I can tell you that Downtown San Diego hotels are favorites for travelers seeking an urban yet convenient location. The airport is 5-10 minutes away, and you can walk to top restaurants, nightlife, and popular things to do across the area’s multiple neighborhoods that I’ll quickly explain first.

This list of best hotels in downtown San Diego includes Gaslamp Quarter San Diego hotels, but you need not limit yourself to this historic district. Rapidly gentrifying East Village is home to PETCO Park (where the San Diego Padres play) and great dining. The two hotels mentioned in the Civic Core neighborhood are so close to the Gaslamp Quarter that people think they’re in it.

I mention hotels in the Marina neighborhood along the bay near Seaport Village and the San Diego Convention Center, where there are water views. The Columbia neighborhood is steps from Little Italy and the Embarcadero waterfront entertainment area.

You can also refer to my separate lists of the best Little Italy San Diego hotels and the best San Diego airport hotels. These two groups of options are also located in greater downtown San Diego. I know, so many choices for where to stay!

Note from Katie: We independently choose all featured hotels. Booking methods mentioned are popular with our readers or ones we think offer the best value. If you book through select links, we may earn a commission and appreciate you supporting our business. Prices and amenities are subject to change. Our editorial guidelines.

1. Pendry San Diego (Top Pick)

Neighborhood: Gaslamp Quarter
Category: Luxury
Address: 550 J Street, San Diego, CA 92101

The pool at Pendry San Diego, my top pick for best downtown San Diego hotels.
A great rooftop pool and lounge (photo courtesy of Pendry San Diego).

Pendry San Diego is one of my favorite downtown San Diego hotels because it offers travelers contemporary rooms, excellent dining, awesome concierge services, and five-star customer service. I receive A LOT of positive reviews and feedback from families, solo, business, and couples travelers. The hotel earns its repeat guests, and I love staying here (and getting massages at the spa).

People like the stunning decor throughout the entire hotel, including the beer hall, social club (hotel guests skip the queue to this nightlife experience), rooftop lounge, fitness center, elegant hotel bar, and signature farm-to-table restaurant. Room service is also always an option.

The luxury boutique hotel is not a small hotel either, with 317 rooms, including 36 suites. And they’re extremely pet-friendly with no weight limit or fee for up to two dogs per accommodation.

The hotel hosts weekend pool parties during peak season that are not family-friendly. Check The Pool House schedule.

Pendry San Diego is part of Montage Hotels and a Virtuoso property, which means that I can add the following benefits:

  • Upgrade on arrival, subject to availability
  • Breakfast credit at Provisional Restaurant or In-Room Dining for two guests per bedroom daily ($30 maximum per person, per day)
  • $100 USD Resort or Hotel credit to be utilized during stay (not combinable, not valid on room rate, no cash value if not redeemed in full)
  • Early check-in/late check-out, subject to availability
  • Complimentary Wi-Fi

2. InterContinental San Diego

Location: Columbia (across from the Embarcadero)
Category: Luxury
Address: 901 Bayfront Court, San Diego, CA 92101

Corner suite view of the bay from InterContinental San Diego hotel in downtown.
View of the bay from a suite (photo courtesy of InterContinental)

InterContinental San Diego stands 18 stories tall, and it’s an impressive modern structure within a short walking distance to the waterfront.

The location right across from the Port of San Diego Embarcadero (where the cruise ship terminal is) makes sightseeing on the San Diego Bay, visits to the USS Midway Museum or the Maritime Museum of San Diego, and dinners in Little Italy a breeze. I’ve also listed it as a top place to stay near San Diego International Airport.

All of the 400 contemporary rooms and suites enjoy water views and coastal-inspired decor. Suites and Club Level rooms come with Club InterContinental lounge access for two people. Inclusions are daily breakfast, all-day beer and wine, evening cocktail hour, and more. You can also lounge at the outdoor swimming pool with panoramic bay views.

Some people feel this InterContinental isn’t as luxe as other ICs, but I think it’s a great place to stay in downtown San Diego. I like the location, the views, the Club Level, and the amenities. There’s also a fitness center, an onsite Starbucks, two restaurants, and three bars. It usually prices well for what you get.

