More about Grand Pacific Palisades Resort
Reservations don't count
My husband, myself and two boys, ages 9 and 6, have just returned from an 8 day trip to California, we had booked the Grand Pacific Palisades on line. We decided to stay there because we are used to staying at nice resorts, and this resort was close to Legoland. ( You can see the resort from Legoland parking lot ) After a long day at Legoland, we went to check in and were told that they had good news and bad news...the bad news was that we could not stay there, the good news was that they would put us up in a similiar hotel and the stay would be free....well..they sent us an exit down to the Ramada Inn....nothing against the Ramada, but had I wanted to stay at a hotel instead of a resort, I would have booked it that way. My husband called them back and told them that this hotel was not even close to their resort...they agreed, but again said that because a large group decided not to check out, that they had to keep them there, and they had already sent about 18 other families to other hotels..
My husband insisted that they find somewhere else for us to stay....it was our anniversary, and we really wanted someplace special....they agreed and sent us to La Costa Resort...an excellent choice...the service was great and the pool wonderful for the kids..(it's open 24 hours)
Bottom line.....even if you have a reservation, you may not be staying where you think...the manager told us, that according to California law, they cannot make other guests check out on their scheduled departure date, and they cannot send them elsewhere....
Hotel is fine for a short stay.
We stayed one night at the GPPR and it was fine. I was glad that I had a copy of my written confirmation because they "couldn't find" our reservation. They hotel room was a basic room nothing fancy but fine. The kids pool is great and the gym was well equiped and no extra charge. I think that for the price $115, it is a good deal. They let us park before we checked in so that we did not have to pay the legoland parking. Yes, it is a small hike to legoland but it is good excercise.
My parents stayed at this resort from Feb. 20 - 27th. My 6 month old son and I joined them for 5 days. This is a beautiful resort with fantastic views especially from the adult pool and hot tub location. The flower fields were just starting, so only a few rows of color on one end. The location is great to Legoland, although we did not go there. We were in a spacious ocean view (the ocean's about a mile away) two bedroom unit in Villa C. My parents were approached once by timeshare salespeople, they declined, and that was it. The suite was very clean and nice. The beds are a little hard however. There is a ton of closet space and the master bathroom has a hair dryer, but no jacuzzi tub. If you're into exercise, the fitness room is the best I've seen at a timeshare property; 3 treadmills, 1 stepper, 2 bikes, 1 or 2 ellipticals, free weights, mats, balls, and a sauna. They also offer massages there. It's also a nice area to take a walk or a jog. Even though the weather wasn't real warm (low 60's) the pools were heated to about bath water temperature so they were enjoyed by the kids. I found the concierge to be helpful and we had no problem getting towels or the room cleaned when we put out the sign. I thought the service was very good, but I wouldn't say that we're high maintenance guests, either. They offer a shuttle to take you around to local areas, just plan your arrangements early in the day before they are booked. The restaurant (I forget the name) on property is very good, we got take-out a couple of times. The outlet mall is fabulous and only 1/2 mile away. Some stores include Gap, BabyGap, Banana Republic, Coach, Dooney and Burke, Clarke Shoes, and Bebe. There are a couple of eateries there, like Rubio's and Starbucks, which I did not try, but looked good. There is a Marie Callendar's nearby and a very good seafood place across from the outlet mall. If you go into Carlsbad, eat at Fidel's Mexican Restaurant. Best and freshest Mexican food I've ever had. When they bring out the chips and salsa, for an extra 75 cents you can get the fresh, homemade salsa which I highly recommend. San Diego is about 30-45 min. away, depending on traffic. Coronado Island is about an hour. We ate at the Old Towne Mexican Cafe in Old Towne. Ladies are making homemade tortillas in the window. The fried ice cream was terrific. I'd love to come back in a couple years and bring the rest of my family to this resort. My older children 8, 6, and 2 would enjoy it and SeaWorld's not that far away.
