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“Two good stays - but airport shuttle is an issue” 4 of 5 stars
Review of BEST WESTERN PLUS Island Palms Hotel & Marina

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BEST WESTERN PLUS Island Palms Hotel & Marina
3.0 of 5 Hotel   |   2051 Shelter Island Drive, San Diego, CA 92106   |  
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Ranked #16 of 269 Hotels in San Diego
Certificate of Excellence 2014
Barre, Vermont
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
“Two good stays - but airport shuttle is an issue”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 14, 2013

We stayed at the Island Palms on our night of a late arrival and again on the night prior to an early morning departure from San Diego airport during a recent trip to visit relatives about an hour north of San Diego. I selected the Island Palms because it had good reviews, reasonable pricing and advertised that they offered an airport shuttle.

Our experience with the airport shuttle was not satisfactory. I had confirmed by email with someone from the hotel to call the hotel when we arrived. I called and they informed me that the shuttle driver called in sick but they offered to reimburse us for cab fare and did so that was fine. But on our outbound stay we inquired about the shuttle and they said it started at 7am. We had an 8am flight, so a 7am shuttle was cutting it too close so we ended up taking a taxi at our expense. I've never been to any hotel where the airport shuttle started so late - a bit ridiculous for many travelers.

I did use the shuttle during the day to go get the rental van and return it and it worked well for me then. (I was traveling with 3 relatives in their 80s so I didn't care for the chaos of getting and dropping off the rental van with them and their luggage in tow). In retrospect, I probably would have not worried about a property having a shuttle and planned to take taxis.

We did enjoy the location and strolling through the marina in the back and the park along San Diego harbor across the street. It was interesting to see a couple cruise ships enter and exit the harbor as well as some US Navy frigates and destroyers. We had breakfast in the restaurant and drinks/appetizers in the bar and in both cases it was good and fairly priced.

  • Stayed October 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 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
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
wjorman, Manager at BEST WESTERN PLUS Island Palms Hotel & Marina, responded to this review, October 17, 2013
Thank you for your review and I apologize for the miscommunication you experienced with our airport shuttle times.

We should have done a better job of informing you of our shuttle times and possibly offered to set up reliable flat-rate town car service for your early departure needs. I will speak with our staff to make sure they handle it better in the future and provide alternate transportation options.

I’m happy to hear that everything else went well and that you enjoyed the local area. We hope to see you again soon!

Sincerely,
Bill Orman
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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2,164 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
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (535)
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Mississauga, Canada
Contributor
17 reviews 17 reviews
13 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
32 helpful votes 32 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 13, 2013

We had but one short night in San Diego, and booked this hotel using our aeroplan miles the night before we left based purely on photos from the website, etc. We figured it looked good, it was costing us nothing, it's one night, what have we got to lose? Well, I'm very pleased to say...nothing at all!

This was exactly what was advertised - amazing location, beautiful views. Upon arrival, we were greeted by an amazingly efficient and friendly front desk staff, who were able to get us into a room immediately, even though we arrived well before check in. My only complaint (and it's not really a complaint) is that the room we were assigned, although very nicely appointed on the interior, was located on the first floor of the oldest section of the hotel, directly off the parking lot. I noticed the door to the room had no sealant on it - i.e., when the door was shut, you could easily see daylight flooding in all around the edges - not a huge issue - it was HOT when we were there...but my mind did wonder about creepy crawlies and other small critters that easily could have entered through the cracks. I figured being assigned this room was probably a function of our "free room" status, so I figured what would be the harm in asking about an upgrade?

I'm very glad I did - for only $30, we were cheerily and efficiently reassigned a gorgeous room in the "Casa Marina" section of the hotel - again on the first floor, but this time with a beautiful view of the marina, with our own private patio, and beautifully appointed interior. The room was quiet, the bed was supremely comfortable, in short, we were very disappointed our stay at the Island Palms was only for one night!

We made the most of it though...we enjoyed a sunny afternoon by the pool sipping Mai Tais, and very much enjoyed the perfect music mix that was emanating from the rock shaped speakers surrounding the pool. A wonderful way to decompress after the long flight from Toronto - paradise found. Had we had more time, I'm sure we would have taken advantage of an outdoor meal on the patio above the pool - the fare being served to others looked delicious! (Given that our time in SD was short, and we had never travelled there before, we did go off site to explore the city during the evening).

