Robert Arends

Coronado November Events: A Cornucopia of Fun!

Skating by the Sea-Coronado Beach

With sunny skies, glistening crowd-free beaches and temperatures averaging 70 degrees, November is the perfect time to visit Coronado, located a bridge or ferryboat ride away from downtown San Diego. There’s so much to do, from craft beer tastings and lavish Thanksgiving feasts to ice skating by the beach, that you won’t know where to start!

The following are my Top 5 to Try in Coronado this November.

Good Times on Tap: San Diego Beer Week in Coronado

Craft beer by the bottle at Coronado Brewing Company

Craft beer by the bottle at Coronado Brewing Company

During San Diego Beer Week, Nov. 1-10, visit the award-winning Coronado Brewing Company to sample tasty ales like Orange Avenue Wit. Also, Leroy’s Kitchen + Lounge on Orange Ave. features a “Local Tap Takeover,” pouring only San Diego beer on all 16 of their taps!

Talking Turkey: Thanksgiving Dinner

san diego hotel del coronado crown room thanksgiving 2013

The luxurious Crown Room at the Hotel del Coronado will host this year’s Thanksgiving feast.

Let the Hotel del Coronado and Loews Coronado Bay Resort do all the cooking this Thanksgiving Nov. 28 as they serve up turkey with all the fixings in festive elegant style. The Del presents a lavish buffet spread in the Crown Room and Ballroom, with live entertainment. Loews hosts a fab champagne brunch buffet in its main dining room, plus a prix fixe family-style dinner in Mistral.

Ice Skating by the Sea

Skating by the Sea at the Hotel del Coronado

Skating by the Sea at the Hotel del Coronado

Lace up your skates and head to the Hotel del Coronado on Nov. 27 for the launch of Skating by the Sea, a magically surreal SoCal experience like no other where guests can practice their axel jumps just steps away from Coronado Beach. A portion of ice skate rental proceeds benefit San Diego’s Make-A-Wish Foundation.

Silver Strand Half Marathon and 5K

Rollerblading the Silver strand Half Marathon

Rollerblading the Silver Strand Half Marathon

Hightail it to the scenic Silver Strand for the popular annual Silver Strand Half Marathon and 5K on Nov. 17. Participants can run, walk, even rollerblade or rollerskate  from Coronado to Imperial Beach; handcyclists and wheel chair participants are welcome too!

Rock n’ Roll: “Suds” at the Coronado Playhouse

Suds Coronado Playhouse San Diego Theater

Suds hits the stage at the Coronado Playhouse this November.

Audiences are in for a rocking good time at the Coronado Playhouse– a 100-seat, cabaret-style theatre on lovely Glorietta Bay – presenting the 1960s musical soap opera “Suds” through the end of the month.

Want to win your own getaway to Coronado? Visit Authentic Luxury Travel to win a romantic Coronado stay!

Robert Arends

Coronado for Comic-Con Fans – Wizards, Dwarves and Dorothy

Wizard of Oz art exhibit at Coronado Public Library

Wizard of Oz art exhibit at Coronado Public Library

Long before Harry Potter or the Twilight series about vampires and werewolves, an author by the name of L. Frank Baum penned a few – well, 14 to be exact! – incredible fantastical novels about a Kansas girl (and original storm chaser) who hitched a ride on a tornado and found herself over the rainbow.

Yep, I’m talkin’ about The Wizard of Oz.

When Disney added its magic touch to the original movie classic earlier this year with Oz The Great & Powerful, I was in awe at how this timeless story continues to enchant and entertain a whole new generation of viewers.

Hotel del Coronado, inspiration for the Emerald City!

Hotel del Coronado, inspiration for the Emerald City!

Well, for you movie buffs and pop culture fans, there’s a fun surprising San Diego/Coronado connection to the Wizard of Oz. Between 1904 and 1910, Oz author L. Frank Baum frequently vacationed here with his family, staying at the Hotel del Coronado, which if you look very closely at the book cover below, was the inspiration for the Emerald City! Note the red turrets and white awnings in the background. Cool huh!

