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“Definitely a resort”

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Catamaran Resort Hotel and Spa
Ranked #11 of 278 Hotels in San Diego
San Diego, CA
Level 4 Contributor
42 reviews
40 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
“Definitely a resort”
Reviewed July 15, 2008

I'm surprised by the recent comments I read about the Catamaran. We stayed for 2 nights in July and had a great time. The rooms were a little dated, but the furniture was ornate wood and the bed was comfortable. We paid a pretty hefty room rate for a ground floor bay front room, but it was a great location and the resort had so much to do that we felt like we almost got our money's worth. We loved stepping right out to the bay and the fact that the ocean was only a couple of blocks away. There are people walking by the resort all the time because of it's location on a sidewalk around the bay, but we had no problems with anyone. We loved the birds at the hotel and the grounds were beautiful. The Bahia Belle was fun to go on and we saw Sea World fireworks both nights. The torch lighting ceremony was cool and the resort always had something going on to keep us entertained. It felt like a tropical paradise. We have already been recommending it to friends.

  • Stayed July 2008, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank travelerforfun49
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
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Phoenix
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed July 12, 2008

We reserved a room at the Catamaran for 4 nights and we liked it so much we extended a night. Our room was the "Studio" room with a garden view. We were on the second floor facing a beautiful tropical garden and enjoyed watching the ducks and ducklings from our balcony. After reading another reviewers tip we requested to be on the side of the building that does not face the parking structure and the hotel was able to accommodate that request. The hotel has a lot of little extras on the property that the kids really liked including a free video arcade with newer games, mad science program and the exotic bird show was fantastic. You can ride the Bahia Bell for free and we loved the 9:00 cruise. It parked in the middle of the bay so we could enjoy the fireworks from Sea World. The beach in front of the hotel is a great place to play in the sand and down the way a bit there is a nice playground and beach to play on. The kids loved playing in the tree in the grass area just above the beach of the Catamaran and the Polynesian entertainment (hula dancers and torch spinner) was a nightly treat for us. This hotel really had a lot to offer not to mention the awesome location! Just 2 blocks from the beach and the best Lobster Bisque ever (little restaurant in Pacific Beach called World Famous). Sea World was just around the way...
We stayed Sunday-Friday and the hotel was consistently quiet from 11pm - 6 am... all other hours plan on some noise coming from either the ducks, other rooms, Sea World firework show or other guests walking the grounds. It was not excessive but if you are a light sleeper with a goal of sleeping in... that probably wont happen. The kids and hubby slept right through all of it though.

The only thing that was bad was having to pay to park in the hotels parking structure... just seems silly to me. I also wish the two beds were queens and a little less firm.

Also the customer service here was way above average... This stay was way better than we expected!!!

  • Liked — Location and Hotel Extras
  • Disliked — Paying to park and small beds
  • Stayed July 2008, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank iamjawd
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Penna.
Level 4 Contributor
21 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 29 helpful votes
Reviewed June 23, 2008

All I'm going to say to my fellow Tripadvisors is this: stay somewhere else. After a wonderful two week trip with family touring California and Hawaii on the Big Island, we had the most horrible room for what they call a first floor bayfront suite. We are sick because of the money we paid out for two suites. If you like the smell of mold and urine and no airconditioning in the "bedroom" than this is your place. It's very old and they are trying to disguise the rooms with little upgrades i.e. coffee pot, flat screen t.v. but little else. Unfortunately, I used tripadvisor comments some time ago to book this place for our grandchildren. People saying "great for the kids" and on the bay and "pool is great "and a half block from beach and on & on. This is one time it misfired for me on tripadvisor and I love tripadvisor.
Also, the area wasn't so great at least at night. Alot of strange people walking the streets and also at the hotel! I ended up checking out only after one night (a very expensive night) and went to Lowes on Coronado, which was great and half the price of the "bayfront first floor suite". We travel quite alot and I really regret booking this place. So be warned.