The best hotel deals for this property are usually via IHG Rewards.

3. Manchester Grand Hyatt San Diego

Neighborhood: Marina (near the Convention Center)
Category: Moderate
Address: 1 Market Place, San Diego, CA 92101

Manchester Grand Hyatt's outdoor pool makes it a perfect downtown San Diego hotel for families.
A big hotel with some family amenities (photo courtesy of Hyatt).

Combining a great location, views, and amenities, the Manchester Grand Hyatt San Diego provides value for the area. You’ll have to not mind its size of over 1,600 rooms and suites spanning two massive towers. A benefit of the height is the sweeping views of the San Diego Bay to Coronado from the rooftop bars — by far one of the best vantage points in the neighborhood — and many rooms.

They offer seasonal activities for kids, like Camp Hyatt, movies at the pool, arts and crafts, foosball, Friday game night, and more out of the downtown San Diego hotels, so it also made my list of best kid-friendly San Diego hotels.

They also have a basketball court, volleyball court, tennis court, and shuffleboard. You can book Club Level rooms. Its location is also near the Convention Center and above Seaport Village and an easy walk down to the USS Midway Museum and other Embarcadero sights. You can also walk to baseball games at PETCO Park in the other direction. A Hertz rental car desk is located inside the hotel.

Their pet policy allows up to two dogs per room as long as their combined weight does not exceed 75 lbs. The maximum weight for any dog is 50 lbs. Additional fees apply.

If you need a moderately-priced suite, check here because they tend to price well. Service can be a little impersonal due to the hotel’s size and don’t expect luxury hotel amenities.

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4. THE US GRANT, a Luxury Collection Hotel, San Diego

Neighborhood: Gaslamp Quarter
Category: Luxury
Address: 326 Broadway, San Diego, CA 92101

Deluxe double room at THE US GRANT San Diego hotel in downtown.
Deluxe double room (photo courtesy of THE US GRANT).

Part of Marriott’s Luxury Collection, THE US GRANT is situated in the heart of downtown San Diego. In addition to being known for exemplary service, it’s listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The five-star hotel was built originally in 1910 by the son of President Ulysses S. Grant.

For art lovers and shoppers —you’re in the right spot. The hotel sits a block north of the Lyceum Theater and one block east of Spreckels Theater. And it’s a short walk to the eclectic Gaslamp boutiques.

Despite having 270 rooms and suites, THE US GRANT feels more intimate than some larger hotels. Guests also like the 9′ ceilings and modern rooms decorated with custom contemporary art. It’s one of the haunted hotels in San Diego. As legend has it, the wife of Ulysses S. Grant Jr. still wanders the halls to this day.

This luxury hotel prices well because they do not have a swimming pool or a full-service spa. I have enjoyed my stays here and found the service to be excellent.

For more pros and cons, please read my review of THE US GRANT. Virtuoso is typically the best hotel deal because of the following benefits that I can add to your stay:

  • Upgrade on arrival, subject to availability
  • Full breakfast daily for up to two in-room guests in The Grant Grill or via room service (maximum value of $60 per day)
  • $100 USD Food & Beverage credit to be utilized during stay (not combinable, no cash value if not redeemed in full, available in the Grant Grill or via room service only)
  • Early check-in/late check-out, subject to availability
  • Complimentary Wi-Fi

When booking Marriott hotels on Virtuoso.com, use only the number of adults traveling to get the correct rates. Kids may otherwise be priced as adults. We will add them after we follow up to collect your arrival details.

5. Omni San Diego Hotel

Neighborhood: Gaslamp Quarter
Category: Moderate
Address: 675 L Street, San Diego, CA 92101

Aerial view of the pool deck and lounge at Omni San Diego Hotel.
Seasonal pool deck (photo courtesy of Omni San Diego Hotel).

Rumored to be the hotel chain of choice for Oprah Winfrey, the Omni San Diego Hotel offers a moderate-luxury experience with a prime location.

