The Gaslamp Quarter was developed in the 1860s. It was then known as "New Town", in opposition to the Old Town area. In its early days, the area's streets were filled with saloons, gambling halls and houses of ill repute - this was, after all, America's Far West. Over the years, the Gaslamp Quarter kept on providing entertainment, but its reputation got increasingly dubious with the apparition of pornographic theaters and massage parlors mostly frequented by sailors. In the 1970s, the Gaslamp Quarter Association was created to preserve the area's history and redevelop the district. Today, the Gaslamp Quarter once again provides entertainment in the more family-friendly form of stores, restaurants and nightclubs. It gets especially busy in the evening and on the weekend. For those who'd like to take a closer look at its history, it's possible to go on a guided tour (Saturdays at 11:00 am, starting at the William Heath Davis House) or go on a self-guided walk of the area. There are some 90 historical buildings on which you can find information pannels - most are located on 4th and 5th Avenue, between J Street and Broadway. It's also possible to buy a map (on sale at the William Heath Davis House for $2) that shows where all the buildings are located.
When you're walking around the Gaslamp Quarter, it's well worth taking a few minutes to explore this historic hotel dating back to the 1880s. Today's structure actually consists of what used to be two separate hotels: the Horton Grand Hotel, the oldest hotel in San Diego and still one of the finest, and the Brooklyn Hotel, a somewhat more modest place originally built in the Cowboy-Victorian style. Wyatt Earp spent about 7 years at the latter, while the former frequently hosted American presidents and international royalty. The two hotels were joined and entirely renovated in the 1980s. Although they now operate as one hotel, it's still interesting to see the contrast between the two buildings as you walk around the lobby area that has been built to connect the two.
Built in 1850, this is the oldest house in the Gaslamp Quarter. It's home to the Gaslamp Quarter Association, and it's possible to go on self-guided tours of the house. Its 10 rooms are furnished so as to represent the early history of the house and of its different tenants, and it thus makes for a nice, quick introduction to the more historic side of the Gaslamp Quarter. The house is named after William Heath Davis, even though he never lived in it. He was the first man to come up with the idea of developing a new downtown for San Diego but unfortunately, after buying the land he needed to carry out his plan, he was forced to give up on the idea when his wealth and fortune went up in flames (literally!) in the 1851 San Francisco fire. A few years later, Alonzo Horton, one of the house's earliest tenants, picked up the idea and turned it into a successful venture, giving birth to the area we now call the Gaslamp Quarter.
The Gaslamp Quarter is about sixteen blocks of shopping, dining and nightclubs that offer something exciting for everyone. Day and night it is a vibrant part of the city.
Downtown San Diego had lost its appeal as more and more shopping malls sprang up in the various communities. Still many people worked downtown, but didn't stay past five. Little by little the streets were taken over by the homeless and some unsavory characters and The fountain in the town square called, Horton Plaza became a place the homeless used to wash up.
The city "fathers" finally devised a plan to change the pending fate of our sad little town and The Gaslamp Quarter was the result.
In a few short years--by city development standards--San Diegans had a re-vitalized downtown area that was fun to spend time in, elegant to live in and beautiful enough to be proud of. Even the homeless were hired to walk security detail!
Now, instead of avoiding this old section of downtown S.D. we are telling everyone who will listen, "The Gaslamp Quarter" is a Must See in San Diego!! Development is still going on and who knows how far it will spread?
The Gaslamp sign as viewed on Fifth Avenue, looking north from the direction of the Convention Center.
WELCOME TO DOWNTOWN SAN DIEGO!
Located at front of Horton Plaza. It has two stages and is the home to the San Diego Repertory Theatre.
Even if you don't have time to go to the theater during your visit to San Diego, just looking at the unique design of this theater is something to see. However, if attending a play is top on your list, you should know that there is a Ticket Master, which offers discount tickets for most plays, concerts and other events going on in the San Diego area, and it is located just up the street from the Lyceum.
Not many areas of a city can let you walk for joy, shop till you drop, smack your lips looking at restaurant menus, listen to cool jazz, dance your "booty" off, or down a beer sitting at an outside, street side table, watch a major league baseball game, and hitting the bed at 2 am. In a 16 block area of San Diego, this all comes alive. You are in the Gaslamp Quarter.
