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“Palomar sets high goals and meets them” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Palomar San Diego, A Kimpton Hotel

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Palomar San Diego, A Kimpton Hotel
4.5 of 5 Hotel   |   1047 5th Avenue, San Diego, CA 92101 (Downtown)   |  
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Spa Package
Ranked #67 of 269 hotels in San Diego
Austin, TX, USA
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
“Palomar sets high goals and meets them”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 12, 2012

My wife and I moved to the Palomar in downtown San Diego for several days after a pleasant stay on Coronado island for a wedding. The Palomar's location just north of the Gaslamp district was perfect for us; it was near the bustle of San Diego's nightlife for an easy stroll to all the attractions, yet off the grid so that we did not feel assaulted by revelers the moment we walked out of the lobby. The staff, who are all in their twenties and early thirties, are courteous, friendly, efficient, and professional. We did have a few problems with our room -- a cooling/heating system which was loud with dripping sounds and a curtain off its rails. A simple call to the front desk and each problem was fixed in a matter of minutes by their maintenance staff. That kind of speedy, competent service is no longer the norm in the US. Thank you Palomar for treating your customers with respect and serving our needs.

The king sized bed was wonderfully comfortable and the ceilings were fantastically high which helped compensate for the room's minimal square footage. The bathroom's giant mirror helped extend the sense of space. The rain shower was relaxing and never did the water temperature fluxuate. If you have kids who need a bath tub, this room wouldn't work for you. There are most likely rooms which could work for families, but to be honest, I did not see one single child at the hotel during our stay. I only saw vacationing friends, couples, and business types.

The gym was small but had all the best equipment one could expect, including free weights, weight machines, treadmills, ellipticals, weighted medicine balls, and a yoga ball. The rooftop pool and lounge was perfect: sun loungers, covered couches which offered some privacy, space heaters for cool nights, and a bar stocked with the best beverages mixed to perfection. The only service we failed to fit in was the spa. Next time, definitely.

We had some friends join us for dinner at the Salt Box restaurant on the mezzanine level. It gets 4.5 stars on Yelp, and deservedly so. Most ingredients are locally sourced and fresh, fresh, fresh. You could fill up on the gourmet appetizers, or supplement with medium and traditional sized entrees. The chef pays a phenomenal attention to detail and flavor combinations. Kale never tasted so good.

Be aware that if you have a car, your single parking option is valet at $38 per day, though there is a parking garage across the street which may get you a slightly better daily rate. Also, breakfast at the Salt Box, though worth it, is not included in the room price.

Kimpton hotels will be our first choice when traveling anywhere in the US.

Room Tip: A room overlooking the pool / rooftop lounge can help decide if you want to join the fun or not. Al...
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 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.
Mark_Van_Cooney, General Manager at Palomar San Diego, A Kimpton Hotel, responded to this review, October 18, 2012
Thank you Zaytian for your very nice review. I am so happy you enjoyed the Palomar, our service and Saltbox Dining & Drinking too! Chef Simon and the Saltbox team have created a really special dining experience. I am so happy you were able to enjoy!

We look forward to your next trip to San Diego,
Mark
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (185)
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English first
Los Angeles, California
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 11, 2012

Excellent hotel and very friendly staff. We had the suite and it was very comfortable. The pool bar was a nice touch. It is in the heart of the Gas Lamp district....right where you want to be. I would stay here again and not hesitate.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Mark_Van_Cooney, General Manager at Palomar San Diego, A Kimpton Hotel, responded to this review, October 12, 2012
I am very happy you had a great stay in one of our suites. Thank you for the comments on our location and pool deck. We still have great weather ahead. Hope to see you soon.

Sincerely,
Mark
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Henderson, Nevada
2 reviews
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 11, 2012

I booked this hotel a month in advance for a weekend away with my dog. The main reason I decided to book with this hotel was because they were pet-friendly and there are no size restrictions. I have a lab mix and on a good day he weighs 70-72 pounds. After browsing endless hotels I decided on the Palomar. The other reviews I read were nice but some made me a bit weary such as the homeless people in the downtown area and the price for valet parking. My dog and I walked the entire downtown area in the two days that we were there and we were never bothered by anyone. Everyone was nice and/or minding their own business while we were out. The valet concern...well I was happy to pay the $38 fee for over night parking because parking is a bit of a challenge. I knew that my vehicle was safe, I didn't have to worry about getting a ticket and the texting valet to get my car when we needed it was pretty sweet.

