What’s new in San Diego this fall
Attractions & Events
The 12th Annual “Kids Free San Diego” returns in October with special savings and something for the entire family.
Throughout the month, San Diego hotels, restaurants, attractions, museums, tours and transportation companies are offering families with kids 12 and under a variety of deals. This includes free entry to attractions and museums, as well as free meals and welcome amenities at hotels.
San Diego Bay Wine + Food Festival is back for its 19th year along the Embarcadero, November 8 – 12. Sample tastes and sips throughout San Diego including Ranch 45, Garibaldi and The Desmond and hear from culinary greats including Food Network Star Claudia Sandoval, San Diego native Sam the Cooking Guy, and more. Additional experiences range from wine, beer and spirit tastings.
The inaugural Del Mar Food & Wine Festival takes place September 6-11 at Surf Sports Park. The festival highlights the best of the Southern California lifestyle, with a lineup of celebrity Food Network chefs; local chefs and sports legends including Drew Brees, Alex Morgan, and Rob Machado.
New Hotels & Renovations
The historic Lafayette Hotel officially debuted its $31 million renovation. C.H. Projects, known for creating some of San Diego’s most interesting restaurants and bars. It has transformed the property with 141 redesigned guestrooms, lobby space and pool. There are two new restaurants, a vintage bowling alley, cocktail bar, game room and an all-new pool bar.
The Hilton San Diego Gaslamp Quarter underwent a $22.5 million complete remodeling of the hotel and new restaurant concept, Wild Hare Bar Garden. The new interior design and architecture creates a relaxed and fun urban vibe. The focal point is a beautifully carved maple wood wall with abstract, organic shapes and patterns.
The St. James Hotel, originally built in the Gaslamp District in 1912, has been reimagined as Palihotel San Diego. The redesign brings Palisociety’s signature California quirky style to its 122 guest rooms. The hotel also features Saint James French Diner, an all-day dining room.
Arts and Culture
The San Diego Comic-con Museum, located in Balboa Park, premiered three new exhibits in celebration of the 54th annual San Diego Comic-Con. “Excelsior! The Life and Legacy of Stan Lee,” “Cowboy Bebop 25th Anniversary Art Exhibition,” and “My Hero Academia,” presented by Crunchyroll, will be on display through spring 2024.
San Diego Museum of Art (SDMA) and the San Diego Museum of Photographic Arts (MoPA) have merged to one institution. The collection of over 9,000 images from MoPA will now be housed at SDMA and will allow visitors to experience the world of visual art through different lenses. SDMA will open the U.S. debut of Korea In Color: A Legacy of Auspicious Images on October 28 and will extend through Spring 2024.
Westfield UTC has transformed a previously unused space within the center to three open-air pickleball courts for visitors to enjoy through October. Located near the UCSD campus in La Jolla, the courts are complimentary and open on a first-come, first-serve basis.
City Tacos opened its seventh San Diego location, a 10,000-square-feet concept called OB Playground in Ocean Beach. The family-friendly space also houses a flower shop, a Mike Hess Brewing coffee shop, and a space that will have rotating small businesses selling their products. The courtyard area has picnic-table seating and lounge seating around fire pits.
Restaurants and Bars
The Fisher’s Group has officially opened their first U.S. location with Fisher’s San Diego in Little Italy. Fisher’s offers the freshest high-quality seafood with a Mexican twist.
Husband-and-wife duo Niccolò Angius and Cesarina Mezzoni, and longtime friend Giuseppe Capasso, who brought the buzz-worthy Cesarina to Point Loma, are set to unveil newest location, Elvira, later this year. Named after Niccolò’s great-grandmother, Elvira looks to center its cuisine around traditional Roman cuisine as an osteria-pizzeria concept..
More restaurants and bars
Awards and Recognitions
San Diego County has welcomed its fifth Michelin starred restaurant, with Valle in Oceanside receiving one Michelin star. Valle is the first-ever restaurant with Mexican cuisine to receive a Michelin Star in San Diego. Mabel’s Gone Fishing, located in the North Park neighborhood was recently named a Bib Gourmand. Artifact at the Mingei Museum in Balboa Park was also added to the Michelin Guide this summer.
The City of San Diego has teamed up with San Diego Association of Governments (SANDAG) to launch a shuttle throughout Pacific Beach. Fittingly named “The Beach Bug,” the all-electric shuttle provides a sustainable mode of travel for beach goers to get to their favorite sunny destination, including the Balboa Avenue Transit Station.
The San Diego Regional Airport Authority has announced the 19 restaurants and 7 retail stores that will be added to the San Diego International Airport Terminal 1 renovation. Popular San Diego establishments including Puesto, SIP Wine & Beer, Mr. Moto Pizza, and Carnitas Snack Shack will added to the terminal alongside new culinary concepts from celebrity chef Brian Malarkey and skateboarding legend Tony Hawk. Both of them call San Diego home.
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