Allow me to take you back to the memorable stay at the Manchester Grand Hyatt San Diego I did with my parents back in February 2022.
Nestled along the picturesque San Diego Bay, this historic hotel is the perfect place for quick stop in San Diego before heading up to the Alila Marea in Encinitas, and is a favorite in the World of Hyatt points & miles community.
Read on to find out about my experience and how I booked this free stay!
How I Booked
The cash rate at the time of booking was $343.78 per night after factoring in taxes and resort fees. I used the Category 1-4 Free Night Certificate from my World of Hyatt credit card to pay for this stay. The $95 annual fee credit card comes with one free night each anniversary year, which I was able to apply to this stay. Paying $95 for a $340+ a night hotel, I call it a win!
Alternatively, this can also be redeemed using 12,000-18,000 Hyatt points, which can be earned and transferred over from a variety of credit cards such as numerous Chase Ultimate Rewards cards or BILT rewards.
Note there is a daily resort fee ($39+tax), but waived for Hyatt award stays. These are the list of inclusions:
The Manchester Grand is located on the waterfront adjacent to Seaside Village, near Downtown San Diego, and only 10 minutes from San Diego International Airport.
The hotel's central location makes it easy to explore popular attractions such as the vibrant Gaslamp Quarter, the historic USS Midway Museum, and the lively Seaport Village.
Some shots of the exterior:
The check-in process started at the grand hall located on the ground floor between the two towers.
The lobby is quite grand!
Hyatt status members can use the dedicated lane. In my experience, it did not really save me time. I could see this being more useful during large conventions, though.
Even though free parking is an elite benefit given only to top-tier Globalist members, the agent checking us in offered to waive the fee ($40+ taxes). YAY! There are also ChargePoint EV chargers available on site (not free). Since we had free unlimited supercharging as part of the Hertz EV launch promotion, we did not use the destination chargers.
The parking structure is located conveniently adjacent to the hotel towers.
They also gave us a minor upgrade to a higher floor room, although still the standard room layout. We were also given early check-in and late check-out.
Time to head up to the room! The hallways definitely feel dated and can use some renovation. That being said, the property was clean and well-maintained for the most part.
The room I booked was a standard 2-Queen room, since I was traveling with my parents. We were assigned a room in the Seaport Tower (west tower).
There was a slight hiccup as we were initially given Room 2570 on the 25th floor. However, upon entering, we found that the blinds were broken. After calling the front-desk, we were moved to the exact room two floors up - Room 2770.
Some more pics of the room:
And the bathroom:
Overall, the room offered breathtaking views of the city skyline and the shimmering waters below, creating a tranquil sanctuary after a long roadtrip.
One of the highlights of this property is the panoramic waterfront views from the two towers. From the 27th floor, we got views of both the city and the harbor:
City view - day vs. night:
Harbor view - day vs. night:
After a long drive from San Francisco, it was very relaxing just to sit by the window and watch the activities down below.
Some more pics of the views:
The windows definitely need a wash. Additionally, there appears to be new construction that may likely block views of USS Midway in the future.
Since this trip coincided with my mom's birthday, and I had noted it in my reservation, the hotel actually reached out to me a few weeks before our stay to offer a "complimentary birthday amenity", and asked if there were any dietary restrictions. Needless to say, before I even stepped foot onto the property, I was very impressed.
However, upon arrival in our room, I noticed the amenity was not there. After inquiring about it, it turns out there was a mix-up and they had forgotten to set it up. Honestly, it was perfectly fine, and I told them since we expect to be out most of the day, they can come in any time to set it up.
Upon return, we saw the following waiting for us:
This really made our stay. My mom was so happy as she was totally not expecting this, and I have to say I was very impressed. Fun side note: they actually forgot the card and knocked on the door shortly after we took the cake out to deliver the birthday card.
Despite the issues, we very much enjoyed our stay and really appreciate the staff here for their hard work. The cakes were also VERY delicious!
Despite the property showing signs of its age (read about the hotel's history), the place was generally well-maintained and I've found the staff here better than most hotels in the US. This property is also a terrific place to use points or Category 1-4 Free Night Certificates when cash rates are high, and is very accommodating to Hyatt elite members.
We almost stayed at the Andaz San Diego a few blocks down the street, but am very happy we decided to stay at the Manchester Hyatt instead. I will definitely consider this hotel again should my travels bring my back to San Diego in the future!
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