Love and Romance in San Diego

Warm sunny days, cool evenings, ocean breezes, and swaying palm trees; when life is this easy what’s not to love? Even in paradise it’s possible for romance to end up playing second fiddle to a busy lifestyle, which makes it all the more important to make the time to reconnect. Sometimes all it takes is some alone time on a great escape to flame the fire.  We’ve chosen two of the most romantic hotel stays, restaurants, and couple’s activities in San Diego to help you plan your perfect romantic getaway, be it a vacation or staycation.

Two San Diego Hotel Stays That Say ‘I love you’

It’s difficult to narrow down the romantic hotel options in San Diego to two, because it’s highly subjective when you have so many options. We chose an island bed and breakfast-style hotel on Coronado Island and a swanky urban hotel in East Village for two distinctly different choices. San Diego, however, is a mecca of romantic boutique, resort, luxury, and independent hotels, each with its own style and passionate vibe.

1906 Lodge is a luxury boutique hotel tucked away on San Diego’s Coronado Island. Rooms and suites transport lovers to a bygone era with original craftsman-style detail and nautical décor.  Ground level suites have patios overlooking a courtyard garden of fragrant flowers; second-story suites have balconies. All suites include rain showers, fireplaces, and cozy seating areas. Indulge in a gourmet breakfast, linger over afternoon refreshments on the veranda, or venture off together with the complimentary use of beach cruisers and beach gear; it’s all included in the price of your room and suite. Recently recognized as the top boutique hotel in America, this island getaway is the perfect place for romance.

1906 Lodge

Andaz is a swanky hotel in San Diego’s trendy East Village. Couture decorated rooms and suites are ultra-modern and amenity laden, catering to the sophisticated couple with an appreciation for high style. You can check in on an iPad while you enjoy welcome beverages; get your VIP bracelet, then settle into your accommodations. Share a poolside massage on the hotel rooftop, or work out together with a personal trainer. When the sun goes down, relax at Andaz Wine Bar on the sidewalk level before going out for dinner or entertainment in the Gaslamp Quarter or East Village. Rooftop600 atop Andaz offers a romantic view of the nighttime cityscape, or a place to share mojitos in front of a fire at the end of a relaxing day.

Two Romantic San Diego Restaurants with Taste

The Greek philosopher Epicurus advised, “We should look for someone to eat and drink with before looking for something to eat and drink.” Eating has always been a social experience where families, colleagues, lovers, and others deepen relationships over plates of food. Among these culinary bonds, none is more anticipated than the dinner date. When you and your special someone are ready to break bread together, these two San Diego restaurants provide both sumptuous fare and a romantic ambiance.

The Prado at Balboa Park is a gracious hacienda-style restaurant in the heart of San Diego’s Balboa Park. The meticulously restored National Historic Landmark is centrally located in the House of Hospitality, making it an easy walk to the Globe Theater, Japanese Friendship Garden, Organ Pavilion, and several museums. The restaurant serves a New American menu, and was a recipient of an America’s Best Restaurant award from Gourmet Magazine. It’s the perfect setting for a romantic dinner before or after the theater or an exhibition. Turn up the romance on the outdoor multi-tiered terrace surrounded by lush gardens with strings of twinkly lights crisscrossing above.

Prado at Balboa Park-4

Bertrand at Mr. A’s is a San Diego culinary icon representing the crème de la crème of fine dining experiences since 1965. The classic restaurant that sits atop the former Fifth Avenue Financial Center in the Bankers Hill neighborhood is listed among the Top 100 Romantic Restaurants in the U.S. You’ll savor French-American cuisine prepared by premier Chef Stephane, a Chef of the Year Gold Medallion award winner, and served either indoors over white linens, or outdoors on the wraparound rooftop terrace. Indulge in a prix fixe performance or tasting menu at sundown, and watch the planes descend onto Lindbergh Field as the sun dips into the Pacific. Share a romantic dinner after dark above the sparkling city lights, or come in after a show for dessert and a nightcap.

Two Places in San Diego to Find Fun and Romance

The Gondola Company takes lovers into a world of their own weaving slow-paced gondolas among the serene waterways of the Coronado cays. Couples can choose either the Pasaporto Cruise for two or Sunset Cruise for two, both of which include blankets, an ice bucket, and wine glasses. You’re encouraged to bring your own bottle of bubbly or other beverage on your enchanted journey. You can even up the romance factor on your gondola cruise by hiring a professional mandolin or violin musician. These romantic cruises are 50 minutes and run to midnight.

VIP Paints offers couples a memorable date night experience in North Park’s emerging arts district. Is there a more natural expression of love than bringing a creation into the world together – a painting anyway? Whether you’re amateur artists or a free-spirited couple who’ll try anything once, VIP Paints will help you manifest your shared artistic expression. Check their calendar for couples’ classes where you share space but not a canvas, or partnered painting classes where you create a diptych – a single painting on two panels. You can also schedule a private class for just the two of you, and BYOB! Before or after your session, take advantage of VIP Paint’s urban location on the 30th Street Corridor, home to North Park’s vibrant craft brew scene.

Even if you can only steal away an hour to spend together, San Diego has plenty of options for romance. Watch the sun set into the ocean at Sunset Cliffs, stargaze into the night sky from atop Mount Soledad, or catch an outdoor movie from his and hers recliners in Mission Hills. Share a cocktail at Prohibition, one of San Diego’s hidden speakeasies where finding the entrance is part of the allure. Ride around Mission Bay on a tandem bike, or catch SeaWorld’s fireworks night kayaking the bay. Find your pleasure together in San Diego.