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“Awesome Prelude to our Mexican Riviera Cruise!”

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Kimpton Hotel Palomar San Diego
Ranked #58 of 278 Hotels in San Diego
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersSilver level
Reviewed 2 May 2014

My husband surprised me with a trip to San Diego to take a cruise Along the Mexican Riviera. We stayed at the Palomara Hotel the night before our departure. It was unfortunate because we were pretty worn out for the packing the night before and just crashed for the entire night, but the hotel itself was really nice. Rooftop bar looked awesome and hotel was in close proximity to the gas lamp district.

Definitely would return to experience what we missed from our previous visit.

  • Stayed: November 2013, travelled as a couple
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Thank Mamoor3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Mark_Van_Cooney, General Manager at Kimpton Hotel Palomar San Diego, responded to this reviewResponded 30 May 2014

Thanks for staying at the Palomar before your awesome cruise to Mexico. We hope you can come back and spend more time with us soon.

Cheers,
Mark

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579 - 585 of 1,254 reviews

Reviewed 1 May 2014

Stayed at this hotel in March as I attended a convention at the convention center. The location is excellent with a lot of dining options. The hotel is modern in its layout. The service was very nice. The rooms were good-sized and the amenities were quite modern, with hardwood floors and plush showers etc. I paid the federal rates which were very good. There was free tea/coffee as well as flavored water options. Internet was free and ran very well. Yes, would stay again.

  • Stayed: March 2014, travelled on business
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Thank jogijogi99
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 25 April 2014

If you are thinking about staying at the Palomar, it is very important that it is the type of hotel you want. Because it can either be a very positive experience or a very negative experience depending on the type of hotel you are looking for. The Palomar is a hipster hotel in a high-energy area of San Diego. If that is what you are looking for, you will enjoy your experience. If you are looking for a quiet resort, you will be disappointed.

OVERVIEW:
I favor Kimpton properties because of their service and the Palomar did not disappoint in that respects. While not always perfect, Kimpton makes an effort, which counts for a lot in my opinion. The few Kimpton properties I have stayed at seem to make a little more effort in terms of service with adequate staffing at the guest contact points at the door, front desk, lounge etc. I think they could teach a few chains about that facet of the hotel business, IMO.

Since we were traveling with a high school senior and the possibility of an additional high-schooler, we wanted to stay in an area that was more urban and high-energy. The Palomar Hotel, north of the Gaslamp Quarter did not disappoint in that regard. The hotel is right next to the House of Blues and about a block from the mall. If you don’t want that kind of energy, pick a different hotel. If you want that kind of energy for a vacation, you will like it a lot. Our travel plans changed and we had to check out earlier. I would be curious how quiet the hotel is during the business week. For our group, which included a high school senior, the hotel worked out perfectly. It helped to contribute to a memorable week. I had to rely on my young adult son for his feedback since he is much cooler than I. He described the hotel as “awesome.”

Check out the Gaslamp quarter website http://www.gaslamp.org

The hotel was having a promotion for their 1,000+ square foot Loft Suites so we reserved two of them. Sweet. We checked in on Friday, so the hotel was busy and the Gaslamp Quarter was hopping that weekend. On the first night, there was a party going on in the suite down the hall. It looked like a lot of fun since there was a bunch of young people dressed in 20’s vintage style. I was a little envious. At 10’ish, hotel staff reminded them to keep the noise reasonable. I was a little worried but the party promptly ended at 11 and it was ghostly quiet after that.

CHECK-IN
Prompt. Efficient. Friendly. Typical Kimpton.

PUBLIC AREAS
From my experience, Kimpton properties go with more of a European boutique style. They do not go with overly large, grand public space. However, since this is a larger hotel, the public spaces were a little larger. The lobby and restaurant had a very hip, contemporary style. The color palate was steel, muted gold and greys.

The pool was nice. The pool was not large, but it was consistent with the modern hipster styling of the hotel.

