Hillcrest House Bed & Breakfast

3845 Front Street, San Diego, California, 92103, United States
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Satisfaction Excellent
Very Good


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Good For Families
  • Families100
  • Couples96
  • Solo98
  • Business97

More about Hillcrest House Bed & Breakfast

Like visiting with old friends

by TripAdvisor Member cem44

We just made our first visit ever to San Diego and, thanks to TripAdvisor, we stayed in a place that, for us, was near perfect.

Almost from the moment we arrived, we felt more like we were visiting with old friends than staying at a commercial establishment. The Hillcrest House itself has a very comfortable atmosphere, and Ann Callahan is one of those people who truly know how to make you feel at home. Her mother, Barbara, who is in charge of breakfasts, is great as well. Both women know the area very well and are loaded with good suggestions for sightseeing, dining, etc.

We stayed in the Gaslamp Room, which was very nice, with a large shower, and quite reasonably-priced. While the room itself is small, it did not feel cramped, and there was ample drawer space for our clothes. We did have a couple of quibbles with the room, but they would not be a problem for everyone.

First, the room does not have a closet or even an armoire for hanging clothes. There is a rack against one wall, which would be adequate for a single person or a couple spending only a few days, but for a couple spending 6 nights, as we did, it was a bit inadequate. We should note that both of the other guest rooms, which are larger, do have closets, though.

Second, we happened to arrive at the beginning of (for San Diego, at least) a heat wave, with daytime temperatures into the mid-80’s and nights only going down to the low 70’s. Because the temperature stays so moderate at least 11 months of the year, many places in San Diego (and Hillcrest House is one of them) are not air-conditioned. Since the windows in the Gaslamp Room face west, it can get quite warm in the late afternoon, and the room can take a while to cool off at night.

These two problems aside, everything else about our stay was wonderful. Ann knows the San Diego restaurant scene well. We arrived with a list of way more restaurant recommendations than we could possibly try, and she helped us whittle it down to a more manageable size, adding a sushi restaurant run by a friend that turned out to be a culinary highlight of our stay. Truthfully, though, we thoroughly enjoyed every meal we had while we were in San Diego, from some great (and very inexpensive) soft tacos at a small storefront place, to a few more elaborate dinners at restaurants in the Gaslamp Quarter and Little Italy. And, speaking of food, we would be remiss indeed not to mention the great breakfasts every day at Hillcrest House – juice, an assortment of fresh fruit, cereal, coffee and tea, and Barbara’s own homemade muffins, fresh out of the oven, a different variety each day. Talk about a great way to start a day!

A couple of other things we really liked about Hillcrest House were the free offstreet parking, since there isn’t much in the way of onstreet parking available, and the location itself. The Hillcrest section of San Diego is loaded with shopping and excellent restaurants, and there is much to choose from within a 15-20 minute walk. When, however, we were headed to another section of town, driving there was always much easier than we expected, and rarely took more than 20 minutes.

It may be a couple of years before we get back to San Diego, but we will be back, and when we do, we absolutely plan to stay at Hillcrest House again. We’ll just be sure to schedule our visit in other than August!

One of the Best

by TripAdvisor Member clydemac

for years my wife and i have enjoyed numerous b&bs in many small towns across the southeast u.s. for this reason it was with a bit of apprehension that we booked this b&b in san diego. but after our three night stay we both agreed that it was one of our most enjoyable and memorable trips. the century-old craftsman type home has been remarkably restored by the proprietor, ann callahan. and the location is very convenient to the sites of san diego and the colorful hillcrest community. and the entire experience was topped off by ann's hospitality. she's as pleasant a hostess as we've encountered in our travels and was more than eager to make our trip as enjoyable as possible. our next trip so san diego will certainly include time spent at the hillcrest b&b.

Just Like Home

by TripAdvisor Member yadwiga

Stayed two nights in the Zoo Room. Extremely comfortable queen bed in a decent sized room. Large bathroom with toilet, sink, tub/shower, and full closet. Enjoyed having a ceiling fan, and being able to sleep with the windows open. I'm a light sleeper, and briefly heard the roar of a couple of passing cars in the middle of the night, but it was the weekend, and our windows were open, so I don't fault that. Also heard the breakfast being set up early in the morning downstairs. Whole house was spotless, and the hospitality outstanding. They make you feel like family. Felt very comfortable coming and going at our leisure, night or day. Breakfast was continental style...cereals, fresh fruit, juice, coffee, muffins. Good central location with easy driving to all attractions.

Unexpected charm and hospitality

by TripAdvisor Member sltrvl

We were fortunate to find a room at all in San Diego with mass evacuation under way during October, 2007 wildfires in the county. Imagine our surprise when we were greeted with a hug and cozy/
comfortable/unexpectedly nice accomodations! Overnight, my daughter went from crying in the car as we pulled up (due to fear from evacuating) to raving about her B&B experience and wanting to stay at
one again! We owe this positive experience to innkeeper Ann's hospitality and the care she has taken in beautifully decorating each
room. Under such difficult circumstances, it was a treat to meet others who were fleeing the San Diego County fires - and even a couple on holiday from Britain. The true B&B experience! Even though we are "local" - it would be a treat to return there - under different circumstances we hope!

