Traveling over the holidays is something many families face throughout the year. We used to travel more for the holidays when we were closer in proximity to family, but that usually involved staying at someone's home. Over Thanksgiving weekend, we decided to get away to the San Diego area and experience hotel travel over the holidays; the Homewood Suites Del Marsurrounded us in the comforts of home.
Homewood Suites Del Mar is an all-suite hotel located in Torrey Hills in Southern California. We were drawn to staying here because of the central location just south of the 56 connection to the I-15 making it easily accessible from Orange County and the San Diego area. The Homewood Suites Del Mar features studios and one and two bedroom suites; with suites being a travel priority, this was a great staycation location for our family.
We stayed in a one bedroom suite during our stay at the Hilton Homewood Suites Del Mar. Staying in suites is our favorite way to travel as a family because it offers us the space we need to truly be comfortable…and not get on each other's nerves.
Honestly, I was expecting a small refrigerator and kitchen like feel, but was pleasantly surprised to find our room had a full kitchen with a stove and large refrigerator. If we were staying longer it would have made it really convenient to make some meals in the room; having the refrigerator was perfect for our short stay allowing us to bring home leftovers. There was even a small dining room table to eat at.
When I asked our kids what they loved most about the hotel, they shared my thoughts but also said that kids appreciate the main living room set up. For kids sleeping on the pull out sofa, the room set up was perfect for our tradition of letting the kids watch TV in bed in the mornings.
It was immediate upon checking into the Homewood Suites Del Mar that we would have plenty of amenities. Complimentary high speed internet access is included with all rooms. Even better? The connection was fast each time we logged on – certainly not something you find at all hotels.
A nice and warm complimentary breakfast is included each day at the hotel as is an evening reception. The evening reception really stands out though because it is not just the typical happy hour reception. At the Homewood Suites Del Mar, guests receive a full warm dinner each evening.
While we weren't traveling for business needs, family travel often blends with business travel. If that's the case for you, Homewood Suites in Del Mar has a free business center and two ballrooms that are generous in size for business meetings, as well as a small breakout room.
The hotel also has a fitness center and outdoor pool, but be sure to get there early as seating is limited and it
fills up quickly. If you need to run errands but don't have a rental car or transportation, a nice amenity offered is a complimentary shuttle within a five mile radius of the hotel.
For me good restaurant and dining options are essential to vacation. As I mentioned Homewood Suites Del Mar offers free breakfast and dinner, but we truly loved having the extra dining options on property. The Hilton Homewood Suites and Hilton Garden Inn Del Mar function as a campus as sister properties. As such, Homewood Suites guests can walk a few steps to enjoy the benefits of both hotels.
There is a great little deli that is great for healthy sandwiches and salads on property. This Hilton campus is the only to offer such convenience right on property with their NY Garden Deli and Cafe. Plus, you can get a glass of wine or beer as well. Our recommendation? Get a sandwich and take your leftovers back to the room for a mini meal or snack.
We had the pleasure of experience two completely amazing meals at Bistro 39 at the Hilton Garden Inn Del Mar. This was our first year of not having a turkey at home in twenty years of being together so I knew that a spectacular Thanksgiving dinner was important for our family. Bistro 39 delivered on so many fronts and left everyone feeling full, content, and surrounded in the comfort food associated with the traditions of the day.
If you decide you want to have a different experience for breakfast, walk over to Bistro 39 for a warm made to order breakfast. The food was outstanding and the service left us all wanting more.
Again, the shared campus between the two hotels is truly a travel benefit for those staying at these hotels. The Serenity Spa and Salon is right on property and offers a full range of services from haircuts and color treatments to full salon services.
I experienced an 80-minute hot stone massage that left me feeling relaxed and rejuvenated during a busy time of the year. If you are traveling with a special someone that needs a little pampering, I would definitely recommend giving them a little R&R at Serenity Spa and Salon. If you have teens and children that can stay alone, leave them in the hotel room and go as a couple to experience happy hour and a spa treatment.
What Doesn't work for Families
Honestly, there isn't a lot that won't work for families, but if you have teens that don't ‘want to be with you' there isn't a ton for them to do close by. It would also be nice to have a plaza within walking distance with a coffee shop and a small convenience store for small shopping needs.
What Works for Families
Location and Space. That's what works for families.
Anyone with children knows the high value placed on being able to close a door after the kids go to bed so you can have some decompression time.
The location is perfect for exploring San Diego and the Del Mar area. If you have time take time to explore the history of the San Diego area.
Value. That's what also works for families.
The rates for rooms at Homewood Suites Del Mar are a great value for the space, amenities, and service you receive. You can also use your AAA membership to receive a discounted rate.
Food options – that are free. Families LOVE that.
Feeding a family is expensive so when you can stay somewhere that allows you to feed them for free…and it's food they love – well, that's part of the definition of “family vacation”.
Service. Outstanding service. Priceless.
I don't know that we have ever stayed at any hotel where every staff member understood good service as well as Homewood Suites Del Mar. I have long been a believer that a person can make a brand. You can have a fabulous company or business but the people behind the brand are they key to success.
Homewood Suites Del Mar is managed by a team that gets the value of their people and the service they deliver. And the benefit for travelers is that we get to reap the benefits. You may be able to find glitz and glam at another hotel, but service like this is hard to come by.