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“Lovely, cute cottages” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Crystal Pier Hotel & Cottages

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Crystal Pier Hotel & Cottages
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Ranked #102 of 282 Hotels in San Diego
Certificate of Excellence
Perth
Level Contributor
67 reviews
39 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 55 helpful votes
“Lovely, cute cottages”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 8, 2013

Lovely little beach cottages on the pier. Very cute, well decorated. Great water pressure in the shower (why can little place like this get the shower right and bigger places can't?). The owners were helpful. Had to book a year in advance and they only take phone bookings - which was difficult to organise time wise from Australia, so instead of getting one of the cottages over the water ours only had water under it at high tide.
Wifi was meant to be available, but signal strength in our unit was almost non existant.

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 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
Helpful?
2 Thank BethDid
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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242 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (69)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
California
Level Contributor
66 reviews
18 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 36 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 30, 2013

The location is perfect...right over the water...waves breaking nearly all the time...great weather and great nearby restaurants. The staff are wonderful and worked hard to meet all our desires. Can not wait until 2014. The one bedroom with private patio was great. The studio units appear to have "shared" or non-private patios and the two bedroom are located similar as the studio units.

  • Stayed May 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
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank zeldazelda
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Thousand Oaks, California
Level Contributor
42 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 66 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 22, 2013

We stayed in cottage "B" May 20 & 21 (and in Cottage 11 on May 19 because "B" was not available) for our 19th wedding anniversary. It was our first trip here. Like others, we booked about eight months in advance. We had been looking at the website for years, but did not know anyone who had been here before. The check in was extremely easy and pleasant, and we drove slowly to our one-bedroom cottage (unit 11) within minutes of arriving. The cottage (unit 11) can only be described as adorable, with blue and white nautical decor. There is a futon couch in the living room with a small table and chairs, and a flat screen TV that gets cable (but no premium channels). The kitchen is small but adequate, with a full fridge, a stove, microwave and sink. They have plates, silverware, paper towels, etc. The bathroom was small but fine, with a single sink and a shower (no tub). They had a blow dryer so you don't have to bring one. The bedroom was small with a full or queen bed (not sure which) but the bed was extraordinarily comfortable.
Of course, the reason you are there is the view. The room has a deck area with two lounge chairs (and cushions), a table with chairs and umbrella, and a stunning view of the beach and ocean. Number 11 is back behind the shoreline, so you have the beach next to the room, and the ocean in front of it most of the time (depending on the tide). This side of the pier is the east, and the sun rises on this side (and you cannot see the sunset as well from your deck).
As far as food goes, we did not want to eat in a restaurant when we had such an incredible view, so we walked down Garnet and turned left at the second street and got huge hoagie sandwiches from the Greek Place, brought them back to the room and sat at the table and watched the beach and the ocean while we ate. The food was really good. On Sunday the beach was very crowded, and it was fun to people watch. The pier is open to the public and there is a lot of foot traffic during the day, but it is locked and very private at night.
On May 20 we moved to cottage "B." I don't know what to say other than it is the most incredible view I have ever seen. You simply can't get that view in a hotel on the beach. I admit that I have never stayed in an over-water bungalow in Tahiti, but this is the closest thing to it in California! It was unlike anything I have been in before and sets my new standard for the greatest ocean view ever. There is a difference between having a view of the versus being on the ocean. With unit B, you are on, above, and all around the ocean. A mere "ocean view" will likely never suffice now in the future. B is a studio, but it is very large and airy (actually larger than the one bedroom cottage 11). The deck is private, although you can see the people on the public portion of the pier and they can see you during the day. The room was just perfect. If you are looking for 5 star amenities, this is not the place. There is no marble or granite, but again, it is just perfect. The bed was fine (it seemed larger than in cottage 11) and it has a full kitchen, living room with couch and coffee table, a small table with chairs by the window, and a separate bathroom with double sinks. The entire ocean side of the room is glass from floor to ceiling.
We went to Kono's for breakfast (it is the corner of Ocean and Garnet - right across the street from the hotel) and it has its own outdoor dining area, but that is nothing compared to the view from the room, so we got our breakfast to go. We simply did not want to be away from the deck. Like cottage 11, the deck has two lounge chairs, and a table with umbrella and four chairs. The view is all water. It is very romantic, and very special. One night we went to pick up a movie at a nearby Ralph's (Red Box) and noticed that they had fresh sushi that looked fantastic, so we ended up getting it and eating in front of our deck and watching the sunset. It was great!
We brought our dvd player and HDMI cable and hooked it up to the TV (the original remote is present so you can change inputs) so that we could watch movies at night after it got dark. There are tons of bars within walking distance if you are interested in night life.
They have two-bedroom cottages as well if you have a family and want to bring the kids. The beach is right there, but for us, this place was just perfect for a romantic getaway without the kids. We already booked it for next year at the same time for our 20th anniversary.

