When it came to choosing a hotel for our short weekend getaway to San Diego, the first thing that came to mind was location! We decided that this trip was going to be pretty much focused on the Downtown area of the city, so we wanted a hotel that was within good walking distance (or at least a short Uber ride) to everything we wanted to see and do (and one that also fit within our budget). We finally decided on the Manchester Grand Hyatt due to pricing, it’s excellent waterfront location, and of course, the quality of the hotel itself. Here’s a bit on how our stay went!
Check in was super easy. We arrived pretty early to the hotel as we had taken an early morning flight out of San Francisco to maximize our time spent in San Diego. Normally, check in for the hotel is 4:00 p.m. but we got there in the morning, around 10:00 a.m. Of course, our room was not ready when we arrived but surprisingly, they did have an upgrade available for purchase (with waterfront/harbor views) that would allow us to get checked in right away! I think it ended up being around an extra $20 per night, but it was totally worth it to be able to go straight up to our room, as well have a room with an awesome view of the bay.
Also, while you are checking in (or before/after), definitely take a moment to admire the beautiful, giant lobby. Damn! I felt kind of regal walking through there every day.
At the Manchester Grand Hyatt, there are two towers to the hotel – we stayed in the Harbor Tower on the 33rd floor! The room was comfortable, modern, and most importantly, clean. The Manchester is touted as a luxury hotel and while I wouldn’t go as far as saying our room was super luxurious, it suited our needs and tastes just fine.
Our bed was a comfy king, which was nice to come back to after a long day of walking around the city.
And believe me, I took advantage of that little lounge by the window because the AC was blowing right in that spot! We visited San Diego over Labor Day weekend, which just happened to be probably the hottest weekend of the year there, so it was nice to get back to the room and cool off in that AC while being able to check out the beautiful views from our window.
The bathroom was clean and updated – no complaints here!
The view from our room was probably our favorite part about staying at the Manchester Grand Hyatt. From the Harbor Tower, we had a nice view of the bay, the other tower across from us, the main pool, and part of the city below.
“Stay classy, San Diego!”
As you can see from the photos above, we were right on the bay! The Manchester Grand Hyatt is also just a short 10 to 15 minute ride from the airport, depending on traffic (less than 3 miles) and about the same distance to the center of one of the city’s main attractions, Balboa Park.
It was a bit of a walk to get to the Gaslamp Quarter, which is where a lot of the Downtown restaurants are clustered, so be sure to wear some comfortable walking shoes. It should take the average person about 15 minutes to get into the heart of the Quarter (a little under a mile). Otherwise, take an Uber!
We did walk to Petco Park one evening to catch a Padres game and it was about a mile; however, we walked down the walkway next to the marina at sunset and it was a beautiful, peaceful walk (save for all the carts whizzing by playing loud music I guess), and you’ll get to pass by some amazing multi-million dollar yachts on this walk! Seriously though, $$$$$$.
Closer to the hotel, you’ll find Seaport Village which is a touristy little shopping area with a few restaurants, as well as The Headquarters at Seaport District, which is an open air marketplace with several larger restaurants (Cheesecake Factory, Puesto, etc.) and a few shops/galleries – along with an old jail you can check out! These places are just across the street/parking lot from the hotel.
Other attractions close to the hotel include the U.S.S. Midway Museum (which I highly recommend a visit to) and also the Convention Center if you are in town for any convention events.
The Manchester Grand has one of the best rooftop bar views of the city at the Top of the Hyatt, located on the 40th floor of the Harbor Tower. I can attest to this view as we went up one evening to enjoy a drink. Unfortunately, it was too crowded and we were unable to find a spot to sit (thank you Labor Day weekend travelers…). But if you get a chance, definitely make your way up there for the views, if nothing else.
There is a very nice lobby bar as well where you can pay for some pricey drinks!
They also have a sports bar called Redfield’s which we passed by a couple of times but didn’t make it in.
Parking at hotels is outrageous in this city! For guests to self-park at the Manchester Grand Hyatt, it costs $35 per night. For valet, it will set you back $49 per night. We figured we’d actually save money by just taking Uber everywhere versus paying for a car rental and the parking fees – and we were right! If you’re only in San Diego for a few days, you really don’t need a car unless you plan on venturing to the outer parts of the city anyway. Just remember to keep these extra costs in mind if you are driving into San Diego for a stay, or if you were thinking about renting a car while there.
There are Uber and Lyft drivers everywhere so getting a ride somewhere is quite easy. There’s also a trolley station near the hotel at Seaport Village which is located behind the hotel at the waterfront for the San Diego Trolley Green Line.
For those that arrive by plane and really, really want to rent a car for a portion of your trip, there’s actually an onsite car rental agency – Hertz – so you may consider renting a car for a day if you want to take a drive somewhere. How convenient!
There are two pools onsite at the hotel. The first pool is located on the 4th floor and is accessible to everyone staying at the hotel. Below is a view of the pool that we had from our room (taken in the morning before it got too crowded there). As it was a holiday weekend, there were tons of families staying in the hotel so majority of the time, it was packed with kids.
To the right of the pool, there’s a game area where you can partake in Foosball, table tennis, and giant games of Jenga and/or Checkers. It’s definitely a great bonus if you are traveling with a family.
There are also first come, first serve private cabanas, and a Poolside Bar and Grill that is open during the summer months.
There is a second, adults-only pool located on the 3rd floor of the Harbor Tower. Say what?! I rarely see that at any hotels we stay at. It was such a hot weekend, we thought we’d check it out the first day there. EEEHHH! As soon as we walked out the door to the pool, we instantly turned around. It was like a giant pool party and it was PACKED! It was loud and crowded…I seriously don’t know where we would have fit in the pool with all those people. We may have fared better with the pool swarming with kids! Again, this may be a lesson learned not to travel on holiday weekends but sometimes, you just don’t have a choice right? You have to maximize those vacay days off from work.
The adults-only pool area has private cabanas available for rent, but you can snag a lounge chair for free if you get there early enough.
Free Wi-Fi – In this day and age, if you don’t have Wi-Fi…life is meaningless? Haha. But really, I think all hotels should offer free Wi-Fi so thanks for that Manchester Grand Hyatt.
Pet-Friendly Hotel – I would never in a million years travel with my pets (they are just too much of a handful) but if you have well-behaved furries, they can stay with you for the price of a cleaning fee here.
Onsite Spa – If you’re in town for a relaxing getaway, the Hyatt does have an onsite spa, offering a variety of massages and spa treatments.
Grand Club – If you book a room in the Grand Club category, you’ll get access to the private Grand Club lounge where you’ll get benefits such as daily breakfast, evening hors d’oeuvres, and a sampling of snacks available throughout the day.
We’d definitely stay at the Manchester Grand Hyatt again! I did love the location, the views, and the overall comfortable feel of the hotel. Next time, I might try out that Grand Club room to check out their offerings!
Manchester Grand Hyatt
1 Market Place, San Diego
California, USA, 92101
Tel: (619) 232-1234
Pin it for later!