The Gaslamp Quarter has history as well. It all began when Alonzo E. Horton came to San Diego in 1867. He purchased land and built a wharf at the waterfront of 5th Ave in 1869. By the 1900's the joint was jumping and not to the happiness of the city's elite. Gaslamp Quarter was the honky-tonk, red light district with the Stingaree being the headquarters for prostitution. This area became know as taboo for the clean of heart and a wild area of fun for the military that had many sailors start their tattoo collection in the heart of the Gaslamp Quarter. But, by the 1980's things were a changin'. Buildings were refurbished. Shops and hotels were built or cleaned up. A giant mall, Horton's was built. Restaurants and nightclubs started to multiply. Today, there is even a Stingaree, but it is an upscale party hardy club. Now, thousands of visitors roam to see a great jazz artist or dine in a gourmet restaurant. The shady past is gone, almost. It still peeks out at you. All in all, it is a great place to party in San Diego
The Gaslamp Quarter is right across the street from the Convention Centre. It is a good place to shop and dine. Horton Plaza is few blocks from Gaslamp and it is an open air shopping mall with 130 stores. Enjoy night time at Gaslamp with lots of nightclubs and fine dining restaurants.
The Gaslamp Quarter is the place for restaurants, bars, clubs, and shopping. This area is filled with late night entertainment. This is a great area to stay in for singles or couples visiting San Diego
I made a pit stop at Horton Plaza on my walking tour of the Gaslamp Quarter mainly because I knew that there would be a restroom somewhere, it's more or less an outdoor shopping mall, not a top draw on my list when traveling. But on the way to the loo I did come across Jessop's Clock which I had remembered reading about. The clock has a long history in the city of San Diego, commissioned by Joseph Jessop, a local jeweler, it took 15 months to build and finally began publicly ticking in 1907. It's 1st stop was in Sacramento at a state fair, it then moved to 952 Fifth Avenue in front of J. Jessop and Sons. In 1927 it was moved to 1041 Fifth Avenue and finally again in 1984 to Horton Plaza.
It's said that the clock has only stopped three times, once when a team of horses crashed into the clock, once during an earthquake and on the day of the clock maker's death. That last one sounds like a bit of an urban legend to me but it sure does make a nice story.
The clock has 20 dials, on one of it's faces there are 12 dials which tell the time in places throughout the world.
We walked around the Gaslamp Quarter is Southern California's premier dining, shopping and entertainment district, with n eclectic blend of food, fun and culture all within one of San Diego's most historic areas. Gaslamp's charming Victoria-style commercial buildings wer constructed between 1873 and 1930.
there are a ton of great places. walk down 5th avenue and you'll see plenty of options. if you're looking for a good place to eat you may want to check out food reviews from this magazine: http://www.bizsandiego.com/previous-issues.shtml
they also have great discussion forums. this one has a bunch of stuff on things to do and places to go: http://www.bizsandiego.com/index.php?option=com_joomlaboard&Itemid=9&func=showcat&catid=13
hope this helps!
The Gaslamp District in downtown is the entertainment district. It is a 6 block stretch of every type of restaurant you can think of and a wide range of clubs, live music venues and pubs. There are also some really cool shops in this area. The action really starts at night, the streets get packed and it is safe. Just don't wonder off. Just to let you know, parking is quite expensive here, and the cover charge isn't exactly cheap. Also, in the heart of this area is Horton Plaza, which is a downtown shopping mall, and in the center of the mall area, believe it or not, is an ice rink, in SAN DIEGO!
Gaslamp Quarter lights up at night--at least, it was quite lively the one Saturday night I was there. It has many bars and restaurants that attract people who appreciate a good beer, a good conversation with good friends, and a good ambiance.
...head to the Gaslamp Quarter. Both sides of it's streets are lined with fabulous restaurants and great, unqiue shops. Theyt have an Urban Outfitters, which I love for their funky, one-of-a-kind, if a bit overpriced clothes. A Persian restaurant called Bandars which is in my restaurant section. An altogether a great atmosphere for just experiencing downtown San Diego. A MUST for any visitor.
The Gaslamp Quarter is an area located within San Diego's historic district plenty of dining, shopping and entertainment options.
Food, culture and fun blends in most of the Victorian-style buildings constructed between 1873 and 1930.
Fifth avenue is the backbone of this neigborhood which has all the action in 8 blocks ending right at the Convention Center.
At nights, the streets come alive and you can have dinner at any of the nice restaurants and sidewalk cafes. Later, bars and clubs dominate the scene with mobs of young having fun.