10 Best Luxury Hotels in San Diego Are Worth Every Penny

Enjoy your San Diego vacation by spoiling yourself (or the family) at one of San Diego's luxury hotels. They're ritzy but not intimidating. Which one you choose depends on the part of town you need to be in and amenities that suit you.

If the kids need to be entertained while you golf or relax in an award-winning spa, the Park Hyatt Aviara Resort in Carlsbad offers a luxurious, yet family-friendly experience. Drop the kids at seasonal Camp Hyatt for arts, crafts and even some pool time with trained counselors.

Couples seeking a luxe romantic getaway should book the boutique L'Auberge Del Mar hotel, overlooking the beach and just steps from restaurants offering romantic sunset views over the Pacific. The spa menu includes private couples treatments and though families do stay here, property caters more to couples.

The belle of the ball is Fairmont Grand Del Mar, one of the most luxurious properties in the entire country. Visiting celebrities and notable figures choose its Mediterranean opulence and upscale dining options for a very, very good reason. Not to mention its state-of-the-art kids club and award-winning spa.

If you travel extravagantly, San Diego luxury hotels won't disappoint. Here are our 10 favorites.


The over 100-year-old hotel is centrally and conveniently located on Broadway, the downtown area's main boulevard. Directly across the street, guests can explore the many stores, theaters and restaurants of Westfield Horton Plaza or walk a few short blocks to San Diego Bay, Petco Park, and the historical Gaslamp Quarter, which boasts a wide variety of restaurants and entertainment venues. The hotel's 270 guest rooms are fused with iconic architecture and classic empire-style furnishings with modern day amenities and contemporary features, including flat screen televisions, luxurious bath amenities and twice-daily housekeeping. The Grant Grill features fresh "farm to table" California cuisine and serves breakfast, lunch and dinner daily. For seasonal craft cocktails, local brews and regional wines, The Grant Grill Lounge is a lively setting with daily happy hour and weekend entertainment.

Recommended for Luxury Hotels because: It's a historic property with a contemporary feel that is within walking distance of many downtown attractions and restaurants.

Read more about THE US GRANT, a Luxury Collection Hotel, San Diego →

Guests of the elegant Westgate Hotel are able to walk to the Gaslamp shops and restaurants as well as Horton Plaza, the area's popular shopping mall. The 211 rooms include city or harbor views, as well as flat-screen televisions, DVD players, high-speed Internet access, mini bars, and more. This European-style hotel offers two onsite eateries: the Westgate Diner and the award winning French restaurant Le Fontainebleau (go for the famous Sunday brunch). Afternoon tea on the weekends is also popular. The Westgate Hotel also offers an onsite bar, concierge services and complimentary coffee and newspapers in the lobby. A rooftop pool was recently added, too.

Recommended for Luxury Hotels because: Take a step into the opulent lobby and you'll see why this elegant hotel is on the list.

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Four Seasons Residence Club Aviara offers convenient luxury for travelers enjoying extended stays and families requiring the comforts of home. The fully-furnished residences rentals are available for any length of stay. Choose from four villa styles complete with washer and dryer, twice-daily housekeeping and high speed internet. Sizes range from a 425-square-foot one-bedroom with kitchenette to a generous 1670-square-foot two-bedroom with three bathrooms. All have tranquil garden, lagoon, golf course or foothill views. Two heated swimming pools, a fitness center, a new spa and dining are for the exclusive use of guests. The renovated Seasons Restaurant features a interactive chef's table inside the kitchen as well as an opportunity to pull up a barstool to watch, eat and chat with the chefs as they prepare farm-to-table dishes.

Recommended for Luxury Hotels because: This property comes with the usual Four Seasons luxury and is perfect for multigenerational travel.

Read more about Four Seasons Residence Club Aviara, North San Diego →


Known as the pink lady, the luxurious La Valencia Hotel has been a La Jolla landmark since 1926. Its Prospect Street address makes it an ideal location with fine dining, shopping, art galleries, and the ocean just steps away. However, with the gorgeous pool and three critically acclaimed restaurants, it would be easy spend your entire holiday on the property. The recently-renovated hotel retains much of its original Mediterranean characteristics while integrating modern conveniences. Richly appointed custom furnishings, luxurious linens and amenities, WiFi and plasma TVs grace the 112 intimate guest rooms and suites. Panoramic ocean views can and should be enjoyed all over the hotel. Weekend brunch at the Mediterranean Room is popular with locals as is the brand new Cafe la Rue.

Recommended for Luxury Hotels because: Its La Jolla location means San Diego's best restaurants, art galleries and boutiques are steps away.

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L'Auberge Del Mar - Destination Hotels & Resorts
Photo courtesy of L'Auberge Del Mar

Just a quick walk away from one of San Diego's nicest beaches and Del Mar's finest restaurants, the recently renovated L'Auberge Del Mar is an excellent vacation choice. The resort is reminiscent of a private, coastal estate, offering 112 plush guest rooms and 8 hotel suites with village, garden or coastal views. Some of the luxurious hotel amenities offered at L'Auberge include a gorgeous pool overlooking the Pacific, private cabanas, a landscaped footpath to the beach, a state-of-the-art fitness center equipment, two lighted championship tennis courts and a tennis pro for instruction. Kitchen 1540 is onsite and highly regarded for it's Modern American cuisine. Breathe in the sea air at Spa L'Auberge while indulging in massages, body treatments, facials, manicures and pedicures.

