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“On the beach with big rooms” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Hilton San Diego Resort & Spa

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Hilton San Diego Resort & Spa
4.0 of 5 Resort   |   1775 East Mission Bay Drive, San Diego, CA 92109 (Mission Bay Park)   |  
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Ranked #113 of 271 Hotels in San Diego
Welwyn Garden City, United Kingdom
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
“On the beach with big rooms”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 19, 2014

We asked for a king room which was very spacious and modern. Large pool area with access to the beach. Iced water available around the hotel to fill up your bottles otherwise charged for the bottles in your room. Easy drive into the town and would recommend.

  • Stayed July 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
HiltonMissionBay, Manager at Hilton San Diego Resort & Spa, responded to this review, July 19, 2014
Thanks for your visit and enthusiastic recommendation. We're so glad to lend our services and incomparable views to your San Diego experience, and to hear that you enjoyed these so thoroughly. We pride ourselves on going above and beyond to make memorable experiences for our guests, and we hope that you'll reach out, join us again, and afford us the chance to build you a return to rival this stay. All our best until then, and thanks again for the kind review!

Warm Regards,
Don Dennis
General Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,858 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (455)
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Chicago
Top Contributor
112 reviews 112 reviews
96 hotel reviews
Reviews in 76 cities Reviews in 76 cities
92 helpful votes 92 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed July 17, 2014

You know a hotel has stopped trying when their sign for "Guest Registration" has a missing letter. Seriously...not the best thing to see when you are checking in.

We checked in late on a Sunday night and the desk manager who checked us in didn't listen to a word I said. Even my teenage daughters remarked on it. He wanted to give me my keys and move on. Sad commentary.

PROS:
Fabulous location. They'e obviously stopped trying as hard because they have a superior location and will get guests no matter what.
Free wifi.
In room fridge (we stayed in a basic room)
Nice bath amenities (soap, shampoo, etc. Good quality.)
Comfortable beds with decent linens and pillows.
Nice balcony.
Decent (although very small) spa.
Nice 24 hour workout room.
Huge television (although we never really used it)
Lots of hot water and good water pressure
Waterside restaurants and lounge
Games at the pool for kids/family
Fireworks show across the water from nearby Seaworld each night
Good for runners/walkers, fitness peeps
Great variety of watersport equipment and other rentals (pricey but good, and lovely staff working there)
Nice conversation areas with fireplaces.

CONS:
The room has ONE lamp! One only! Very dark and cavelike.
We had two burned out lights in our room when we checked in.
The in-room safe had to be reset so we could use it.
Cleanliness is decent, but it feels a bit dirty because it's SO OLD.
This entire place needs a serious renovation.
Staff is spotty on customer service - some are great, some really need to be retrained.
Coffee place, AROMA, is way too small and gets very overcrowded in the mornings.Give them a bigger space!
Gift shop is lovely and has wonderful staff.
Olives, the lounge, great staff and good food.
Acqua restaurant - don't recommend.
Most things here are over priced - it is a resort - but the accommodations and the inconsistent customer service do not make the overpicing easy to swallow.
Outlet covers in our room were all loose - not an inconvenience really, but just a commentary on the overall lack of attention to detail
Horrifically overpriced on site parking!!! $35 a day? And you HAVE to have a car when you are here.

Here's what you do:

Go to Alberston's grocery and buy your breakfast and snack food and keep it in your room.
Don't rent the ridiculously tiny and horrendously overpriced poolside cabanas.
Bring an extra powercord to make up for the lack of outlets
Don't buy from the soda machines in the lobbies - they charge $.75 for one bottle of soda or water!

Lastly, set your expectations accordingly. While we were really disappointed our first day, we managed to get over it and enjoy ourselves despite the issues.

Hilton...this is why I am no longer a Diamond member and am elite with Hyatt and Marriott nowadays. You've taken your eye off the ball.

I would never come back. I'll go to a Marriott closer to the city. Why was I here? Burning off my last few thousand Hilton points from when I used to have higher status with them.

So long Hilton! I won't miss you.

Room Tip: Don't pay extra for rooms here. They are dated and tired. Not worth the extra money from what we...
See more room tips
  • Stayed July 2014, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
HiltonMissionBay, Manager at Hilton San Diego Resort & Spa, responded to this review, July 18, 2014
While we're glad to have welcomed you to our site, we're saddened by and sorry for those shortcomings you've identified here. We can certainly appreciate your frustrations in regard to service inconsistencies, and we'll surely take this up with the team on your behalf. We pride ourselves on creating unrivaled experiences for our guests, and it's clear that we came up short in this instance; we apologize for that. With continued renovations and upgrades across the property, it's our hope that you'll reconsider and reach out again the next time you're headed to San Diego. We'd love the opportunity to showcase our continued evolution and to better demonstrate the hospitality for which we're renown. Thank you again for your stay and review; we hope to hear from you again down the road.

