We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Location! Location! Location!”
Review of Dolphin Motel

Best prices for -
Check In mm/dd/yyyy Check Out mm/dd/yyyy
Prices are for 1 room, 2 adults
Show Prices
Compare best prices from top travel sites
and 2 more sites!
Dolphin Motel
Ranked #23 of 278 Hotels in San Diego
Certificate of Excellence
Mpls., MN
1 review
“Location! Location! Location!”
Reviewed April 13, 2013

The Dolphin is at most, 15-20 min. from anything you'd want to see in San Diego. The staff couldn't be friendlier or more helpful.
Small rooms, few amenities in each room originally. However, they have hair dryers and GPS available for your use during your stay. (no charge- just ask.)
My only suggestion would be have coffee pots in the rooms. Also, it's too bad they don't have a pool, but, at those prices, you can't complain too much.

Room Tip: Ask for water view.
See more room tips
  • Stayed April 2013, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank psat41313
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
DolphinMotel, Owner at Dolphin Motel, responded to this review, April 15, 2013
Thank you psat41313 for staying at our motel recently
Our office is open 24/7 for our guests if they have any questions, information about places to go, or to borrow a hairdryer, iron, or print boarding pass
Hope you come back in the near future
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review

1,105 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    694
    317
    71
    13
    10
See reviews for
198
500
118
57
Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (213)
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
1 review
Reviewed April 12, 2013

My first time in San Diego had a wonderful time! The Dolphin lnn is a nice budget motel. The staff was very courteous and helpful, the owner even gave us a map and pointed out some local attractions. I only have one suggestion, it would have been nice if the refrigerator in our room was plugged in before our arrival time, we thought the refrigerator didn't work and called for some assistance. But overall a very nice place to stay and would definitely stay again!

  • Stayed March 2013
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank jcsms
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
DolphinMotel, Owner at Dolphin Motel, responded to this review, April 13, 2013
Thank you jcsms for writing about your recent stay with us.
All in all we thank you for taking the time to write about your recent stay at our little motel
Your review will help others evaluate if our place fits their needs
As said a hundred times, we are a budget motel best suited for budget travelers.
For our future guests: if you are looking for a clean place to sleep, we are perfect for your needs
However, we may not have all the accommodations that some guests expect from places they might otherwise pay double the price.
Please contact us beforehand to make sure we are "the right fit"

Minor note: to conserve electricity (and not overfreeze the frig), we keep it unplugged.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
small town usa
Level 3 Contributor
21 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
Reviewed April 7, 2013

We stayed at the Dolphin hotel for 3 nights and must say the service was excellent. They were very helpful with any questions we had regarding San Diego. The location is perfect central location. Easy to drive to all attractions. The hotel was spotless! I mean spotless. I have been in 4 star hotel that aren't as clean as the Dolphin hotel. The parking and internet is free! love that!! I agree the internet is slow but unless you are on business, not that important. I would recommend staying here to anyone who doesn't have to have 4 star hotel but enjoys good location, and great service!

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank luv2travell
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
DolphinMotel, Owner at Dolphin Motel, responded to this review, April 8, 2013
Thank you kindly luv2travell for taking the time to write about your recent stay with us.
We pride ourselves in cleanliness, service, and value.
As stated many times over, we really want all future guests to read about our motel and see if we are the right fit for them. Sometimes we may not have the accommodations they need; and some guests may find our motel sufficient.
Your recent review will help everyone get a glimpse of our little motel.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lutterworth, United Kingdom
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed April 7, 2013 via mobile

We wanted a more budget room for one night whilst staying in San Diego. We were greeted by a very smart friendly staff member who i think could have been a part time comedian and made us feel very welcome. The accommodation was a small but clean room and as a motel, my husband did complain that he could hear all the traffic through the night from the nearby road. All fittings were dated and quite shabby and there were staples in the curtains. Distance from downtown San Diego was a little too far. Breakfast was included in the price and was perfectly fine with a range of cold items.

This was a good value money motel for a short stay

  • Stayed April 2013
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank phil e
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
DolphinMotel, Owner at Dolphin Motel, responded to this review, April 8, 2013
Hello Phil,

Thank you for the honest review. There is always room for improvement. Sorry about the traffic noise. We very rarely get comments on that since we are not on a major street. (See other reviews). Was your window open? Regarding the dated fittings, yes we are an older motel that appeals to the budget minded traveler, and thank you for the "clean room" and "good value" comments. We would love to have you back, we can do better. As one of our regular "no frills" guests commented the other day, "The money I save here, I can spend elsewhere."
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed April 7, 2013

This place just has everything you need, no frills and fuss. It gives you the basics: it's impeccably clean, fresh towels, soap, wifi, and basic cable. The staff is very friendly and happy to accommodate us with an extra pillow during our stay.

