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Amp Up Your Adrenaline

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Sure, you could spend your time in San Diego laying in the sun and listening to the waves crash. Or you could channel your inner adrenaline junkie and check out some of the thrilling activities the city has to offer. There are at least a dozen to choose from, but the staff at a friendly and affordable hotel downtown San Diego has selected 6 of the best.

1. Cliff Diving in La Jolla

Get a bird’s eye view of San Diego and feed your need for adventure at the same time by diving off the cliffs of La Jolla–attached to a hang glider, of course. You’re welcome to hang glide or paraglide with an instructor or go it alone if you’re experienced enough. While in the air, enjoy miles of gorgeous shoreline and the glamorous mansions of La Jolla.

2. Chill with Dolphins and Whales

Hop in an authentic, inflatable, low-profile Navy S.E.A.L boat and get up close and personal with the playful dolphins and magnificent whales (depending on the season) that call the waters off the San Diego coast home. A U.S. Coast Guard-licensed captain will fill you in on all the wildlife that happens to be in your line of view.

3. Swim—Cage-Free–with the Really Big Fishes

Get chummy with sharks without a cage. “Mako Mike” offers shark diving expeditions that literally put you eye-to-eye with the feisty creatures. Mike safely handles the sharks while you snorkel or free-dive.

4. Extreme Circus Flying

If you want to kick your fear of heights while having lots of fun, make your way to Trapeze High. The friendly instructors cater the tricks they teach to your abilities and comfort level. Be warned though, you could very easily become addicted to the highflying fun you’ll experience here.

5. Discover Your Inner Marty McFly

While Back to the Future’s hoverboards have yet to become reality, you can come close to the experience thanks to some heavy-duty waterpower. You can’t go shimmying across San Diego’s sidewalks. However, you do get to check out the view from 30 feet in the air when on a water-powered Flyboard or Hoverboard.

6. Kayak the Caves of La Jolla

Nestled within a 75 million-year-old sandstone sea cliff, the seven sea caves of La Jolla are a breathtaking sight to see, especially if you’re in a kayak. You’ll be safely guided through the waters in and around the caves (weather permitting) and introduced to sea lions, leopard sharks, dolphins and other regional delights along the way. You can also do some snorkeling or rent a kayak and do a little kayak fishing.

Whether you’re seeking thrill after thrill or hours of relaxation, one thing is for sure. You’ll want to rest and recharge in a comfortable hotel room with a convenient location. Don’t hesitate to book a hotel near the SAN airport like the Pacific Inn Hotel & Suites. We’re near all the major attractions, offer all the comforts of home, and have some great ongoing discounts. Find out more by calling 1-800-571-2933 to reserve your room today!

3 Pizza Places in Little Italy You Won’t Soon Forget

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No doubt, San Diego is a food lover’s paradise. If you’re staying in a Little Italy San Diego hotel, you have the good fortune of being in one of the best neighborhoods for noshing at all hours of the day. With so many options, you’ll find it hard to prioritize. However, one thing is for certain: When in Little Italy, you must try the pizza!

Isola Pizza Bar

Smack dab in the middle of Little Italy, Isola offers a “fresh, inspired twist on Italian traditions,” and serves pies featuring delicious local ingredients. Favorites like the salciccia with fennel sausage, red onions, tomato, and mushrooms, and the arugula con l’uovo topped with Parmesan, panna, farm egg, arugula, pancetta, and truffle oil have locals in the area coming back time and time again.

Napizza

Also in Little Italy, Napizza serves gourmet, organic pizza. The crust is homemade, light, and all natural, and pizza is sold by the slice, half-tray, and whole tray. Unique combinations include potato, bacon, and mozzarella; organic chicken, goat cheese, tomato, and pesto; and truffle, porcini, and mozzarella. Gluten-free and vegan pies are also available. As if that wasn’t enough, all food is free of hormones, chemicals, and preservatives.

