The touristy Old Town area gets a lot of traffic, but this mission-style hotel is also surrounded by parks, and its sprawling layout on a hillside keeps it above the fray. Shops and restaurants are within walking distance, and the neighborhood is filled with character, with such sights as the historic Whaley House Museum, among other old, original Spanish buildings. The large rooms have great Southwest character, though their layout is peculiar and the bathrooms are too small. The grounds of the Best Western Plus Hacienda Hotel Old Town are big and beautiful -- but be prepared to climb stairs.
Formerly a shopping center, the hotel is spread out around multiple buildings on a hillside. There are no long dark hallways here, but airy outdoor verandas, partially covered walkways, and staircases cutting through courtyards with fountains and countless places to sit in the Southern California sunshine. The Spanish-influenced lobby has a great lounge area around a huge stone fireplace under exposed wood beams and lazy ceiling fans.
Known as the birthplace of California, Old Town is a popular tourist destination. The area can get crowded, with its high density of shopping and dining, but it has public green spaces in almost every direction. The hotel is within walking distance of Heritage park, Old Town Historic Park, and Presidio Park -- and there's plenty of breathing room too. Around the corner is Heritage Park, famous for its restored Victorian buildings and well-manicured landscapes. One block south, San Diego Avenue is packed with tourist shops and great Mexican food. The airport is a 12-minute drive, and downtown San Diego is less than 10 minutes by car.
Southwestern decor can be found in these rooms which feature interesting layouts; some have balconies.
All 200 rooms are furnished in a Southwest/Spanish hacienda style, with red terra-cotta floor tiles, white plastered walls, and Santa Fe furniture. Rooms have shared courtyard entrances, but some have private balconies with great views of the colorful streets of Old Town. All have quirky layouts and manage to be large, but they make poor use of the interior space (tiny desks facing corners and couches in the middle of the room, for example). Bathrooms are small and cramped, but at least there's a separate area for the sinks and vanities. All rooms have mini-fridges, coffeemakers, and microwaves; some have kitchenettes instead.
The outdoor pool and hot tub, margarita happy hour, and free shuttle are nice perks.
The outdoor heated pool and hot tub are on the small side, but as a bonus the sundeck has great views of Old Town from the hotel's hillside perch. The Old Town Tequila Factory Restaurant & Cantina also has great views from the rooftop. It serves Mexican standards with indoor and outdoor seating, and can get busy during its margarita happy hour. Five meeting rooms -- including banquet facilities -- total more than 4,500 square feet of available event space. There's a small, windowless fitness room with a couple of circuit machines and treadmills, but no spa or sauna. Housekeeping delivers two bottled waters each day for free, and the hotel operates a free shuttle to the airport, the Amtrak station, and San Diego harbor's cruise ship terminal.
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