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“Great water view” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Hilton San Diego Bayfront

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Hilton San Diego Bayfront
4.0 of 5 Hotel   |   1 Park Boulevard, San Diego, CA 92101   |  
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Ranked #69 of 271 Hotels in San Diego
Everett, WA
Senior Contributor
32 reviews 32 reviews
24 hotel reviews
Reviews in 19 cities Reviews in 19 cities
41 helpful votes 41 helpful votes
“Great water view”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 4, 2009

Brand new hotel that needs to work out a few issues. Beautiful views, right on the water, comfy beds, nice bathrooms, food was good and the bar is nice. In January, they had only been open a few months. Poor signage and interesting layout to meeting rooms from lobby and to the outside. Elevator to rooms was close to meeting areas. It was impossible to find the Starbucks in a 10 minutes break. The small meeting rooms used the big screen tv hooked up to the computer, instead of a lcd. Great outdoor space for reception gatherings.

  • Stayed January 2009, traveled on business
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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2,611 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
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Muskego, WI
Senior Contributor
48 reviews 48 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 23 cities Reviews in 23 cities
43 helpful votes 43 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 27, 2009

We had a two night stay at the Hilton San Diego Bayfront with a promotional rate of $99/night. I was a bit concerned of the reported construction and location to the shipping yards but it was unwarranted. If your room overlooked this area it could pose a problem, but for us it wasn't an issue.

The hotel is very new and its styling is very sparse and clean and simple. We loved the style but for those who like plush, ornate styels they might find it a bit empty.

We had a double queen room which was roomy enough. Comfy beds with plenty of pillows. There is a large LG flatscreen TV on top of a six drawer dresser which also houses the in-room safe, coffee maker, glassware and ice bucket. There is a desk, deskchair and seating chair as well. The closet is pretty small, about the width of two suitecases standing upright. The bathroom is nice, but it is all in one room. When traveling as a family it is nice to have the sink and mirror outside the shower area. The towels are large and plush, a nice blowdryer (not like the mini ones connected to the wall) and Crabtree & Eveland shower supplies.

The hotel is located just to the south of the convention center. Between them is an art garden and some nice walking paths. It's just a short walk to the Gaslamp quarter (about two blocks) and across from Petco Park. There is some road construction in the area which causes you to have to go up a few blocks to get to the hotel, but once you figure that out it doesn't cause too much delay.

The heated, salt-water pool area overlooks the water. They've done an admirable job hiding the shipping area, so unless you're looking for it, it isn't terribly noticeable. Large, over-sized pool towels are available in the pool area. There are plenty of lounge chairs and four cabanas with dual loungers. The area is plenty large so if you want to be away from the pool noise you can still be outside. It looks like they have a snack bar area but it was not open nor did I see the HUGE TV screen in use.

Also outside is a large gas fire-pit. A nice place for gathering, enjoying a cocktail. It is located just behind the Fox sports bar which is rather loud. So definately not a family-friendly spot.

We found the front desk and concierge staff helpful and the request for more towels and creamer were prompt.

The only downsides to the hotel were the parking ($21/day) and wireless internet required a fee. If you are parking, park on the third floor which is a direct walk across the bridgeway to the front door of hotel. We got such a great rate on the hotel that even with the addition of parking (something most the San Diego hotels charge) it was still an excellent value.

It was fairly convienant to both the Zoo, Sea World and Old Towne. All just about a 10 minute drive. It was within walking distance to Seaport Village and Gaslamp quarter.

  • Stayed April 2009, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Senior Contributor
29 reviews 29 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 17 cities Reviews in 17 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 26, 2009

After coming from the Hilton Calabasas we tried the all new Hilton Bayfront. We were plesantly surprised. A new, cool hotel at best location near Gaslamp Quarter at the bayfront and convention center. We enjoyed a great stay with shopping and relaxing at the pool at the Hilton. Also the restaurant is very nice with good food and very friendy personnel. There was no convention, but a game at the stadion. So arriving per car was a nightmare. If there is a game, it's better to travel to the zoo and then drive through the streets around the center/Gaslamp. In case of a convention the hotel may be very busy. So the experience from one day to the next day can be extreme. From very busy to slow.

