The Grand Del Mar is an absolutely stunning and beautiful hotel nestled in a canyon in San Diego county. This resort-style hotel was filled with friendly staff and had very spacious and comfortable rooms. Our kids were welcomed with happy smiles and a gift from the treasure box. This place offers luxury vacations with many kid-friendly activities. As my family was ushered into our spacious suite of rooms at the Grand Del Mar - rooms filled with large bathtubs, flat screen TV’s, and beautiful views of both the golf course and countryside - I asked the bell hop one important question: How do you stay anywhere else after you have been here?
BEAUTY IS ALL AROUND
One of the first things I noticed upon entering the majestic lobby was the delightful scent in the air. We were offered a cooling cloth for our hands dotted with eucalyptus. As we walked into our room, the smell of fresh linen and lightly scented soap was incredibly pleasant. It seemed that everywhere I went, I was surrounded by beauty - flowers in the landscaping, amazing architecture, and scents that relaxed me. The Grand Del Mar is beautiful and lovely!
UNDERWATER MUSIC AT THE FAMILY POOL
The first thing our kids want to do at any hotel is to jump into the pool. Our family was welcomed by the pool staff, who promptly set up towels for us on the comfy pool chairs. We were brought ice water (with fun cups and straws for the kids) along with the menu for all the fun snacks, drinks, and lunch items that are available poolside. The kids just loved hearing the music playing under the water of the large pool. There were no steps in the large- or middle-sized pools and the shallowest they got was approximately three feet. This meant that our two-year-old and four-year-old had to swim with us. When we discovered the one-foot wading pool next to the middle pool, my little ones were delighted, and so were we. However, we were disappointed with the Jacuzzi – it was very small, only had three seats, and no steps. In addition, it had an odd shape with relatively sharp corners that didn’t really allow the six of us to enjoy the nice warm temperature.
My older boys (8 and 10) spent several afternoon hours in the Explorers Kids Club playing air hockey, Nintendo Wii, and making sand art. The ladies on staff in the Club room jumped right in to help our boys feel comfortable by playing foosball and engaging them in friendly conversation. Ages 5 and up will really enjoy the bright, cheerful room that offers toys, games, crafts, and many other activities. The staff members also frequently take the children outdoors onto the lawn to play games in the afternoon.
The staff at The Grand Del Mar were all smiles when they saw our kids. The treasure chest of toys was offered on our arrival which delighted my four children. The concierge offered them a chance to participate in a scavenger hunt that was meant to help them explore the hotel grounds and to discover the fountains, statues, and activities of the hotel. My kids absolutely loved finding all the answers to the questions and were delighted with a reward upon the completion of their quest - a free scoop of gelato in the coffee shop! We saw many kids and families enjoying tennis, swimming in the pool, eating dinner at Amaya restaurant, riding horses in the equestrian center, and strolling the grounds by the golf course.
On the first morning of our stay, we were led on a nature hike through the local Penasquitos Canyon. Our nature guide was very personable and taught us so many amazing things. We learned the history of the wagon trains that rode through the area from San Antonio to San Diego. We heard about the Native Indians who used the plants and rocks for their everyday living, and we learned about the Mexicans who used the wild mustard and lemonade berry to spice up their food. My ten-year-old loved crushing the wild mustard seeds in his mouth to taste the kick of the spice. We scrambled over rocks to see the cascades of water from Penasquitos Creek. The nature guide laughed with my boys as they ran up and down the hills of the “rollercoaster” section of the trail. He was friendly and knowledgeable and was able to teach my young ones well - and keep my husband and I interested at the same time! Guided nature hikes, bike rides, and horse rides are available.
Relaxation awaits weary parents at the wonderful spa at The Grand Del Mar. I was grinning to myself as I walked down the beautiful stairs with yet another amazing scent wafting up from the quiet rooms below. I made sure I enjoyed the steam room, the sauna, and the Jacuzzi as I waited for my facial appointment. Not wanting to miss a thing, I sampled the 2 chocolate truffles, nuts, and orange-infused water as I relaxed in a chaise lounge in the women’s room. The facial itself was heavenly. A whole hour lying on a heated bed with cleansing, massaging, and pampering left me a very happy mom. A separate men’s room and treatments are available for dads needing that relaxation as well.