Recommended for Luxury Hotels because: A boutique hotel with its own pathway to the beach that is within walking distance of high-end shops and restaurants.

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The Lodge at Torrey Pines
Photo courtesy of The Lodge at Torrey Pines

Boasting stunning ocean and golf course views, The Lodge at Torrey Pines has established itself as one of Southern California's finest resorts. Often referred to as a hidden treasure, the post-and-beam construction throughout the resort pays homage to early 1900s Craftsman-style architecture that is designed to look and feel like a residence. Inside are 170 generously-sized rooms and 8 suites with custom furnishings contributing a historic but contemporary look. A world-class spa performs beauty services and restorative therapies, including massage, wraps, hydrotherapy, and time-honored wellness rituals. The Lodge is centrally located in upscale La Jolla near UCSD, the famous Torrey Pines Golf Course, and major freeways that provide quick access to other San Diego attractions.

Recommended for Luxury Hotels because: This property is perfect for those seeking a relaxing, intimate experience near a world-famous golf course.

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The secluded Park Hyatt Aviara rests above a protected wildlife sanctuary called the Batiquitos Lagoon and enjoys spectacular ocean views. This AAA 5-diamond resort offers all the luxury one might expect from a Park Hyatt. When not splashing around in the 3200 square foot pool, kids can stay busy in Camp Hyatt while you enjoy a leisurely morning at the spa or golf at the resort's Arnold Palmer course, named by Golf Digest and Golf Magazine as one of the best resort golf courses in America. Better yet, improve your swing at the prestigious Aviara Golf Academy, located on the property. LEGOLAND and the San Diego Zoo Safari Park are not too far away, though Downtown San Diego is about a 40 minute drive.

Recommended for Luxury Hotels because: This hotel offers luxury for the entire family, including seasonal Camp Hyatt where kids can play while adults spa or golf.

Read more about Park Hyatt Aviara Resort, Spa & Golf Club →

The iconic red roof has become one of San Diego's most recognizable symbols. The beachfront Hotel del Coronado is filled with over 120 years of history with guests including 11 Presidents, royalty and countless movie stars. Coronado Island is actually a peninsula connected to Downtown San Diego by the famous Coronado Bridge. Attractions in Balboa Park are also just minutes away. This luxurious National Historic Landmark has unveiled several major enhancements including more ocean view dining, a state-of-the art fitness center with classes held on the beach, as well as a facility just for kids and teens. Beach Village is a new 78 room enclave that offers kitchens, private terraces, and larger living spaces. If you forget to pack something, the shops have a variety of amenities and are sure to fill any empty space in your suitcase.

Recommended for Luxury Hotels because: San Diego's posh signature hotel offers amenities for the discerning traveler and is adjacent to a fabulous beach.

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The luxurious Rancho Valencia, tucked away in the affluent Rancho Santa Fe neighborhood, is an all-suite property of 49 suites averaging 1000 square feet in size that recently enjoyed a $30 million renovation. All suites boast a fireplace, private garden patio, spacious bathroom with walk-in closet, and wet mini-bar while some have a private whirlpool spa on the patio. Mediterranean-Spanish decor features colorful hand-painted tile work, open beam ceilings, plantation shuttered windows, and Terra Cotta tile floors. Tennis enthusiasts will love the 18 courts. Other amenities include a heated outdoor pool, two whirlpool spas, croquet lawn, fitness center, and easy access to nearby golf courses. Don't forget to book a spa appointment, too.

Recommended for Luxury Hotels because: Southern California's only Relais & Chateaux property is an opulent, cozy and private wellness retreat.

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Fairmont Grand Del Mar
Photo courtesy of The Grand Del Mar

As Southern California's only triple five star resort, Fairmont Grand Del Mar oozes opulence. Nestled in a secluded canyon east of Del Mar, the sprawling property boasts an equestrian center, luxury spa, state-of-the-art fitness center, 5-star dining, golf, tennis and four heated pools. If the beach is calling, Fairmont Grand Del Mar can chauffeur you there and back with chairs, umbrellas and bottled water in tow. Kids can do crafts and play games in the Explorer's Club while parents take a pilates class or cherish a private dinner at the resort's award-winning French restaurant, Addison. The 249 hotel rooms are lavishly decorated with Pratesi linens and marble bathrooms to compliment tranquil canyon views.

Recommended for Luxury Hotels because: San Diego's best hotel is also the most luxurious and features the city's best restaurant.

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Meet Katie Dillon

Katie Dillon originally moved to the seaside community of La Jolla to attend UC San Diego. When the opportunity presented itself, she and her husband set off for a 7 year stint overseas as...  More About Katie