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Helpful Reviews 
Sofia HotelJoy G. rated

If we paid full price, I probably would have docked another star. The website we booked through had this room listed as $165 per night over the memorial day weekend. We jumped on it being that most other downtown hotels were upwards of $200 for the holiday. My business partn...moreer and I spent Thurs & Fri night there with not too many complaints. However, after reading a few reviews on a couple sites, I still am unsure why they don't install full shower doors. The entire bathroom is tiled. Toilet and shower are separated by a glass partition. The partition doesnt fully stretch the length of the shower, so the water tends to splash out. IMO, if it wasn't possible to install an entire glass door, shower curtains would have sufficed. The switch to the restroom light is to the right of the main door, however the restroom itself is to the left. The bathroom sink is to the right as soon as you walk into the room. My one other complaint is the parking fees. When booking online, it first appeared we would be able to pay an \"overnight flat fee\" of $10. Once we arrived, we noticed that the $10 flat fee is only good until 2am. If your stay doesn't include cruising downtown streets during the witching hours, you actually have to pay $30 for 24 hours of parking. You can self park to get that rate, or you can use valet--it comes out to the same $30. We opted to self park since we were not too sure how long it would take for valet to retrieve the car. We were in town for business, so there was not a lot of free time to dawdle. There are a good amount of pros to this hotel. The view from the third floor of Downtown San Diego is beautiful both during day and night. The cheapest food options we found within walking distance was Wendy's and a fresh baked large pizza from 7-11. They have 3 different HBO channels. If you don't want to use wifi, they do provide an ethernet cable for internet connection, which I appreciate. They provide 2 water bottles per day as well as coffee, both regular and decaf. Their fitness center is open 24 hrs, although I was not able to use it. Most of the staff was really friendly. The maid came to clean when we were still in the room, so we sent her away. Before she left, she made sure we had all the supplies we needed...toilet paper, water, shampoo, etc. One of the valet guys threw dirty looks, but whatev. If Hotels Tonight has another special on this hotel, we might just stay again. If you do download the hotels tonight app, make sure you use promo code \"sSaenz3\" to get $25 off your first booking. Every little bit helps! Safe travels everyone... This area is mostly one way streets, so let me offer small tip. When southbound on Front St, look for parking on the left side just as you pass C street. If you pass it, you can still pull over in front of the hotel for valet. If you're determined to self park, turn left on Broadway (Broadway runs both ways), and left again on first. The first parking lot on the left side is for the Sofia. Parking permit machine goes to sleep after inactivity, so if it looks off, just hit a button to wake it up. It accepts both cash and credit. view less

Hotel Occidentalndunbar rated
Clean and Convenient

Found this hotel on one of the popular travel Web sites after deciding to drive down to SD for the annual Celebrate Dance Festival in Balboa Park. My friend and I were looking for something affordable and convenient, and the Hotel Occidental fit the bill. I'd found and staye...mored in a similar \"European styled\" hotel about a year ago and had a great experience there, so I was hoping that this one would not disappoint. These types of hotels usually have smaller rooms with separate toilet and shower facilities which allows them to offer lower rates. We paid just under $200 for two nights for two twin beds plus a kitchenette (dishes, fridge and a microwave) and an in-room toilet, with extras like free wireless access, a combo TV/DVD, a basket of useful goodies (bottled water, microwave popcorn, instant coffee, tea, etc) a stack of fresh towels and plenty of room to put away our clothes for the weekend in an open shelf-closet combo. Many of the furnishings were minimalist Ikea-styled modular, but mostly comfortable. This room was a bit more sterile than others I've stayed in, in that there was no wall art or other touches of \"home,\" but seeing as we didn't spend a heck of a lot of time in the room but for sleeping, I was OK with that. They also made up for that lack of hominess in the room by creating a welcoming atmosphere in the common areas - fresh fruit and a tempting candy bowl were kept full in the lobby, and at night, guests came \"home\" to a dimly lit lobby accentuated by candlelight - truly a nice touch. The hotel also offered a complementary breakfast which was mostly fresh and included juice, coffee and an assortment of danish and breakfast rolls. Between that and the small kitchenette, we saved a bunch of money on eating out. Also, though small, the shower facilities were quite clean and well maintained. The only cons I have to note is parking - the hotel has a tiny, gated lot that can fit about four cars. However, we were lucky to find non-metered spaces on the street while there, and parking at meters is free on Sundays. Also, the neighborhood is a bit sketchy at night. Still we safely walked down 'G\" street to the Gaslamp district and took a cab back. There's a liquor store on an adjacent corner that attracts the usual clientele for that type of establishment, along with a \"lounge\" next door. However, those elements didn't freak us out as much as the presence of HUGE \"water bugs\" boldly walking along the street but no where near or in our living quarters, thankfully! All in all a nice stay especially for a quick weekend getaway!view less

San Diego Surf Schoolbustersd10 rated
San Diego Surf School

To live in San Diego is to live by the beach. Being near the beach means that the water is close enough to smell. That big body of water we call the ocean invites you to ride its waves, and if you don’t know how to surf, or if you want to improve your skills, Souf Tihhi and ...moreSan Diego Surf School in Pacific Beach can help. Growing up in Morocco, Africa, Souf, owner and founder of San Diego Surf School, fell in love with surfing early on in life. Taking cues from his older brother, he began surfing sometime in his seventh year of life. He has since surfed around Africa, Europe, Hawaii, California, Mexico and the East Coast. Souf went to Hawaii for college to study and surf. He spent his summers as a surf instructor in San Diego until he graduated and opened his own school. “I started out with nothing pretty much,” Souf said. He built the business from the ground up getting clients here and there until one day he realized that he had more clients than he could handle himself. Souf now has up to 30 instructors working in the summer time, holding classes, lessons and camps, but they’re not just for beginners. “[I want] to share what I’ve learned with others and spread what surfing is all about. It’s a really fun sport and I pretty much wanted everyone to experience that,” he said. His school is about more than just surfing. Souf and his team of instructors want people to experience the culture of surfing and learn to care about their surroundings. “We teach a lot about the waves and how to respect the ocean and to give to the community,” he explained. The most important part of surfing, and the core of San Diego Surf School, is to have fun. “The best surfer is the one having the most fun,” Souf said. view less

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