Recommended properties in LA/San Diego?

Discussion in 'IHG | Rewards Club/Ambassador' started by viguera, Mar 16, 2013.  |  Print Topic

  1. viguera
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    viguera Gold Member

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    I'm taking a trip out West for a few days at the end of the month and I haven't decided yet where I'm crediting my stays... but in spite of my status with Hyatt/SPG (Plat/Gold) I've been on a mission to requalify with IHG first, then maybe throw my stays at other chains.

    This trip coming up has me arriving at LAX 3/25 and (in spite of my better judgment) renting a car and taking a drive to San Diego the following day. The first three days of the trip will be family oriented (with our 3 year old) so we're thinking of spending a day at Sea World or the Zoo.

    Unfortunately, I don't see a whole lot of reviews for properties in the area, so I was wondering if anybody had any recommendations. I saw the review for the Indigo (Gaslamp) and it seems ok, although for the San Diego part of the trip I was eyeballing that HIX near Sea World.

    Thanks in advance.
     
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  2. sobore
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    sobore Gold Member

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  3. viguera
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    viguera Gold Member

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    Thanks.

    That HIX Century City is handing out the points... 10k points per night. I don't think I've seen any other hotel in the chain offer that.
     
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  4. sobore
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    sobore Gold Member

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    Nice! Got the 10k per night last year in Madison WI. :cool: There are a few IHG properties that do this.
     
  5. viguera
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    viguera Gold Member

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    I just got 10k per stay last week at Vernon Hills (which hasn't posted yet). This is making me reconsider my plans, even though the rate is high. :)
     
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  6. Jenny & Curt
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    Jenny & Curt Gold Member

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    I think the zoo would be a much better choice with your child. Sea World is a bit beyond him, and much more of a "journey." The zoo is in a beautiful area where you can walk around. You could get combination zoo-safari park tickets if you want two outings, and skip Sea World. There is also LegoLand near Carlsbad.
     
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  7. edekba

    edekba Gold Member

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    Safari Park + Zoo is the way to go.
     
  8. edekba

    edekba Gold Member

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    where do u see 10k/night ... i might need to check in a few times when I go see my fiancee
     
  9. In San Diego there are two Indigo properties, one in Del Mar and the other right downtown near the ball bark. Both are very nice.
     
  10. viguera
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    viguera Gold Member

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    I followed the link from sobore, with check-in on 3/25. At the very bottom the rate says "10000 PCR BONYS PTS" with the description of "BANK 10000 PCR BONUS POINTS PER NIGHT WHAT AN OFFER"
    Unusual because it's missing the bonus point graphic they use [​IMG] (which I always look for when booking :) ), but the rate is there at the bottom. Problem is like I said the cheapest rate I see for my days is $239... then again that's "only" $50 more per night than the cheapest BAR rate I see without bonus points, and 10k points a night is a sizeable offer.
     
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  11. viguera
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    viguera Gold Member

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    Incidentally while looking around the Anaheim area (considering Disneyland on day 1) I'm noticing a lot of the PC properties offering as much as 11k points per night in some cases.
     
  12. viguera
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    viguera Gold Member

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    While looking for an overnight stay (thinking of a 6am flight) I found this at the new Indigo Brooklyn...

    25k.png

    Can't say I've seen any hotel offer that many points for a stay, although there seem to be plenty doing 10k per night.
     
  13. viguera
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    viguera Gold Member

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    Apologies for the lengthy post... I'm writing this as it comes while the information is still fresh. As is the case with hotel hopping, chances are I will forget most of the information by the time I get back home. :)

    Just to follow up on this, I ended up breaking this up as much as I could, within reason.

    * 1 night at Crowne Plaza LAX
    * 2 nights at HIX Fullerton
    * 2 nights at HIX San Diego - Sorrento Valley
    * 1 night at HIX LAX Hawthorne

    So far so good actually, and in spite of the moving around it has actually been pretty stress-free, even traveling with the little one.

    The Crowne Plaza LAX I picked because it was close to the airport and had the better AAA rates and the room type I needed. The hotel is very clean and quiet, the shuttle runs every 20 minutes and I don't really have anything to complain about. The shuttle is kind of small though, and on Monday night was (for some odd reason) serving both the Crowne Plaza and the nearby Courtyard (yeah, by Marriott), so it can get crowded and difficult to manage in if you have a lot of luggage.