Room Tip: Choose cottage "a" or "b" for the best view.
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  • Stayed May 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
Helpful?
8 Thank dda4life
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Huntington Beach, California, USA
Level Contributor
8 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 17, 2013

The front office employees are so very helpful. One would think sleeping in a beautiful cottage on a pier over the ocean would be like camping in style. Nope. ... WiFi, morning wakeup calls, kitchens with all you need. Even cable! Love!

Room Tip: South was nice but if you like to watch the surfers, reserve north. Plus the sunsets on that side.
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  • Stayed May 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
Helpful?
3 Thank hbluvangel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Manchester
Level Contributor
31 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 17, 2013

We stayed here for 3 nights after Coachella festival and it was simply amazing. The Cottage was gbeautiful, the setting is amazing and the staff were fantastic and so helpful. We cant wait to go back!!

Room Tip: We had cottage 3 (1 bed) which is south side so you get the sun all day, plus you get an extra large...
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  • Stayed April 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
Helpful?
1 Thank ManchesterJessDunc
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Georgetown, Texas
Level Contributor
55 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 31 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 29, 2013

OK. I've stayed at some of the world's best hotels and I am in love with this one. These cottages are literally built on a giant pier that extends from Pacific Beach out into the Pacific ocean. It's very unique to actually sleep over the ocean -- feeling the gentle sway of the pier and hearing the crashing sound of the surf.

After you check-in, you're given access to drive your car (very slowly) onto the pier and park right in front of your cottage. The rooms are quintessential beach cottage with nice wood floors. As we walked in, we found the screened door open and the sound of the waves immediately drawing you out onto your own private deck which is over the water overlooking the beach. It's truly a unique perspective to observe the beach from the water side. I could sit outside on the deck for hours at a time just watching the surfers and listening the sounds of the surf. Just be careful not to drop your cell phone. If it falls between the gaps in the wood then kiss it good bye because it's a 50 foot drop to the crashing waves below. In addition oto the living room with a sofa-bed, the cottage also has a separate bedroom which is quaint and comfortable. I cracked the screened window at night just so we could hear the waves all night. Attached to both the bedroom and the living room/kitchen is a nice bathroom with a walk-in shower.

We could think of no complaints about this property. We found ourselves wishing for another day so we could just do nothing but sit in the cottage and relax.

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled with family
    • 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
Helpful?
4 Thank mosskm
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sonoma, California
Level Contributor
70 reviews
31 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 66 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 9, 2013 via mobile

Things I thought while staying at Crystal Piers
1) wow this pier is really old. These waves are crashing very hard. Is my car going to fall through?? No seriously those boards look a bit worn...
2) omg is it an earthquake. Why is my bed moving???
The crystal pier cottages are very clean and cute. Situated right on the pier above the ocean they are rare. Sleeping on a pier in California??? This is the only way. The fun part about this hotel is truly the fear of will I see my car in the morning and is that wave going to be the one that does us in. My son and I loved it for that reason coupled with the unbeatable beach location. You literally are sleeping above some really sizable waves in California. Surfers are all over the water and the people watching is great. I was concerned about safety based on other reviews but have to say I felt very safe there and i am a huge chicken scared of my own shadow. San Diego is a bar town at night so I can say I would not want to stroll around the town past 9 with my 9 year old . Mostly because bar towns = sloppy drunks= I don't want to step in vomit. For late night beach strolling with kids Corona del Mar is really the best. But there was no reason to stroll because we had a great time listening to the waves and laughing every time the cottage moved. Great fun! Will do it again and again and again. The front office was very nice. We actually left a kite when we checked out (did not want to bring home) and they called to see if they should send to us. Rare very rare.

  • Stayed April 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Value
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Location
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Jenkr
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Crystal Pier Hotel & Cottages

Property: Crystal Pier Hotel & Cottages
Address: 4500 Ocean Blvd, San Diego, CA 92109-2459
Location: United States > California > San Diego > Pacific Beach
Amenities:
Hotel Style:
#11 Family Hotel in San Diego
#22 Romantic Hotel in San Diego
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Number of rooms: 29
Also Known As:
Crystal Pier Hotel And Cottages
Crystal Pier San Diego
Crystal Pier Hotel San Diego
San Diego Crystal Pier

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