Hotel del Coronado- Emerald City of Oz

Did you know: In addition to “Crown City,” Coronado is also nicknamed the Emerald City.

If you get a chance to explore the Hotel Del, head to the Crown Room, look up and you’ll spot four regal crown chandeliers that were designed by Baum!

L. Frank Baum's historic Coronado home.

L. Frank Baum’s historic Coronado home.

Down the street from The Del, Baum also rented a humble yellow cottage on Star Park Circle where he wrote three of his famous Oz books: Dorothy and the Wizard of Oz, The Emerald City of Oz and The Road to Oz. You can check out rare first editions of the books at the Coronado Museum of History & Art!

Oz books

At the Coronado Public Library, you’ll not only find the complete Oz book series, but also a spectacular Wizard of Oz Glass Art Exhibit, where  Baum’s storybook jumps off the pages onto nine huge glass panels depicting Dorothy, the cowardly Lion, Scarecrow, Tin Man, Glenda the Good Witch, Munchkins and more.

Welcome Comic-Con fans to our fine city and if you get a chance, definitely follow the Yellow Brick Road over the bridge to Coronado to discover the home-away-from-home of one of America’s most beloved authors. One look at our island paradise and you’ll see why Baum was so enamored!

Also, plan to return this fall for Coronado’s premier Wizard of Oz Weekend (September 20-22), celebrating the 75th anniversary of The Wizard of Oz. There will be exclusive screenings of the first-ever, re-mastered 3D version of the movie at Coronado’s Village Theatre, as well as a Wizard of Oz parade down Orange Ave. – Coronado’s main street – book signings, exhibits, character look-a-like contests and more!

Robert Arends

Mother’s Day Delights in Coronado!

Mother's Day in Coronado
Mother's Day in Coronado

Mother’s Day in Coronado

So have you made plans yet for mom this Mother’s Day? Best hop to it! 😉

Coronado has the holiday ALL wrapped up with some fun – and delectable – ways to show mom she’s #1:

Mother’s Day at the Hotel Del Coronado

Mother’s Day Champagne Brunch

Crown Room at the Hotel del Coronado

Treat Mom to a Mother’s Day Champagne Brunch in the Hotel del Coronado’s Crown Room.

The Hotel del Coronado’s annual Mother’s Day Champagne Brunch in the magnificent Crown Room and oceanfront Ballroom features a cornucopia of culinary delights. It’s the most lavish brunch around and the Del makes it extra memorable with live music, a rose for mom and special children’s buffet.

When: May 12, 2013
Time: 9:00 AM to 3:00 PM
Cost: Adults – $82.50. Children – $35. Children under 5 – Free.
Reservations: 619.522.8490
> Find out more about the Mother’s Day Champagne Brunch at the Del

Spa at the Del for Moms and Mommies to Be

Help Mom relax with a day at the Spa at the Del

Help Mom relax with a day at the Spa at the Del

After brunch, help Mom rejuvenate with a spa treatment at Spa at The Del. Even mommies to be can relax with a special a maternity massage for only $109, from May 1 through May 23rd (Sunday-Friday) for 2nd or 3rd trimester only.

Mother’s Day at the Loews Coronado Bay Resort

The Gondola Company at Loews Coronado Bay Resort

The Gondola Company at Loews Coronado Bay Resort

The luxe Loews Coronado Bay Resort features a Mother’s Day Champagne Brunch on May 12 (12:00 to 3:00 PM) in the Constellation Ballroom. Menu includes breakfast classics like omelets and eggs made to order, oysters, crab claws, shrimp, sushi, prime rib, salads and greens, cheeses and charcuterie, a Bellini bar and grand dessert spread (yum!). For kids, there will be an activity room and buffet. Classical piano music and long-stem roses for all moms stylishly set the mood.

Afterward, go on a relaxing gondola cruise through the Coronado Cays and San Diego Bay with The Gondola Company. The gondoliers sing in Italian…Mom will feel like she’s on a chic European getaway!