Kindly,
Don Dennis
General Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Honolulu, Hawaii
Contributor
19 reviews 19 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
22 helpful votes 22 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 17, 2014

Hilton is usually reliable when I have to travel/stay for business; this is actually our 8th time here. Great service by the check in and housekeeping staff. However, don't expect 'usual' hotel curb to room luggage service that you're accustomed to at a regular hotel in this star range..... we lugged our suitcases for three rooms ourselves; luckily we knew where the rooms were located..

  • Stayed July 2014, traveled on business
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service

Review collected in partnership with Hilton Hotels & Resorts

Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
HiltonMissionBay, Manager at Hilton San Diego Resort & Spa, responded to this review, July 18, 2014
Whether you're with us for business or leisure, we pride ourselves in creating an incomparable guest experience, and we thank you for your loyal return and feedback. We can certainly understand your concerns regarding luggage service, and it would be a pleasure to better meet this need in your returning travels. We'd love to make your experience a thoroughly relaxing and comfortable one, and we look forward to the opportunity. Thanks again for the stay and review, and all our best to you and your family until we see you again.

Kindly,
Don Dennis
General Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Des Moines, Iowa
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed July 16, 2014

3rd trip to this resort and very disappointed. Will be my last. Front desk staff made me feel like they felt they were doing me a favor checking me in and seemed put off if you asked any question. Suite was nice but a little dirty and always felt itchy when I was in the room. Great location but not worth the price I paid for the suite. Never again!!!

  • Stayed July 2014
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 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.
HiltonMissionBay, Manager at Hilton San Diego Resort & Spa, responded to this review, July 17, 2014
While we're glad to have welcomed you, we're sorry to hear that your experience with our team missed the mark in this way. It's certainly alarming to hear, and we'll be sure to share the feedback immediately. We'd appreciate the opportunity to further discuss this visit with you, and we hope that you'll extend us the opportunity and reach out to our management team at your next convenience. We appreciate your stay and continued attention.

Kindly,
Don Dennis
General Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
1 review
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 16, 2014

Dates: 7/1/14 - 7/8/14
Since this was my first time to San Diego, California with my family and I wanted to stay somewhere nice, I did a lot of research before deciding on this hotel. I wanted something that had a nice view, not too expensive, child friendly (we have a toddler), easy access to the highway, near the San Diego Zoo and other attractions, easy access to food and basic necessities. I will start off by saying that this hotel did all of the above with one caveat which I will mention in a moment after I list the pros and cons.

Pros:
- beautiful hotel
- nice sized rooms with comfortable beds
- hot showers
- mini fridge in the closet
- on the Mission Bay beach
- large pool with hot tub and nearby kiddie pool
- outside free weekly movies at the pool (at night of course) with popcorn provided
- semi-secluded location (away from the business of the city but close enough to get to it if you want)
- just across the bay from Sea World (BTW, they did a nice fireworks show every night)
- within walking distance to 2 small parks for kids
- several fields of people working out, BBQ'ing, playing volleyball, etc.
- on a 7 mile bicycling/walking/running/skating/etc. trail (the area just makes you want to be outdoors)
- basketball and tennis courts
- fitness gym
- spa area where you can get massages (this IS a vacation)
- friendly, caring and helpful staff

Cons:
- the parking fee ($35/day)
- restaurant prices are a little steep
- not within *walking* distance of any other store or food alternative
- although there's cable TV in the rooms, there's no program guide to know what's on and when... You just have to channel surf and hope you find something you like whenever you randomly turn on the TV and then hopefully the show name will show up at some point in the show.

That's really it... I can't think of any other cons.

So what was my caveat? Basically you need to have a vehicle to really be able to enjoy the location of this resort if you stay more than a couple days, but since the parking is so expensive you have to factor that into your costs.

Now I have to mention a few staff members that really stood out and made our time special:

Brice - helped us get settled in our room and explained where everything was

Marlo - smiling and happily greeting every day as I passed through the driveway area

Luis - great waiter and kept my daughter and wife smiling

Teresa Montoya - housekeeping lady who kept our room nice and clean, went over and above by surprising my daughter with a gift, always ready to assist in anyway needed and was always a joy to talk to

Edit - she worked at the front desk and was always conversational and friendly, kept a smile on her face

Joan - worked in the gift shop and was very helpful and friendly, easy to talk to and very knowledgeable about the area (she's a native)

Lorena (Castro?) - also in the gift shop, was just so sweet all the time, always smiling and has such a peaceful presence about her, easy to be around and to talk to.