ROOMS
What is not to like about the Loft Suites? They are beautifully decorated and huge. I love modern style so I loved the design with floor-to-ceiling windows and clean lines, high ceilings etc. My wife thought it was a little cold. Both suites had very comfortable beds. One of the suites had an additional half-bath.

On close inspection, you will see that the rooms are getting a slight bit time-worn. There are a few sagging cushions and scratches. If we were paying $1,500 a night, I might be bothered, but since it was less than a third of that, it wasn’t enough to be bothersome in my opinion.

Suggestion is to get a loft suite if you can. Check directly with the hotel website to see if they are running any specials.

I think this is a 20-story hotel. It is all-suite from floors 16 to 20. The front of the hotel is on 5th street, which is noisy on the weekends, particularly if you are on a lower floor. Try to get a room on floor 10 or above if your reservation type allows it.

LOCATION
Some people might say this is the perfect location for an urban hotel. It is 20 minutes or less to the airport, Balboa Park, the beaches, Old Town and walking distance to the baseball park and the mall. It is surrounded by clubs and restaurants and also next to the light rail. It is not on the water, but many of the upper floor rooms have a distant view of the harbor and ocean. See my note on parking at the end.

If you are younger and hipper, you will be gravitating to this area of town on a weekend night anyway. Might as well stay in the middle of it. We were informed there were a couple of conventions in town that weekend and the Gaslamp Quarter was packed with overflowing restaurants and sidewalks.

MISC
Housekeeping was very accommodating in working around your schedule.

We had room service for breakfast each day. We thought it was very good for the price. We did not use the bar or restaurant as the hotel was surrounded by restaurants.

The loft suites have coffee makers but housekeeping did not replenish the supply and we had to call for more. To make matters worse, the coffee station in the lobby ran out of coffee at the same time.

SUMMARY
Stay at the Palomar if you are young or young at heart. I jokingly whispered to my wife that we don’t have enough body art to stay at the Palomar. If you want a quiet resort in a quiet part of town, this is not the hotel for you. If you want a stuffier experience, stay at the US Grant a block away. I think we will likely stay at the Palomar again the next time we visit San Diego although I am sure we will also check the Kimpton Solamar also.

IMPORTANT WARNING:
Like many urban hotels, the Palomar has valet parking only and it is very expensive. A few years ago, we stayed at the US Grant hotel a few blocks away and parking was exactly the same. In many cities such as Chicago, Denver, London, San Diego etc., downtown businesses are charged a very high penalty for maintaining parking spaces. It is intended to keep the area from becoming overly congested with cars and also to comply with EPA clean air plans. Don’t blame the hotel for the high parking charge. By the way, the Palomar is next to the commuter light rail station. Check it out.

FINAL NOTE
FYI, I notice that I tend to give positive reviews. I don’t know if I tend to stay at nice hotels or if I just prefer to share nice experiences with others. It could also be that I use TripAdvisor and avoid hotels that don’t fit my needs.

  • Stayed: March 2014, travelled with family
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7  Thank JaimeUSA
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Mark_Van_Cooney, General Manager at Kimpton Hotel Palomar San Diego, responded to this reviewResponded 12 May 2014

Thanks JaimeUSA for the great and detailed review. I'd swear you were a travel writer. I'm so happy you had a great stay and enjoyed the high energy of our location.

We hope you come back soon.
Mark

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Reviewed 22 April 2014

Fantastic location in the Gaslamp Quarter. The staff were super friendly, the beds were comfy and the overall atmosphere was great. It's also dog-friendly which is nice. We asked to change rooms and the staff were more than happy to do this. Definitely recommend.

Room Tip: Try to get a room on the higher floors - some of the lower floors don't have great views.
See more room tips
  • Stayed: March 2014, travelled on business
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Thank sarahzhdavis
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Mark_Van_Cooney, General Manager at Kimpton Hotel Palomar San Diego, responded to this reviewResponded 12 May 2014

Thanks Sarah for the great review. I'm glad you enjoyed our awesome staff and you were able to bring your dog. Make sure you check out Saltbox next visit. The craft cocktails and good are amazing.

