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What’s New in San Diego, Winter 2022/2023

Discover new attractions, exciting events, museums and restaurants this winter.

Attractions and Events

A family-friendly immersive 20,000-square-foot experience, Jurassic World: The Exhibition, is coming to San Diego Oct. 31 for a limited engagement at the Westfield Mission Valley Mall. Visitors will walk through the world-famous “Jurassic World” gates, explore richly themed environments and encounter life-sized Velociraptors, a Brachiosaurus, and the most fearsome dinosaur of all, the Tyrannosaurus rex.

San Diego Brewers Guild is hosting the 14th-Annual San Diego Beer Week Nov. 4 – 13, the first in-person celebration since 2019. Guild Fest will officially kick-off the week of events on Saturday, Nov. 5 at Surf Sports Park in Del Mar with delicious craft beer from San Diego and beyond, food trucks and live music. The Beer Garden at The Lodge at Torrey Pines will close out the event on Sunday, Nov. 13, featuring a food-and-beer pairing experience with 14 chefs and 28 breweries. San Diego Beer Week is a great way to experience San Diego's rich craft beer scene.

The Del Mar Thoroughbred Club’s fall Bing Crosby Season kicks off on Nov. 11 and runs through Dec. 4, featuring a lineup of exciting races and events. The fall meet will feature 15 stakes races in 13 days and the lineup of trackside events includes Uncorked Derby Days Wine Festival, Brunch & Brews, Toys for Tots Toy Drive & Ride and more.

From Nov. 12 – Jan. 8, on select dates, A Very Furry Christmas at Sesame Place San Diego is a festive, family-friendly celebration with everyone’s favorite Sesame Street friends. The park is transformed into a festive winter wonderland filled with holiday magic and surprises. Guests will enjoy Sesame Street Christmas shows, the Sesame Street Christmas Parade, the Furry Friends Christmas Dance Party, and exciting rides.

The 18th annual San Diego Bay Wine & Food Festival returns to San Diego on Nov. 9 – 13. The festival will feature dozens of events, hundreds of domestic and international wineries, the celebration of craft beer and spirits, local culinary legends and nationally recognized celebrities, and a Grand Tasting Finale on the stunning Embarcadero.

SeaWorld Christmas Celebration returns to SeaWorld San Diego from Nov. 14 – Jan. 8, where guests can enjoy live entertainment, delicious festive food and drinks, and eye-catching displays, including the iconic 320-foot SkyTower Tree of Lights.

The highly anticipated Wonderfront Festival 2022 will return to San Diego’s downtown waterfront Nov. 18 – 20. This three-day music, culinary and arts festival will feature seven-plus stages and 80+ bands. This year’s the lineup will include Zac Brown Band, Kings of Leon, Gwen Stefani, G-Eazy, Young the Giant, among others.

Skating by the Sea® at Hotel del Coronado is returning for the 2022 holiday season from Nov. 17 – Jan. 1 ,2023 as part of Hotel Del's Frosted by the Sea celebrations. The beachfront ice rink features stunning views of the Pacific and benefits Make-A-Wish® San Diego. Guests can also reserve the rink-side Frostbite Lounge with plush seating, roaring fire pits, holiday-themed libations, and delectable bites. Frosted by the Sea also features sparkling lights draping the hotel's iconic red turrets, Christmas trees, snowy surprises, garlands galore filling the property with holiday cheer and visits from Santa.

The Holiday Bowl returns to Petco Park on Dec. 28 featuring top teams from the Pac-12 and ACC. After the game, the KGB Sky Show celebrates the station's 50th anniversary and Sky Show's 45th anniversary by lighting up the San Diego skyline over Petco Park with its spectacular and legendary fireworks display.

SeaWorld San Diego’s highly anticipated coaster, Arctic Rescue, is set to open spring 2023. The coaster will be the longest and fastest straddle coaster on the West Coast. This family-friendly multi-launch ride will invite guests to hop on a snowmobile and launch at up to 40 mph on a chilly adventure as they race through the unpredictable arctic climate to help animals in danger.

New Hotels & Renovations

In fall 2022, the Kimpton Hotel Palomar will be redesigned and renamed to Kimpton Alma San Diego. The 211-room hotel’s renovation will include a refresh of all guestrooms and suites, new restaurants and kitchens, a more inviting pool area, and updated meeting spaces. The new interiors are inspired by San Diego’s proximity to Mexico, with custom street art on its pool deck and murals from local artists.

Marriott Marquis San Diego Marina unveiled the next phase of a property-wide multimillion-dollar reinvention encompassing rooms, suites and the M Club Lounge. The hotel’s enhanced offerings will include three completely refreshed Presidential Suites in the South Tower, with complete redesigns to the lobby, ballroom spaces, Exchange Restaurant, Marina Kitchen Restaurant & Bar, Coronado Terrace, day beds, cabanas and more. 

