FX Excursions

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Carté Hotel San Diego Downtown Review

by Aoife O’Riordan

Dec 16, 2022


December 2022

ARRIVAL/CHECK-IN: There’s no doubt Carté Hotel San Diego Downtown embraces laid-back vibes, the city’s constant energy and the sleek style of modern architecture and design. Situated in the heart of San Diego, the hotel serves as an upscale paradise, with rooms on the top floor offering vast views of the bay and pool. With the Global Business Travel Association happening in San Diego this same weekend, the hotel was notably busy, with all rooms booked for the night. That said, the general buzz of hotel guests in the lobby and restaurant was far from chaotic, and an employee stood waiting outside to open my taxi door and help carry my luggage inside.

GUEST QUARTERS: The hotel booked me in a room on the 15th floor facing the bay. This meant the moment my room was ready, I hustled to the floor-to- ceiling window and opened the curtains as much as possible to let in the sunlight. Carté did not exaggerate when it mentioned bay views, as I could even see individual boats floating on the water. The room featured muted and neutral colors of grays, whites and dark browns, accented by a deep teal wall behind the bed. With plenty of outlets and the most updated technology, including a large television, I was tempted not to leave my room and simply look out the window from the comfortable bed.

The bathroom exuded modern luxury, with a large vanity; dimmable lighting; and dark, patterned walls. The rainfall shower went beyond an ordinary shower, with extra space and smooth glass walls.


SERVICES/AMENITIES: The hotel boasts several great amenities and services, from a rooftop bar on the 16th floor to an inviting restaurant on the first floor. Above Ash Social, the rooftop bar, features fire pits and even more views of San Diego. Delicious cocktails abound, with drinks like Sunday Flowers — a concoction of You & Yours Sunday gin, butterfly peaflower, lemon and sparkling wine — and shareable bites, such as house-made hummus with warm pita bread. For breakfast, a poolside brunch or dinner, Watercolors Restaurant has it all. I couldn’t get enough of the passion fruit pancakes for breakfast, the tart passion fruit curd adding the right amount of sweetness and flavor.

In addition to these two eateries, the hotel features a terrace pool and the Lido Lounge. While the pool was under construction during my stay, its location a few stories above ground will make for a unique pool experience. Guests of the hotel also enjoy a day pass to Fit Athletic Club on the third floor, complete with advanced workout equipment, fitness classes, a steam room and sauna.


Unbeatable views. Securing a room on one of the hotel’s top floors promises expansive views of San Diego Bay. Each room boasts floor-to-ceiling windows to maximize San Diego’s natural beauty.

Sunset at Above Ash Social. Do not miss an exceptional sunset over the Pacific. Venture to the top floor for a cocktail and bite while soaking in the golden sky.

401 W. Ash St.
San Diego, California 92101
tel 619 546 9600


FX Excursions

FX Excursions offers the chance for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in destinations around the world.


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