By Greg Aragon
There are many great ways to see San Diego and one of my new favorites is from the balcony of a room at the Hyatt Regency Mission Bay Spa and Marina. Epitomizing California coastal chic, the hotel offers incredible ocean views, waterfront dining, a contemporary poolside lounge, an eco-friendly spa, and great location.
A friend and recently snuck away to the 429-room beachside resort and were captivated by its subtle luxury. Our getaway began when we checked into a suite on the 14th floor of the hotel tower. Featuring two queen beds, office desk, with free wi-fi, flat screen TV, mini-fridge, and comfortable bathroom with tub and shower, the room had a definite vacation feel. Add to this a balcony overlooking the pools and the beautiful, yacht-filled marina, and it is easy to see why we made plans for a return visit this summer.
After lounging in the room, we headed down to the pool. It was a gorgeous fall day, with a warm breeze blowing through the lush, tropical grounds, so we quickly found comfort in the water. And for a little more comfort we threw on towels and strolled into the Swim Bar and Lounge.
At the lounge, we sampled pomegranate margaritas, and blackened mahi-mahi tacos, with lime-cilantro sour cream, roasted corn pico de gallo, avocado, shredded cabbage and tortilla chips. While eating, we enjoyed sweeping bay views and a giant, colorful, 800-gallon aquarium in the center of the bar.
After lunch, we walked out the pool gate and found ourselves surrounded by big, beautiful yachts. The hotel has a 181-slip private marina. As a boat-lover, this was one of the big highlights of my visit. For the next 45 minutes, we walked up and down the dock fingers examining the expensive vessels. We also got some memorable views of the hotel and bay.
From the yachts we walked along the perimeter of the property and found a water-front park across the street, where we relaxed and waved to passing boats. Continuing on we found ourselves near the entrance to Sea World, which is another big perk of the Hyatt.
Back at the hotel, I worked out at the hotel’s unique, state-of-the-art fitness center. Located next to the yachts, overlooking the bay, this gym has one of the best views of any I’ve encountered. After generating a sweat, I went back to the room and prepared for dinner at the Red Marlin.
Set above the water, on wooden piers, in the corner of the Hotel property, the Red Marlin looks like an inviting building on Cannery Row. We began our meal here at a booth overlooking the marina. While sipping Bloody Marys, we sampled jumbo lump blue crab cakes, with poblano remoulade and micro greens.
For the main course I had memorable, seared maine scallops, with tomato chutney, creamy grits, corn nage and cilantro pistou. My friend experienced an incredibly tender, grilled 10 oz. New York strip steak, with baby potato, shaved asparagus, arugula, bacon jam, cherry tomato, red wine demi.
The next morning we walked four blocks to beautiful Mission Beach. San Diego offers 70 miles of Pacific beaches and Mission Beach is one of the best. This sandy paradise features Belmont Park and stretches north to the shores of Pacific Beach and onto the cliff-side beaches of La Jolla and Torrey Pines. To the south, just across the Sunset Cliffs Bridge, lies Ocean Beach and the breathtaking Sunset Cliffs. Guests can enjoy swimming, surfing, skin diving, scuba diving, pier fishing, volleyball, basketball, seaside shops, restaurants, strolling, skating and cycling along the oceanfront boardwalk.
Historic Belmont Park features the Big Dipper roller coaster (a classic 70-ft drop wooden track roller coaster) and other amusement park rides, shops, bars, arcade and a special children’s area.
For spa lovers, the hotel also boasts the full-service Blue Marble Spa at Hyatt Regency Mission Bay Spa and Marina. Conservation and luxury go hand in hand at this indulgent day spa. Named for “The Blue Marble” image of the Earth taken during the Apollo 17 mission, Blue Marble Spa promotes “life in harmony with nature.”
The Hyatt Regency Mission Bay Spa and Marina is located at 1441 Quivira Rd, San Diego, CA 92109.