Cucina Urbana

Just north of Little Italy in Bankers Hill, Cucina Urbana features organic, local produce on every pizza. Pies average $15 and include unique toppings, such as smoked salmon and lemon crème Fraiche; lamb sausage and honey ricotta; olive, fontina, and baby chard; mission fig and Gorgonzola; and smoked prosciutto and pineapple. On Thrifty Thursdays, pizzas are half-off the regular price.

When (or if) you’re ready to branch out, the friendly staff at your hotel in Downtown San Diego can offer some other excellent dining suggestions. Aside from friendly customer service, at the Pacific Inn you can also count on complimentary amenities like free Wi-Fi and fresh coffee and tea served 24-hours a day. We also offer special park and fly and park and cruise packages for our guests. Call 1-800-571-2933 to learn more and book your room!

7 Cool Places to Take Pictures in San Diego

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Spend some time at the touristy locales like Balboa Park, downtown, and Coronado, and then head out to find the hidden treasures that make for standout pictures. To make it a little easier for out-of-towners, the San Diego Point Loma Inn & Suites has put together a list of our favorite off-the-beaten-path photo ops.

1. Harper’s Topiary Garden
Tucked away in Mission Hills, this zany garden is truly a treat for the eyes. Artist Edna Harper keeps over 50 topiary sculptures in this space, ranging from whimsical animals to shrubbery replications of famous landmarks.

2. Chula Vista Salt Mounds
Visitors in San Diego might not know that they are in prime salt production territory. However, these enormous, glacier-like mounds of salt extracted from the ocean will quickly dispel any doubt.

3. Hidden Cemetery
In 1889, a streetcar line was built over a small city cemetery in what is now Old Town. City planners didn’t discover what lies beneath this patch of street until 1993 and has since placed tiny markers on the paved ground denoting each gravesite.

4. The Mushroom Beach House
Black’s Beach is home to the inimitable mushroom-shaped beach house, constructed in 1986 as the guesthouse for a seafront residence. With cliffs to one side and the ocean to the other, this futuristic hut looks a bit like a James Bond villain’s lair.

5. Heritage Park Victorian Village
Just outside of Old Town lies a picturesque cul-de-sac of old Victorian mansions. Pay them a visit for some gorgeous antique architecture and sweeping views of the city.

6. The Jail Cell at The Headquarters at Seaport
Patrons of this bustling complex might not know that they’re shopping in a former jail. Head to the hallway between Madison Leather and Kitson Boutique to take a picture in one of the few preserved cells.

7. Banker’s Hill Footbridges
Before the days of modern infrastructure, engineers linked San Diego’s neighborhoods by spanning the city’s canyons with footbridges. Head to Banker’s Hill for some fine vertigo-inducing examples and great views of downtown.

A great way to make sure you see all the city has to offer is by booking a centrally located cheap San Diego Convention Center hotel like the Point Loma Inn. We’re close to restaurants, great sights, and plenty of things to do. You can even save 15% just by booking in advance! Give us a call at 1-800-571-2933 to learn more and reserve your room!

What’s Happening Around San Diego This Memorial Day?

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There are always a lot of great, entertaining things to do in San Diego and holidays bring out some of the city’s best events. Here are a few fun ways to enjoy your Memorial Day weekend while in San Diego.

San Diego Surf Film Festival
May 22nd & 23rd

This popular film festival held at the Sherwood Auditorium will feature more than 20 films with many of the filmmakers attending the festival themselves. There will also be workshops, live music, a surf art gallery, live art, and after parties.

Santee Street Fair & Craft Beer Festival
May 23rd

Free and open to all ages, this festival attracts thousands of people. The event will have carnival rides, live music, and 300 food and vendor booths.

Memorial Day BBQ Brunch Cruise
May 25th

For those that love being on the water, Hornblower Cruises will be hosting this 2-hour scenic tour of the San Diego Bay. The cruise includes free-flowing champagne, a full brunch buffet, dessert buffet, a live DJ, and boarding is just around the corner from several Little Italy San Diego hotels.

