Hotel del Coronado, Curio Collection by Hilton1500 Orange Ave, Coronado
Start your trip at a seaside classic. The charming island community of Coronado is just a short drive from the San Diego airport, and the town’s heart has long been the Hotel del Coronado, part of the Hilton Curio collection. The hotel’s history stretches back to 1888, when it was one of the first hotels with electricity and an elevator. Since then, this National Historic Landmark with Queen Anne–style red turrets has hosted presidents, movie stars, and even played a role in the Marilyn Monroe movie Some Like it Hot. Guests continue to be treated as royalty with a variety of choices of activities and accommodations from the beachside Cabanas building, the towers known as The Views, or the villas of the Beach Village, featuring private patios and balconies overlooking the Pacific with access to secluded pools. Thanks to a $400 million renovation project completed in 2021, this California legend now features revitalized guest rooms, reimagined restaurants, and a shimmering new pool.
Downtown San Diego is just a 15-minute drive away, along with the nearby San Diego Zoo and Balboa Park. But you can’t go wrong staying put at “The Del,” either. Lounge by the pool or on the beach, join the mermaid fitness class, or get a massage at the spa. The friendly waves off Coronado also make a great place to take a surfing lesson.