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Review of Dolphin Motel

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Dolphin Motel
Ranked #36 of 278 Hotels in San Diego
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed November 18, 2010

The Dolphin Motel was exactly as described. Clean rooms, great view of the harbor and Point Loma, friendly owners and staff. The proximity to Shelter Island for walking or to Bus 28 to get you to the Old Town trolley/bus station is key. They even had an international adapter for my friend from overseas. I will definitely stay there again.

  • Stayed: November 2010, traveled on business
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Thank Soko_G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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797 - 803 of 1,113 reviews

Reviewed November 16, 2010

I just want to say that my daughter and I stayed in this motel over 4th of July for 4 nights. The Staff was great and very helpful. The rooms were very clean and well kept. I loved the rates. This is a motel I would recomment to anyone. As a matter of fact I will be calling them tomorrow to see if they have any rooms available for Friday thru Tuesday of next week.

  • Stayed: July 2010, traveled with friends
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Thank nightstar47
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 16, 2010

Our stay at the Dolphin Motel was wonderful. I have never met a more friendly or helpful staff - very much a "can-do" attitude! Sure, there are plenty of places that are fancier - bigger rooms, elaborate furnishings and elaborate breakfasts, but the Dolphin is more than adequate, and even better than some of the ultra high end hotels I've "splurged for" in the past. I will be happy to stay there again!

  • Stayed: November 2010, traveled as a couple
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Thank babbleor
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 14, 2010

This motel was a great find, if I were to come to San Diego I would be sure to come back.
Reading the other reviews, the rooms are on the small side however if your out and about exploring San Diego then the rooms are more than adequate. Above all the rooms were comfy and extremely clean.

The motel is a wee bit out from the likes of the Gaslamp District; however the San Diego transport is so good that this is a minor issue. So with this in mind, wherever you want to go, you should get there in no time!

The hospitality was superb, the boy at the check in desk was very helpful and Holly was amazing. Holly drove my friend and I up to Cabrillo. This was much appreciated as we wouldn't have had the chance to see the most beautiful views of San Diego without Holly's 'guided tour'. We can't thank him enough!

I would encourage anyone to go to this, darling of a motel!

  • Stayed: September 2010, traveled with friends
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1  Thank emcgui15
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 7, 2010

Here I thought they were so gracious and accomodating to my daughter and me was because we are so nice - but from all the other reviews I've read since arriving home, they're simply that way to all their clients! We were with them for a week, and the owners and the entire staff were always helpful. The reviews ratings on cleanliness, location, etc. are true, and the coffee is excellent, too! We'd go back in a minute.

  • Stayed: October 2010, traveled with family
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Thank audreymahoney
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 2, 2010

The prices at this motel may seem a little high when you first look into the rooms here. However, after you to look around, you will realize that you wont find any that are cleaner and more hospitable, and yet also cheaper than this place. We are from the midwest and are used to Indiana's cheap motel prices (39.99-49.99). While visiting San Diego, we stayed in a couple hotels/motels before coming to the Dolphin. The first night we stayed at a Ramada ($150 per night), and while on a day trip to San Clemente we first checked out a local mom and pop inn and inquired about the rate. They wanted $80 per night but did not include cable or internet, so we had to stay at a Holiday Inn for ($170 per night). Our 3rd night back in San Diego, we agreed we couldn't afford to keep shelling out the high prices for these Southern California hotels. I happened to run across the Dolphin's website while doing a search for cheap San Diego motels. The website had us a little cautious and apprehensive but agreed we would give it a try.

MY DOLPHIN REVIEW
To secure the room, they do require you to use your credit card over the phone and pay for the first evening, but allow you to make a decision after the first night if you want to continue staying each additional night. We were given a second floor room in the main building, in the corner of the balcony. (Side Note: If you have disabilities like the second member of our party, this motel does not have elevators, so you will have to request downstairs room if available.). I asked how to access the pool from the pictures, and was disappointed to find out that the pool actually belongs to the neighboring hotel and therefore the Dolphin does not have a pool. WIth the negatives out of the way now, I am free to tell you about all the positives about the Dolphin that have left us with certainty of coming back.

