So, another Valentine’s Day came and went. That one day a year, those speedy 24 hours, where you’re allowed and expected to go over the top with romantic gestures, sweet somethings and non-random acts of canoodling.
But what about the 364 other days of the year? What about when Valentine’s Day falls on a Tuesday and you already have a date with tacos? Or if you’re just not feeling it in February? It’s time to think outside February 14th, people.
We’re firm believers in celebrating your amorous achievements all year round, and there’s no better city to up the romance than with a baecation in San Diego.
Maybe it’s those good vibrations, or relaxed lifestyle, or ever-flowing craft beer and overabundance of good food, but things just feel a little lighter and sunnier the moment you step off that plane. San Diego is the perfect playground to reconnect, share laughs, sleep in, and utterly focus on your person (while soaking up those endorphins and having a heck of a good time).
Stay Alfred offers six properties in three San Diego neighborhoods, including:
- Stay Alfred on Kettner Boulevard in Little Italy
- Stay Alfred at Alexan ALX in East Village
- Stay Alfred on G Street in East Village
- Stay Alfred on 10th Avenue in East Village
- Stay Alfred on 6th Avenue in the Gaslamp
- Stay Alfred on 7th Avenue in the Gaslamp
Travel apartments have a leg up on hotel rooms when it comes to things like room to spread out in separate living areas, full kitchens, and laundry. It’s easy to settle in to your home away from home and make it feel like a little love nest. Pop your own champagne, make breakfast in bed, or order in for some Netflix and chill. The autonomy of a travel apartment means you get to vacay your way without any interruptions.
But Stay Alfred’s real sweet spot is location. Guests are always in the middle of everything with plenty to do, see and taste within the neighborhood. So without further ado, here’s our list of the best San Diego neighborhoods to explore when you want to embrace the romance and make memories with your special someone:
East Village - Located just east of the Gaslamp, East Village is home to a number of hip restaurants and borders Petco Park, home of the San Diego Padres.
- Mix Things Up at You & Yours Distillery - As California’s first female owned and operated distillery, You & Yours is a destination for craft cocktail aficionados. You and yours can get creative at one of their popular mixology classes - or simply indulge in a few cocktails over candlelight. Insider tip: Stay Alfred on G Street is right next door!
- Serenade Your Special Someone at Karaoke - Because what better way to simultaneously embarrass and enamor your special someone. Punch Bowl Social is a veritable playground for adults with bowling, an arcade, shuffleboard - and karaoke rooms. Pro tip: Drake’s “Hold On, We’re Going Home” and Queen’s “Crazy Little Thing Called Love” are always a sure win.
- Spend the Day at Balboa Park - Ok, you got us. Balboa Park isn’t technically in the East Village - but it’s pretty dang close. Take a scooter or rideshare to San Diego’s best public park and spend the day museum hopping or lounge away the day with a picnic on the grass.
Little Italy - Walk block after block on India Street and you’ll find the majority of San Diego’s hottest chef-driven restaurants and that famous Italian flare.
- Cozy Up on a Harbor Cruise - Walk a few blocks west and you’ll hit San Diego Bay and a bevy of harbor cruises just waiting for you to board. We recommend a sunset Hornblower Cruise - and no shame if you have your own Titanic “I’m flying!” moment.
- Treat Yourself to a Chef’s Table Dinner Experience - There’s nothing like a little extra attention to make you feel special. Kettner Exchange hosts a monthly 5-course Chef’s Table dinner, as does Fort Oak in Mission Hills… more on that neighborhood later.
- Hit Up Little Italy for an Epic Date Night - Little Italy is where locals and visitors alike come for a memorable night out. We recommend starting things off with cocktails at Born & Raised’s rooftop bar overlooking all of San Diego, dinner at Civico 1845 for some of the best Italian food in the neighborhood and then dessert at Salt & Straw. Pro tip: all these locations are about a 5-minute walk from Stay Alfred on Kettner Boulevard.
Mission Hills - Located north of Little Italy, Mission Hills is home to great local favorites and has a more laid back vibe than downtown or Little Italy.
- Celebrate Your Love… of Burritos - What is a trip to San Diego without indulging in a California Burrito? While the debate for the best Cali burrito will be eternal, a solid option is the Lucha Libre Taco Shop. Order up and feel the love.
- Watch a Movie Under the Stars - Cinema Under the Stars has been around for decades and has delighted locals with new and classic / cult movies. Cuddle up with blankets and enjoy the evening air.
- Reach Ultra Relaxation with a Couples Massage - Book a session at Firefly Wellness Day Spa. This is a great way to wind down your trip before you travel.
Gaslamp - Downtown San Diego! The Gaslamp is the beating heart of downtown and offers block after block of restaurants, shopping and the best kinds of distractions.
- Sharpen (or Test?) Those Communication Skills with an Escape Room - This could be dangerous. But it could also be really fun. The Hour Room will test your wits and will (hopefully) bring you closer together.
- Find the Rhythm with a Salsa Dancing Class - When was the last time the two of you went dancing? That’s what we thought. Cafe Sevilla is home to big energy and fun and frisky Salsa and Bachata classes.
- Get a Little Rowdy with Dueling Pianos - Looking for a little comradery? Make reservations for The Shout House and get a little loud and rowdy signing along and laughing the night away.
North Park - This mid-city neighborhood is a short rideshare away from all Stay Alfred properties and is home to great boutiques, bars, restaurants and breweries.
- Prove You’re a Power Couple at Local Trivia - You can find trivia happening almost every night of the week in North Park breweries, including Rip Current Brewery, Barn Brewery and the North Park Beer Co.
- Catch a Concert at The Observatory - Seeing one of your favorite bands is a great excuse to plan a trip together. Check out The Observatory’s schedule and make it happen.
- Brewery Hop Through North Park - Did we mention this neighborhood has a ton of breweries? Hop from tasting to tasting and then stay a while for dinner. Modern Times is a must-visit and ramen-fave Underbelly is right next door in all its noodle-slurping glory.
La Jolla - Located about 20 minutes from downtown, La Jolla is farther but well worth the effort, as it’s home to some of the best beaches in San Diego.
- Take a Sunset Stroll on the Beach - It’s the simple things, right? And it’s not hackneyed - it’s amazing. La Jolla Shores offers miles of shoreline and some of the best sunsets and green flashes on the planet.
- Get Fancy with a Waterfront Dinner - An institution in San Diego and repeat winner of Most Romantic Restaurant, you will not have a better oceanfront view than at The Marine Room. Get dolled up - this is definitively a special occasion destination.
- Kayak to La Jolla Cove - Take a guided tour to the cove and take in the sweeping ocean views. You might also meet a few friends along the way (seals call La Jolla Cove home).
*Disclaimer - 100% of these recommendations are also extremely enjoyable even if you’re not on a romantic baecation. Friends, family - simply have fun celebrating the love in your life.
We want to see those San Diego pics - share all those happy moments with #stayalfred.