Positioned at the base of Gaslamp, you are located right in between the iconic Gaslamp sign, PETCO Park baseball stadium, and the San Diego Convention Center.

The 21-story hotel also features an elegant 8,000-square-foot terrace with a heated pool and jacuzzi, a stone fireplace, and a tanning deck for those looking to soak up the San Diego sunshine.

Other amenities include a 24-hour fitness center, a coffee shop, a full bar, and a poolside terrace restaurant. They even have a pedestrian walkway that connects the hotel to PETCO Park and a 4th-floor baseball memorabilia collection.

This hotel in downtown San Diego is popular with families, and you can book rooms with a bay view. If you’re visiting San Diego with kids, this is a great hotel because of its close access to the best San Diego theme parks, like SeaWorld and the San Diego Zoo.

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6. Hotel Republic San Diego, Autograph Collection

Neighborhood: Columbia
Category: Moderate
Address: 421 W B Street, San Diego, CA 92101

Hotel Republic San Diego Corner Executive Room interior.
Corner Executive Room (photo courtesy of Hotel Republic San Diego/Jason Dewey Photography)

This lifestyle hotel in downtown San Diego is part of Marriott’s Autograph Collection of over 125 one-of-a-kind properties worldwide.

A local restaurant group handles the three onsite dining options ranging from a cool rooftop terrace to a grab-and-go cafe.

Club Level rooms, a complimentary benefit for Marriott Rewards Gold and Platinum members (though anyone can book into Club Level), come with all-day water and sodas, continental breakfast, and daily happy hour in the lounge.

Pop-up events and contemporary coastal decor immerse guests in the local experience at Hotel Republic San Diego.

You can book in as a Marriott Luminous VIP guest with extra amenities such as complimentary daily breakfast for two, a room upgrade at check-in (subject to availability), and more.

  • Priority for complimentary room upgrade (based on availability upon arrival)
  • Daily breakfast for two people in the Veranda Club Lounge
  • Chef’s welcome amenity
  • VIP status granted
  • Early check-in/late check-out, subject to availability
  • Complimentary Wi-Fi

Tip: You can view the Luminous rate by searching your dates here (it does not populate on all dates). I’ll need to book for you, so if you want the Luminous rate, use the button below to send me your dates and preferred room type.

7. Carte Hotel San Diego Downtown, Curio Collection by Hilton

Location: Columbia (on the border of Little Italy)
Category: Moderate
Address: 401 W Ash Street, San Diego, CA 92101

Rooftop lounge with large TV screen and outdoor seating areas at Carte Hotel San Diego.
The rooftop lounge (photo courtesy of Carte Hotel San Diego)

Carte Hotel San Diego is a new boutique hotel. It’s in the Columbia neighborhood on Civic maps, but it’s considered a Little Italy San Diego hotel because it’s right on the edge. You’ll be at the Embarcadero or in the heart of Little Italy’s shopping and dining in a few blocks.

Don’t worry. You’ll be able to work off all of that fresh pasta and pizza. The hotel is integrated with a 28,000-square-foot Fit health club with a full roster of classes, grab-and-go healthy eats, and state-of-the-art cardio and weight equipment. You can cool down at the outdoor pool on the lovely rooftop terrace, cocktail in hand.

The onsite restaurant, WaterColors, serves international cuisine by Chef Philip Hoffer, who graduated from the San Diego Culinary Institute and worked as a Chef De Cuisine for the US Grant. Some of their entrees include a signature burger, a lobster roll with tarragon aioli, and chili blackened nordic blu salmon. 

A deck menu also features yummy shareable meats, frozen margaritas, and all the best outdoor snacks you could crave, delivered poolside.

The guest rooms are contemporary coastal design. I like the refillable water bottle stations on every floor. I can also tell you from personal experience at dinner that the onsite restaurant, WaterColors, offers an excellent sea-to-table menu, wine list, and craft cocktails.