3rd Annual EOD Warrior 5k
May 25th

This annual 5k is a healthy and fun way to raise funds for the Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) Warrior Foundation. The race will be held at NTC Park at Liberty Station and will include a silent auction.

San Diego Memorial Day Jazz Festival
May 22-24th

A great event for music lovers, this three-day jazz festival will feature some of the biggest artist in the industry including R. Kelly, Toni Braxton, Elan Trotman, and more.

Legacy Week at USS Midway
May 22-25th

The USS Midway will be hosting its annual Legacy Week celebration for Memorial Day weekend that includes special family activities. The USS midway is the longest serving Navy aircraft and there are 60 exhibits throughout the aircraft carrier.

Hotels for Memorial Day Weekend in San Diego book up fast!! If you’re looking for a hotel room in downtown San Diego, look no further than the Pacific Inn Hotel & Suites. You’ll be able to walk to plenty of MDW events, and we offer great discounts (even during special holidays) so you’ll have more money in your pocket for the fun stuff. Call us today at 1-800-571-2933 to hear more about our great rates!

Walk Your Way Through San Diego

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Itching to stretch your legs and see San Diego on foot? Explore the coast, unique neighborhoods, or the historical core of San Diego with a guided walking tour. There are dozens offered, but the friendly staff at our cheap SAN airport hotel recommends the following.

Bite San Diego
Downtown San Diego Food Tasting and Walking Tour ($45)

Let your culinary senses lead in this tour of the historic Gaslamp Quarter and Little Italy. You’ll stop at several restaurants to try a taste of San Diego while taking in tales of the city’s past.

Ghostly Tours in History
Old Town Walking Tour ($25)

Walk into the houses of San Diego’s founding families and spend an evening with the ghosts of Old Town. Don’t let the spooks scare you away from this fascinating journey!

San Diego History Center
Balboa Park History Stroll ($12)

Join the history experts for a lively and informative stroll around Balboa Park, site of the 1915-1917 Panama-California Exposition and some of San Diego’s most beautiful buildings.

Urban Safaris
Hillcrest, the East Side Story ($10)

With Patty in the lead, you’ll experience Hillcrest, the heart of local San Diego life and rich in history. With architectural styles ranging from Egyptian to Spanish, there won’t be a dull moment on this tour!

Another Side of San Diego
La Jolla Historical Walking Tour ($99)

Walk along the shore and past the upscale boutiques of La Jolla, the “jewel” of San Diego. Be mesmerized by the impressive cliffs, storied caves, and barking sea lions.

All San Diego Tours
Torrey Pines State Reserve Hiking Tour ($40)

Ready to leave the urban jungle and become one with nature? Walk among San Diego’s famous Torrey Pines and take in breathtaking views of the coast.

If location and walkability are at the top of your priority list when visiting SD, you’ll want to book a downtown San Diego hotel room situated right in the heart of the city. Aside from our great location, the Pacific Inn Hotel & Suites offers great in-room amenities and competitive rates. Reserve your room by calling 1-800-571-2933 or clicking the “Reservations” tab up above.

Best Vegetarian Restaurants in San Diego

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Top Vegetarian Restuarants in San Diego

At the Pacific Inn San Diego, CA, we often meet vegetarian guests who are concerned about finding tasty options while on vacation. Although most don’t want to be the sole dissenter in the group and are willing to “find something” on the menu, with options like these, everyone in the party will be happy to eat at a veggie-friendly restaurant.

The Naked Cafe

The Naked Cafe serves food that proves you don’t need to eat meat to enjoy delicious cuisine. The tasty meat-free menu appeals with carnivores and herbivores alike, boasting unique plates like coconut French toast, the pesto scramble with potatoes, tailgate tacos featuring soy chorizo, and the goddess wrap filled with ginger tofu.

