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“Stay clear of this place”

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Hilton San Diego Resort & Spa
Ranked #102 of 286 Hotels in San Diego
GreenLeadersSilver level
Reviewed May 23, 2011

Just spent two nights at this disaster of a "Resort". I do extensive traveling for business and am normally very easy to please, but this place compelled me to write this review. I was traveling with my wife and 1.5 year old twin boys. When we made the reservation (knowing we would be arriving late), we asked that two cribs be put in the room. While this was confirmed during our midnight check in, no cribs were in the room. We had to wait an eternity for cribs to be delivered because "all the housekeeping people had gone home". Not a good start.

The next morning in the restaurant, we met up with family (who luckily for them were staying elsewhere). After we were seated in the restaurant NO ONE would wait on us. We waited and waited. After asking THREE times for some help, we were told by the only server present that it was not his table, that he had asked someone to help us, and to get any service, we would need to speak to the manager! After speaking with the manager, someone finally showed up, but by then it was beyond annoying.

We were gone for most of the day and got back to the room at about 4 pm. The room had not been made up. Because the twins needed a nap, we put them down with the "Do not Disturb" sign on the door. Right after the kids fell asleep THE PHONE RINGS - waking up the kids- and the staff person asks when they can clean our room. They had ALL DAY to clean it but wait till the evening and then ignore the "Do not disturb" sign. Incredible.

The $25 dollar parking fee is high, but it would be better if you actually got a space to park in. When we got back to the room at 10 pm the last night, there were no spaces in the entire resort. I drove around for 20 minutes looking for a place to park (with a bunch of other guests). I eventually had to park on the street and hoof it back to the room (a ten minute walk).

There is much much more, but I have already wasted too much of my time on a place (like any other Hilton) that I will never stay at again.

STAY AWAY!

Room Tip: go elsewhere.
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Stayed: May 2011, traveled with family
5  Thank Pilotr
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
hiltonmissionbay, Guest Relations Manager at Hilton San Diego Resort & Spa, responded to this reviewResponded July 20, 2011

I sincerely apologize for what you experienced while staying at our property. We seek to make EVERY aspect of your stay as positive as possible, especially the service that you receive from team members around property! These issues were covered in our staff meeting at length so we can improve our overall guest experience. We take our guest reviews very seriously and hope that we are given the opportunity to exceed your expectations in the future.
Lisa Campbell, Director of Guest Relations

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2,855 - 2,861 of 3,345 reviews

Reviewed May 9, 2011

Hotel was awesome. The location is great for anytime of year. Walk the boardwalk, you have all food, fun, sport in one location. Staff is great all around, especially William at the front desk. He provided great assistance throughout our stay.

  • Stayed: May 2011, traveled on business
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2  Thank bigmow33
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
hiltonsandiego, Manager at Hilton San Diego Resort & Spa, responded to this reviewResponded May 11, 2011

Dear bigmow33,

Thank you for your review of the Hilton San Diego Resort & Spa. We are proud of our team members and the service they provide to all of our guests. We've sent your review to William in the front office and I know he will appreciate your kind words. Thanks again and we look forward to seeing you at the resort in the future.

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Reviewed May 3, 2011

The Best Place I could spend with my Family!!

I Enjoyed staying at Hilton! Clean, comfortable and great service. Would love to go back again!!

  • Stayed: April 2011, traveled on business
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2  Thank Araik
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
hiltonsandiego, Manager at Hilton San Diego Resort & Spa, responded to this reviewResponded May 11, 2011

Dear Araik,

Thank you for your review of the Hilton San Diego Resort & Spa. Short and sweet, but enough said. We're glad to hear you enjoyed your stay as well as the service provided by our team members. See you again soon!

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Reviewed May 1, 2011

I stayed there with my wife and 2 year old daughter. The rooms were great, the staff was very friendly, and the location was ideal. They have a great pool deck with a small pool for little children. The little pool is only 1 foot deep and it allows little children to play away from the bigger kids.

We took our daughter to Sea World which was about a 5 minute drive away. As you can imagine, a 2 year old needs to nap. It was so nice to just be able to return to the hotel, have my daughter nap, and then return to Sea World.

The hotel is also located just a few minutes from Old Town. We went to Old Town for lunch and it was a great place to walk and spend a few hours.

I must admit, it is a little expensive to stay there and the $25 dollar a night parking fee is a bit excessive. There were a lot of cars and it was difficult at times to get a parking spot. For that kind of money, a parking space should be designated.