8. The Guild Hotel, San Diego, A Tribute Portfolio Hotel

Neighborhood: Columbia
Category: Luxury (though prices well)
Address: 500 W Broadway, San Diego, CA 92101

King room at The Guild hotel in downtown San Diego.
A king room (photo courtesy of The Guild)

What draws people to The Guild Hotel, San Diego, part of Marriott’s Tribute Portfolio, is how the architects and designers integrated a luxury boutique hotel into existing features of a historic Italian Renaissance-inspired building that was the Army-Navy YMCA.

This is a beautiful hotel from top to bottom, featuring highlights such as the original stone staircase, intimate seating areas, a lush courtyard. Army green and blue accents complement refined but minimal interiors.

It’s meant to be an experiential hotel, so they’ve formed some fun partnerships. Guests can purchase day passes to the Broadway Athletic and Swim Club across the street for a nominal fee. The concierge team can help you arrange luxury car transportation, PETCO Park tickets, and more.

You’ll want to pay attention to the accommodations regarding size as some guest rooms are small, even for the downtown area. Go with a higher floor if you’re a light sleeper to avoid street noise (a good rule of thumb at all downtown San Diego hotels). I have some great perks here that include:

  • Priority for complimentary room upgrade (based on availability upon arrival)
  • Daily breakfast for two people in Luca restaurant ($12 per person value)
  • Chef’s welcome amenity
  • VIP status granted
  • Early check-in/late check-out, subject to availability
  • Complimentary Wi-Fi

Tip: You can view the Luminous rate by searching your dates here and compare it to other Marriott packages. I’ll need to book for you, so if you want the Luminous rate, use the button below to send me your dates and preferred room type. Luminous benefits apply to stays of two nights or longer.

9. The Westgate Hotel

Neighborhood: Civic Core (edge of the Gaslamp Quarter)
Category: Moderate-Luxury
Address: 1055 2nd Avenue, San Diego, CA 92101

The European-style lobby of the glamorous Westgate Hotel.
Feel like you’re in Europe (photo courtesy of The Westgate Hotel).

Donning a classic Victorian vibe, The Westgate Hotel capitalizes on an era of grand décor while providing modern amenities expected by savvy travelers. Enjoy big rooms, a lovely rooftop pool, and a fantastic location in the heart of Downtown San Diego.

I can say from personal experience that you’ll almost feel like you’re in Europe, but without crossing the Atlantic.

Guests can also take advantage of the adjacent AquaVie Spa + Wellness Center during a stay. Be sure to book the lovely Sunday champagne brunch at Le Fontainebleau.

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10. Marriott Marquis San Diego Marina

Neighborhood: Marina (adjacent to the Convention Center)
Category: Moderate
Address: 333 W Harbor Drive, San Diego, CA 92101

Aerial view of Marriott Marquis San Diego pool and marina full of boats.
It’s the closest hotel to the convention center (photo courtesy of Marriott).

This waterfront hotel prioritizes creating a unique and wonderful experience for all guests. Just outside of the main Gaslamp area, the Marriott Marquis San Diego Marina sits on the waterfront steps from Seaport Village.

Conference-goers stay here because it’s also adjacent to the San Diego Convention Center. Every room boasts either a city or San Diego Bay view. You also have Marina services at the hotel, such as boat, jet ski, and paddleboard rentals.

Enjoy a spacious tropical outdoor pool, their restaurant right along the bay, and good customer service every step of the way.

The hotel offers City View and Bay View rooms and suites, which have been newly renovated to feature improved amenities and a clean, refreshing decor.

For an elevated experience, you can reserve a place in the M Lounge, a private club that offers continental breakfast, hors d’oeuvres, non-alcoholic drinks, and a dessert menu.

11. Palihotel San Diego

Neighborhood: East Village
Category: Moderate
Address: 830 Sixth Ave, San Diego, CA 92101

The historic St James Hotel is now the Palihotel San Diego, featuring 122 guest rooms and a new, vibrant design that boasts a nautical theme. The renovation was done by Palisociety, a hotel management group known for their artsy, artistic style that plays on California’s colorful, elegant style. 

The new renovation transforms the St James’ 122 rooms and introduces the St James French Diner, an all-day eatery serving brunch, dinner, and cocktails that combine French cuisine with American flavors, like the Burger Parisienne, topped with caramelized onions and bordelaise sauce, and an omelette made with comte, crème fraîche, and herbs.

