I recently had the pleasure of staying at the Hard Rock Hotel San Diego as part of #TheNewKia Event. This luxurious hotel at 207 Fifth Ave is close to the Petco ballpark, Convention Center and the bustling Gaslamp Quarter! Die hard rock and roll fans will marvel at the decor while families will enjoy the proximity to the city’s tourist attractions and restaurants.
What works for families
- The hotel has some Queen suites that can accommodate traveling families of four.
- The central location of the property is an important selling point. It is within walking distance to many shopping and dining venues and a short drive away from the city beaches and museums.
- The suites have a curtain separation which provides parents with some privacy.
- The hotel offers free WiFi, and the suites have two TV sets.
What doesn’t work for families
- The hotel is somewhat of a party spot which might bother some parents.
- The bathroom glass door doesn’t lock, and there is a glass wall between the living room and shower.
I got to skip check- in altogether since #TheNewKia Event PR team had already made all the arrangements. All that was left for me was to walk up to my room after receiving my welcome amenity package.
Most travelers are solo and couples that seek a romantic weekend or are looking to have fun. However, there are a few business people and families that are fans of the brand and stay at the property too. Furthermore, the hotel is a favorite spot for conferences and convention goers.
As a huge fan of the chain (I have stayed at several of their properties over the years) I took my time checking out all the memorabilia sprawled across the vibrantly lit lobby.
Decorated in contrasting dark woods and metallic hues, the lobby didn’t have the traditional layout. In fact, it was more of one central space with several tentacle areas leading to the various hotel venues.
The living room
There was a bar area with a long table on the left side of the spacious room. The white and chrome contrasted well with the rest of the dark furniture. The bar area boasted a coffee maker, a small refrigerator as well as a well stocked mini bar atop the granite countertop.
The living room furniture was comprised of an L shaped dark brown leather sofa accompanied by with a chrome glass coffee table. The table and sofa sat across from a 42-inch screen TV with a funky leather red Burgundy chair that I wished I could take home.An abstract painting squared off the hip vibe of the space.
My bedroom was on the large side. It had a comfy king sized wooden platform bed with two nightstands. I liked the wooden headboard that held two mini chrome night lights, perfect for anyone who wants to stay up without disturbing their sleeping partner. Moreover, I was thrilled to find multiple outlets throughout the room to plug in my electronic devices every night.
Across from the bed, there was a second TV along with a built in mini chest of drawers. Complementing the functionally of this space was a standing closet with plenty of room to hang clothing.It even had a small safe, but it was placed quite low, and one had to sit on the floor to use it.
Surprisingly, the balcony did open even though the room was on a high floor. However, the door did have a special lock that could block the door to keep younger kids safe.
The bathroom area featured natural stone and white tile. The shower had an attractive design, with large glass doors and no borders or curtains. It was an open space with a tiled sitting spot perfect for parents to sit and help their kids shower. Though it didn’t have a handheld shower head, it did have two built-in shower heads placed on the ceiling and the side.
The shower area was somewhat unconventional in that it had an opaque glass wall separating it from the living room. Furthermore, the bathroom glass door had no lock on it. Both those features could prove challenging for parents that travel with kids.Directly across from the shower was a separate commode room. The room decorated in burgundy also had a glass door.
The Hard Rock Hotel has two restaurants; MaryJane’s a diner type venue and the upscale Nobu.
MaryJane’s is open from six thirty AM to nine PM Sunday through Friday, and six thirty AM to three AM on Saturday.It is a great place to get traditional American breakfast, lunch, or dinner. Guests can enjoy everything from a Breakfast Burger to fresh fish tacos.
Nobu run by famous chef Nobu Matsuhisa features Japanese cuisine, with, of course, a sushi bar! At Nobu, guests can enjoy a variety of Japanese fare, including a unique Yellowtail Sashimi with Jalapeno creation.
Pool and Spa
Anyone over the age of 21 looking to relax can enjoy the Rock Spa, with multiple pampering treatments available.The Spa offers a variety of treatments that can be performed in-suite or within a poolside cabana.
In between the all #TheNewKia event based fun activities ( including driving their new Kia Nero around town) I did get a chance to check out the hotel pool. It looked inviting, and I regretted I couldn’t spend more time just lounging about.
I didn’t get a chance to see the gym, but a staff member told me it was outfitted with treadmills, weights, and anything else one would need to get a great workout.I was tempted to use one of their complimentary bikes for a quick spin around town but didn’t have the time. And speaking of free rentals- the hotel lets guests borrow fender guitars to use during their stay! How cool is that?
Another place I just had to explore was the hotel’s flagship store.My son and I love the themed clothing and own several t shirts purchased at the various hotels.This time I picked a t shirt for him and a quirky Mary Frances guitar shaped evening bag for me.
Staying at the Hard Rock San Diego doesn’t come cheap. Prices start at $350 and depending on the room they can get to over 6004 a night. All guests get an All Access Pass, which gives them access to the high-speed wireless internet and all other hotel benefits, for $25 a night.
Valet is an additional $45 per day, but there are cheaper self-parking options nearby as little as $15 a day.
I found the staff to be helpful and very attentive. The room was ready on time and exceptionally clean. I contacted housekeeping for some extra towels the first night, and they were delivered to my room in less than 10 minutes.
Autism travel tips
- As I have mentioned before, the property is popular with the younger crowd, especially on the weekends. During the summer there are pool parties that at times can be on the noisy side. If your kid is noise sensitive, I suggest requesting a room facing Petco Park.
- The balcony doors can be locked upon request so make sure to mention any safety concerns you may have before arrival.
- Like in most US hotels there are no life guards supervising the pool, so parents need to be watchful of their kids at all times.