The only thing that was disappointing was the breakfast buffet. This was too standard for the hotel and the style of the hotel. Bad coffee and bread. And too expensive.

Car parking and Internet are extra and not free of charge.

  • Stayed April 2009, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Southern California
16 reviews 16 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 22, 2009

We had a very nice time and enjoyed ourselves. Walking to the Gaslamp District required a walk through the outer area of the convention center which at night caused my wife to become alarmed due to the characters lingering in the area. I figured it should be safe because SD depends on visitors to the area.
Our room was very nice. The view from our window showed a lower roof and the pineapple freighter. We could also see part of the city and Coronado Bridge which was a nice view at night.
The desk people were very nice. The room was better than we expected. Self-parking was available and cost $20 per night. The only problem I had was parking our vehicle at the end of the ramp, along with a number of other vehicles, during check-in and unloading. After returning from check-in the valet wanted our car key and said our car would be towed away if I didn’t give it to him. This was NOT posted and I believe illegal to do, but who would risk an issue when away for a little relation. We I retrieved our car key the valet wanted to go get the car and drive it to us. Don’t they realize that I don’t want them to drive my vehicle and besides I pay for exercise so why not walk to my car? If it were up to me I would fire the valet and give the remainder of the staff a raise in pay.
Charging for the internet was not customer friendly!

  • Stayed December 2008, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
1 review
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed April 20, 2009

The subject line says it all. I've stayed at numerous hotels for business (and personal) reasons and I've never experienced the incredibly excessive addt'l charges like the ones at Hilton Bayfront in San Diego. Here's just the charges I had: Self-parking in a detached parking garage - $21/day, extremely poor, spotty, constantly dropping internet - $13/day, fitness center - $15/use (HHonors is free...how benevolent), beer in the bar - $10/glass, standard movies to rent on the tv - minimum $12/movie, and the most ridiculous of all, plain ol', nothing special breakfast buffet - $25/person. I know the business center charges for all kinds of stuff too, but I didn't use it..I went to Kinko's.

If you are made of money, then you'll love this place.

The rooms do have a good view and the bathroom was spacious; otherwise there wasn't anything special about this hotel. There is a Starbuck's attached on the outside.

There was not a frig in my room - go figure - they would Charge for it anyway. After we found out the money-grubbing, corporate bstrds even charged for the gym, my friends and I started kidding each other about excessive charges..."Oh, you flushed the toilet, $5"..."Oh, you used the phone, $3.75"...."Elevator use charge, free to go up, but down is $3500".

While it is a brand new hotel and as nice as any other well-known chain hotel, you should look for a place that doesn't have excessive charges. A good pillow and a pretty view can be found at many places in San Diego - make this one a last resort!!!

  • Stayed April 2009, traveled on business
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
69 reviews 69 reviews
62 hotel reviews
Reviews in 47 cities Reviews in 47 cities
92 helpful votes 92 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed April 19, 2009

Being new, the hotel has contemporary décor, décor is a matter of taste, and the public areas look very nice but reminded me of the new Terminal 5 at London Heathrow Airport and I found it to have a very sterile and clinical feel. As previous reviewers have stated, it is close to the convention centre and Petco Centre. The staff at check-in and check-out didn’t really seem to know what they were doing. The self parking car park charge was $22.00, which I felt was a too much. The hotel is in a nice position with great views, but it is too big and way too impersonal and not really my cup of tea.

  • Stayed April 2009, traveled with family
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
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United States
Senior Contributor
49 reviews 49 reviews
27 hotel reviews
Reviews in 26 cities Reviews in 26 cities
48 helpful votes 48 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 18, 2009