I've already booked my next stay with the Palomar for next month. We enjoyed the area so much we cannot wait to go back. After spending all day at the beaches and parks it was nice to come back to the hotel, open out the patio door and take a nap on the most comfy bed I've slept in in a while.

I also worried that people were going to freak out when they saw my dog. He's a big boy and a tad 'happy' when meeting new people but from the valet staff to check in staff; they were just as excited to see him/us as he was to see them. It's the little things like that made the stay that more enjoyable.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled solo
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Mark_Van_Cooney, General Manager at Palomar San Diego, A Kimpton Hotel, responded to this review, October 12, 2012
We are so thankful you chose us for your first trip to San Diego. It sounds like you and Maxx had a great time Living Like a Local and enjoying the Palomar. We love pets and I am so happy you had a great stay.

See you next month!
Mark
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Chicago, Illinois
Senior Contributor
48 reviews 48 reviews
38 hotel reviews
Reviews in 32 cities Reviews in 32 cities
114 helpful votes 114 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 10, 2012

I stayed here for a week, while in San Diego for a bit of business, and a bit of vacation. What's great about this hotel is that it accomodates both activities very well, and very comfortably.

When I made my reservation online, I was offered the option of an "instant upgrade" at the time of check-in for a nominal additional cost of $10/night. I went ahead and opted for this. So glad I did. Because not only did my upgrade come through, I got a "double upgrade" to a flat on the 18th floor, probably because I was going to be with them for an entire week.

There are many things I like about this hotel. The room is stylish, clean, and very comfortable. The bed is fantastic! Very comfy, plush matress with fantastic sheets. The hot water is instant and perfect temp. The room is quiet at all hours. There are large windows that allow lots of natural light into the room. The wireless connection is flawless. The flat screen TV is brand new and offers a huge selection of channels. You get The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, and a few local newspapers every day in the lobby for free. The fitness center has everything you need, and I never saw a single person in there, so had it all to myself.

The location is also excellent. Only a two block walk to the heart of the gaslamp district and basically any type of cuisine you can imagine. It is also exactly 0.5 mile from Little Italy, another great place to dine. And the cab ride to the airport cost only $12 -- a huge plus.

I ordered room service two of the nights I was there. Again, excellent. The hamburger could well be the largest, juiciest, tastiest I have ever had! Maybe it is the heaping amount of guacamole they put on it. Make sure you try it!

If I wanted to nitpick, I could mention that the mini-bar is exhorbitantly expensive. That's easy to solve -- just don't use it. Or I could mention that you get a lot of noise from the loud music being played by the DJ if your room is on the side of the hotel above the pool. That's easy to solve as well -- just don't stay on that side if you think it may bother you. It is only a couple hours during the late afternoon and evening. And I think it is only on certain days (i.e. weekend). And I know the parking is extremely expensive, with not a lot of nearby options. My solution to that was not to have a car, since I was working/playing downtown during my stay. Cab rides are cheap compared to renting a car and then paying the parking. So my "nitpicks" all come with an easy solution, and really aren't "problems" at all.

All said, this hotel does such a great job that some evenings I found myself just wanting to stay in and enjoy the comfort of the room. It truly is so good that you don't want to leave. I will definitely be back, and am already looking forward to it.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled solo
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Mark_Van_Cooney, General Manager at Palomar San Diego, A Kimpton Hotel, responded to this review, October 12, 2012
Thank you Eilig for the great comments. We are so happy you had a great week with us in San Diego. We have the DJ on the pool deck on a few weekends in the fall to celebrate our warm fall weather! You really got to get out and Live Like a Local... and spend some quality time at the Palomar.

We hope to see you back here soon.
Mark
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San Francisco Bay Area
Top Contributor
67 reviews 67 reviews
45 hotel reviews
Reviews in 39 cities Reviews in 39 cities
43 helpful votes 43 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 9, 2012 via mobile

I've stayed at Palomar a few times and find the rooms stylish and pleasant. Lobby is hip and a scene--but a low key scene. Location is good. Excuse homeless, this is the city and unrelated to hotel!
Good service by young staff who are eager to please. Join Kimpton InTouch for free $10 from mini bar every stay and free wifi.
The price point for this hotel seems to run 160-180 and for this price you get a more interesting place than a Marriott, with reliable good quality.
FYI, frosted glass doors in bathrooms make it unwise to share a room with anyone you are not intimate with!

