Updated: May 21, 2015

Courtyard Marriott San Diego Downtown - Gaslamp Quarter:

My family took a recent trip to San Diego (October 2013) and after much research I picked the Couryard by Marriott hotel in the famed Gaslamp Quarter of downtown San Diego. The location of this hotel could not be better in terms of being right in the thick of things. The hotel sits at the corner of 6th and Broadway This Courtyard hotel used to be the San Diego Trust & Savings Bank and is considered a landmark of a building. The lobby has high ceilings (we mean really high) and there is a nice bar next to the restaurant called Lincoln's Bar & Grill. We had rented a car so the valet service (there is no parking on site) met us on 6th Avenue and took our car for us. At $24/day to park (plus the daily rental car fee) it's expensive if you want to have access to your own car while in San Diego. We opted to get a car since our travels took us up to Legoland and Disneyland later in our trip. The rooms are large and ours had 2 queen beds with a small refrigerator which came in handy with 2 kids always wanting something to eat or drink while we were in the room.


Our room had a city view, some offer more of a water view. The staff was very accommodating in helping us find restaurants to eat it and they guided us to the local trolley stop so we could catch the trolley/train to Seaport Village one night. At $1.25 each way (for adults - kids ride free) it was a total bargain. The trolley stop was just one block north of the hotel and easy to find. We felt safe and it took less than 5 minutes once on the trolley to get to Seaport Village and the waterfront. Walking at night around the hotel and into the Gaslamp Quarter seemed safe as there are literally 100's of people on the streets with you. My only complaint with the hotel was that on a Saturday night some partygoers came back to their rooms (next to ours) and continued partying well past 3 AM. I finally called downstairs for someone to handle the situation and they did. Other than that one episode the hotel was more than we could have asked for. It's expensive, but the location makes it a great choice if you don't want to have to drive to much. The hotel also offers a fitness center, a 24-hour food market, and a business center with computers to go online and print out documents. My wife and I used the Internet a few times and it was nice to have access to email while on vacation. There are 14 floors with 245 hotel rooms (230 rooms and 15 suites). Whether traveling for business or pleasure, the Courtyard hotel in downtown San Diego makes for a great place to stay. I considered staying in the Old Town Courtyard Hotel a little further from downtown, but chose this location for all the things you can get to on foot. We would definitely recommend it to others as the staff was always very helpful. My kids liked the fact that the hotel offered free cookies each night near the check-in counter.

Location:

As we mentioned above the hotel is at the corner of Broadway and 6th Avenue in downtown San Diego. You can view an excellent interactive map online HERE. That page also has written directions from the San Diego Airport which were easy to follow. Having traveled to so many cities over the years I can honestly say getting from the San Diego Airport to downtown is perhaps the easiest trip you will ever make in any major city. You never have to get on a freeway or busy street. We arrived on a Friday evening during what would normally be rush hour and it was a breeze. It took all of about 10 minutes to get from the rental car parking lot to the hotel. The actual address is 530 Broadway Street in San Diego, CA 92101. Their direct phone # is 619-446-3000 or toll free at 800-321-2211. The Gaslamp Quarter pretty much runs south from the hotel along 4th, 5th, and 6th Avenues down to the Convention Center. There are dozens of restaurants to pick from and the weather was absolutely perfect for an evening stroll.

Room Rates and Reservations:

Since this hotel is in prime downtown real estate, the room rates are expensive and range from $240 (weekend night) to $380 (weeknight). You can go with 2 queens or a suite with a king bed. The rooms have free high speed internet access (not wireless) and if you request it you can get a small refrigerator in your room too. You can make reservations right online HERE with their easy to use date and availability calendar. For those of you who like to talk to a real person and ask questions, feel free to call them at the phone #'s listed above. We found their staff to be more than friendly and they answered all our questions.

Nearby Attractions/Activities:

San Diego is loaded with activities for both couples and families who are traveling. As a family, we were interested in the San Diego Zoo (just a few miles away) and SeaWorld. Both attractions are within a few minutes drive from the hotel and well worth the visit if you have children. We also visited Ocean Beach one afternoon as the weather was so inviting at around 75 degrees. The Gaslamp Quarter is very family friendly with lots of restaurants to choose from like Rock Bottom Brewery, Hard Rock Cafe, Fred's Cantina, or the Yard House. The hotel can give you a detailed map with all these places listed clearly. We took the trolley to Seaport Village one night and had a nice sunset meal at the San Diego Pier Cafe. There are shops and great dessert spots throughout Seaport Village.