  • Liked — Nothing
  • Disliked — Everything
  • Stayed June 2008, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
5 Thank travelandgo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Princeton, New Jersey
Level 2 Contributor
4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed June 10, 2008

Do not stay here! The worst experience I have ever had. The spa and restaurant are nice, but you can stay across the street at the Best Western and still visit the spa and restauarant and have a clean room and better service and if you leave items in the room they will be returned to you, unlike this hotel. The sheets were dirty. They do not know the meaning of the word hospitality or accomodate. We booked our reservation six months ago to attend a family members wedding, requesting specific room next to elderly parents. The hotel had clearly already booked my parents room and I had to move after one day. In my haste I left several items in the room (cell phone charger, bottle of wine, clothing) . When I requested four times through the front desk and housekeeping to please return my items they repeatedly told me that they checked the room and the items were missing. I finally got the manager to enter the room and of course they found the cell phone charger in the exact same spot I left it. They never apologized for the inconvenience of moving us significantly further from the lobby which made it very difficult for my parents. The manager then offered to let us check out late as we had a red-eye flight. He told me to name the time. The next day when I checked out slightly later than the time I had suggested, the supervisor told me I would have to pay an additional night. When I got upset, he called security! Who does that? I am a 51 year old mother of three. I askd him to please verify through the manager that I should not have to pay an additional night which he finally did. I still have not received the clothing I left in the room. They say the items are not there. I have stayed in hotels all over the world, some stays are better than others, but nothing was even remotely as bad as this. I am generally quite laid back about my hotel experiences. You could not pay me to step foot in this place.

  • Liked — The only thing I iked was the location
  • Disliked — Everything,!....dirty room, arrogant staff etc.
  • Stayed June 2008
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
5 Thank SierraLady
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
uk
Level 4 Contributor
11 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed June 10, 2008

stayed at the catamaran for 1 night as part of our honeymoon. Stayed in the a tower suite with nice views over the bay. Large rooms with lounge and kitchenand two balconies, Flat screen tv`s in the room also.The bed was very firm and not to my liking. Decor of the room was average and could do with a refurb.The gardens were very impressive.We went to the restaurant for breakfast and were promptly seated,but we then waited 20 minutes for the staff to come and take our order,but nobody came ,so we got up and went elsewhere. free internet access and bahia bay boat ride were good. probably would not stay here again though for the price.

  • Liked — view from room,free internet
  • Disliked — service, slightly tatty
  • Stayed June 2008, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
5 Thank martin1982
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reno, Nevada
Level 1 Contributor
4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed June 1, 2008

Searched high and low for a hotel in San Diego and decided on the Catamaran, due to it's location and the reviews on Trip Advisor. We were promptly and courteously checked in and given a room in the Tower on the 12th floor. The room was right next to the elevator, which I thought would be a problem, but as long as we kept the closet door and bathroom door closed, the noise was minimal. Beware though that the room next to the elevator tends to shake a bit. The room was a bit shabby. We had just come from The Resort At Squaw Creek, where the rooms are pretty amazing, so to walk in to this room, which was large for sure, was a bit disappointing. We were given a room with a small kitchen, which was a nice bonus, but the cupboards were pretty beat up and the utensil supply was minimal. The coffee makers are very small, as are the coffee cups.
The room was decorated with a pseudo Polynesian theme. The view was pretty darn amazing, and we were afforded two good size balconies with this room. I have to agree with a previous reviewers thoughts on the bed covers, as they were abnormally heavy. A huge walk in closet was nice. If they spent some dough redoing these rooms, they would be pretty amazing. We went down to visit some friends staying at Lowes Coronado and were very impressed with the conditions of the rooms down there.
The resort was a great place for our two kids, ages 7 and 11. The arcade room, where all the games are free (much to dad's delight) was a great place for them to go hang out in. The pool was nice, very well maintained. I think if we ever stayed there again, which is unlikely, we would book a room on the ground floor, maybe one that butts up to the bay. Those rooms, with their easy access to grassy areas and the bay, look to be a bit more kid friendly.
The staff was always cheerful. We did not eat at the restaurant, seemed a bit stuffy. Never had a problem parking. All in all, an ok place for our first trip to San Diego. After driving around the city and exploring new neighborhoods, we think we may try Coronado next time. Mission Beach is a bit too young for us old fogies.

