Times have changed on the island.  Coronado, used to be known as a place Navy Admirals retired to and visitors put their toes in the water at one of the best beaches in the USA.  A slow pace of life and a beautiful shoreline, the town was predictable.  Now there is change in the air and the city is even more desirable.

Once across the 2-mile bridge into Coronado, it feels like a new day has dawned.  The Coronado Island Marriott Resort and Spa, sitting close to the bridge, has sweeping views of the bay and the lights of San Diego’s downtown skyline. Not only did the resort recently complete a massive remodel by modernizing the rooms and lobby, healthy dining was launched. The menu is in step with the many healthy aspects of vacationing in the sunshine.  Bicycling and walking along the scenic walkways plus yoga and tennis can stir up an appetite.  Local and fresh foods are on the menu, with choices of selecting grains and proteins to make for a perfect lunch.  While enjoying a peaceful time in the full-service spa, a delightful meal can be arranged in a Bento Box with quinoa as the basis, and layered with vegetables and fruit.  Proteins are chosen to be added such as seared ahi or chicken. I must say, the meal was more filling than I expected and my sweet tooth was satisfied digging into a coconut pitaya bowl for dessert.   A facial and a massage, plus a wellness lunch is my idea of letting stress melt away and feeling pampered.

Blueberry and coconut milk with pitaya

And don’t miss the flock of flamingos in front of the hotel as you combine a relaxing visit with a fitness flair.

Coronado Island Marriott Resort and Spa
2000 Second St
Coronado, Ca 92118

The saying goes, no man is an island, but Loews Resort, is on an island all to itself located on a 15-acre peninsula. Sweeping views of the Pacific Ocean and Coronado Bay surround the resort and shows off beautiful sunrises and magical sunsets. Loews is rooted in the US and likes to think of this special resort as offering a world away from everyday life.  I was impressed with the design of the rooms and suites, and the complimentary colors of white, light blues and greens reminded me of Cape Cod.  Nautical looking in Southern California.

The hotel has a unique partnership with nearby Silver Strand State Park for fun activities.  Lots of water sports are available for adults and families while luxuriating at the resort. Kayaking, jet skiing and surfing are just a few of the action happenings, then splash in the hotel’s interactive pools and it’s all fun in the sun.

I decided to explore Executive Chef Aguirre’s fine dining in Mistral restaurant. The views alone are captivating and the fall season sugar pie pumpkin soup was over the top with flavor.  Roasted beet salad is a popular item and this one was like no other. It was prepared with soba noodles and cashew pesto for a little surprise and was a plated like a work of art.  Goat cheese is usually on a beet salad but this time, the cheese was in the dessert.  Caramel apple ice cream with goat cheese cheesecake was a dessert I couldn’t turn down. Chef Aguirre recently arrived from the Four Seasons in San Francisco, and his culinary expertise has brought Mistral to a new level.

beet salad

Loews beet salad

While walking along the silver strand, watch for the U.S. Navy SEALS training on the beach before exploring Coronado for the day.  That will certainly invigorate your day.

Loews Coronado Bay Resort
4000 Coronado Bay Rd
Coronado, Ca 92118

The Hotel del Coronado, a century old Victorian storybook hotel and resort has captivating views of the ocean and Pt Loma.  In fact, the majestic hotel cannot be missed while driving on Orange Avenue, the main street in Coronado.  Its history fills volumes about visiting celebrities, dignitaries and lavish events which makes for a good read. The elevator alone is rich in history and worth a ride.  Located in the lobby with an eye catching ornate brass door, Otis elevator #61 has dedicated elevator operators transporting guests and making them feel welcomed.

Several years ago, I had the pleasure of dining in the hotel’s well-known Crown Room and it became a memorable experience.  Recently, I had a different eating experience.  On the outside patio aromas from the wood-fired pizza ovens drifted my way.  I watched the chef at Eno Pizzeria stretch the dough and load the pizza with sauce, cheeses and varieties of toppings.  How pleasurable it was to sit outside eating pizza and drinking wine while watching the sun set.  But I wasn’t done yet, on the sand were fire pits and a selection of appealing goodies to make s’mores.  Graham crackers, the basic ingredient in making a s’more were at the forefront, but here’s a twist, ginger snap cookies, too.  Hershey’s chocolate bars and colorful house made marshmallows in flavors of mint, raspberry and vanilla added to stacking the gooey goodness.  S’mores are always fun and these were even more festive on the beach as the sun went down over the ocean.

S’mores at Hotel Del Coronado

Hotel del Coronado

1500 Orange Ave
Coronado, Ca 92118

Coronado is referred to as Crown City and most likely derived the name from Spanish explorers.  The crown is seen throughout the city and is a wonderful getaway.  Although the size of the island remains the same, the dining scene has hit a new wave.

Disclaimer-my food was compensated; however, the opinions are my own.

First appeared on Amateurtraveler.com