Not a great resort, but a decent Legoland home base
My biggest complaint about this hotel is the $9.00/room/night service charge. I made a reservation through this site and was presented with what I thought was the total I would be paying for our stay. Upon check-out, I was notified of the extra charge ($36.00 for two rooms for two nights, which is not insignificant). I wouldn't have minded paying that amount if they had not been so sneaky about tacking it on. The checkout person said, with a straight face, "It's in the fine print of your web transaction."
- the family pool area was closed the day after we arrived for a week.
- we had to check in 2 hours late because our room wasn't ready
- one of our tubs was clogged and when they fixed it, they took the stopper so we couldn't give our kids baths in that tub
The upside (mostly covered in other posts):
- legoland is a short walk, so one could argue that the surprise service charge makes up for the saved parking fees
- when open, the family swimming area was quite fun for our kids, ages 3-9
- the staff is friendly, although not entirely competent
- we bought our legoland tix at a discount from costco near our home in LA. I didn't check this out, but I'd be willing to bet that the costco across the street from the hotel might sell discounted legoland tix as well. It's worth the trip across the street if you are a costco member.
We stayed here 3 nights as our last stop of a week long trip through southern California, staying in 3 hotels during trip. This particular hotel is very nice, and I would definately stay there again. I obtained a weekday rate of $119 and weekend of $153 for our stay from Expedia. The reservation was made about 2 weeks before the trip, and more advance time would have made my rate cheaper. This price is about average for the area, all of Carlsbad is pricey. The hotel also charges a resort fee and taxes of about $16 a night.
The outside of the facility is the prettiest hotel in Carlsbad, we have seen every hotel there and stayed at 3 others so far. The motorcourt and lobby are very welcoming and classy. They have underground parking so your car stays cool. The staff does not pressure you for bellservice and such but it is available - and they have luggage carts in the parking garage in case you want to take your own bags up to your room.
The hotel has an adult olympic sized pool one one end othe property that has the view, since the hotel is on a hill. The pool area has hot jacuzzi with a bonfire at night, very romantic. They do not have a resteraunt but use the one next door (Karl Strauss) for room service. They have a door card to order breakfast and we had a tasty and suprisingly affordable breakfast using the card one morning. The neighborhood is terrific with plenty of dining and shopping nearby, especially at the high-end outlet center. The flower fields next door are gone now, but the facility has wonderful plush landscaping. They have a nice fitness center that is supervised, no kids allowed though even if they are just watching you.
The lobby has a concierge and mini-gift shop. Check in was very quick and our room was ready on time.
We had a second floor room, with a balcony with sliding glass doors and chairs. The rooms all open into spacious hallways. The halls did not smell bad while we statyed there, but some older reviews said they did. The room was very clean and tastefully decorated with bright colors. The beds were very comfortable, with high quality bedding and the best pillows of our trip. The towels were nicer that the towels we had at Hilton the week before. The furniture was high quality as well. The bathroom was nice with granite counters, tile, fancy shower, and its roomy with extra large cabinet space available under the sink. Even though it was full of towels we asked for 4 extra towels, and 4 extra pillows right after checking in, and they came quickly with no questions asked. Nice lighting, TV had internet and 50 channels, and video games, and a VCR.
They have a ton of stuff for kids to do. They rent movies for the VCR's that are in each room, along with most kid channels. No HBO or unsuitalbe content for kids on TV, unless you count pay per view. They have a special kids area on the opposite end of the faciltiy from the adult pool. It includes a playground, game room with ping-pong and fooseball, arcade, very fun kids pool and water play area with water cannons, pirate boat, soaker showers and more, and a supervised kids camp in daytime, and kids movie nights with popcorn, also supervised. They claim to have a shuttle to Legoland, but it was never available during our stay. If they suggest you walk to Legoland, don't do it. It will be far too much if you have kids, so just drive. They do have a laundry room at the hotel.