The renovated rooms boast a fun, preppy design and feature Bellino Fine Linens, bath amenities from Diptyque, a SMEG mini fridge, a Nespresso coffee machine, free Wi-Fi, a rainfall shower head, a stocked mini-bar, and a 43” HDTV. 

There are several rooms available that include king and queen size beds. The standard queen room is 165-190 square feet, and the king room is 165-175 square feet. The Deluxe King Suite is 260 square feet.

Meanwhile, the Deluxe King is 340 square feet and includes a sleeper sofa and ottoman for those who need extra room for the kids. Then there’s the 410-square-foot King Suite, which includes a sleeper sofa in its own separate seating area for increased privacy.

Located in the Gaslamp Quarter, the Palihotel is within walking distance of many shops and restaurants. As one of the most historic and vibrant areas in San Diego, the Gaslamp Quarter offers plenty of nightlife, including bars, cocktail lounges, and jazz clubs. It’s also full of Victorian architecture and boutiques, which make it a great place to wander around. 

When you stay at the Palihotel San Diego, you can also take advantage of special offers. The “Weekly Happenings” at the St. James French Diner range from half-price cereal and lattes on Mondays to late-night happy hour on Fridays and Saturday oyster specials.

I recommend staying two to three nights at the Palihotel if you want to hit some San Diego hotspots. It’s an interesting hotel with a lot of charm that’s made even better thanks to the recent renovations. 

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12. Hard Rock Hotel San Diego

Location: Gaslamp Quarter
Category: Moderate
Address: 207 5th Avenue, San Diego, CA 92101

Hard Rock San Diego outdoor lounge and bar seating areas after sunset.
This lounge area near the pool can be quite a scene (photo courtesy of Hard Rock San Diego).

Right across the street from the San Diego Convention Center and adjacent to the iconic Gaslamp Sign, the Hard Rock Hotel puts you at the base of downtown San Diego, right in all the action.

This modern hotel gives you access to its stunning rooftop pool, enjoys a spa on-site, and has the hip nightclub at the bottom of the venue. And, of course, there is a ton of rock and roll memorabilia inside. Though families do stay here, I think it’s for people who like the rock and roll vibe, late nights, and a pool scene.

I don’t recommend this spot for families with kids as it does tend to attract a nightlife-driven crowd. Float, the rooftop poolside bar, features cabanas and lounge spots during the day, and at night, it becomes a vibrant hotspot. Guests at the hotel receive two complimentary VIP access passes, so it’s a great deal for anyone looking for a fun date night in San Diego.

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13. Andaz San Diego

Location: Gaslamp Quarter
Category: Moderate
Address: 600 F Street, San Diego, CA 92101

An Andaz San Diego hotel room interior with city views.
Andaz San Diego is good for nightlife seekers.

For the traveler seeking a sleek, modern venue, the Andaz San Diego is sure to delight. They easily blend a modern minimalist approach with a chic design targeted to a younger crowd.

The Star Suite is their largest suite (1275 sq ft) and features one king-sized bed, king bunk beds, artwork from local artists, and a wet bar. A really cool Cabana Suite has a downstairs section that opens up to the rooftop pool.

At the rooftop outdoor pool, you’ll find gorgeous cabanas and a bar that is always a crowd-pleaser. Rooms have recently been refreshed, and this historic building first opened in 1913 for the Worlds Fair. You’re surrounded by nightlife when you check in here. They are also a great choice if you’re looking for a pet-friendly hotel in downtown San Diego.

Andaz San Diego can also be booked with Hyatt Prive benefits that include:

  • $50 USD Property Credit
  • Room Upgrade*
  • Breakfast for Two
  • Welcome Amenity
  • Guest Welcome Letter
  • Early Check-In*
  • Connecting Rooms*
  • Free Wifi

* Subject to forecasted occupancy

14. Kimpton Alma San Diego

Neighborhood: Civic Core (one block north of the Gaslamp Quarter)
Category: Moderate
Address: 1047 5th Avenue, San Diego, CA 92101

Hotel Palomar San Diego pool with white lounge chairs in the background.
The small pool and lounge area are a fun place to unwind.

