bay. Peohe’s also offers something you can’t get at The Del—sushi. Whether you’re ordering sashimi, poke or specialty rolls like The Ninja—spicy tuna, coconut crunchy shrimp and avocado topped with scallops—you’re in for a true treat.
- Oh, the SPA! Frankie says relax, and you will here. The Spa at The Del is one of the most amazing dens of relaxation you can ever hope to find. It’s big, it’s beautiful and they’ve got some amazing products. We recommend trying a new treatment, Babor’s ReVersive Anti-Aging Facial, which actually will turn back the clock. Utilizing the revolutionary time reverse technology of the Babor Re-Youth complex, this innovative treatment retains and extends skin cell lifespan, reactivates the skin’s own anti-aging mechanisms and reclaims lost radiance as it visibly smooths fine lines and wrinkles. The lifting effects of this treatment are further intensified by our intensively firming massage techniques.
- Oh, the VIEW! Book an ocean-view suite, grab a glass of wine (or a bottle) and sit on you balcony to watch the truly epic sunset that sets over the Pacific every single night. If you’re an early riser, you won’t want to miss sunrise here, either. The sky looks like cotton candy every.single.morning.
- You can get your fitness on. Working out creates endorphins, which make you happy, right? Thus, one might conclude that The Del has plenty of ways to make you happier than a clam. You can meditate on the beach, or enjoy a 50-minute beach spinning session. You can learn to surf, or paddleboard. If you’re a gym rat, you even have that option here at the fantastic Fitness Center, which features a variety of cardiovascular equipment, strength training equipment, certified personal trainers, and a wide range of classes such as Pilates, spinning, yoga, circuit work, core conditioning, body sculpting and even Zumba. Haute!
- Your haute pets can enjoy a classy stay, too! Your furry friends don’t have to miss out while you’re indulging—they, too, can enjoy gourmet room service prepared by a talented team of chefs. The Del also offers treats upon arrival, services such as pet-walking, pet-sitting, dog grooming and a vet and specialized items like a kitty scratching post, bedding, crates, collars and leashes. The Del even has “Yappy Hour” every Sunday from 4-5, where dogs can lap up complimentary Evian and “yappatizers” (organic gourmet dog treats), while their owners sip on pet-inspired drinks such as a Hair of the Dog, tangy Greyhound or Salty Dog. OK, sold! We’re officially lifers!