Evolution Fast Food

Located on 5th Avenue, Evolution Fast Food is a citywide favorite serving delicious vegan and vegetarian options. Grab a seat and nosh on raw tacos, choose from a variety of burgers, or taste one of their famous wraps. If you’re heading to the zoo or the beach, swing through the drive-thru instead!

Salad Style

Vegetarian foodies unite! Salad Style’s menu includes everything from red pepper bruschetta to Caesar salad wrapped in lavash. The setting is casual and comfortable, welcoming those who want to study or grab a quick bite to go, and their pizzas and salads are made with organic ingredients.

Native Foods Cafe

Colorful dishes and a low-key environment make Native Foods a favorite among vegetarians and meat eaters alike. Adventurous eaters can try Jamaican Callaloo on Mondays or the sesame kale macro, while others might enjoy the chicken run ranch burger or classic deli Reuben. Those who can’t leave without dessert will dig on the gluten-free peanut butter parfait or key lime pie.

Cafe 21

With both vegan and vegetarian menu items, Cafe 21 is a hot spot in downtown San Diego and is known for its hip decor and plates that look like art pieces. Favorites on the menu include the spicy bloody Mary and the tiramisu short stack.

Looking for more local suggestions? When you reserve a room at leading San Diego Convention Center hotel, the Pacific Inn Hotel & Suites, you can count on friendly customer service available 24/7, comfortable accommodations, and unbeatable rates. Click on the “Reservations” tab above or give us a call at 1-800-571-2933 to book your room!

Top Spots for Surfing in San Diego

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Where to Surf in San Diego

Undoubtedly, you plan to spend at least a little time at the beach while visiting San Diego. Whether you’re a seasoned surfer happy to visit some new waves or just getting your feet wet (pun intended), here are a few of San Diego’s top surf spots.

La Jolla Shores

With protection from the southwest winds, this surfing location is safe for beginners and families. Should you prefer your surf with a little more kick, head down the road to Marine Street Beach for a killer break, known locally as “womp,” or Windansea Beach, which has powerful waves due to steep ocean floor slopes.

Nearby: Walking trails, formal surfing schools

Ocean Beach Pier

Regardless of how skilled you are when it comes to surfing, you’ll be welcomed at this beach, just 10 or so minutes from several cheap SDCC hotels. Waves tend to fluctuate enough for everyone to get their surf on, from beginners to those more accustomed to riding some serious waves.

Nearby: A great burger place, a cafe, an ice cream shop, and board shops

Sunset Cliffs

First things first–you’ll need to be an experienced shredder if you want to hang ten here. The surf tends to pound the rocks hard, but it’s a thrill if you know what you’re doing. It’ll take some time to get to know the breaks within the coves here, but that’s part of the fun.

Nearby: Nothing but parkland and residential homes

Del Mar

You’ll run into a decent mix of surf conditions along the area between Dog Beach and 15th Street, and there’s plenty of room for all skill levels here. On hot summer days, you’ll have no trouble finding the prime surfing spots along the Del Mar shore since the adjacent beaches are usually deserted. Del Mar is about 20 to 25 minutes north of most hotels in downtown San Diego, so if you head up to surf consider making a day of it and exploring the quaint, and ritzy, neighborhood.

Nearby: Restaurants (a bit pricy, but great views), a surfing school offering private lessons, and some local boutiques

Mission/Pacific Beach

The main surfing spot here is between the Mission Bay Jetty and Crystal Pier. The surf isn’t spectacular, but you’ll find some good peaks here and there. You’ll also find some decent swells and breaks during the winter months when the crowds are gone.

Nearby: Belmont Park, PB Shore Club, board shops, sportswear shops, bars, nightclubs, and restaurants

Imperial Beach Pier

This surfing spot, also a prime fishing destination when the waters are calm, offers a nice combination of mid-to-high tides. Surf cams on the pier allow you to check conditions before grabbing your board.

