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Enjoy a tropical island retreat in the heart of San Diego

  • Best of both worlds

    San Diego is famous for many world-renowned attractions, but what some visitors may not realize is that you can enjoy a luxury resort experience on Shelter Island, just a few miles from San Diego's airport. You can choose to spend your vacation relaxing and rejuvenating in a tropical setting, but if you do want to explore the region's many attractions, a wide variety of options are close at hand.

    Photo courtesy of Joanne DiBona

  • Touch down minutes from downtown

    San Diego's Lindbergh Field is one of the few airports in the nation located in the heart of a city. It takes ten minutes by car or shuttle to get from the airport to Shelter Island, where you can choose from a wide variety of visitor experiences.

    Photo courtesy of Tony DiBona

  • Resort ambiance

    Just imagine a relaxing getaway a short distance from San Diego's downtown. A multi-million dollar renovation has transformed the historic Kona Kai Resort & Spa (which recently celebrated its 60th anniversary) into a luxury Southern California resort destination. Located on 11 acres on the tip of Shelter Island in San Diego's popular Point Loma neighborhood, the property boasts an exclusive private beach, a 7,000-square-foot state-of-the-art spa, two pools and a wide array of hotel-based activities.

    Photo courtesy of Kona Kai Resort & Spa

  • Water water everywhere

    The Kona Kai Marina carries the distinction of being the closest marina to the open ocean in San Diego Bay. Rent some kayaks at the resort's aquatics center and explore the amazing number of birds that call this estuary their home, gliding past picturesque sailboats and yachts along the way. If you want to speed things up during your stay, rent some jet skis and go for the ride of your life. Or take the kids on a leisurely pedal boat cruise through the placid bay waters.

    Photo courtesy of Tony DiBona

  • Visit one of the nation's oldest national monuments

    Just a short drive away, you can go back in time and visit the Cabrillo National Monument at the southern tip of the Point Loma peninsula. The monument commemorates the landing of Juan Rodríguez Cabrillo at San Diego Bay on September 28, 1542. This event marked the first time a European expedition had set foot on what later became the West Coast of the United States. The monument, established in 1913, offers awe-inspiring views of San Diego's harbor and skyline, as well as a huge expanse of the Pacific Ocean to Mexico.

    Photo courtesy of Joanne DiBona

  • Explore fascinating tide pools

    After your visit to the Cabrillo National Monument, follow the signs to the tide pools for a unique experience exploring a fascinating marine ecosystem. It's an especially favorite place for families to visit with children, as they can discover firsthand the marvelous marine world (sea urchins, starfish, mussels, etc.) nestled among the rocks.

    Photo courtesy of Joanne DiBona

  • Marina views

    You simply won't believe you're in the heart of America's 8th largest city as you soak in the views of the picturesque marina from the Kona Kai Resort's pool, beach or restaurant. Many of the rooms have views either on the marina or on San Diego Bay and the city's dramatic skyline.

    Photo courtesy of Tony DiBona

  • Plucked fresh from the sea

    If you're a seafood lover, you've come to the right place. There are dozens of restaurants in the neighborhood that specialize in surf-to-table seafood specialties (as well as other menu items), such as the Vessel Restaurant located right on the Kona Kai Resort property. Enjoy a luscious seafood platter as you take in the restaurant's picturesque marina views. If seafood isn't your thing, you'll find every kind of cuisine, from vegan to steakhouses, in the vicinity.

    Photo courtesy of Tony DiBona

  • Rock out in San Diego's famous Gaslamp Quarter

    Craving some nightlife? San Diego's world-renowned Gaslamp Quarter is a short drive away from your tropical enclave. Enjoy the ambiance of rich Victorian architecture and history, eclectic dining options, boutique shopping, intimate bars and pulsating nightlife venues within the district's 16 blocks.

    Photo courtesy of Joanne DiBona

  • Cruisin' along

    The Kona Kai Resort's beach cruisers offer guests a street-level experience of local San Diego sites. Your first hour-long ride is complimentary, so don't resist the temptation to pedal around and explore Shelter Island and San Diego Bay while breathing in the fresh sea air and getting exercise!

    Photo courtesy of Tony DiBona

  • A taste of Italy

    San Diego's historic Little Italy community is just minutes away from Shelter Island and consistently ranks as one of the best Little Italy neighborhoods in the nation. The community is rooted in a rich heritage from the thousands of Italian immigrants who came to San Diego's shores in the 1920s to work in the tuna fishing industry. Explore its many restaurants, urban wineries and craft breweries, delis, art galleries, shopping venues, boutique hotels and the impressive central plaza, the Piazza della Famiglia.

    Photo courtesy of Joanne DiBona

  • Savor the sunset

    For a romantic sunset experience like no other, cross the impressive Coronado Bridge (a short distance from Shelter Island) to catch the setting sun over the Point Loma peninsula from the expansive beach at Coronado Island.

    Photo courtesy of Joanne DiBona

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