I often share with close friends and Tango Diva followers that one does not need to go overseas to find a unique pampered travel experience. European-style luxury may be only a short domestic flight away. When asked for a recommendation, the Fairmont Grand Del Mar Resort is always top of my mind. The resort is a shining star in our United States and an exemplary property in terms of location, amenities and service.

# 1 Luxury Hotel in California – TripAdvisor Travelers’ Choice, 2015-2016.

The Fairmont Grand Del Mar, located north of San Diego, is a magical Mediterranean oasis featuring Mizner-inspired architecture, exotic design elements and lush landscaping. The resort concept focuses on an artful blend of indoor and outdoor living space.

The Fairmont Grand Del Mar’s serene setting and beauty alone will wow you. The graceful arched doorways, vibrant tiles, wood-beamed ceilings, ornate stone and wrought-iron accents are unique and opulent touches reminiscent of a grand palace.

Enjoy your morning coffee and toast the sunset while taking in the spectacular scenic views of Los Peñasquitos Canyon Preserve. Guests will also find a vast array of outdoor amenities that showcase the natural beauty of the area – tropical native gardens, flowered terraces, courtyards, meandering walkways and hiking trails.

The resort’s world-class 72-par Tom Fazio-designed golf course is sure to give golfers a reason to wake for an early tee-time. The 380 acres of rolling green fairways winding through the canyon, an 18-foot dramatic waterfall and an impressive short game practice area complete with chipping green, sand bunkers and a 5,000 square foot practice tee make the Fairmont Grand Del Mar a special find.

After a challenging day of sport or sightseeing, the four heated swimming pools and 21,000 square-foot Spa will help renew your body and spirit. The Spa, with separate locker and relaxation rooms for men and women, features 11 treatment rooms, indoor/outdoor Jacuzzis, steam and sauna areas and a 24 hour fitness center.

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Fast Fact: The Spa is one of only 27 Five-Star spas in the country.

Divas extend your pampering to primping at the Spa Salon which offers hair, nail and waxing services.

The Fairmont Grand Del Mar’s accolades are many and well-deserved, but it is the resort’s ambiance that is the Grand Del Mar’s most alluring distinction.

One feels a million miles away; guests are happily marooned in a seaside sanctuary nestled in an extraordinary eco-setting where the climate and coastal views always equal perfection!

The Fairmont Grand Del Mar makes an escape from the daily grind easy without a feeling of confinement or forced complacency.  The resort is perfectly suited for discerning travelers who expect and want more.

There is freedom to explore and endless leisure/active lifestyle opportunities. Play tennis, golf, kayak, bike or simply snooze in a private cabana poolside.

Guest rooms and suites are an extension of the Fairmont brand philosophy – sophisticated elegance and superior comfort.

Beautiful brocade upholstery, fine Italian linens, goose down pillows, decorative molding deliver a bold and majestic design statement. The attention to every detail makes each room a lavish retreat.

My favorite in-sweet indulgences were the oversized tub, scented candles and mounted bathroom television screen. Add a glass of vino or a little bubbly to complement your bath bubbles and voilà … you have a perfect recipe for total relaxation and a night of restful slumber.

Foodies will find heavenly culinary delights, as well as craft cocktails and fine wines, in the resort’s three main dining venues. You will want to dress up in your Sunday best to savor the award-winning artisan dishes in style at the Grand Del Mar’s signature restaurant, Addison. Celebrated Grand Chef William Bradley and his talented team will tantalize your taste buds with delectable dinner creations featuring a contemporary French flair.

Take note – Addison is Southern California’s only Five-Star/Five-Diamond Restaurant.

For a more relaxed terrace setting, try the outdoor deck of Amaya. The Mediterranean-American menu features the aromatic farm-fresh flavors of Spain, Italy and France.

The Grand Del Mar’s Clubhouse Grill is the perfect spot for Happy Hour and late night snack cravings. And, the Cent’Anni Cafe, an early riser favorite for a cup of joe before the morning jog, offers gourmet coffee, tea and light fare from sandwiches to salads.

Follow dinner with a little romance and a night cap at Club M; The Clubhouse Grill comes alive as Club M on the weekends with music, dancing and guest DJs.

The Fairmont Grand Del Mar is a magical destination in itself.  One would be content to spend every moment in this enchanting estate’s embrace.

But if the big city beckons, know that San Diego is less than an hour away by car, where you can enjoy a baseball game at Petco Park, boat cruises, museums, a variety of tours and world-class shopping.

If still feeling restless, full and half day trip options are plentiful. Torrey Pines State Park and Temecula Wine County are close and popular diversions. The resort also offers complimentary town car service to La Jolla, a quaint artsy community best known for its resident seals, secluded coves, dramatic cliffs, beaches, boutiques and galleries.

The Fairmont Grand Del Mar is a spectacular seaside sanctuary that will give you that European vacation fix without all the fuss.

The Fairmont Grand Del Mar raises the bar in world class hospitality with an unparalleled commitment to excellence – serving a posh, palatial and pleasing escape on a silver platter.

For this Diva, The Fairmont Grand Del Mar is nothing less than Simply Divine!

Location: 500 Grand Del Mar Court; San Diego, CA 92130

30 minutes north of San Diego International Airport

2 hours south of Los Angeles International Airport

Rates/Reservations: Seasonal.  Starting at $495+ per night.

For current rates, availability, special offers and packages, visit the Fairmont Grand Del Mar website

Hotel/Room Highlights:

  • 249 Guest Rooms & Suites. Smoke-Free
  • Complimentary Wi-Fi & Cable
  • 40 inch flat screen LCD television with HDTV
  • Mini Bar & In-Room Safe
  • Plush Bathrobes/100% Cotton Woven Towels
  • Large marble-clad bathrooms with European-style soaking tub
  • 13 inch flat screen mounted bathroom television
  • Three dual line phones with voicemail
  • Nespresso Coffee Machine
  • Full Service Spa &  24-hour Fitness Center
  • 24-hour Room Service
  • Daily Laundry/Valet Parking
  • Business Center
  • Concierge
  • Explorer Activity Club for Kids
  • Complimentary Newspaper & Shoe Shine
  • Town Car & Beach Service
  • 4 Pools/ 2 Tennis Courts/ Tom Fazio-designed 18 Hole Golf Course
  • Meeting/Conference Space – 20,000 square feet
  • Wedding Chapel – 3,330 square feet
  • Boutique Shops

September 2016 Anniversary Savings:

Rates start at $295 per night and include a $50 resort dining credit, complimentary self parking and a bottle of bubbly to say cheers. 
Offer is valid for new bookings made September 19 – 30, for travel through December 23, 2016.
Blackout dates and other restrictions may apply.

For all your San Diego vacation planning needs, contact the official San Diego Tourism Office.

Photos courtesy of S. Gaspers and Fairmont Hotels & Resorts.