With a temperate climate and beautiful Pacific beaches, it’s no wonder San Diego is one of the nation’s top vacation destinations. Whether you want to hit legendary links, practice yoga al fresco, or indulge in a decadent French dinner, these four resorts will make your visit something special.
Mornings at Rancho Valencia start with fresh-squeezed orange juice delivered to your door, and that pretty much sets the tone for this five-star resort near Del Mar. Here, your room is a casita complete with fireplace and garden patio, the 18-court tennis center is one of the best in the state, and a fleet of Porsches is available to borrow (and ultimately buy, if you so choose). Spend your days playing golf, practicing tree pose in the stunning outdoor yoga pavilion, or learning to saber Champagne, then dine at one of two on-site eateries, including The Pony Room, where the tequila list boasts more than 100 bottles.
L’Auberge Del Mar
Built on the site of the historic Hotel Del Mar and currently undergoing renovations, L’Auberge Del Mar once drew stars like Jimmy Durante and Desi Arnaz. The Pacific crashes just beyond the pool, visible from your balcony and accessible via private path. The ponies sprint at the famed Del Mar Thoroughbread Club just a mile away, and Del Mar Village’s shops and restaurants are right outside the front door. Catch sunset by the fire pit at Bleu Bar, then head to Coastline, where you can order from the Kitchen 1540 menu, where chef Nathan Lingle crafts award-winning menus using the bounty and herbs from a local farmers' market truck.
Fairmont Grand Del Mar
Inspired by revered architect Addison Mizner, Fairmont Grand Del Mar’s sprawling estate feels plucked from the Mediterranean, thanks to its ornate fountains, formal landscaping, and sculpted stone arches and columns created in Italy by a family of master craftsmen. The design alone is worth a visit (and an Instagram post), but that attention to detail carries over to other elements of the resort, like the spa’s wine-infused facials, the pool’s underwater speakers, and restaurant Addison, where chef William Bradley offers seasonal tastings of contemporary French cuisine that aim for the “haute couture of food.”
The Lodge at Torrey Pines
Golf courses hardly come more scenic than the pair at Torrey Pines, set atop bluffs overlooking the ocean in La Jolla. Guests at the AAA five-diamond Lodge at Torrey Pines get priority tee times, as well as guided hikes inside the adjacent Torrey Pines State Natural Reserve, where trails climb coastal cliffs and descend to golden beaches and tide pools swarming with life. When you’re ready for a break, return to the craftsman-style hotel and lounge by the pool, play croquet on the lawn, or just enjoy a good book by the lobby’s grand, tiled fireplace.
Learn more about luxury lodgings across the state on the California Now Podcast.