Timeless Elegance at the Fairmont Grand Del Mar in San Diego

Fairmont Grand Del Mar, Amaya Terrace
Amaya Terrace

By Angela Fairhurst

The name says it all, Grand it is. The Fairmont Grand Del Mar in San Diego is like stepping back in time into a 1920s fairytale.

Leaving the main highway, down a long drive, one leaves behind the city, and makes their way pass the well-manicured grounds, a Tom Fazio-designed golf course and guardhouse to the dramatic entrance with a garden fountain centering the opulent resorts’ circular driveway.

The resort is a mere seven years old, but one would think it was built centuries ago yet with all modern conveniences. Upon entering the lobby, one can’t help but smell the hotel’s delightful Spicy Apple Signature Scent candles made exclusively for Fairmont Grand Del Mar by Rosy Rings, Inc.

Fairmont Grand Del Mar
Fairmont Grand Del Mar

Interior designer Warren Sheets and architect Robert Altevers designed the five star resort paying homage to the distinctive style of Addison Mizner, a turn-of-the-century visionary. Mizner focused on Mediterranean architecture and decorative arts from Spanish Colonial palaces. As ornate as the Carved stone, wood-beamed ceilings, Ironwork, parquet floors, Stained Glass, glazed tile and patina accents are, they are so uniquely put together, it exudes a sophisticated romantic timeless elegance that says simply Mizner or quite frankly, Gatsby.

The interiors and architecture are built to feel like an estate home rather than a hotel and are complemented by lush landscaping with a mix of palms, Italian cypress trees and citrus plants. It only seems appropriate that the property also includes a horse ranch.

Mediterranean flavor flows into the 249 guestrooms. The palette is deep blue with pale yellow and gold. With an old-money feel, the detailed crown moldings and millwork complement the crystal cut lamps, dark distressed wood furnishings and gilded gold accents. The beds are pillow-top, covered with Pratesi Italian cotton linens and goose-down pillows. The large marble-clad bathrooms all have European-style soaking tubs, separate showers, dual vanities and flat-screened televisions. Amenities include plush towels and bathrobes and custom red flower scent, Côte d’Azur products including bath salts.

The resort’s 21,000-square-foot spa also resembles the same era, made up of earth tones accented by crystal glass tiles, arches and Carrera marble. The Spa has a plethora of services and natural therapies all incorporating their theme to restore and replenish. European-style wet rooms allow for a variety of scrub treatments. Relaxation areas come complete with stone fireplaces and the club-style locker rooms have shower, steam and sauna areas as well as Jacuzzis.

Sheets and Altevers got it right, “No one makes hotels like this any more.”

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