CH Projects, known for creating San Diego’s most interesting restaurants and bars, is expanding their hospitality microcosm with the full reimagining of the historic Lafayette Hotel & Swim Club in North Park, San Diego's hip neighborhood. The entire property will be re-concepted through the CH lens, attempting to create an all-encompassing immersive oasis in the heart of North Park. Slated for an opening in May 2023, the hotel will include 141 redesigned guestrooms, lobby space and pool, plus three new restaurants, two additional dining and drinking outlets, a vintage bowling alley, cocktail bar, game room and all-new pool bar.

Arts and Culture

From Sept. 15 – Feb. 5, 2023 the Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego  La Jolla location will present Alexis Smith: The American Way, the first retrospective of California artist Alexis Smith in thirty years. Featuring work produced throughout the artist's career, from the 1970s to the 2010s, the exhibition highlights the themes that permeate the artist's oeuvre, including her interests in gender, identity, and class.

The Chicano Park Museum and Cultural Center opened in Barrio Logan in October, with the inaugural exhibition being the premiere of a collective historical narrative of Chicano Park and Logan Heights titled, “PILLARS: Stories Of Resilience And Self-Determination.”

La Jolla Music Society launched its 54th season in October with a series of exciting debuts at The Conrad in La Jolla. From jazz and Americana to the finest in chamber music, the 2022–23 season offers many chances to discover new talent and welcome some of the greatest artists in chamber music.

The internationally acclaimed Lightscape show will illuminate the San Diego Botanic Garden from Nov. 18 – Jan. 1, 2023. The enchanting, after-dark, illuminated trail will span one mile and feature a festive world of wonder with over one million twinkling lights. Attendees will enjoy eye-catching artistic installations from international artists that come alive at night with color, imagination, and sound.

Caught on Camera: Wildlife When No One’s Watching opens at the San Diego Natural History Museum on November 18, in the Museum’s top-floor photography gallery. The show features remarkable images of southern California wildlife “caught” on film with the help of camera traps set up by scientists, photographers, and other curious people. Visitors will see squirrels mid-leap, bobcats in backyards, and native species they may have never heard of.

The San Diego Symphony’s 2022 Holiday Programming kicks off Nov. 19 with performances at The Rady Shell at Jacobs Park. This year the Symphony will perform three of their signature Noel, Noel concerts, as well as Holiday Movies in Concert and a special presentation of the Vienna Boys Choir at Balboa Theatre. For more information, visit The Shell’s website here.

Restaurants, Breweries and Bars

Mabel’s Gone Fishing opened in North Park in September, serving up Iberian coastal cuisine and highlighting San Diego/Baja ingredients and a gin-forward cocktail and natural wine program. Most of their ever-changing, seasonal dishes are based around seafood, including bycatch or less popular but more sustainable local varieties.

Paradisaea, a restaurant and cocktail bar, opened in seaside neighborhood of Bird Rock in September after four years in the making. With a background in Michelin-starred dining, culinary director Mark Welker made the menu based on seasonal ingredients, ranging from white sea bass crudo with Thai basil, finger lime, strawberries, and chile de arbol oil to summer squash with crispy sheep’s milk dumplings, pistachios, capers and mint, and pasture-raised roast chicken with seasonal greens, croutons, and chimichurri.

Opened in September, Zama brings Latin American cuisine with an Asian infusion to San Diego’s Gaslamp neighborhood. Against the extravagant backdrop of the lush jungle-inspired space, Zama’s menu and beverage program focuses on Latin American foods and cocktails highlighting refreshing exotic ingredients like pineapple, coconut and hibiscus.

Gold Finch, a modern Jewish delicatessen in the heart of Torrey Pines, opened September bringing both Ashkenazi and Sephardic-style cooking to La Jolla. Gold Finch’s menu is a love letter honoring Jewish immigrant cuisine and blends regional influences as well as the owner’s family recipes.

San Diego's largest winery, Carruth Cellars, returned to Little Italy in October with a new tasting room location at the boutique Carté Hotel. Just steps from the Embarcadero waterfront, the new indoor/outdoor tasting room features Carruth's award-winning bold, California-style wines by the glass, flight, and bottle. Plus, a complementary menu that includes the winery's signature cheese board, in addition to exclusive Carté Hotel menu items.

Xin Chao Eatery opened in October bringing Vietnamese food to the Del Mar Highlands Town Center. The restaurant specializes in a small menu of popular favorites, including pho, so they can focus on making each dish excellent. Xin Chao Eatery’s house special pho consists of a tender, fall-off-the-bone back rib with a good portion of filet mignon, meatballs, and brisket plus wide or thin rice noodles in a fragrant, long-simmered pho broth.