    I ended up on the Club floor (16th), and although the club is not all that big it doesn't feel cramped. I was told by someone that the hotel sells access to the lounge for a $40 fee if it's not included in the rate, but that they have some kind of policy about kids not being allowed. I suppose it's understandable if they want the lounge to be a place you do some work and relax, although I would imagine this would be a tough sell for people traveling with kids.

    The food spread was decent... a few juices, some pastries and cereals and the usual hot stuffs for breakfast. They do close at 9pm though, so if you arrive late from the East you might find it closed by the time you get there. The front desk did not acknowledge my status, although they did acknowledge that I was a PC member and gave me a voucher for a free drink or some such at the restaurant. I think I still have that with me.

    The HIX Fullerton hotel itself was average I would say. It's not a bad hotel at all but it's nothing remarkable either. They have a bar/restaurant which were pretty empty for the duration of my stay, in spite of the parking lot being pretty much full since early in the afternoon. It might have something to do with the plethora of food choices within walking distance (Denny's, In-n-Out, Sonic, etc).

    The rooms were clean although a bit dated, but with a nice work area with plenty of outlets, decent wireless internet, etc. The hotel is 5 floors and I ended up on 4, in a "1 King Jacuzzi" with what appeared to be a rather uncomfortable sleeper sofa. The bathroom had a standing shower and separate Jacuzzi, which seems like a cool idea but I never used. And I mention this because apparently the 5th floor people decided to try out the Jacuzzi (or at least fill it) which resulted in quite a bit of noise in my room.

    The pool is on the 2nd floor and has a few chairs, but it's only 3 1/2 feet deep all around and was very, very cold. There's a laundry area and relatively decent fitness center in the same general area as the pool. To the immediate right of the registration desk there's a very small shop of sorts with a few snacks and beverages. As a PC member I was given a coupon that I could redeem for one beverage (bottle of juice, soda, etc) and one snack (bag of chips, chocolate, etc).

    I just checked in at the Sorrento Valley property so I can't comment too much. So far so good, although it looks like one of the properties that sprung around to support the Qualcomm rush in the area. The only real thing that I've noticed so far is that it's really close to MCAS Miramar, so while you'll occasionally see some pretty nice hardware in the sky, you will also hear and fell it as it flies nearby. A V22 Osprey on approach sounds like there's an A380 at full throttle in the shower, so consider yourself warned.

    My adventure continues tomorrow with the rather large campus they've built to sustain the Qualcomm guys down the block, which has a food court that would make most malls jealous, plus some hot tub action (although you can see cars driving down the street since it's on the ground floor).
     
  14. viguera
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    viguera Gold Member

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    Just to bring this thread to a close...

    The Sorrento Valley property was actually pretty decent. The breakfast on the main restaurant was actually a very nice variety of cold/hot stuffs, although the bacon was paper thin and overcooked. At least they had pastries, bagels, the famous pancake machine, quite a few different types of cereals and juices.

    Housekeeping apparently "leaves early" -- or at least that was the explanation I got from the front desk as to why I couldn't get a check-out past 1pm, even after pushing the issue. Keep that in mind if you're ever around and expect to leave at 4pm. Otherwise the property was nice if not remarkable.

    The Hawthorne property at LAX however, was "interesting" to say the least.

    It seems like a brand new hotel in a "transitional" area. They have a private parking lot (free), covered and secured by a code that they give you at check-in. I wouldn't call the area "unsafe" but it's certainly not glamorous in the least, with a few vacant lots nearby and a few other hotels currently under construction.

    The 2 Queen room I booked was huge -- very long, although awkwardly furnished with small furniture which just made it seem long and narrow. I don't know, probably just me but I could have made better use of the space. As I said, it looks like a newish property complete with the new RFID keys.

    There were quite a few people in the fitness room, but nobody in the pool -- the weather, the area, and the fact that it's outdoors on the ground floor probably had something to do with it. They have a few different shuttles they run to LAX, but when it's a small group they usually just run the vans -- and they run every 30 minutes, 24/7.

    The only thing that I didn't like about this stay was that the bonus points were given to me as vouchers, rather than being listed as Bonus PCR points in the stay. Not only does that shift the work to you to go and redeem the vouchers, but (more importantly) these don't count as elite qualifying points under the new program changes.
     

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