Fairmont Grand Del Mar

4.5 star rating

This hotel is rated between 4 and 5 stars. 4 star - Quality accommodation with a variety of facilities and services. 5 star - Exceptional accommodation with superior facilities and services.

    What to expect (based on 2176 reviews):

    Cleanliness

    Cleanliness-5

    Location

    Location-4.5

    Rooms

    Rooms-5

    Service

    Service-5

    Value

    Value-4.5

    5 most recent TripAdvisor reviews:

    Lousy service

    Reviewed by 118scott(Boulder, Colorado) on Apr 06, 2021

    		
			TripAdvisor users rated this property 
			2
			 out of 5

    The service was really lousy. We have stayed at many 5-6 star hotels and the service at this hotel was close to a failure. You can’t blame it all on COVID. We had other problems as well. The golf course is in poor shape. It took 3.5 hrs for nine holes. We ordered food and they got it wrong. The food bill was also incorrect. Someone in management needs to take a careful look at improving their service amongst other things. I’m disappointed. Especially spending $1000 a Night. It’s not ok. Oh the portion size was comically small. Even the waiter said it’s embarrassing.

    A fantastic hotel

    Reviewed by TravelinJabbo(Eau Claire, Wisconsin) on Apr 03, 2021

    		
			TripAdvisor users rated this property 
			4
			 out of 5

    We stayed here for a week toward the end of March, 2021. At this point the hotel has been running at about 30% capacity, according to staff. We have stayed here and reviewed this hotel before, but I thought it was time for a new review, especially in light of covid restrictions. The hotel and grounds are still spectacular. It must have great maintenance staff, because nothing looks at all worn or dingy. Our room, in particular, was spotless and looked brand new. The rooms are some of the nicest hotel rooms we have ever stayed at. I happen to really like the décor of both the rooms, the common areas, and the outside of the buildings. It is a fairly ornate style of Italian architecture, but it really works well, and I do not find it too gaudy, although some might. The room had a comfortable bed, good lighting and charging stations, and a huge amount of storage in all the right places. In our room, the bathroom was very large, had two sinks and lots of storage, a tub and separate shower, and separate room for the toilet. It also had a closet with a safe, and plenty of room to store the empty luggage. The towels were thick and luxurious, and the bathing products very nice. Rooms at the Grand Del Mar are very expensive, but do not disappoint in any way. The room did have a minibar, which is only unlocked on request, but we did not find it particularly useful. There are some extremely expensive bottles of wine or full-size bottles of liquor; there are no small sized liquor bottles. There were four bottles with pre-mixed drinks, like margarita, old fashion and cosmo, that you can just pour over ice, but the rooms are not supplied with ice – so that requires a phone call (if there are self-serve ice machines, we didn’t see them) which negates the convenience of the mixed drink. There were a few egregiously expensive snack items as well. Overall, it seemed that a lot of thought went into the minbar items, but it wasn’t a match for us. Maid service had its ups and downs. When they came, they did a spectacular job. They did come every morning, and if we wanted to arrange service at a particular time, we could call, and often someone would answer the phone, and they understood our needs. However, turndown service was a mystery…our first day at the hotel they came to do turndown service at 4:30 pm, when we’d just been there a short while. We indicated that if they came when we were out to dinner, that would be preferable, and every night there were several hours when we were out of the room, but turndown service never re-appeared throughout the week. Wifi was good, and stayed connected our whole stay without repeat log-ons, although we were charged $10 a day even though we chose the free wifi. The TV was large and of good quality, but the programming selections were set up such that there was not much to watch except PPV at $22 each. The available stations were almost all ones without movies, and the system was set up to not allow screen-mirroring from portable devices. So, if you wanted to watch your own Netflix or other streaming service account, you had to watch on your tablet or phone, and ignore the huge TV on the wall. In my opinion, turning the TV into a profit center on a room costing $865 per night, plus required $49 daily resort fee and $45 per day parking fee is an inept attempt to nickel-and-dime us customers. We attempted to use the indoor workout room one morning at 8:30, but found a sign indicating that it opened at 9:00, and required a reservation (due to covid restrictions). However, the front desk staff told us that there was an outdoor workout center near the tennis courts, which didn’t require a reservation and was always open. We used that almost every morning and it was great. It is in-between two tennis courts, has bottled water, towels, and antiseptic wipes, and a nearby bathroom so gorgeous that it would put any other bathroom facility to shame. It has high quality Life Fitness machines and some weights (although 5 lb weights were mysteriously absent.) There are walking paths around the grounds that are useful for getting from one place to another, but also for exercising. There is a walking/hiking map at the front desk that is slightly helpful; unfortunately, none of the landmarks are marked on the map, so you never can really tell where you are. There are extensive paved paths for golf carts, but they are not for walkers, which is too bad because they go to some lovely areas. And, BTW the landscaping at this hotel is beyond amazing. There are two pools for families and kids, and an adult-only pool which is as nice as any I’ve ever experienced, with the most comfortable chaise lounges I’ve ever encountered, and a staff of young men and women who are quite adept at helping everyone with their towels, drinks and food orders. Each pair of chairs had an umbrella for shade from the strong San Diego sun. Regarding the dining situation, I think there is quite a difference between staying here for a weekend, vs staying for a week; in short, there is not enough variety in the restaurants for more then a day or two at the resort. There are basically five options for dining at this hotel: 1- Fine dining at Addison for 5 or 10 course dinners. These take about 3 hours, and it would be hard to spend much less than $300 per person here. 2- Amaya, which is their main restaurant open for breakfast, weekend brunch and dinner; but inexplicably not open for lunch. A dinner here with a drink, starter, entrée and dessert would cost about $100 per person. There are only 6 entrée choices, and they do not come with any vegetables, nor is there a list of vegetable side dishes; so the filet mignon is a steak on a plate with a tablespoon of mashed potatoes (for $55). But, a good steak! 3- Cent’ Anni Café, open from 7am to 4pm, and has great sandwiches, salads, pastries and drinks at almost reasonable prices. The staff here are great, and it was our favorite spot. 4- Poolside Lunch Service: some basic poolside food, not as good as the choices at Cent’ Anni Café, and for whatever reason they can’t bring you the food from the café to the pool (but, you can go get it yourself). The poolside menu items are quite simple and unadorned. For example, the chicken/mushroom quesadilla consists of a quesadilla cut into 4 wedges with a bit of green salsa; no chips, no vegetable, no garnish…no imagination. 5- In room dining is just the same restaurant items, but with an 18% service charge. Although this sounds like a lot of variety, the problem is the menus are almost the same at each place, with only some slight variations, especially for lunch choices. For dinner, it makes sense to eat off property as much as possible, the restaurants in Del Mar are much better. The food at Amaya is good (not great), the choices are limited and become repetitive even at a second sitting. Addison is a great once-a-year experience, but you wouldn’t want to eat here more than once per stay, and you wouldn’t bring children unless they can sit for 2-3 hours. Possibly, the limited menu is related to the facility coming back to full speed since it was shut down due to the pandemic, but I think they need to step up their game regarding variety, especially at the prices they are charging, as volume returns. The hotel staff are uniformly friendly, professional and helpful. The valets are great, the bell men are helpful, and the front desk staff are lovely. Everyone wore masks and stayed socially distanced. However, there is a real communication problem at the front desk because they are behind plexiglass and wearing masks; we can’t hear them, and they can’t hear us. Because of this, everyone is sticking their head around the plexiglass in order to hear or be heard. By this time, someone should have installed an electronically augmented system with microphones and speakers to prevent situations like the comedy of errors that occurred as we tried to check-out. Overall, this is a magnificent facility with great staff. The food service cost and options, however, need much improvement, and drop my rating from 5 stars to 4. But, there are many aspects of this hotel that deserve 6 stars!