Coronado Historic Home Tour

Coronado Historic Home Tour beckons moms this Mother's Day

Coronado Historic Home Tour beckons moms this Mother’s Day

The Coronado Historic Home Tour has become a Mother’s Day tradition on the island. Guests have a rare opportunity to walk through and admire six gorgeous Coronado homes, ranging in architectural styles from a Queen Anne built in the 1880s to a mid-century modern and Spanish Revival.

Where: Coronado Visitor Center – 1100 Orange Avenue, Coronado, CA 92118
When: May 12, 2013
Time: 11:00 AM to 4:00 PM
Cost: $40
Reservations: 619.482.6148
> Find out more about the Coronado Historic Home Tour

Happy Mother’s Day (almost) from Coronado! 🙂

Robert Arends

Hop to it! San Diego’s Delightful Easter Brunches

Easter Eggs

Spring has sprung – my favorite time of year! The sun is shining, beach sands are sparkling and flowers are blooming from the coasts of Coronado, Mission Bay and La Jolla to our inland mountains (Julian daffodils!) and deserts (Borrego Springs’ wildflowers). As Easter weekend approaches, following are a few fun seaside brunches for the whole family to enjoy (save me some Easter eggs! 😉 ):

Champagne Brunch at the Hotel del Coronado

Easter Bunny at The Del!

Easter Bunny at The Del!

On March 31, families are in for a hopping good time at the Hotel del Coronado with their champagne Easter brunch in the magnificent oceanfront Ballroom and Crown Room. The menu looks delish! Festivities begin at 9:00 AM and go until 3:00 PM. There will be live entertainment and old-fashioned egg hunts on the beachside Windsor Lawn, plus a craft ‘egg’-stravaganza and photo opps with the Easter Bunny! Activities are free and open to hotel guests and those attending the brunch.

Easter Brunch at Paradise Point Resort

Enjoy Easter brunch along the shores of Mission Bay at the Paradise Point Resort & Spa (celebrating its 50th anniversary!). From 10:00 AM to 3:00 PM, guests are invited to ring in spring at their bayside restaurant Baleen and choose from a delectably artful, a-la-carte Easter brunch menu by Chef Amy DiBiase, with entrées starting at just $12.

Brunch at L’Auberge Del Mar

Celebrate Easter in style by the sea at L’Auberge Del Mar. Easter brunch a-la-carte is featured at their signature restaurant Kitchen 1540. Or enjoy a sumptuous ocean view buffet at their Waterfall Terrace Restaurant. L’Auberge promises plenty of Easter sweets and treats to satisfy!

Brunch on the Water

Do something a little different and enjoy an Easter brunch not just near the water but on the water! Both Hornblower Cruises and Flagship Cruises are offering delicious dining with beautiful views along the waters of San Diego’s Bay.

Reservations for all of these brunches are recommended.

Robert Arends

Follow the Yellow Brick Road…The Wizard of Oz and Coronado!

Wizard of Oz

Wizard of Oz

On the heels of today’s premiere of the new Disney movie “Oz The Great & Powerful,” I thought it might be fun to spotlight Coronado’s remarkable link to author L. Frank Baum and his famous Wizard of Oz book series.

Between 1904 and 1910 Baum and his family frequently vacationed in Coronado, located a bridge away from downtown San Diego. He was so fond of the island’s magical setting, that he wrote several of his Oz books here.

Following are six fun and surprising sights in Coronado that either inspired Baum’s whimsical literary works directly or were inspired by the author’s visits to the enchanted island:

1. Hotel Del Coronado

Coronado Beach and Hotel del Coronado - photo credit Brett Shoaf

Coronado, the “Emerald City”

They say the Hotel del Coronado with its iconic red castle-like turrets and enchanting fairy tale setting, was Baum’s inspiration for the Emerald City. He and his family often stayed at The Del on their Coronado vacations. Did you know: Coronado is nicknamed the “Emerald City.”

2. The Crown Room

Crown Room chandeliers by Baum at The Del.

Crown Room chandeliers by Baum at The Del.

The Del’s grand Crown Room is home to four spectacular crown-shaped chandeliers designed by Baum; his lasting legacy to the hotel he loved so much.