Nearby: An RV resort, free parking (mid-week), an ice cream shop, a t-shirt place, and restaurants

Heading to surf in San Diego? Book a hotel room near the SAN airport at the Pacific Inn and you’ll have plenty of room to store your board. You’ll also be able to take advantage of booking discounts and our great low rates. Oh, and we offer free Wi-Fi, fresh coffee 24/7, premium cable channels, flexible dates, 24/7 customer service, and we won’t charge your card until you check in. Interested in inquiring about availability? Call a friendly Reservation Manager at 1-800-571-2933 who can help you out!

San Diego Beach Bars Not to Pass Up

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Top San Diego Beach Bars

We don’t have to recommend spending time at a beach bar — we already know you will. We just want to make sure you see some of the best San Diego has to offer, so the staff at the San Diego Pacific Inn has handpicked 4 favorites to start.

1. Lahaina Beach House

Order a pitcher of cold beer and relax with friends after a day on the beach at this charming bar-slash-restaurant. The drink selection includes an assortment of tequila delights, and there’s also a patio where you can sit, enjoy your beverage, and watch the sunset. Keep in mind it’s cash only here and it can definitely get packed.

Try: The burritos and fish tacos get rave reviews.

2. Beachcomber

Just blocks from the sand (and about 10 minutes from cheap hotels by the SAN airport), this rustic bar attracts a diverse crowd that ranges from college partygoers to gray-haired perpetual adolescents at heart. There are plenty of TVs for catching up on sports when you’re not people watching, and the beers are cold, the popcorn is free (should you need to get something in your stomach between refills), and prices are reasonable.

Try: The theme nights, including karaoke night and trivia night.

3. Firehouse American Eatery and Lounge

Although this local favorite is currently closed for renovations, it should be opening any day now. Firehouse is a previous “Best Beach Bar” winner, and will be serving up an all-new cocktail menu, delicious food, and tunes from top local DJs both inside and on the rooftop.

Try: Everything! The food and beverage menus will be brand new.

4. Guava Beach Bar and Grill

If you want to catch some of the game while taking a break from the beach, this sports bar is definitely the place to be when not riding the waves or soaking up rays. The service is friendly and there is a dartboard, pool table, and giant Jenga. The decent happy hour specials provide an added incentive to stop here.

Try: You can’t go wrong with some wings topped and a Bionic Beaver to wash it down.

Ready to spend a little time in the San Diego sun? We thought so! Give us a call at 1-800-571-2933 and reserve a hotel room in the San Diego Gaslamp Quarter today! As our guest, you can take advantage of our stellar location, flexible dates, and super-low rates! We look forward to hearing from you!

Don’t Leave Little Italy Without Eating These Foods

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Best Foods in San Diego's Little Italy

No trip to San Diego is complete without a visit to Little Italy. Of course, the best thing about Little Italy is the food, so plan to try out at least a couple of places your next time there. Here are five favorites that will wow you whether you’re a native Italian or didn’t know there were more than 5 kinds of pasta.

1. Small Plates at Davanti Enoteca

Small plates are a great way to sample Little Italy without breaking the bank. You can find classic subs and fabulous bruschetta, or try the quintessential Italian appetizer, the antipasto plate. Step out of your hotel in San Diego’s Little Italy and into Davanti Enoteca, where you can select any antipasti for under $12, with amazing marinated or roasted vegetables, candied walnuts, hazelnuts or capers. For true Italian flavor, try the Tuscan fennel salami paired with any one of the imported Italian cheeses. Add a little bread and a glass of wine, and you’ll think you’ve hopped a flight to Rome.

2. Pasta at Bencotto Italian Kitchen

The key to good pasta is to serve it al dente, which means it’s not overcooked and has just the slightest bite to it. Bencotto Italian Kitchen does just that, and for $16-$19, you can have your choice of pasta and sauce, with half-size portions available for kids (Little Italy is a perfect family dining location). Try the fusilli in arrabbiata sauce–corkscrew pasta in a spicy, garlicky tomato sauce familiar on the southern Italian coast.