    Individual ratings:

    Rooms

    Rooms-5

    Service

    Service-5

    Gorgeous grounds, great relaxing stay

    Reviewed by lemonyegg(NY) on Apr 01, 2021

    		
			TripAdvisor users rated this property 
			5
			 out of 5

    Love this hotel. Wonderful for families, very friendly staff. Extremely clean and immaculate hotel. Will definitely be back. Beautiful grounds and lovely pool. Our suite was very comfortable and clean. Beds were great.

    Relaxing stay in luxurious accommodations and with friendly staff

    Reviewed by David P(Los Angeles, CA) on Mar 31, 2021

    		
			TripAdvisor users rated this property 
			5
			 out of 5

    We wanted a relaxing vacation at a beautiful resort that also had appropriate Covid protocols in place. The Fairmont Grand Del Mar exceeded all of our expectations. We had one of their "basic" rooms, and even this room was much larger than most hotel rooms. It would probably qualify as a junior suite at other hotels. It was filled with luxurious details and touches, such as extra bath towels and an in-room espresso maker that made delicious coffee. The entire facility had many Covid safety protocols in place and we felt very comfortable. The entire staff was extremely friendly, warm, and welcoming.

    Above & beyond

    Reviewed by ameliac215() on Mar 27, 2021

    		
			TripAdvisor users rated this property 
			5
			 out of 5

    I’ve been to this hotel many times and always have the most amazing experience. I always come with such high expectations, yet never leave being more impressed than the last visit. The staff go above and beyond with their service and I couldn’t be more impressed.