Stay here!!

by TripAdvisor Member MECB

My husband and myself were planning a holiday from the UK to include some time in San Diego. As I'm really fussy about where I stay, I went straight to this site for help. Thank goodness we did or we might never have found this gem of a place.
What makes it fantastic? Well that depends on what you are looking for. My number one priority is always cleanliness and this place is spotlessly clean. We stayed in the "zoo room". It had a really comfortable bed with good bed linen and an immaculately clean en-suite bathroom. Breakfasts were I suppose, continental style, perfect for us as we didn't want the "gourmet" food that can overwhelm you. We NEVER left the table hungry and there was always a freshly baked treat on offer!
However, what set this b&b apart from the 3 others we had stayed at on this holiday was Ann, the innkeeper. She's bright, cheery and friendly. She made us feel so relaxed, as though we were in our"home away from home". Nothing was too much trouble to her to help us get the most out of our stay in San Diego. We didn't have a car for the 4 days we were staying. Despite having evacuees from the areas dreadful fires seeking refuge with her, she somehow found time to sort out maps, buses, restaurants and whether the local attractions were open for open for visitors. So folks, stay there. You won't be disappointed.

Awesome experience!

by TripAdvisor Member msjlc

This was my first experience staying at a bed and breakfast and I couldn't have asked for any thing better. Ann and Barbara made me feel so welcome. Their friendly, outgoing personalities immediately made me feel comfortable and right at home. They were very helpful in suggesting places to eat and things to do but they also provided me with plenty of space and privacy.

I stayed in the Zoo room and I loved it. The bed was extremely comfortable and I found every little detail in the room to be great! Barbara provides a very healthy breakfast and I especially loved her home made muffins!

By the end of my four day vacation I felt more like family. When I return to San Diego I would not consider staying any place else. I have already suggested the Hillcrest House Bed and Breakfast to all of my friends as a great get away place.

San Diego at it's best

by TripAdvisor Member Doingydoing

I have traveled to San Diego for business many, many times and have to say that this trip was my favorite and Hillcrest House is the reason. First, I had to make a last minute trip to a very large meeting, so all of the hotel rooms were booked, and although I had no experiences with them I looked for a bed and breakfast. When Ann told me they had a room I booked immediately, so I would love her and the place regardless of the atmosphere. However when I got there I was so utterly surprised that I had to write this review. The house is so comfortable and Ann and Barbara truly treat you like old friends when you arrive. I stayed in the Zoo room and it was very comfortable (I now leer at my bed at home for not living up to the one at Hillcrest House), the bathroom was also huge and well equipped. Everyone morning before my conference I would chat with Ann, and if I was in a hurry they would throw some things together so I could get there in time. I cannot stress how great it was to leave my meeting at the end of the day and truly leave my meeting...my colleagues were still near the convention center eating at chain restaurants and I was hanging out at my new friends house in the truly unique and lively Hillcrest neighborhood. I could not recommend this bed and breakfast with any more enthusiasm.

Great location, friendly welcome

by TripAdvisor Member Georgio

Visited San Diego in September, and booked our first couple of nights' accommodation here before leaving England. Proprietor Ann was very friendly and welcoming, and put herself out to be helpful to us in every possible way (for example, tracking down our lost luggage!) and advising us of places to visit. Her home is in a great location just to the north of the city and a short walk from the Hillcrest shopping area, where there are dozens of restaurants with any number of ethnic choices available. We extended our stay for a third night, and returned after driving round San Diego County for a last night before joining our cruise ship. Our rooms were clean, spacious and comfortable, and the ensuite bathrooms were truly splendid. Only drawbacks were that there was not a lot of natural light in the rooms, and we experienced a bit of noise from the neighbours on a couple of occasions.

A Home Away From Home

by TripAdvisor Member Nenon

We have just returned from a five night stay at The Hillcrest House Bed and Breakfast and staying here certainly added to the great time we had in San Diego. Ann gave us easy directions from the airport and greeted us at the door when we arrived. From the minute we saw the beautiful garden and welcoming front porch and stepped into this lovely home we knew we had come to the right place. Ann and her mother Barbara could not have been more helpful in making our holiday enjoyable. Ann's Yorkshire terrier Callie made us smile each day with her greetings and tail wags.
My husband and I stayed in the Gaslamp Room which was very comfortable with a private bathroom, storage for our clothes in a bureau, and a TV which we didn't expect. Each morning we were treated to a heart healthy California breakfast of juice,cereal,yogourt,fresh fruit and the best homemade muffins ever!
Ann was so helpful in giving us easy directions to find Old Town and local shopping malls. We were amazed at the number of great restaurants that were located within easy walking distance of the Bed and Breakfast. We enjoyed our evening walks in the Hillcrest District.
We highly recommend this lovely spot for a great stay in San Diego!!

Absolutely perfect!

by TripAdvisor Member meisha747

I wish I would have had more time! I didn't arrive until about 1am and she made it totally painless. The minute I walked in the door it felt like I was back at home. Everything was clean and had a very "homey" feel. The bed was extremely comfortable; very nice bathroom as well.
I felt so at home that I decided to just go downstairs the next morning in my pjs. Homemade muffins, fruits, coffee, cereals, etc for breakfast- everything was very tasty. I am 25 and was vacationing alone and was timid about where to go- Ann had maps and helpful suggestions on what I should do. Everything was very close so I was able to walk. I will be coming back for sure! Ann is such a sweetheart and Callie just melts your heart :)


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 Hillcrest House Bed & Breakfast

We've found that other people looking for this hotel also know it by these names:

Hillcrest House Bed And Breakfast
Hillcrest House Hotel San Diego

Address: 3845 Front Street, San Diego, California, 92103, United States