Restaurants, Pools & Rooms With A View By The Convention Center & Gaslamp Quarter
When it comes to hotel rooms, I will generally take location over comfort.
Yet when those two elements are combined well then, I have found me a (temporary) home.
Case in point: the Marriott Marquis Marina Hotel. It’s the place to stay & play while in San Diego.
As the name suggests, the hotel is located at a marina. And not just any marina, some remote outpost miles away from anything else, but on the watery edge of downtown San Diego. It is also across the street from the dynamic Gaslamp Quarter, the trolly to Old Town and Mexico, right next to the convention center and, in the other direction, just steps to the Coronado Island ferry boat.
It has been Super Bowl headquarters for the Super Bowls in San Diego, for the America’s Cup and is right across the street from a place that had scenes shot for a famous Hollywood movie (think “You’ve Lost That Lovin’ Feeling”).
But all that’s if you can ever pry yourself away from the Marriott in the first place. The rooms – especially ones with views of the bay – are spectacular. The beds have thick mattresses topped with super-comfortable sheets and a comforter that are all so comfortable it would ordinarily be hard to get out of them except for the obvious fact you’re in San Diego!
On the hotel premises there’s enough to keep one busy and entertained for endless hours. The grounds are gorgeous with two outdoor pools. One features a tropical oasis-type bar called the Tequila Bar & Grille. Go there for afternoon drinks and Roy’s for dinner; this Asian-fusion restaurant has a patio as well as indoor dining with a view. Marina Kitchen & Bar features craft beer brewed specifically for it by San Diego’s well-regarded breweries.
Heck, walking through the lobby area is even exhilarating. It’s buzzing with activity, as there’s always people in town for a convention or gathering for a reunion or work retreat. During PubClub.com’s visit there was even a college basketball team, in town to play San Diego State, staying at the Marriott.
The lobby area is not big and wide but rather long and thin with escalators going to three different levels, and I love walking the length of it, trying identify badges on people from the conventions and figuring out what company or corporation they work for on my way to the pool. And the tequila bar.
The hotel is easy to spot from the outside: it has two tall, glistening silver towers, making it an identifiable mark of the San Diego skyline.
But it’s inside those towers where you’ll find that ideal combination of location and comfort.
Oh, and that famous Hollywood movie shot across the street at Kansas City BBQ? Top Gun.
It’s fitting because the San Diego Marriott Marquis Marina is a top gun of places to say downtown.
San Diego Marriott Marquis Marina Details
Location: Next to the San Diego Convention Center along Harbor Drive with rooms overlooking San Diego Bay
Address: 333 West Harbor Drive, San Diego, CA
Phone: (619) 234-1500
The Rooms: City views, Bay views & Bav views with balconies. Configurations are 1 King or 2 Doubles, 1 King and sofa bed, and 1 King, 2 Murphy beds and 2 bathrooms (Hospitality Suite) and a sofa bed and 1 1/2 baths (Deluxe Suite). Beds have soft-down comforters and thick mattresses.
On-Site Restaurants: Marina Kitchen & Bar, Tequila Bar & Grille (by the pool) Roy’s, Exchange & Starbucks.
Spa & Pools: The Hideaway with a body scrub, body wrap, massages facials and manicures & pedicures. There are two outdoor pools, a whirlpool and a fitness center.
Rates: $150-250. Parking $35. Internet: Extra