San Diego Family Vacation – Days Hotel Review Hotel Circle

Kelsey P. Gonzalez May 19, 2011 No Comments

Family Picture in San Diego, CA

My little family on our trip to San Diego, CA.

Recently my little family—comprising of my husband, three-year old son, ten-month old daughter, and myself—set out on a 7-hour drive from our home in Southern Utah to San Diego, California.  It was actually closer to an 8 ½ hour drive when considering the number of stops we had to make for bathroom breaks and diaper changes.  Our vacation was rather last minute; we left on a Thursday and I’d made the reservations just three days before.  After a friend told me about a website with some really great last minute deals on San Diego hotels and attractions  (, I decided to go online just to check it out and ended up booking our trip!  The website allowed me to select my destination and then put together my own hotel and attraction package.  I first selected the Vacation Packages option, then entered my travel dates.  The site compiled a selection of hotels with a variety of star ratings to choose from and listed the dollar amounts for each option which included both the room and Sea World tickets. 

I picked the Days Hotel, Hotel Circle, a 2 ½ star hotel  (I figured we wouldn’t be in the room much anyway and the price couldn’t be beat), then decided I wanted to add San Diego Zoo tickets to my order as well.  For each set of tickets, I was prompted to choose the ages of the travellers and explained what was included in the admission price. 

The Days Hotel, Hotel Circle San Diego

The Days Hotel, Hotel Circle San Diego, CA. Photo courtesy of

While putting together my package, I selected the hotel option I wanted but was told I would need to call a travel agent to complete my reservation.  Apparently the website showed the hotel was booked for some of the dates I’d selected.  I called the listed number and was assisted by a very helpful agent who quickly made a phone call to my hotel of choice to verify that they were actually sold out.  Thankfully, she came back on the line to report that there were still vacancies and quickly booked me a room with my choice of two queen beds.  She made sure to add the Sea World and Zoo tickets and verified the number and ages of travellers for the reservations.  She then asked me which days of our trip we were planning to visit Sea World and the Zoo.  Normally, a reservation is made far enough in advance that the hotel confirmation and ticket vouchers can be mailed with no additional charge and arrive in plenty of time for the trip.  With my travel dates just two days away however, I had the choice of either having that information faxed or choosing to pay an expedited shipping fee to have it overnighted to me.  Needless to say I chose to have it faxed!  The agent assisting me asked which days we would be attending which parks in order to make sure that the vouchers were sent on the right dates and would be ready for our arrival.  At the time we hadn’t actually given much thought to when we’d be doing what, but my agent told me I could call back and let them know up to 24 hours before my park visits and they would have the vouchers waiting there for me.  I called back the next day with that information but couldn’t help but wonder if everything would go as smoothly as they’d assured me it would!

Thursday afternoon when we finally exited the freeway at Hotel Circle, even my three-year old was anxiously looking for our hotel and freedom from the car!  We spotted the Days Hotel quickly and I, as I was the one who had made the reservation, I went in to show my I.D. (as the website required) and check in.  The lobby was clean and neat and offered a million brochures on attractions from Tijuana, Mexico to Disneyland in Anaheim and just about everything in between.  The hotel staff was friendly and helpful and familiar with the website through which I’d made my reservations.  They asked if I had my confirmation voucher with me and when I told them it had been faxed, I waited to see if would pass this first test.  Sure enough, the attendant found it had been sent over as promised and I was quickly set up with our room.  I let the woman helping me know that we were travelling with a baby and asked for a room in a quiet location if one was available.  She obliged by putting us in a corner room on the third and highest floor which turned out to be perfect!

The Days Hotel, Hotel Circle Room with Crib

Our room at the Days Hotel San Diego, CA.

The hotel is built in two long wings facing each other across the parking lot and has open-air hallways.  The higher floors can be reached either by stairs or by a very small elevator.  We quickly unloaded our car and headed upstairs to check out our room.  We were pleasantly surprised by what we found.  All of the rooms are non-smoking which was important for us, and we found ours to be clean and ready for us.  In addition to the standard two queen beds, table and chairs, television, and bathroom, the room also came with a mini refrigerator and a microwave.  Both came in very handy during our four-night stay. 

Pam Pam Cafe and Grill San Diego

The restaurant at the Days Hotel San Diego, CA.

After dropping off our bags, we decided not to get back in the car to drive to a restaurant and instead dined downstairs at the hotel’s “Pam Pam Café and Grill”.  It was fairly small and the menu was very basic, but the food was decent and its on-site location made it perfect.  The Pam Pam Café proved to be very convenient during our stay.  We were so tired when we returned from the zoo that we phoned in our dinner order using the in-room menu and although the hotel doesn’t offer true room service, the café did call us to let us know our dinner was ready for pick-up about 15 minutes later.

The hotel offered a free continental breakfast each morning which was enough to tie everyone over until we could get something more to eat a little later on.  The breakfast consisted of mini bagels, mini muffins, mini croissants, apples, bananas, and juice or coffee.  I have to admit, our son loved the mini blueberry muffins! 

Days Hotel San Diego Jacuzzi and Pool

The jacuzzi and pool at the Days Hotel San Diego, CA. Photo courtesy of

Our son thoroughly enjoyed the hotel pool.  After our day at Sea World, he couldn’t wait to play “Shamu” in the water!  The pool is at the very back of the hotel property. I liked this very much because it was in a more private setting.  Tables and chairs provided plenty of places to sit or lounge and although it was usually crowded, everything was still clean and pleasant.

Overall we found our stay at the Days Hotel, Hotel Circle to be very comfortable.  On our first night there, our ten-month old daughter decided she did not want to share a bed with mommy, and at 9:30 at night we called and asked for a crib to be delivered.  We expected a long wait at that hour, so it was a pleasant surprise when the crib was delivered and set up just ten minutes later.  We found that to be the norm rather than the exception when it came to their customer service; they were always friendly and accommodating and helped make our trip very enjoyable!  Although it didn’t offer all the amenities of a higher star hotel, the Days Hotel was still perfect for our family’s trip to San Diego and I would gladly recommend it!  I would also happily recommend the website we used to book our hotel and trip—  They lived up to their guarantee in every way!

avatarAbout the Author:

Kelsey lives in Southern Utah with her husband, their 3-year old son, and their newborn daughter. They enjoy the adventure of exploring new places together and love building memories through family travel.

Tags: , Reviews, Travel Excursions

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