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Review of US GRANT


Guest room at the US Grant in San Diego.

Guest room at the US Grant in San Diego.

Image copyright Charlyn Keating Chisholm, licensed to About.com.

The century-long history of this grand historic hotel parallels the history of downtown San Diego itself, which grew up and evolved around the hotel's storied walls. Now owned by the Sycuan band of the Kumeyaay tribe and named for the president who first gave them land of their own, this elegant hotel brings together a service-focused staff, beautifully restored original elements and sleekly designed guest rooms and public spaces.

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US GRANT: Guest Rooms

Guest rooms, I'm told, were designed by women, and certainly I was comfortable the moment I stepped into the small entryway with wood floors and a large closet. The king-sized Starwood bed with its snow-white duvet and piles of white pillows was accented with an original piece of art at the headboard. A large and elegant desk faced windows draped in cashmere overlooking NBC and the lights of downtown San Diego. A solid door with a translucent panel delineated a roomy marble bathroom with a large glassed-in shower, dramatic overhead lighting and plenty of natural light. Water was complimentary, and WiFi and wired Internet access was available for a daily fee.

US GRANT: Dining and Meeting Spaces

The Crystal Ballroom, once called the Italian Room, is a sought-after venue for weddings. A former speakeasy and nightclub in the bottom floor now houses gatherings and special events.

Grant Grill, a power lunch spot for decades, is also open for breakfast, dinner and cocktails. The creative and original ("market-inspired") cocktail menu changed with the seasons; I enjoyed a refreshing "Market Gimlet" with cucumber-infused Ketel One and grapefruit juice in dramatically stylish surrounds. Breakfast found me crowning a new favorite: the Poached Duck Eggs Confit, a hearty and flavorful plate of wild mushrooms, oven-dried tomatoes and poached duck eggs -- order it as I was advised with a side of sliced avocado.

US GRANT: History

The US Grant's history winds through over 100 years around presidents (14 have stayed at the hotel), intrigue (it's said to be haunted by President Grant's daughter-in-law, Fannie) and triumph (a symbol-enhanced purchase of the hotel in the late 1990s by the Sycuans). Fannie purchased the property and deeded it to her husband, the son and namesake of President U S Grant. He built the present-day structure over the original wooden hotel, which in its time had been the largest building in California. Fannie died a year before the hotel was complete, and the US Grant opened in 1910.

(Reviewed 1/28/2011)

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US GRANT is located in the Gaslamp Quarter.
326 Broadway, San Diego, California 92101 USA
Phone: (619) 232-3121; Reservations: (800) 325-3589
Email: usgrant@usgrant.net
Web site: US GRANT

As is common in the travel industry, the writer was provided with complimentary accommodations for the purpose of reviewing those services. While it has not influenced this review, About.com believes in full disclosure of all potential conflicts of interest. For more information, see our ethics policy.
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