We will definetly be returning in the future.

Room Tip: Shop all of the web-sites.
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  • Stayed: May 2011, traveled with family
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4  Thank travelnaps
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
hiltonsandiego, Manager at Hilton San Diego Resort & Spa, responded to this reviewResponded May 11, 2011

Dear travelnaps,

Thank you for your review of the Hilton San Diego Resort & Spa. We are pleased to hear that you and your family enjoyed your stay at the resort. We couldn't agree wit you more that the hotel is centrally located and easily accessible to so many of San Diego's various attractions and venues. Thanks for the feedback and hopefully we'll see you all again soon.

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Reviewed April 26, 2011

we got married at this hotel. wonderful job they did. We decided to make sure we stay for our anniversary weekend every year. When permitted we try to go just for a short getaway as well. The staff is wonderful, Nick and Jeff are someof the regular staff members who i see there ar always awesome. It's important to us that we see employees who are still there, it gives a homey feeling. They remember us as well. Always had a great meal from the resturant, to poolside Frescos, and roomservice. They even had an easter egg hunt for children and a movie night at the pool for the family. For those in the san diego area consider this asw a wonderful way to save money and appreciate your hometown for your next vacation. have fun...Michelle and James Rydquist

Room Tip: a room with firepit great or next to pool we enjoy
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  • Stayed: April 2011, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank MichelleRydquist
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
hiltonsandiego, Manager at Hilton San Diego Resort & Spa, responded to this reviewResponded May 11, 2011

Dear MichelleRydquist,

Thank you for your review of the Hilton San Diego Resort & Spa. What a great story and we couldn't be happier to be a part of your families story. Your pictures are great and it looks like you enjoyed the Easter egg hunt. Please feel free to call me directly in the future to arrange your bookings. I want to make sure we arrange the best possible rate and room for you when you come. Thanks again.

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Reviewed April 26, 2011

I stayed at the Hilton with 2 teenagers and a 5 year old. It was perfect. The hotel is located in an easily accessed area. Less than 10 minutes to most areas. Also it's located on mission bay which has all kinds of activities. You could stay at the hotel without going anywhere and have plenty of things to do. The hotel property is well maintained. There is a ton of outdoor seating throughout. There is a poolside bar but I couldn't figure out what their hours were, sometimes it was open sometimes it wasn't. The pool area was relaxing. We spent a lot of time there. They had a "dive in movie", popcorn and all. I saw some families ordered pizza for it and sat by the fire pit. Great idea. The coffee shop in the morning was good. We ate there several times. The Acqua restaurant was fantastic. I topped at the hotel shop nearly everyday, very convenient, a little overpriced, but worth it to not have to go elsewhere.
We stayed in the tower, bay side, although we couldn't see the bay from our balcony. Not a problem though since we didn't spend much time in the room except for sleeping. The beds were very comfortable, the room and bathroom standard hotel size. Housekeeping did an excellent job taking care of us.
The 25$ parking fee seems overpriced. You will want a car in San Diego and there is no where else to park near the hotel so they are taking advantage of you there. I bought my room on Hotwire and saved a lot of money that way, makes up for the parking I guess.

I would stay here again. My 14 year old daughter said she wants to get married there, LOL.

  • Stayed: April 2011, traveled with family
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5  Thank Katie H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
hiltonsandiego, Manager at Hilton San Diego Resort & Spa, responded to this reviewResponded May 11, 2011

Dear Katielynnh,

Thank you for your review of the Hilton San Diego Resort & Spa. We appreciate your constructive feedback regarding the resort and we're glad you and your daughter enjoyed your experience. As we head into season, the resort activities become greater including the dive in movies, complimentary s'mores roasts on the beach and organized kids activities. Fresco's is open on a daily basis now through summer from 11AM-7PM. Let your daughter know we'd be happy to arrange a beach wedding for her when she's ready.

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Reviewed April 25, 2011

Anytime I see the word "resort" I immediately think of something bigger than what many resorts can deliver. For me, resort means offering everything you need on the property for a complete vacation. If you use that idea then this property is certainly a full service hotel but not a resort.