Inaugurated in October by Nick Jonas, Villa One™ Tequila Gardens brings elevated cocktails, an impressive collection of more than 160 Tequilas and Mezcals, and modern Mexican fare together with breathtaking views from the rooftop of Theatre Box in downtown's Gaslamp Quarter. Created in partnership with singer and actor Nick Jonas and fashion designer John Varvatos, the stylish new rooftop bar, restaurant and nightlife destination offers over-the-top and tableside cocktails and margaritas, and a menu of fresh, flavorful Mexican cuisine.

The Gärten debuted in San Diego’s Bay Park neighborhood in October debuting its spacious multi-vendor concept. The 2,500-square-foot biergarten-style space brings locals a new expanse to explore wide-ranging craft beers, mead and sparkling wines not available elsewhere, as well as artisanal pizza and more made-from-scratch eats. The Gärten’s vendors, all partners in the project, include Deft Brewing, Lost Cause Meadery, Pizza Cassette and Oddish Wine.

Slated for October, Munchies Food Club will join Pacific Beach’s neighborhood as the newest outdoor food court and neighborhood hang out spot dreamed up by the creative team behind Good Time Design hospitality group. Munchies Food Club will be bringing an assortment of concepts to the open air dining area, starting with Lucky’s at the Beach and Manivela Coffee, with additional food and beverage concepts slated to join the club soon.

Cheese Garden is opening in Carmel Valley at the Village at Pacific Highlands Ranch Center in late October. The popular dessert chain, known for its trendy Japanese cheesecakes, also known as cotton cheesecakes because of their fluffy, cloud-like texture, will also offer a variety of other dairy-based desserts including a Double Fromage Cheesecake that layers frozen mascarpone cream on top of a baked cream cheese filling and a base of cheese sponge cake. 

Mister A’s reopened its newly remodeled doors in Bankers Hill in October after being sold to new ownership. The remodeled restaurant contains a 180-seat main dining room, a brand-new 18-seat bar and a 72-seat indoor-outdoor lounge. The food dishes lean more toward plant cookery and there are far more share plates for guests to enjoy while taking in one of the best views of San Diego.

Grand Restaurant Group, the team behind Nick & G’s, Bellamy’s, Cork & Knife, and DiCicco’s, will be opening their most recent venture, Alejandra’s Fine Mexican Food & Cantina, in Carlsbad this winter. The 5,600 square foot venue will include indoor and outdoor seating and two bars with upscale Mexican food and cocktails.

Fisher’s Group, with its 31 locations around the globe, is slated to bring their seafood eatery to San Diego’s Little Italy neighborhood in December. Fisher’s San Diego will introduce an “avant garde” Mexican seafood style of cuisine, offering an inviting atmosphere with a coastal touch. The new 8,700 square foot restaurant will feature an oyster and raw seafood bar, and an extensive menu featuring anything from tacos and chilaquiles to expertly prepared coastal seafood delicacies.

The Gaslamplighter, a karaoke and cocktail bar that’s due to land in the Gaslamp neighborhood early next year, will feature a list of classic and contemporary cocktails as well as a menu of bar bites and shareable plates. Operating Tuesday through Sunday from 8 p.m. to 2 a.m., the bar will host karaoke on its main stage, with guests able to make reservations for individual singing slots. There will also be occasional live music programming, a mix of local acoustic artists and nationally known names.

Awards and Recognitions

Conde Nast Traveler readers ranked San Diego #3 for Best Big Cities on the publications The Best Cities in the U.S.: 2022 Readers’ Choice Awards. The popular travel publication highlighted San Diego’s beaches, food and beautiful climate.

Time Out Magazine ranked San Diego’s Barrio Logan #6 for their article, “The 51 coolest neighborhoods in the world,” where the publication polled 20,000 city-dwellers and grilled local experts to rank the greatest places for fun, food, culture and community. The article highlighted it’s vibrant and historic Mexican American culture.

Transportation

San Diego International Airport (SAN) added non-stop service to Provo, Utah via Provo Municipal Airport (PVU) on Allegiant Air on Aug. 18. between Nov. 5 and Jan. 3, 2023. Flights operate two times weekly on Thursdays and Sundays.

San Diego International Airport (SAN) will add seasonal non-stop service to Orlando, Fla. via Orlando International Airport (MCO) on Frontier Airlines between Nov. 5 and Jan. 3, 2023. Flights operate daily.

For press releases and information on San Diego, click here.

For images, click here.

For more information on San Diego’s offerings, including exciting vacation packages and valuable coupons for attractions, restaurants and more, visit the San Diego Tourism Authority’s website at www.sandiego.org.

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