COMFORTABLE AND SPACIOUS ROOMS
One of the favorite activities that my kids enjoyed on this vacation was playing hide and seek in the suite of rooms we stayed in. Couches, dining room chairs, closets, and deep bathtubs became favorite hideouts. I couldn’t have been more comfortable on the wide, clean bed as I surfed Trekaroo on the free WiFi and heard them counting. We all took baths in the super deep and wide bathtubs because it was just too much fun. I did think that a parent of an infant or young toddler would have to take a bath with their youngster because you can’t reach over into the deep tub. Flat screen TVs are in every room, including the bathrooms. Microwaves and refrigerators come standard. The hotel staff had a full-size crib, sheets, bumper pad, quilt, and all the baby essentials already setup in our room when we arrived. Coffee makers are available, but are not complimentary. The Grand Del Mar water bottles offered in each room - and by most of the staff we ran into - are a wonderful complimentary feature. Our rooms opened onto patios with beautiful views of the golf course and the surrounding canyon environs. Settling into the comfortable patio chairs to watch the sunset was a delight. Turn down service was an unexpected fun gift to our family as we came back to a room with organized shoes, folded clothes, chocolates on the pillows, slippers to enjoy, and rose petals on the bathtub. I just wish I had turn down service at home every night!
Our family took muffins and breakfast bars for our morning meal in our room. Room service is available but there is no continental breakfast. We enjoyed an amazing dinner at the family-friendly restaurant, Amaya (please see my other review) with reasonable kid menu prices. Lunch poolside is a moderately priced and delicious option with good kid menu prices. A gourmet café near the lobby offers sandwiches and more, but with limited seating for large families. We ate lunch out at a nearby restaurant after our nature hike. Dinner out at a family restaurant near by was another good choice for our second night.
Parents may want to bring strollers for young ones as the hotel is spread out over a large area. It took us about 5 – 10 minutes to walk to the family pool from our room at the other end of the resort with our 2 year old.
During our two-night stay, we didn’t have enough time to enjoy all the family-friendly activities available at The Grand Del Mar. They offer shuttle service to the beach, golfing, horseback riding, and so much more. Despite that, our time there felt like a long and wonderful vacation.
I highly recommend staying at The Grand Del Mar. It is a very family-friendly resort where all of the staff members seem to know you by name and want to help you have the best time possible. Your vacation will start the moment you drive up, are greeted warmly by the valet, and are ushered into the beautiful lobby.
This review is based on a complimentary stay at The Grand Del Mar. I received no other compensation and the business owner did not request that I express a particular point of view. The opinions I write are entirely my own.
The Grand Del Mar is a business friendly hotel located in San Diego and local attractions include Torrey Pines State Reserve, University of California San Diego, and Del Mar Horse Park. Other area points of interest include Torrey Pines Golf Course and Torrey Pines State Beach.
Dining options at The Grand Del Mar include 6 restaurants. 5 bars/lounges and a poolside bar are open for drinks. Room service is available 24 hours a day. The hotel serves full breakfasts each morning (surcharges apply). Recreational amenities include 4 outdoor swimming pools and 4 spa tubs. Also located on site are a golf course, a children's pool, outdoor tennis courts, and a sauna. The property's full service health spa has body treatments, massage/treatment rooms, facials, and beauty services. This 5 star property has a business center and offers small meeting rooms, technology support staff, and limo/town car service. Complimentary wireless and wired high speed Internet access is available in public areas. This San Diego property has 1800 square meters of event space consisting of banquet facilities, conference/meeting rooms, a ballroom, and exhibit space. Complimentary shuttle services include an area shuttle which runs to destinations within 14 mi and a beach shuttle. Business services, wedding services, tour/ticket assistance, and tour assistance are available. Self parking is complimentary. Other property amenities at this Mediterranean property include a rooftop terrace, a library, and a coffee shop/café. This is a smoke free property.
249 air conditioned guestrooms at The Grand Del Mar feature minibars and laptop compatible safes. Beds come with premium bedding. Bathrooms feature separate bathtubs and showers, televisions, makeup/shaving mirrors, and designer toiletries. Wired high speed and wireless Internet access is complimentary. In addition to desks and complimentary newspapers, guestrooms offer multi line phones with voice mail, as well as free local calls (restrictions may apply). 40 inch LCD televisions have pay movies. Rooms also include complimentary bottled water, windows that open, and bathrobes. Guests may request extra towels/bedding and wake up calls. A nightly turndown service is offered and housekeeping is available daily.
Notifications and Fees:
The following fees and deposits are charged by the property at time of service, check in, or check out.
The above list may not be comprehensive. Fees and deposits may not include tax and are subject to change.