  • Liked — location, family friendly activities
  • Disliked — room conditions
  • Stayed May 2008, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Azabu2000
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Los Angeles
Level 6 Contributor
108 reviews
61 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 196 helpful votes
Reviewed May 27, 2008

The Catamaran is definitely "kid friendly" and since we were there with a kid, the several days we spent there were OK.
It must be a challange to keep a "resort" hotel in satifactory functioning condition when 2 year olds amuse themselves by opening and closing the screen door to the balcony as our grandson did. The staff does seems to stay on top of this effort. The pool and hot tub area was well-maintained, as were the grounds and the beach generally. There are "amusements" for the kids - parrots, swans and ducks. There's a paved walkway along the beach for strollers and joggers. The restaurant welcomed small kids with their Cheerios and the staff was friendly, very courteous and prompt in service. I give them high marks.
Our rooms, however, were somewhat worn and dark. The bed cover was very physically heavy, ponderously so. This is not a luxury establishment, a bit shabby not chic.
I thought it was rather expensive for the value but since I didn't make the reservation, I didn't compare rates. It was quite satisfactory to be sure.

  • Stayed May 2008, traveled with family
    • Value
Helpful?
3 Thank Shi Hu
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Catamaran Resort Hotel and Spa

Property: Catamaran Resort Hotel and Spa
Address: 3999 Mission Blvd, San Diego, CA 92109-6959
Phone Number:
Location: United States > California > San Diego
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) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#4 Spa Hotel in San Diego
#4 On the Beach Hotel in San Diego
#5 Luxury Hotel in San Diego
#55 Family Hotel in San Diego
#70 Romantic Hotel in San Diego
#94 Business Hotel in San Diego
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — Catamaran Resort Hotel and Spa 4*
Number of rooms: 315
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
One of the few resorts on Mission Bay to not charge a resort fee! The Catamaran Resort Hotel and Spa is a paradisiacal destination located on the shores of Mission Bay and mere steps from San Diego’s famous Pacific Beach. With features including lush tropical gardens and private beach, this Polynesian-themed hotel offers an ideal blend of fun and tranquility all year-round. Established in 1958, the Catamaran is a paradise featuring more than 1,000 varieties of exotic plants and animals from around the world. Palm trees, bamboo, waterfalls and koi ponds appeal to the senses, while playful parrots delight and intrigue guests. The Catamaran’s architecture, reminiscent of the traditional Colonial Hawaiian style, boasts accents including totem poles handcrafted in Bali, art pieces such as tapa cloth from Vanuatu and a beautiful front desk constructed of Black Koa wood imported directly from Tahiti. At the Catamaran, guests are checked into one of 310 guest rooms, studios or suites, each with a private balcony or patio that opens to stunning views of Mission Bay, the Pacific Beach neighborhood and coastline, or the hotel’s lush tropical gardens. All guests are provided a full range of amenities including complimentary Wi-Fi and 24-hour room service. On-site dining options include Oceana Coastal Kitchen, rated by Zagat as one of San Diego’s most anticipated restaurants of 2015 and featuring chef-driven surf and turf dishes. Next door to this signature restaurant is Moray’s, where guests can sip on a signature Moray’s Mai Tai, savor a local craft beer and enjoy daily happy hour specials. Both venues feature a blend of indoor and patio spaces, the latter lined with tiki torches, fire pit tables and lush palms. Guests may also choose to grab a bite poolside at the Catamaran’s full bar and grill which serves up barbecue favorites during the spring and summer months. Another standout summer special is the Catamaran’s signature luaus, featuring live performers that guide guests through the cultures of the South Pacific as they enjoy a Hawaiian buffet. Those who prefer to spend their time on the water can opt for a cruise on the Bahia Belle, a replica of an 1860s-era sternwheeler that tours around Mission Bay. Step back in time and enjoy a colorful sunset from the top deck, or kick up your heels as the vessel becomes a vibrant nightlife destination with live entertainment and a full-service bar. The Catamaran Spa—the only beachfront spa in San Diego—offers a South Pacific-inspired menu of treatments including massages, facials, body wraps, hydrotherapy treatments and more—carried out with all-natural marine and botanical elements. Additional wellness amenities include an outdoor pool and hot tub, beach cabanas, an open air fitness center, seasonal outdoor yoga classes and more. Further vacation activities include rental paddleboards, sailboats, kayaks, surfboards, bicycles and Segways. The Catamaran is also located within the beach towns Mission Beach and Pacific Beach, where guests can stroll the boardwalk or the iconic Crystal Pier, play at the beach or experience a variety of cafes and boutiques. The resort is also within 10 miles of major San Diego attractions such as SeaWorld, the San Diego Zoo, Balboa Park, Downtown’s Gaslamp District and the San Diego International Airport. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Catamaran Resort & Spa San Diego
Catamaran Hotel Mission Bay
Catamaran Resort San Diego
Catamaran San Diego

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