  • Stayed September 2012
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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Lewes, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
29 reviews 29 reviews
18 hotel reviews
Reviews in 21 cities Reviews in 21 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 7, 2012

Stayed in this hotel for three nights at the beginning of October. The hotel itself is very stylish with a strong theme on design and art, which extend to its rooms.

My room was a nice size with plenty of the usual ammenites that one would expect from a hotel of this rating.

However a few issues occured/arose. My in room safe was still locked from the previous guest, meaning that a member of the hotels security team had to come and unlock it for me.

The sinks in the bathrooms do not have any plugs, so if you want to have a quick wash it makes it very difficult to do so.

The televisions comes on at a ridiculously high volume and the controller is so slow to react if can be about a minute before you have the thing under control. This is something I'm sure neighbouring rooms wouldn't appreciate if you like to watch the news first thing in the morning.

The room my parents were allocated was of similar size but at the rear of the hotel with a nice view of the hotels air conditioning plant. Their room had a mulitude of issues: no safe at all - one had to be fitted, no plug for the sink, no towel rail or hook for the bathroom (holes in the wall where there once had been one, but not replaced) a bedframe too big for the mattress causing many scraped shins and no full length mirror. We figured this room may have had things taken out of it to replace other broken bits in other rooms but never got resolved itself?

To the hotels credit they did sort out the security/safe issues, however they need to check all their rooms have the basics of a shower rail/hook in their bathrooms.

This hotel has a nice location with plenty of easy (but expensive) local parking, however its style makes certain aspects of holidaying here impractical.

If I return to San Diego, which by the way is a lovely city, I doubt very much that I'll be staying here again.

Room Tip: Higher rooms towards the front of the hotel would afford a better view.
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Mark_Van_Cooney, General Manager at Palomar San Diego, A Kimpton Hotel, responded to this review, October 9, 2012
Dear RobfromTheUK,

I am sorry you experienced issues with your guest room. I know this did not make a great first impression. I hope that you will give us another try next holiday. I would like to chat about your stay. I can be contacted at the hotel.

Thank you,
Mark
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yorba linda
Contributor
17 reviews 17 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
83 helpful votes 83 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed October 6, 2012

We stayed at the Hotel Palomar in San Diego last week. The decor is lovely, edgy, staff was nice and helpful. I would say the room we stayed in was a king sized bed...and that is it! Very very small room, to the point where I could hardly make it around the bed without hitting my ankle or knee on the frame or dresser. Small tv, curtains needed attention, as they were not attached at the top and the ceiling is prob 16 feet...so the light came in early. They needed to be rehung or something, and the staff should have noticed this when tending to the room. I could have called, but we were there only one night, and by the time we figured it out, I was ready for bed. Pricy place for such a tiny accommodation.

Room Tip: ask for a larger room, maybe a suite
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled on business
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Mark_Van_Cooney, General Manager at Palomar San Diego, A Kimpton Hotel, responded to this review, October 9, 2012
I am sorry you were not impressed with the size of your room nlkYorbaLinda. It seems like you live close to San Diego. I would like for you to return and try some of our other guest rooms. We do have other rooms with a bit more space.

Please contact me personally at the hotel.
Mark
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Additional Information about Palomar San Diego, A Kimpton Hotel

Address: 1047 5th Avenue, San Diego, CA 92101
Phone Number:
Location: United States > California > San Diego > Downtown
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#17 Spa Hotel in San Diego
#17 Business Hotel in San Diego
#23 Luxury Hotel in San Diego
#25 Romantic Hotel in San Diego
#62 Family Hotel in San Diego
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Palomar San Diego, A Kimpton Hotel 4.5*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Move into luxury and sophisticated, art-filled style at Hotel Palomar San Diego. In the center of downtown arts and culture, surrounded by award-winning theaters and nightlife and just steps from San Diego's Gaslamp Quarter, our boutique Kimpton Hotel is a top choice for both work and play. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Se Hotel San Diego
San Diego Se Hotel

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