Don't make any mistake, this hotel was built to serve the Convention Center next door. But, as we've found with most luxury hotels in large cities that cater to business traffic, you can get a great deal on a wonderful room when the business traffic is scarce. We stayed a Fri-Sun night over Easter weekend (family of four) and were very pleased with the value. We booked our room at the Hilton web site and it was cheaper than the usual travel web sites (Travelocity, etc.). (I can't comment on Priceline because I don't use them - I'm funny about wanting to know EXACTLY which hotel I'm getting.)
The hotel is immaculately clean, as it has only been open since Dec. 3, 2008 (we asked). I had to ask Housekeeping for two items and they were both waiting in my room when I returned. The staff was very friendly and helpful.
To address some points in other reviews, yes, it is really annoying that there is no gift shop open yet and no other "quick mart" in walking distance. My husband had to pay $5 for two AA batteries at the front desk. Ridiculous. Self-parking is $21 a day, which in my experience is very reasonable for a downtown spot in a major city. We paid $40-$50 in NY and over $30 in San Francisco. Yes, you do have to walk outside to get to the parking garage...about 100 feet, on a ramp that goes directly from the front door of the hotel into the 3rd floor of the garage. Not a big deal, IMO. If it really bothers you, you can valet your car for $10 more per day that the self parking. My husband and son walked to Petco Park from the hotel and didn't think it was far, at all. You could actually see into the stands of Petco Park from our room. We did pay a bit extra to have our view upgraded, an offer that is made at the time of booking (sort of a standby arrangement - you agree you'll pay the extra when you check in if the upgraded room is available). One thing about the view that is misleading...this hotel *is* on the bayfront. There is a wonderful photo of the pool on the hotel web site, which is lovely. HOWEVER, the photo is misleading in that the pool DOES sit on the bay, however about half the pool also faces the pier where Dole bananas are unloaded. While we were there, there was a freighter tied up and you know what freighters look like. However, I have to say that the hotel (or someone) has obviously tried to make the best of this situation by putting up a kiosk on the boardwalk that tells all about the Dole pier, the capacity of the ships, their voyage, etc. So, your kids just might find this interesting. I did, but I couldn't see the freighter from my hotel window, so maybe that made a difference. :)
The Gaslamp district is technically in walking distance, but if you want to venture past the first few blocks, I'd suggest taking your car. The restaurants we ate at were not within walking distance. Downtown garage parking was ridiculous...$2 per 15 minutes...and street parking was hard to come by, especially if there's a ball game. One night (no game) we found a space, on the other, we should have used the valet at the restaurant. At $15 it was cheaper than what we paid at the garage.
We did have the breakfast buffet at the restaurant one morning and it was wonderful, BUT we didn't pay for it. My husband had trouble with the tickets he got from the concierge, so they comped our whole family with breakfast. I don't know if I would have paid $25 per person, but the food included an omlette station, smoked salmon, homemade pastries, and some other unusual items along with the breakfast regulars.

What it's like when full, I can't say, but all in all, we really enjoyed our stay and would definitely stay here again.

  • Stayed April 2009, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hilton San Diego Bayfront

Address: 1 Park Boulevard, San Diego, CA 92101
Phone Number:
Location: United States > California > San Diego
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#15 Spa Hotel in San Diego
#21 Luxury Hotel in San Diego
#31 Business Hotel in San Diego
#50 Romantic Hotel in San Diego
#60 Family Hotel in San Diego
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — Hilton San Diego Bayfront 4*
Number of rooms: 1190
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Step in. From the moment you arrive you instantly feel the difference. All of the vitalizing elements of the sea and sun are embraced on this spectacular waterfront setting. Rising 30 stories above San Diego Bay, the Hilton San Diego Bayfront hotel is a spirited blend of San Diego’s coastal influences, style, innovation and of course the unmistakable vibe. Steps from downtown’s Gaslamp Quarter, San Diego Convention Center, and PETCO Park, this beautiful hotel offers the amenities and lays the best of the city at your doorstep. Now guests have easy access from the hotel by way of the pedestrian bridge, directly to PETCO Park, downtown’s vibrant Gaslamp district, and up-in-coming East Village. Luxury and comfort have no boundaries here. Enjoy magnificent San Diego Bay and city views from our lobby, restaurants and guest rooms. Each one of the 1,190 spacious guest rooms including 30 suites at the Hilton San Diego Bayfront has a Bay view and features Hilton's Serenity Collection® bed and linens, the finest amenities such as Peter Thomas Roth® products, and the latest technology. And true to Hilton tradition, exceptional service comes as effortlessly here as the tides ebb and flow. For a San Diego business trip, family weekend, or a romantic getaway, Hilton San Diego Bayfront accommodations offer something for everyone. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Hilton San Diego Bayfront Hotel San Diego
Hilton Hotel San Diego

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