Cheers,
Mark

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Reviewed 21 April 2014

i expected more from this hotel, but what we got was a small cramped room with bed and sheets that are not comfortable at all. the sheets felt like they were made of wool with how itchy they were. terrible! the bathroom had a modern shower with half a glass as a shower door...half meaning, it's doesn't fully close. we didn't like that. the pool is small and doesn't get sun all day because the building blocks the light. i also noticed (since our room faced the pool) that the mess that people left behind the night before was still there when we woke up the next morning. staff hadn't cleaned it up yet by 10am. the location was not bad, but it is on the borderline of being in a dirty bum hang out of the gas lamp district. overall, we expected more from palomar. guess we'll stick to westin or the W next time, since it's usually more consistent when it comes to expectation.

  • Stayed: March 2014, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Carmela G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Mark_Van_Cooney, General Manager at Kimpton Hotel Palomar San Diego, responded to this reviewResponded 25 April 2014

I'm sorry your room wasn't comfortable and the sheets were itchy Carmela. I'm not sure what happened. We usually get great comments on our beds and comfy sheets. If you are coming back to San Diego, please let me know. My email is mark.vancooney@hotelpalomar.com.

Sincerely,
Mark

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Reviewed 18 April 2014

This hotel stay was excellent thanks to one employee in specific, Neachelle Nadeau. Not only did she upgrade me to an executive sweet, she also offered advise and helped out in any ways she could, including printing any documents I needed for my flight. I will be staying at the Palomar again next time I'm in San Diego because of her.

  • Stayed: April 2014, travelled solo
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1  Thank jared l
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Mark_Van_Cooney, General Manager at Kimpton Hotel Palomar San Diego, responded to this reviewResponded 25 April 2014

Thanks so much for the shout out about Neachelle Jared. She is one of our rock stars and I'm really happy you were able to meet her. Please let us know when you are heading back to the Palomar.

Cheers,
Mark

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Reviewed 15 April 2014

The uber modern bathroom door is a big piece of frosted glass that slides across the entrance. It leaves a 1 inch crack and absolutely no sound buffer. I came for a much-needed romantic get away with my wife and she can terrified to take a dump in my own room!

And whats with the shower not having a door? Just a piece of glass that covers part of the shower, but water spills everywhere on to the floor and makes for a very drafty experience. The wooden floors look nice, but it makes the room cold and uncomfortable. Good thing the room includes a pair of fuzzy socks that they charge $15 for!

You would expect a 4+ star hotel to offer comfort above all else. But this places sacrifices that on multiple levels. The POOL CLOSES AT 8:00PM?! This is not luxury! There is no hot tub despite plenty of room for one which is a bummer. But the spa offers a "couple's soaking tub" at $55 for 30 minutes.

  • Stayed: April 2014, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank Skahdt
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Mark_Van_Cooney, General Manager at Kimpton Hotel Palomar San Diego, responded to this reviewResponded 25 April 2014

I'm sorry your stay wasn't as romantic as you would have liked Skahdt. Our rooms do have the glass bathroom doors and half glass in the showers. However we have two other Kimpton properties close. Hotel La Jolla and Hotel Solamar, please give them a try next time you visit San Diego.

Sincerely,
Mark

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Additional Information about Kimpton Hotel Palomar San Diego

Address: 1047 5th Ave, San Diego, CA 92101
Region: United States > California > San Diego > Downtown
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#12 Spa Hotel in San Diego
#17 Business Hotel in San Diego
#20 Luxury Hotel in San Diego
#21 Green Hotel in San Diego
#26 Romantic Hotel in San Diego
#62 Family Hotel in San Diego
Price Range: £106 - £363 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Kimpton Hotel Palomar San Diego 4.5*
Number of rooms: 211
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Move into luxury and sophisticated, art-filled style at Kimpton Hotel Palomar San Diego. In the center of downtown arts and culture, surrounded by award-winning theaters and nightlife and just steps from San Diego's Gaslamp Quarter, our boutique Kimpton Hotel is a top choice for both work and play. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Se Hotel San Diego
San Diego Se Hotel

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