Upon check in, the staff asks if you brought a laptop with you. If you have, they will supply you with a wi-fi code to access their internet. If you have left your laptop at home, they have complimentary laptop for you to use at no additional charge.

There is a privacy fence that blocks the downstairs rooms' views, but having the room we did on the second floor, we couldn't have asked for a better room with a view. From our balcony, we had a perfect view of the harbor and and yachts at Sport Fishing Landing across the street. As for the service you get at the Dolphin, you cannot ask for anything better. The staff here really care about their guests. From the night clerk we checked in with, to the actual owners that work the desk and take care of continental breakfast duties, service is top priority here. One owner asked if he could carry our bags to our room for us. This kind of service is something you don't get at other chains. The rooms are a bit small. We had one queen bed and one twin bed in the room, which only left a walk way around each bed. While the rooms may be small, you wont find a cleaner room elsewhere. Everything in these rooms is white, and the staff ensure that it stays that way. The showers at the Dolphin had great water pressure and never ran out of hot water, which was a plus compared to the other hotels we stayed at. Each morning there are large sized muffins and juice available downstairs near the lobby, free of charge. All in all, the Dolphin is a great value with great service and clean rooms. If you are like us, we don't spend much time in the rooms while on vacation, so how clean it is and how we are treated is what means more than anything, and this place delivers on that.

AREA ATTRACTIONS/RESTAURANTS

The Dolphin is in a great location. With everything nearby, we returned our rental car after the first night here. Within walking distance (2 blocks) there is a great restaurant (Miguel's) which the staff can give you coupon for free appetizer, a great white cheese sauce that is superb. If you prefer a hot breakfast over the free continental served, just around the corner is a donut shop that also serves plate size croissants for same price you would pay at Burger King. There are plenty of dining options in the area. Although we did not go to any of the bars/clubs, there are a few within a couple blocks if that is your scene.

GETTING AROUND
Just behind the motel, you can hop on the MTS bus line that will take you all the way to Old Town (Main transport area), which you can then access the different trolleys or other bus lines to take you to other areas of San Diego. Before you get to Old Town though, there are many stops at area shopping centers along Rosecrans Street. You will come to find, just as we did, that a car was not needed after you get to the Dolphin, as its location is near everything you need.

Concluding..The Dolphin actually made our stay in San Diego the best part of our trip. We were able to save money on the room to use for other activities in SD, but not sacrifice room quality. You won't find a more caring staff anywhere else. What you really need in a room is someplace quiet that you can get a good night sleep, with great service and clean rooms. The Dolphin more than delivers on that! WE WILL DEFINITELY BE BACK!

-Wanda & Shawn from Greenfield, Indiana

  • Stayed: August 2010
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Thank shabrick
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 27, 2010

Sheet thread counts? Mini bar? Movie channels? Potpourri? Time and temperature projected on my ceiling? Bath soap in wrapping paper fit for a mother's day present?

No frilly accessories needed for me, thanks.

My first stay at the Dolphin last week before a 6AM flight was comfy.

Clean & firm bed, a clean bathroom with hot, pressured water, wifi internet, quiet sleep and morning coffee available are all that I need in a room. Dolphin provided all of that, a wakeup call, and an airport taxi call.

Many would describe my room at the Dolphin as spartan college dorm style. I don't spend much time in my room when traveling.

There was plenty of service from the staff. That included answering all of my questions via email when I was selecting my room, as well as doing their best during my brief stay.

Ilikeit and will be back for my next early morning flight out of San Diego.

  • Stayed: October 2010, traveled solo
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Thank Bajadock
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about 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:
#4 Best Value Hotel in San Diego
#7 Family Hotel in San Diego
#9 On the Beach Hotel in San Diego
#10 Romantic Hotel in San Diego
#44 Business Hotel in San Diego
Price Range: $87 - $190 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
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 
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Also Known As:
Dolphin Motel San Diego
Dolphin Hotel San Diego

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