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Grande Colonial offers taste of Europe in LaJolla
By CARY ORDWAY
If you're tired of the mega-resort 1experience and want to try a classic European-style hotel, the Grande Colonial La Jolla offers the perfect balance of style, amenities and location, with an interesting history thrown in for good measure.

Nothing against those mega-resorts, but sometimes you want a simpler experience. You want to be charmed. You want a certain type of elegance that feels extra special for that getaway with your significant other. You want impeccable service and world-class dining just footsteps from your hotel room or suite.

The Grande Colonial La Jolla does all of that and more, and you realize it the moment you arrive. From the valet service to the pleasant and super-efficient front-desk personnel, staying at the Grande Colonial is like stepping right into a Lincoln commercial with Matthew McConaughey. This place doesn't have just a touch of class -- it's like a fantasy weekend for those who want to really see how the other half lives.

1It really shouldn't be a surprise when you consider that the Grande Colonial, in fact, is La Jolla's oldest hotel. It's been catering to La Jolla's visitors since 1913, back when there were just 2,000 souls living in this seaside artist colony. Along the way, some of Hollywood's biggest stars have spent time at the hotel. But while some historic hotels are limited by their original design, the Grande Colonial has had numerous multi-million dollar updates and is not only classic, but quite functional.

Our ocean-view room at the Grande Colonial was spacious and comfortable and had views of the ocean as well as La Jolla beach areas. A lounge chair was available for sitting down and diving into that vacation novel, and a small table and chairs proved useful as well. The king bed was delightful and perfect for easy, restful sleep.

Just off the lobby, the Grande Colonial's Nine-Ten restaurant is one of La Jolla's go-to restaurants for elegant dining. It was fun to watch the luxury vehicles pull up as well-dressed diners stepped inside to enjoy the restaurant's fare. The Nine-Ten has a farm-to-table philosophy, featuring the best of the harvest from local artisan farmers. There is inside dining as well as sidewalk dining.
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