The facilty has one wing that is condos, sold as time shares. The hotel will call your room ask if you want to come to a presentation and dinner on the time shares. We didn't go, and they didn't pursue us over it.
Overall, it is the nicest we stayed in Carlsbad over last 3 years out of the Residence Inn, Best Western and Embassy Suites. Travel tip - We often fly into the small Carlsbad airport from our Phoenix connecting flight rather than the LA or San Diego airports. No lines, no crowds, no pressure, very nice treat!
Really liked this resort
We spent the week of 6/11-18 in a 2 BR on the ground floor. We were right across from the kids' pool, but from the master bedroom & LR, the noise was minimal. We had our G-Grandson for one night, and he LOVED that pool..so many toys and activities in the little water park. The pool didn't feel heated to me, but maybe all the energy warmed it a bit?
The adult pool is beautiful, huge, heated, and with a great view.
The staff were all very helpful, and maintenance responded quickly to the 2 small things we reported.
The $9 daily charge seems a bit much, but no one seems to mention that the parking is in an underground garage, and the fee also includes 24 hr. internet service...and a newspaper daily.
We enjoyed going to the Museum of Making Music, just up the street, and we also took the child to the Wild Animal Park.
The location is excellent, and I'd love to be there when those flower fields are in bloom. It must take ones' breath away. We would go back in a heartbeat.
Wonderful facility. We were upgraded to a one-bedroom condo upon check-in; full kitchen with a TV in the bedroom and stereo/TV in the living room with ocean view off the balcony. Spotless. Pool area was great. A couple of things could be improved:
more 'activities' in the activity center and more vending machines that actually work.
Not to pleased with this resort.
My husband myself and my little girl went to this resort for a time share package weekend. When we arrived at the hotel our room was not ready and we were told to return at 3:00 pm. The adult pool is beautiful and right off the main lobby area so we decided to sit and wait for our room After about 30 minutes of waiting we were approached by an elderly women and told the general manager was watching us and we were told to go wait by the childrens pool. I was very insulted to say the least but did what was asked of me. At 3:00 I went back to get my room but was told it would be at least another 25 minutes. We were given our room at 3:30. The room which was basically in the parking lot was not clean. The bathroom floor still had hair on it from the last guest. GROSS! The other problem I had with this hotel was the way they kept count of all their towels. Every single towel had to be accounted for or they would charge you 10.00 per towel. There are no towels kept near the adult pool so you have to walk over to the fitness club to obtain a towel. The first night we arrived I wanted to go into the adult jacuzzi. I got two towels and was told it woud be to late to return them tonight so I could return them in the morning. I felt like a jerk walking through the hotel the next morning with two wet dirty towels that I had to save from the night before so I wouldn't get charged. Needless to say I wasn't interested in purchasing a time share from them. We were suppose to stay 2 nights but decided after the first night after our room hadn't even been cleaned after 4:00 pm we had had enough and decided to go home.
"A place to get to know..."
I've driven through Carlsbad many times on trips between L.A. and San Diego, stopping maybe once or twice to grab a bite to eat.
I spent the week before Christmas this year with my family at the Grand Pacific Palisades Resort here in Carlsbad. It's quite touristic, but I'm hoping to come back from time to time to explore the half-dozen or so quaint beach towns north of San Diego.
Most tourists will love this location because of its proximity to the ocean, the Flower Fields, LegoLands, Premium Outlets, and its close proximity to the major San Diego tourist attractions.
As I get to know this place better on future visits, will definitely share tips with you all.
"Perfect for families"
Though I have no kids of my own, I can tell that Carlsbad is a haven for families looking for a nice vacation spot.
LegoLand is supposed to be a great place for young kids (toddlers through pre-teen); the beaches are nice, and it is a short drive from the major San Diego tourist attractions.
There are an abundance of budget motor lodges, as well as higher end resorts.
For tourism information, go to:
p.s. There is a weekly Farmers Market in Carlsbad Village every Wed. Try the handmade tamales--they're lard-free and delicious! :)