3. Baum’s humble Coronado home

L Frank Baum house on Star Park Circle - Photo credit Coronado Historical Association

L. Frank Baum’s home on Star Park Circle.

The charming yellow house he rented on Star Park Circle is where he wrote several Oz books: Dorothy and the Wizard of Oz, The Emerald City of Oz , The Road to Oz  and parts of The Marvelous Land of Oz. From the sidewalk, you can spot the face of the Wicked Witch peering out from the side of the house.

Please Note: This is a private residence, so please be respectful to its occupants and view the house from the sidewalk.

4. Wizard of Oz Glass Art Exhibit

Wizard of Oz Glass Panels - Coronado Public Library

Wizard of Oz glass panels at Coronado Public Library.

The Wizard of Oz Glass Art Exhibit at the Coronado Public Library is where  Baum’s storybook jumps off the pages onto nine huge glass panels depicting Dorothy, the cowardly Lion, Scarecrow, Tin Man, Glenda the Good Witch, Munchkins and more.

5. Three Rare First Edition Oz books

Check out three rare first edition Oz books by Baum on the “Celebrities” wall at the Coronado Museum of History and Art on Orange Avenue; admission is free.

6. Author’s Study

Author's Study at 1906 Lodge

“There’s no place like home…” in the Author’s Study at 1906 Lodge.

In addition to spending the night at The Del, celebrating its 125th anniversary, guests can rest their heads in the Baum-inspired “Author’s Study” at 1906 Lodge at Coronado Beach, featuring framed art prints of the glittery Ruby Slippers, Dorothy and the cowardly Lion and the classic front cover of The Wizard of Oz book, plus an autobiography on Baum and a writing desk with antique-looking typewriter bookends.

This spring, ease on down the road to Coronado to discover our merry little land of Oz! While you’re there, why not catch a screening of Oz The Great & Powerful at the beautifully restored Coronado Village Theatre.

Wizard of Oz Weekend (WOW!)

Oh, and next fall the city is planning its premier Wizard of Oz Weekend (WOW!), celebrating Coronado’s love of all things Oz and the 75th anniversary of the original Wizard of Oz movie!  I’ll have all the exciting details later this summer! 🙂

Maren

Beachside Easter Brunch in San Diego

Crown Room at the Hotel del Coronado

This Easter Sunday, April 8, 2012, make sure to enjoy your champagne brunch with a side of ocean views. With San Diego’s 70 miles of beaches, it is easy to find an amazing restaurant at any point along the coast. Get the most mileage out of your Easter with these great beachside brunch recommendations. Reservations are limited, so hop to it!

Crown Room at the Hotel del Coronado

Crown Room at the Hotel del Coronado

Coronado

The Hotel Del Coronado Easter Champagne Brunch Buffet  is the grand dame of Easter brunches, elegantly served in the oceanfront Ballroom and the magnificent Crown Room. The sumptuous buffet will feature classic holiday fare for adults as well as a special children’s buffet. Both the Crown Room and the Ballroom will have live musical entertainment. 9:00 am – 3:00 pm. $80 for adults and $34 for children ages 6-10 (not including tax and gratuity). Children 5 and under eat free.

Downtown

Celebrate Easter in the spirit of Aloha across the bridge from Coronado at Buster’s Beach House in Seaport Village with champagne, made to order omelets, carved ham and freshly baked muffins. 9:00 am – 2:00 pm. $23.95 for adults and $9.95 for children ages 3-ll (not including tax and gratuity).

Baleen at Paradise Point Resort & Spa

Baleen at Paradise Point Resort & Spa

Mission Bay

It’s not technically the beach, but you can dock your boat right outside the award-winning San Diego waterfront restaurant, Baleen, at Paradise Point Resort & Spa this Easter. The menu will include brie and apricot waffles, apple-brined porkchop and upside-down pineapple pancakes (yum!). 10:00 am – 3:00 pm with entrees starting at just $12.

JRDN

Pacific Beach

Beautifully perched on the Pacific Beach boardwalk, Jrdn at Tower23 commingles California casual and West Coast hip and is perfect for those interested in a little less Easter and a little more beachside brunch. Full brunch menu from 9:00 am – 4:00 pm.