Sandy (Peruvian lady) - just great to talk to and has some cool stories to tell, very personable

Jessica Maddock - she was the lead concierge and was awesome, she helped me get a rental car, get tickets to the San Diego Zoo, find good places to eat nearby, updated me about busy times and different routes to take to get to and from the hotel, always showing her beautiful smile, knowledgeable, easy to talk to, my daughter couldn't stop staring at her engaging presence, made me feel comfortable to ask any question no matter how stupid, and was very patient in making sure I was taken care of. Needless to say she was awesome and great at what she does. If you need anything before or after you arrive, make sure you get a hold of Jessica!

Amanda Briggs - she was the manager when I was there and a large part of the reason we stayed. We had some concerns about a few things the first day and brought it to Amanda's attention and she quickly provided us with some alternative solutions to help make our stay better. I have to say she impressed me with how she handled everything and she went above and beyond my expectations to the point I couldn't think of a better place to stay. She really is great. Don't hesitate to talk to her if you have concerns about ANYTHING... Really she is ready to help if she can. (BTW, she looks like a prettier version of Olivia Wilde)

There are so many other people there that made my first time to California one I'll never forget, but unfortunately I can't remember their names.

All in all, I'd definitely recommend this hotel to a friend. Seriously, if I don't like something, I won't recommend it. So I have no problem recommending anyone to stay here, because for me it was truly... unforgettable.

Stayed July 2014, traveled with family
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
HiltonMissionBay, Manager at Hilton San Diego Resort & Spa, responded to this review, July 17, 2014
Many thanks for being a guest of our Hilton Resort and for taking the opportunity to lend us such kind and thoughtful feedback of your visit, Clifton. We're so happy to hear that it was such an enjoyable one, made so by the dedicated efforts of our team. We're hugely proud of their commitment to guest satisfaction, and we're thrilled that this came through so resoundingly during your stay. We hope for the chance to host you again and to showcase a visit to rival this first, and we encourage you to reach out again should you return our way. Until then, all our best to you and your family, and all our appreciation for your kind review!

Warm regards,
Don Dennis
General Manager
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Sacramento, California
Senior Contributor
40 reviews 40 reviews
18 hotel reviews
Reviews in 22 cities Reviews in 22 cities
16 helpful votes 16 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 15, 2014

I really love the Hilton Resort. I have stayed here 5 times over the last several years and always check this hotel first for vacancies. I brought a friend with me who usually camps, so this was a luxury for her. We had a great room with a view of the beach. Our room was spacious, the free breakfast was delicious, and the location was perfect. I will definitely be back.

  • Stayed March 2014, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
HiltonMissionBay, Manager at Hilton San Diego Resort & Spa, responded to this review, July 17, 2014
We're thrilled to have such a devoted fan in you, and we thank you for sharing our property with others. As you've noted, our views and regional accessibility are unrivaled, and we hope that you were also able to enjoy some of the many relaxing amenities on site. We'd love to help you explore these and those still to come, and we look forward to visits ahead and to welcoming you back with the warm hospitality you've come to know. All our best until then.

Kindly,
Don Dennis
General Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Los Angeles, California
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 15, 2014

My family has been vacationing at this hotel for many years. This year in particular was outstanding in all areas; the rooms, the restaurant, the gift shop, and especially the staff.
My reason for writing at this time is to applaud the cabana staff at the pool. They were friendly, helpful, professional - everything you could ask for, to make a seven-person family vacation comfortable and stress-free.
I've undoubtedly forgotten some names - but just know that every person on the cabana staff during our stay from July 8 through July 11, 2014 deserves special mention: Those names I remember are: Hannah, Lauren, Patrick, Chelsea, Nick, Gerald, Forrest, Paige, and Page. Terrific people, every one.
And of course we'll be back again next summer!

  • Stayed July 2014, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 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.
HiltonMissionBay, Manager at Hilton San Diego Resort & Spa, responded to this review, July 17, 2014
It's such a pleasure to have you as a loyal guest, Patricia, and to hear that our team continues to set the benchmark in terms of hospitality. As you've noted, it's a pleasure to do all we can to ensure your stay is a relaxing one, and we look forward to welcoming you back and to building many more memories alongside you!

Kindly,
Don Dennis
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hilton San Diego Resort & Spa

Address: 1775 East Mission Bay Drive, San Diego, CA 92109
Phone Number:
Location: United States > California > San Diego > Mission Bay Park
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#18 On the Beach Hotel in San Diego
#23 Spa Hotel in San Diego
#27 Luxury Hotel in San Diego
#63 Business Hotel in San Diego
#66 Family Hotel in San Diego
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — Hilton San Diego Resort & Spa 4*
Number of rooms: 357
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Also Known As:
Hilton San Diego Hotel San Diego
Hilton San Diego Resort And Spa
Hilton Hotel San Diego

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