In short, our experience at the BW Island Palms not only met, but exceeded our expectations. Yes, we paid next to nothing for our experience there, and yes, our time was short, so I can't speak to what a longer term visit here would be like - but might I suggest that this might be exactly the BEST way to review a hotel - they had one brief window to get it right, and they knocked it out of the park! This hotel will now definitely be our #1 choice for any return trips to San Diego, without question (and we would willingly pay full price). Upon checkout (again served by an incredibly friendly front desk employee) we were advised that should we call them directly to book future visits, we'd receive 15% off. A nice final touch - we'll be back! :)

Room Tip: Rooms in the Casa Marina section of the hotel are newer, quieter, and have better views.
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  • Stayed October 2013, 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Plymouth, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
44 reviews 44 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
38 helpful votes 38 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 12, 2013

We had a 2x queen room single storey next to the pool. The rooms are wooden and single glazed, you can hear pretty much everything going on in other rooms and outside. The actual room was well appointed, bathroom a good size with nice shower. Pool areas great, fantastic views, massive tv, microwave, fridge, coffee making. Very hospitable staff at desk, maid didn't speak a word of English. Our friends stayed in a suite, with kitchen, it was well equipped. Overall lovely, just maybe not for the light sleeper, but it is a sizable hotel with lots of buildings, maybe away from a pool area????

  • Stayed October 2013, 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Scottsdale, Arizona
Top Contributor
57 reviews 57 reviews
30 hotel reviews
Reviews in 29 cities Reviews in 29 cities
52 helpful votes 52 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 11, 2013

This is a very decent hotel...when the price is right. The restaurant is "ok" and the bar is cozy.
Free parking is also a plus. The other hotels nearby charge a fee to park.
This was originally two hotels. These days they are both operated under the Best Western mantra. But unlike many BW hotels, breakfast is not included and the morning choices in the restaurant are less than stellar.

I prefer to stay on the older side of the property. The Casa Marina side is a long way from the lobby, bar and restaurant and quite honestly, not worth the hype. At $100-$125, this is a very decent hotel. When it tops $150...pick another in the neighborhood.

There are (4) hotels on Shelter Island that share a common website (just search: Shelter Island Hotels). One of them always has a deal going. I stayed at three of the four several times this past summer and they are all decent....when you book their deal. At full price, not so much.

Room Tip: Marina views are available, at a premium. Don't fall for it. There's no need to pay extra to...
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  • Stayed October 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 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.
London
Top Contributor
133 reviews 133 reviews
29 hotel reviews
Reviews in 38 cities Reviews in 38 cities
74 helpful votes 74 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 10, 2013

I spent three days here on a road trip around California. All staff I came in to contact with we're very friendly and efficient.
The bar man was happy to recommend wines and chatted freely with all customers.
I asked at reception where to catch the bus to go into town, not only odd the receptionist tell me but she also printed off a map and gave detailed info about different ticket prices.
The room was large, tidy, and very clean. The only negative comment would be that from outside the rooms looked very old but once inside they were wonderful. I did find that there was quite a lot of noise from staff in the nearby staff rest room (I was in room 144).
I would happily return to this hotel.

  • Stayed October 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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bedfordshire
Senior Contributor
21 reviews 21 reviews
15 hotel reviews
Reviews in 16 cities Reviews in 16 cities
28 helpful votes 28 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 8, 2013

After driving from Las Vegas what a delight to discover we were staying here. Ideally located near all the popular things to see and do in San Diego, Located on Shelter Island with the Marina one side of the Hotel and the Harbour inlet the other. Lovely walks and a delightful pier just across the road where I spotted seals and plenty of pelicans trying to catch the fish along with the fishermen. Room had everything we needed and a lovely comfy bed and pillows. No where close by to eat except for the hotels but 5 mins drive away was Ralphs- a supermarket with everything you would need including hot chickens,soup, salads a Starbucks etc which was ideal for taking back to the room. 2 pools and ideal for a swim and rest after a busy day sightseeing. Lovely 3 night stay.

  • Stayed October 2013, 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Leesville, United States
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 8, 2013

Excellent service...they picked me up from airport when I arrived...genuine, courteous personell. If you are ever in the San Diego area, I would definitely recommend the Best Western Plus Isle of Palms!

  • Stayed October 2013, 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

Review collected in partnership with Best Western

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about BEST WESTERN PLUS Island Palms Hotel & Marina

Address: 2051 Shelter Island Drive, San Diego, CA 92106
Phone Number:
Location: United States > California > San Diego
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#15 Family Hotel in San Diego
#17 Romantic Hotel in San Diego
#39 Business Hotel in San Diego
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3 star — BEST WESTERN PLUS Island Palms Hotel & Marina 3*
Number of rooms: 227
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Located on San Diego's Shelter Island, the Island Palms Hotel and Marina is surrounded by the blue waters of San Diego Bay. Nestled among 6 acres of lush, tropical landscaping, this spectacular setting overlooks our private yacht marina and San Diego's largest yacht basin. Features and amenities include 227 beautifully-appointed guest rooms and suites, 2 heated waterfront pools and spas, waterfront restaurant and bar and over 6,300 square feet of water view meeting space. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Best Western Plus Island Palms Hotel And Marina
Best Western San Diego
San Diego Best Western

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