The Shores Restaurant at La Jolla Shores Hotel

La Jolla

Join The Shores Restaurant at the La Jolla Shores Hotel for an extensive oceanfront brunch buffet this Easter. Executive Chef Bernard Guillas and Chef de Cuisine Amy DiBiase highlight local flavors with special menu items, such as Lavendar Honey Glazed Bone-In Iowa Ham, a decadent French Toast Station and Children’s Station. 10:00 am – 2:30 pm. $46 for adults. $23 for children ages 6-12, $4 per year for children 5 and under.

Del Mar

Can’t decide between oysters and omelets this Easter? You don’t have to at Waterfall Terrace at L’Auberge Del Mar. 10:00 am – 3:00 pm. $65 for adults and $32.50 for children ages 12 and under.

With 70 miles of beach, I couldn’t list them all! Where will you be brunching beachside this Sunday?

Robert Arends

Dining Spotlight: Coronado – Feast Fit for a (future) King & Queen

Discover San Diego’s Neighborhoods with our Summer Sweepstakes. Join us every week as we showcase the best in what to do, where to eat, and where to stay in some of San Diego’s unique neighborhoods. Be sure to check back for exciting insider tips, giveaways, and more! This week’s spotlight is on Coronado.

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge arrive in California tomorrow. But alas, Prince William and Princess Catherine aren’t scheduled to visit San Diego or our apropos “Crown City” of Coronado.

But let’s imagine for a moment if they could take a quick jaunt down the coast to see the magical isle of Coronado, taking in its postcard-perfect setting and historic splendor of the Hotel del Coronado which has been likened to a storybook castle.

What would they see and do… And where would they dine?

Well, proving you don’t have to be a royal to receive the royal treatment, following are five fabulous dining choices in Coronado that would roll out the red carpet for monarchs and visitors alike:

Breakfast treats at Tartine bistro.

To give the Duke and Duchess a taste of home, they could have a quick breakfast bite at Tartine, Coronado’s own “European Style Café” where delectable fresh-baked pastries, biscuits and quiches are sure to please, along with a spot of tea.

Hotel del Coronado's magnificent Crown Room.

Sunday brunch in the Crown Room at The Del is quite regal with its sumptuous spread of Alaskan king crab, herb-crusted prime rib, black truffle mac ‘n cheese, Charcuterie pates and other gourmet delights. Coincidentally, The Del has hosted its share of royalty over the years with lavish banquets for the likes of England’s Prince Edward in 1920 and even Hawaii’s King Kalakaua in 1890 (The Del’s first royal guest). William and Kate would surely feel right at home dining under the magnificent crown chandeliers.

For lunch, we’d introduce the royal pair to local south-of-the-border flavors at Miguel’s Cocina. Its lively patio, festive décor, zesty Mexican dishes and free-flowing margaritas would certainly lighten the formal mood and give them a taste and feel of our rich Hispanic heritage.

Dinner would be tres magnifique at Chez Loma, a historic Victorian home-turned-restaurant where the crown couple could cozy up by candlelight to a menu of fabulous French cuisine in their own private room – well out of sight from prying paparazzi. 

Fine dining at Mistral, Loews Coronado Bay Resort.

However, for an even grander and more romantic San Diego-style entrance, we could serenade the Duke and Duchess at sunset aboard one of the Gondola Company’s gondolas (complete with the finest champagne and chocolate-covered strawberries) as it glides through San Diego Bay to the docks of Loews Coronado Bay Resort. There, they’d disembark and dine at Mistral where modern French fare marries seasonal local ingredients with brilliant technique to create robust, intense flavors in every dish.  Even more enchanting than the cuisine are the spectacular panoramic views of the bay and downtown San Diego.

Sensational cuisine, fit for a future king and queen – and you too – await in Coronado!

We want to send you to Coronado in the “Live Like a Royal in San Diego’s Crown City” Sweepstakes.  The trip for two includes a 2-night stay at the Hotel del Coronado, a 1-hour surrey rental from Bikes & Beyond, and a Pasaporto Cruise from The Gondola Company.  Register to win here.  Contest ends July 15, 2011.