Cortez Hill – Resting between Little Italy and Balboa Park, the historic neighborhood of Cortez Hill is known as one of San Diego’s oldest residential neighborhoods to date. Its Victorian style architecture and landscape attract many visitors seeking a quiet, vintage taste of San Diego near the Gaslamp District, without the hustle of being Downtown.
As its name suggest, Cortez Hill sits at a higher elevation than Downtown San Diego and presents beautiful views of Balboa Park and the Pacific Ocean. Sitting atop Cortez Hill’s peak, the iconic El Cortez Condominiums watch over everyday activity below. The contemporary condominiums, formerly known as El Cortez Hotel are famous to San Diegans as being one of the most glamourous hotels around during the 1950’s. The El Cortez was built in 1926 and went on to become the first hotel in the United States with an outdoor glass elevator and motorized sidewalk.
Tweet Street Park offers local residents lighted walking paths surrounded by birdhouses to encourage local wildlife dwelling in this urban, bird-themed public park. Like the El Cortez Hotel, St. Joseph Cathedral on Third Avenue remains protected as a historical landmark in San Diego County. Guests can freely stroll and create their own self-guided walking tour down Fifth and Sixth Avenues in Cortez Hill’s historical community.
The area’s legendary past doesn’t stop at landmarks. Local favorites Sole Luna and The Kebab Shop keep lunch lines flowing through the work week. Sole Luna on Ash Street is known for its authentic, affordable Paninis served on the patio, while The Kabob Shop cures lunch boredom with its gluten-free, original California Mediterranean menu. Looking for a classic four-course meal before a night out on the town? Morton’s Steakhouse, notoriously known for serving The Best Steaks Anywhere leaves guest speechless after just one bite of their Maine Lobster, Oysters Rockefeller and Morton’s Hot Chocolate Cake. When looking for “The Good Life”, simply follow the path leading up to Cortez Hill.