The Kimpton Alma is in the Gaslamp Quarter, just 2 miles away from the San Diego Zoo. Its laidback, SoCal vibes make it a fun place to stay, but it’s more likely to appeal to adults than families with kids. It is a boutique hotel with an upscale and inviting atmosphere, perfect for sipping cocktails next to the modest rooftop pool.

There are touches of colorful Mexican artwork woven throughout the design, but the rooms have a minimal, relaxing aesthetic with pale blue headboards, warm leather accents, and plush white linens.

Among the 211 rooms, the Kimpton Alma offers specialty suites, premium guest rooms, and ADA accommodations with accessibility amenities. The specialty suites offer breathtaking views of downtown San Diego with floor-to-ceiling windows, and they’re complete with a separate dining and seating area, Italian bed linens and bathrobes, luxury bathroom amenities by Atelier Bloem, LCD flatscreen TV, yoga mat, hair dryer, umbrella, and personal safe to store your valuables. 

There are several suites, ranging from 600 to over 1,500 square feet.  The 2-Bedroom Skyline Penthouse Suite features a king and double bed, two and a half bathrooms, a six-person dining table, and floor-to-ceiling windows that open just a crack.

Premium guest rooms are smaller, naturally, but still feature all the standard amenities found in the suites. King, queen, and two double-bed options are available to suit solo travelers, couples, and groups. 

There is no shortage of dining options at Kimpton Alma. There are three on-site restaurants, the extravagant five-star eatery and cocktail lounge, The Desmond, and the rooftop bar, Leave of Absence. The Cafe is the place to go if you want to grab a latte, cold brew, or Americano during your stay. 

One thing I love about the Kimpton Alma is its close access to so many amazing places in San Diego, like Little Italy, Balboa Park, Coronado Beach, and the Art District. No matter your travel style, you’ll be able to access the most appealing attractions from one of the best hotels in the Gaslamp Quarter. 

Take advantage of the beer concierge, who can help lead you to the best suds in town. They’ll also have your pets and kids California Dreamin’ in no time. Take out a loaner bike to explore and book a Skyline room for the best city views. Book using IHG Rewards.

15. Hotel Indigo San Diego Gaslamp Quarter

Neighborhood: East Village
Category: Moderate
Address: 509 9th Avenue, San Diego, CA 92101

Ballpark view studio suite at Hotel Indigo San Diego, a downtown San Diego hotel.
Ballpark view suite!

As LEED-certified with eco-friendly operating practices in place, Hotel Indigo San Diego-Gaslamp Quarter is likely the greenest hotel on this list.

They have an awesome pet policy with no deposit, water bowls, pet beds, and even a rooftop relief pad for easy potty breaks.  This boutique property also has a great rooftop bar, Aveda bath amenities, and stylish room decor that sets the tone for a relaxing and refreshing getaway. 

The hotel is located just one block from Petco Park and only a few minutes away by car from the San Diego Convention Center. 

As for the accommodations, rooms start at 375 square feet and feature 55” flatscreen TVs, free WiFi, and your own virtual assistant, Ivy. After a long day, you can unwind in a steamy spa-inspired shower. 

The hotel also offers great modern amenities, like an onsite gym with Pelton bike and free weights, an office space with Mac computers and printers, air-conditioned common areas, and the Level 9 Rooftop Lounge. 

Use the IHG Rewards (free to join) discount to book on InterContinental Hotel Group (IHG), of which Hotel Indigo is a member.

16. Staypineapple, Hotel Z, San Diego

Neighborhood: Gaslamp Quarter
Category: Budget
Address: 521 6th Avenue, San Diego, CA 92101

Hotel Z San Diego's blue, white, and orange-yellow exterior.
This one is for the hip crowd (photo courtesy of Hotel Z San Diego).

For an out-of-the-ordinary experience, consider Hotel Z San Diego. This hip boutique hotel puts a fun twist on the regular amenities, integrating a stylish (and playful) pineapple into countless aspects of your stay — including some tasty welcome and afternoon treats.