Would definitely stay here again!

  • Stayed April 2013
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank MorayMorayEel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Level 6 Contributor
164 reviews
51 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 120 helpful votes
Reviewed April 1, 2013

We had a very good stay at the Dolphin Motel. It is refreshing to stay somewhere that does not pretend to be something it isn't. It is exactly what it claims to be offering basic but clean and comfortable rooms at a very affordable price. We stayed in 2 rooms, intially booking in for 3 nights but deciding to stay an additional one we were moved to a larger room. Neither of the rooms were as small as I had been led to believe from other reviews. Both rooms also had flat screen TVs and powerful showers, the towels were of very good quality for a budget motel. I've had far worse in a more expensive chain motel. Steve, his Father and the other staff were all helpful, friendly and attentive. The breakfast muffins were excellent. The location is perfect, Point Loma is lovely in itself and is a very short drive to the centre of San Diego. The only thing that could have improved my stay was if this was a non smoking establishment, it really isn't very nice to have someone smoking more or less outside your door. However this is a minor issue, I was very happy during our 4 night stay and I am not always easy to please! I would certainly stay here again. For the price I believe it cannot be beaten and for that along with the level of service and comfort you get here, the Dolphin is certainly worth considering for your trip to San Diego

Room Tip: Rooms on the top level are best as breakfast is served in the open air courtyard from an early time...
See more room tips
  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Ruthie3005
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
DolphinMotel, Owner at Dolphin Motel, responded to this review, April 2, 2013
It was nice having you Ruthie3005, we do get a good number of guests from the UK and Europe who do a little research and save some vacation money
Your input will help future guests get an idea of what we offer (and don't offer)
For the record: Alan and his father Mr. Murdock run the motel (Steve is the morning manager)
Many thanks
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Las Vegas, Nevada
Level 4 Contributor
35 reviews
25 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed March 31, 2013 via mobile

Me and my father stayed here for a fishing trip. The hotel's staff we're very helpful and friendly. The rooms were small but were clean and comfortable. The hotel was across the street from the docks for fishing and 7 minutes from mission beach. I would stay here again.

Stayed March 2013, traveled with family
Helpful?
1 Thank sandiegolover12
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
DolphinMotel, Owner at Dolphin Motel, responded to this review, April 1, 2013
Thank you very very much sandiegolover12 for this generous review. We don't openly advertise fishing at our motel but do get a good number of regular customers during the warm water seasons; as long as they don't bring their catch and store it in the refrigerator!
As also, we appreciate your kind words about our little motel!
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hotels you might also like...
Travelers also viewed these San Diego hotels
The Pearl Hotel
#26 of 278 in San Diego
973 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices
Mission Valley / Hotel Circle
Kings Inn San Diego
Kings Inn San Diego
#32 of 278 in San Diego
2,127 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices

Been to Dolphin Motel? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Additional Information about Dolphin Motel

Property: Dolphin Motel
Address: 2912 Garrison St, San Diego, CA 92106-2770
Location: United States > California > San Diego
Amenities:
Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Room Service
Hotel Style:
#2 Best Value Hotel in San Diego
#7 On the Beach Hotel in San Diego
#7 Family Hotel in San Diego
#10 Romantic Hotel in San Diego
#44 Business Hotel in San Diego
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:2 star — Dolphin Motel 2*
Number of rooms: 35
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Highly Rated - Very Reasonably Priced - American Owned and Operated Budget Motel since 1976. Budget very clean rooms with top rated beds, refrigerators and great showers! Best Price! Budget Value! Great location - one block from San Diego Harbor and minutes from the Airport - Seaword - Downtown - Zoo - Beaches and more! Friendly - professional staff ready to help with directions - boarding passes, etc. Every morning say hello to our staff over continental breakfast. - Please see over reviews. Thanks ... more   less 
Reservation Options:
TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Expedia, Orbitz, Hotels.com and Travelocity so you can book your Dolphin Motel reservations with confidence. We help millions of travelers each month to find the perfect hotel for both vacation and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
Also Known As:
Dolphin Motel San Diego
Dolphin Hotel San Diego

Is This Your TripAdvisor Listing?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing