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Opinion of 2 hotels

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Opinion of 2 hotels

We have narrowed our hotel search to 2 hotels, both Holiday Inns. We usually stay at Holiday Inn Expresses when we travel as we have found them to be reasonably priced, clean, nice breakfast, etc.

Our 2 choices are: 1) Holiday Inn Express Old Town; and 2) Holiday Inn San Diego On the Bay. Both look to be fairly decent places to spend 2 nights.

HI Old Town offers: 1) airport and cruise shuttles; 2) free breakfast buffet; 3) shuttle to SD Zoo (we are planning to visit there). Price is slightly less than HI On The Bay. Also is only 2 story hotel and maybe in a quieter area than the Bay area. Reviews seem better for this hotel also.

HI On The Bay offers free airport and zoo shuttles, does not offer free breakfast, high rise hotel on the bay and near the cruise port.

Price slightly higher than Old Port HI. Website says that pets are allowed. Not sure this is a good feature. Also the noise factor is reportedly higher because of the airport, train station, etc. This would be a huge factor for me as I am not a good sleeper when we travel.

This is where I need advice. Which would be the better option for us? We will be disembarking our cruise ship and heading towards our hotel, will leave our luggage and head for the zoo. Check in after we return from the zoo (will have pre-registered).

Is the Bay Hotel close enough from the port where we could walk to the hotel w/ our luggage? We are not renting a car so want to be in a walkable area to restaurants, etc.

Old Town looks to be further out so not sure this would be a good selection for us. Their website indicates restaurants nearby.

Thanks for your help.


San Diego...
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1. Re: Opinion of 2 hotels

Overall I would pick the Old Town location, based on what you like and dislike. The shuttles to get you to the zoo and the cruise ship terminal make up for its further-away location. The one On The Bay is almost across the street from the cruise ship terminal, and assuming you can carry all your luggage when walking, you would only have to cross one street (Harbor Drive) and then walk north a block to get to the cruise ship terminal. That would be the main advantage of staying there. However, you say the Old Town location offers a shuttle to the cruise ship terminal, thus erasing the advantage of the On the Bay one's location. As far as restaurants, there is an abundance of Mexican restaurants in the Old Town area, so if you like Mexican food, that would be a good choice. The On the Bay area is within a reasonable walk to the Little Italy part of San Diego, so if you really like Italian food that would be a good choice. It is also not too far away from the center of downtown and the Gaslamp Quarter, with an abundance of restaurants there. But those could also be easily reached from Old Town by a short ride on the San Diego Trolley, from the Old Town Transit Center. The only advantage for you of staying at the HI On the Bay would be its close proximity to the cruise ship terminal. On all other issues I think the Old Town location would be a better choice. However I've never stayed in either of those hotels so I have no idea what they are like on the inside.

San Diego
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2. Re: Opinion of 2 hotels


We actually stayed at the On The Bay location for New Years Eve. The location is practically across from the cruise terminal as mentioned above. I think that is its best feature. It has 3 buildings and the south building has the best views. We had trouble with our heat and would probably not choose it again.

My sister and her husband stayed at the Hi Exp Old Town last summer.

We liked the Spanish feel of it but you would be more at the mercy of the shuttle driver there than in downtown where you could easily walk yourself to the lightrail or bus and go to the zoo on your own. The lightrail stop in Old Town is a bit of a walk from the Hi Express but doable if youare "walkers". Besides the Mexican restaurants the Old Town neighborhood also has 2 decent Italian ones,a deli for sandwiches, a sushi place so there is some variety.

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3. Re: Opinion of 2 hotels

Id choose HI on the Bay. I personally dont think there is much in Old Town, Sire a few bars and restaurants, but the HI on the BAy is downtown on the water close to everything.

Edited: 19 February 2011, 00:30
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4. Re: Opinion of 2 hotels

I'd choose the HI On the Bay, it is walkable to Little Italy and the Trolley to go into Old Town or the Gaslamp.

The HI Inn Express is nice and Old Town is full of some decent Mexican restaurants, but on the bay is on the bay.

5. Re: Opinion of 2 hotels

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