Hotel Del Coronado: Where Architecture, History and Modern Cuisine Coalesce
The Hotel Del Coronado is one of the San Diego region’s true treasures. Built in 1888, this legendary hotel has played host to celebrities, royalty, U.S. Presidents, and plenty of other people for well over a century. Since 1977, it’s been a designated National Historic Landmark.
But even a classic needs a little cleaning up sometimes. Recently, the Hotel Del Coronado had a $200 million facelift. Serea, the hottest new sea-to-table restaurant in town, was part of that upgrade. Let’s talk a little more about the unique design of the hottest new restaurant in the Hotel Del Coronado:
Serea: A Clique Hospitality Venue
Serea is brought to you by Clique Hospitality, the famed Las Vegas-based hospitality group responsible for restaurants and clubs in high-profile venues such as the MGM Resorts, the Mirage, the Cosmopolitan, the Hotel Pendry in San Diego, and more.
When asked by San Diego Magazine if he was nervous about being part of this massive renovation project, Clique’s Andy Masi said, “Just the opposite…it’s this beautiful old hotel and we needed to respect the integrity of the exterior and the heritage of it. How do we create something that really feels like it belongs there? Making it super modern would feel awkward and out of place. We needed classic beauty.”
Of course, it’s worth noting: this wasn’t the first redesign this space has experienced.
Over the years, this seaside restaurant space has featured some interesting themes and features, including one incarnation featuring bowling alleys on the side, a cocktail lounge, and even a tiki concept.
But Clique had a vision for true change, and so they brought in the big guns.
Studio Munge: A Creative Approach to Design
Toronto-based Studio Munge was the high profile design firm tasked with designing Serea. They’ve designed multiple prominent restaurants, hotels, and club venues across the globe, and they just so happen to have worked on several of Clique Hospitality’s venues in Vegas.
The idea for Serea? To create a casual yet high end space that felt sophisticated without being too serious.
Drawing inspiration from Greek islands and the Italian coast, the first thing Studio Munge did was open up the space, uniting the lawn, deck, and beach. Now, more than half of the restaurant features outdoor seating.
Serea: A Restaurant Unlike Any Other
As you walk through the exquisite Hotel del Coronado toward the entry to Serea, the first thing that will strike you is the clean, white design, and thoughtful touches like modern lanterns lighting the walkway.
The inner dining room features a sun-soaked space with light colored hardwood floors and bright whites, accented with splashes of color from plants, upholstery, and art on the walls. Wooden accents, colorful dishware, and leather seating give the area a warm and welcoming feel. The overall vibe? Clean, but not fussy.
On the outside, the epic patio offers views of the ocean and the famous red and white tower of the hotel. Colorful cushions, beautiful tile work, and plants give it a comfortable feel that is breezy yet sophisticated.
Serea: The Full Package
But Serea isn’t just a pretty face. Even if the bones of a restaurant are good, its food is its heart and soul. Happily, the cuisine at Serea is just as incredible as the surroundings.
At the helm of the kitchen? Chef Chef Jojo Ruiz (pictured above with his prize catch), an accomplished chef known for his elegant and creative dishes.
The menu includes plenty of seafood, with both raw and cooked options available. Whether you go for a seafood tower to today’s fresh catch, everything is rendered highly delicious pretty much the moment Chef Ruiz touches it.
A full bar means that no matter what you order, you can enjoy it along with a creative cocktail, a local draft, or a selection from the well-curated wine list.
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