So before I go too far and you think this is a terrible hotel let me say we would go back. It's just that you need to temper your expectations. This is not a luxury resort. It's a very nice hotel in a good location (near Sea World and on the bay) that fits well with families with young children. There is a small kiddie pool (1 foot deep) and the main pool only gets to 5 feet deep and is 3 feet deep in most places- so our 4 year old had a great time by just avoiding the middle of the pool. It also draws a family crowd so he had plenty of kids to mess around with whenever he was poolside. Their kids camp is only offered in the summer months (another reason they are not a resort in my opinion) so that was not available, making the poolside encounters that much more important. As we experienced with HIlton in Hawaii we do wish they would put a bit more heat in their heated pools- it was not ice cold as it was in Hawaii but it could have been a bit warmer to make staying in a bit easier.

They also had a great food option for those not wanting the full service restaurant: a 7-day happy hour with half price starters and drinks. It made grabbing a quick meal each evening much more affordable and was certainly good enough for us on several occasions. The issue is there is only the 1 restaurant and the bar area so leaving the property was inevitable unless you are really a creature of habit or just there for a long-weekend.

Where is the hotel lacking? First, they charge $25/day for self parking. This is essentialy a suburban hotel so that struck me as way too expensive. Second, our expectation of the beach was quite different than the reality- it's not a sit out and sun yourself beach- it's a narrow strip of sand separated from the hotel by the bay-side walking/biking trail (the trail was a nice feature for getting out of the hotel).

The rooms are spacious enough and in good (but not great) shape. The TV was new but the signal sketchy if you touched it. The two reading lights besides the beds didn't work at all and the chain on the lamp by the window pulled off on Night 1 (thankfully in the 'off' position). They also went a bit too far with the cheap flourescent bulb in the can light near the doorway which gave a harsh light when it was turned on (and was the only light in the room besides 2 lamps) that made us prefer to leave it off- and we were down to 1 table lamp for the whole room. They would fix things as you called- but you had to call. The shower on/off handle clearly looked like it was added on when the original one broke as it simply didn't look like it belonged there. They also have the old, what I call atomic toilets whose sound resonates for several floors - you will know when your neighbors above have gone to the bathroom and only a sound sleeper can sleep through a toilet flush in the room. So a bit more attention to detail would be nice.

But the rooms are comfortable (though with the usual glut of pillows on the beds) and spacious enough. They also have two other features I wish they highlighted more clearly: refrigerators and an in-room safe. Being able to stock the small fridge was great but we were not aware it was there when booking. The safe is always nice given how much we just seem to have that has some value.

The food was fine- good not great. It met our needs but we headed for other places just for variety. The larger number of CPK and other food boxes/bags suggested others felt the same way. It was nice to have poolside bar service though we found it odd in this day and age that the female servers were blonde and in short-shorts and short-sleeved shirts while the men practically had no skin showing besides their hands and faces. It's not offensive to me but it is a bit too obvious to go overlooked.

So for a good hotel in a great location consider this property. It's not a value option by any means but it was a nice, comfortable base for our 7 days in San Diego. Hopefully they can smooth out some of the rough edges and it could be a really great place.

  • Stayed: April 2011, traveled with family
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1  Thank SFWorld
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
hiltonsandiego, Manager at Hilton San Diego Resort & Spa, responded to this reviewResponded May 11, 2011

Dear SFWorld,

Thank you for your review of the Hilton San Diego Resort & Spa. I appreciate the time and feedback you provided regarding the resort and your experience. I think you offered a fair assessment of the property and your critiques were constructive. We are continually working to get better and reviews like yours allow us to work on shortfalls that sometimes can be overlooked. The resort shines in summer season with a whole host of free beach and water activities for children of all ages to participate in on a daily basis as well as a welcome s'mores roast for all guest on Wednesday and Friday nights, dive in movies twice a week and much more. Thanks again for taking the time to provide feedback regarding your stay and we hope to have the opportunity to see you and your family again.

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Additional Information about Hilton San Diego Resort & Spa

Address: 1775 East Mission Bay Drive, San Diego, CA 92109-6801
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) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#15 On the Beach Hotel in San Diego
#20 Spa Hotel in San Diego
#28 Green Hotel in San Diego
#33 Luxury Hotel in San Diego
#62 Business Hotel in San Diego
#62 Family Hotel in San Diego
Price Range: $168 - $343 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Hilton San Diego Resort & Spa 4*
Number of rooms: 357
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Hilton San Diego Resort And Spa
Hilton San Diego Hotel San Diego
Hilton Hotel San Diego

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