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“Genuine hospitality” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Dolphin Motel

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Dolphin Motel
Ranked #14 of 279 Hotels in San Diego
Certificate of Excellence
Strasbourg, France
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Genuine hospitality”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 19 April 2012

I stayed there for a couple of nights in November last year and I absolutely loved it!

I was traveling by myself and it was my first time to stay in a motel in the US, so I was a little nervous about its security (watching too much American TV dramas lol), but quickly felt safe after talking to the staff and the owners. They told me that they had plenty of security cameras which made me feel safe enough, but what really made me feel safe was their hospitality.

They were very friendly, willing to help in any way they could, and pleasant. Holly, the father of the owner was especially kind - giving me hand-written maps, suggesting where to go to and making sure if everything was OK and I felt like I had a home to come back to. I was able to enjoy San Diego without worry largely thanks to them. For me, it was worth staying there just because of that.

Having said that though, hospitality wasn't the only good thing about there. The room was super clean (let me remind you, I'm from Japan where everyone is a clean freak), the bed was really comfy, sheets and towels very clean and super white. The wall was kind of thin and I could hear a guy blowing his nose in the next room, but people were all quiet after 9pm or so, so it didn't bother me much.

They reminded me that traveling is not only about seeing new places or doing new things but also - or more importantly, meeting and having communication with people and I feel so lucky to have found this motel.

  • Stayed November 2011, travelled solo
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank u82
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
DolphinMotel, TOM, Desk Clerk at Dolphin Motel, responded to this review, 21 April 2012
We are a family owned motel and you are treated like family here.
Nothing fancy, we are a basic motel with basic accommodations
Please book early to get the best rates and availability
Lately, we have noticed some of our guests are expecting more than what we offer
Also please contact us if you have any questions or special needs
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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1,089 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (211)
Date | Rating
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  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
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English first
penrith
Level Contributor
7 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 18 April 2012

We enjoyed our stay at the dolphin motel thanks to the staff and the owners.Very clean and a decent location .The motel is very friendly good bus service and near the airport would like to return.
Val England

Room Tip: corner suites are large and sunny
See more room tips
  • Stayed April 2012, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Freda W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
DolphinMotel, TOM, Desk Clerk at Dolphin Motel, responded to this review, 21 April 2012
We love travelers like you
If what your looking for is clean bed and clean room, we are just the right place!
Unfortunately, every traveler has a different expectation/needs
I hope future guests will read carefully about our accommodations before they jump
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
United States
Level Contributor
27 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 14 April 2012

It wasn't easy figuring out hotels and mapping out college tour visits---from the Bay Area, for myself and my two teenagers on spring break. We stayed at 3 different hotels and I was most interested in this one, after reading this wonderful reviews. After our 2nd hotel on first st. in Azusa (Rodeway Inn) where I felt scared for our lives (somehow the handful of reviews were positive) it was SUCH A RELIEF to come to Dolphin Inn for 2 nights and have that "peace of mind for my soul" in feeling safe, taken care of, and the layout is like a little community. The rooms were cute and clean and quiet. Breakfast was just right for us and appreciated. We arrived from the UCSD tour in pouring down rain and one of the Housekeepers who was outside at that moment offered us HER umbrella. We didn't need it, but that gesture warmed my heart. Of course we appreciated the affordable price too, fit just right into our budget. I agree with all the other reviews, but feeling safe (and relaxed) was the best PLUS for me.

Room Tip: Room 28 has a nice balcony area, and is out of the way, on the corner.
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  • Stayed April 2012, travelled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Debbie v
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
DolphinMotel, TOM, Desk Clerk at Dolphin Motel, responded to this review, 18 April 2012
Thank you Debbie for visiting our little motel
On behalf of the owners and all our staff, we appreciate nice folks like you guys who gave us a chance.
Our biggest room is the once you were staying in Room 28
There is always a staff on duty if you have any needs. We also have surveillance 24/7 on property although Point loma is a predominently uppper-middle class to upper class neighborhood
Your every concern will be addressed.
Mnay thanks for a pleasant stay with us and hope to see you again!
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Seoul, South Korea
Level Contributor
35 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 14 April 2012

The good: After much searching for a cheap hotel in San Diego that was in a decent location it brought me to the Dolphin Motel. The staff here are very friendly and print things for you and also help you out with any problems you have. The location is great and parking is free. You are around 5-10 minutes from downtown San Diego and all the attractions. The breakfast was okay- we had some muffins,coffee,yogurt, and orange juice but it was okay. Most importantly, the price was great and it is very clean.
The bad: The rooms are not very soundproof. I stayed on the 1st floor and was able to hear a lot of the footsteps from the room above me so that was a bit annoying. Also, if someone was outside your room talking you could hear them without much of a problem. I think that if the hotel was quieter i would have given it a 5 star rating.

  • Stayed April 2012, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank justinbbfc
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
DolphinMotel, Owner at Dolphin Motel, responded to this review, 18 April 2012
Thank you justinbbfc for writing us a review
You are correct, our rooms are not big and we are an older motel.
With the noise, please notify our 24 hour staff on duty and we can ask the other guests to quiet down. We do have quiet time after 9pm due to our rooms being small.
You were staying on one of our busy nights during the weekend and a holiday. This happens when we fill up.
I thank you for writing about us from both perspectives as all places have both good & bad. Hope you come back to San Diego on vacation in the future. Call us early as well so we can give you our upstairs rooms, they are very popular and less noise from people above.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
San Francisco
Level Contributor
11 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 11 April 2012

Thanks to Tripadvisor, I had the opportunity to spend two nights this week at the Dolphin Motel. As advertised, the rooms are small and the amenities are basic, but saying that, it is probably one of the cleanest, most comfortable rooms I have experienced at any price. Good bed, pillows, and showers -- and a quiet room - not always the case at rooms 4x the price!!! Hanging out waiting for my daughter and enjoying the (free) breakfast on Easter Sunday morning, the owner was there handing out candy to the kids - nice touch! The staff took extra care at every opportunity, and are clearly committed to making each guest's experience a positive one. Highly recommended!

  • Stayed April 2012, travelled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank URKMB
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
DolphinMotel, Owner at Dolphin Motel, responded to this review, 12 April 2012
It's been a pleasure having you guys. Your daughter was a darling! She definitely put a smile on to Holly's (the owner) day.
We'll see you next time you come down south to our little corner of California!
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Dolphin Motel

Property: Dolphin Motel
Address: 2912 Garrison St, San Diego, CA 92106-2770
Region: United States > California > San Diego
Amenities:
Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Room Service
Hotel Style:
#1 Best Value Hotel in San Diego
#5 On the Beach Hotel in San Diego
#7 Family Hotel in San Diego
#10 Romantic Hotel in San Diego
#44 Business Hotel in San Diego
Price range (per night): ₹ 3,603 - ₹ 4,913
Number of rooms: 31
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Highly Rated - Very Reasonably Priced - American Owned and Operated Budget Motel since 1976. Budget very clean rooms with top rated beds, refrigerators and great showers! Best Price! Budget Value! Great location - one block from San Diego Harbor and minutes from the Airport - Seaword - Downtown - Zoo - Beaches and more! Friendly - professional staff ready to help with directions - boarding passes, etc. Every morning say hello to the owners Holly and Alan over continental breakfast. - Please see over reviews. Thanks ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Dolphin Motel San Diego
Dolphin Hotel San Diego

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