3. Pizza at Isola Pizza Bar

Pizza aficionados rave about the pizza from Naples, and you can find true Neapolitan pizza in San Diego at Isola Pizza Bar, just minutes from SAN airport hotels. There, you’ll get a hand-tossed crust, imported Italian ingredients and a pizza cooked in a wood-fired oven. For just $12, you can’t beat the margherita pizza–the acid test of Naples-style pizza, made with just San Marzano tomato sauce, mozzarella and fresh basil. With 17 other pizza combinations, though, everyone in your party is sure to find something they like.

4. Cioppino at Buon Appetito

While you may have tried pasta in clam sauce, have you ever had cioppino? If not, it’s a must at Buon Appetito, originally from San Francisco, as is the dish itself. The blend of fresh fish and shellfish in a flavorful tomato broth is sure to become your new Italian favorite.

5. Dessert

If you know anything about Italian food, you know the desserts are out of this world, so don’t forget to sample dolci (sweets) in Little Italy. While the cookies and cannoli are awesome at so many spots, you’ll want to stop in at Pappalecco for a dish of gelato, Italy’s smoother, richer version of ice cream. A grande cup will only run you $5.95, and for an extra two bucks, add a shot of espresso on top to make an affogato, another wonderful taste of Italy.

Start your culinary tour of Little Italy by reaching out Little Italy’s leading budget hotel, the Pacific Inn Hotel & Suites. We are in the heart of Little Italy, near the airport, and just minutes from downtown. After sightseeing, visitors can relax in their room equipped with premium cable, a fridge and microwave, and free wireless internet. We have the lowest rates around, offer flexible dates, and keep the coffee brewing 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Call 1-800-571-2933 to speak with a friendly Reservation Manager today!

Keep It Safe in San Diego This Summer

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Summer Safety Tips for San Diego

Every year, millions of tourists flock to San Diego, especially in the summer. Generally speaking, locals will tell you San Diego is a safe place. But we are a big city with a bustling nightlife, so there are a few basic safety precautions worth taking to ensure your vacation is memorable in a fun way. As a leading downtown San Diego hotel for summer breakers, we’d like to share a few tips with incoming tourists.

Know What Areas to Avoid

When you’re exploring on vacation, most people don’t know the good from the bad areas and it can be easy enough to wander into the wrong side of town. Do your research ahead of time and avoid locations that are isolated or away from tourist attractions. Know which streets to avoid and stay in areas that are well-lit with plenty of traffic.

Place a Napkin Over Your Drink

When you’re mingling with other people at a bar or party, place a napkin over your drink as you socialize. Although it may be a difficult habit to begin practicing or you might feel funny at first, holding a napkin over your drink (you can poke a hole for the straw) can prevent someone from easily slipping something into your drink the moment you turn the other way.

Rely on Taxis

Even if you “feel fine,” if you’ve been drinking at all rely on taxis and car sharing. Aside from the fact that this is just responsible behavior, San Diego sets up check points for all the big holidays as well as sporadically throughout the year, especially during summer months. Have the phone number of a local taxi company on hand ahead of time for a plan of action that ensures that you arrive safely back at your hotel without an accident. You can also reserve a hotel room in the Gaslamp Quarter, making it easy to just walk (or stumble) back to your hotel at the end of your night.

Go Home with Friends

One of the most common mistakes made on vacation is going to a party or bar with friends and leaving the event with a stranger. This can easily threaten your safety and make you vulnerable to a dangerous situation. Stick with your friends and have a buddy system in place to ensure that you don’t succumb to a stranger’s ulterior motives.

As with any vacation, it’s important to plan ahead (at least a little) and keep a few safety tips in the back of your mind at all times. For more safety ideas, or to book a downtown or Little Italy hotel, reach out to the Pacific Inn Hotel & Suites. We are minutes from downtown, the airport, and the convention center, and we also offer great rates and promotions. Call us at 1-800-571-2933 to learn more!

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