Enjoy complimentary bikes to tour the downtown San Diego area, friendly staff, and Hotel Z’s convenient downtown location. There’s no onsite food (other than snacks for purchase and the aforementioned treats), but it’s okay with all of the fabulous restaurants within walking distance.

There are always afternoon snacks available, and you get a free welcome drink (your choice of wine, beer, or a non-alcoholic beverage). The hotel is also 100% smoke-free, which includes vaping, and you get cozy robes to unwind in. 

Grab a free PATH water bottle at the front desk and refill it with sparkling or still water from the water station in the lobby. 

Rooms include Tommy Bahama bath amenities, ultra-soft European-style duvets, free WiFi, coffee and bottled water, and a large HDTV. Accessible rooms include a roll-in shower, tub, and doorbell with strobe light and braille. For a fun, laid-back hotel at a low price for the area that doesn’t skimp on perks, I recommend Hotel Z.

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17. Residence Inn San Diego Downtown/Gaslamp Quarter

Neighborhood: Gaslamp Quarter
Category: Budget
Address: 356 6th Avenue, San Diego, CA 92101

The Residence Inn San Diego is worth mentioning on this list because it is an excellent option for those looking for an extended stay within walking distance of San Diego’s best restaurants, shopping, and the Convention Center.

It’s the only all-suite property in the area with fully-equipped kitchens and full-sized appliances, making it a great option for families. Breakfast is also included in the rate and served every morning.

If you want a family-friendly hotel in downtown San Diego, the Residence Inn makes a great choice. Rooms range from queen-size with a sofa bed to one bedroom with a sofa bed. Up to two pets are welcome per room with a maximum combined weight of 50 lbs.

While there, you can enjoy free WiFi, a fitness center, laundry, an onsite convenience store, dry cleaning service, a pool, and the onsite Toasted Barrel restaurant, known for its grilled cheese sandwiches.

Use the Marriott Bonvoy discount (free to join) to book.

Why Choose Downtown San Diego Hotels

Again, you can choose a hotel based on location, but you can also let the property’s amenities determine where you stay. Each one of the hotels in downtown San Diego on this list is a good option for sightseeing.

From any downtown San Diego hotel, it’s easy to get to popular tourist attractions such as the USS Midway Museum, America’s longest-serving aircraft carrier, and a floating city rich in maritime history. The world-renowned San Diego Zoo and Balboa Park museums take just a few minutes to reach. Hop on the Coronado Island ferry to Coronado beaches to spend an entire day soaking in the sun while enjoying the soft waves along the golden shore. In short, there are many things to do in downtown San Diego and just beyond.


You’ll find that regardless of star rating, rates for self-parking and valet parking at hotels in downtown San Diego can skew rather high. There isn’t a lot of parking in the downtown area. Street parking is usually metered and difficult to find. There are a handful of parking lots where you can purchase all-day parking, however, they can be pricey as well. I suggest budgeting the cost of having a car into your hotel stay or considering going carless.
Find the best hotels near San Diego Airport with free shuttles, pools, club lounges and more.

Downtown San Diego Vacation Rentals

If you’ve decided that a downtown San Diego vacation rental is more appropriate for your situation, I prefer Marriott Homes and Villas because they vet the properties and only use those with professional management. However, VRBO has the most availability.

Look for vacation rentals in the heart of Gaslamp Quarter, Little Italy, or along the San Diego Bay between the Convention Center and Little Italy. Do not veer too far east or north of these areas.

What are your favorite downtown San Diego hotels?

Katie Dillon is the managing editor of La Jolla Mom. She helps readers plan San Diego vacations through her hotel expertise (that stems from living in a Four Seasons hotel) and local connections. Readers have access to exclusive discounts on theme park tickets (like Disneyland and San Diego Zoo) and perks at luxury hotels worldwide through her. She also shares insider tips for visiting major cities worldwide, like Hong Kong, London, Paris, and Shanghai, that her family has either lived in or visits regularly (or both).

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