DEL MAR, CALIFORNIA [ ABN NEWS ] — Ideally situated 20 minutes north of downtown San Diego, the quaint seaside village of Del Mar known for its beautiful beaches and famous Del Mar Racetrack, offers a variety of new reasons for a romantic getaway or an family vacation. Listed below are some of the top reasons to put Del Mar on your destination list:

The Beach – with over two miles of coastline and gently rolling waves, Del Mar is the perfect place to stroll, learn to surf, kayak or simply basque in the sun.

Pet Friendly – Not only does Del Mar have its own leash-free “Dogs Beach”, but many of the hotels, restaurants and stores are pet friendly. In September, an annual dog surfing competition takes place at Dogs Beach.
Hotel Indigo – opened in March offering a full-service spa and restaurant with ocean views.

Events – Del Mar offers a variety of annual events such as: Summer Solstice, a food and wine tasting event overlooking the ocean (June); Del Mar Fair (June 8 – July 4); Del Mar Races (July 18 – September 5); Taste & Art Stroll, a strolling taste from Del Mar restaurants and juried artwork displays, music and kids activities (October); and Holiday Wonderland, a multi-block event with holiday activities such as horse drawn carriage rides, crafts, snow play areas, and visits with Santa. (December).

Historic – Stratford Square, a historic landmark in the downtown village, contains a historical gallery with photos of Del Mar and its residents including Jimmy Durante, Desi & Lucy Arnez, Dick Enburg and Burt Bacharach. Also included are photos of Bing Crosby who opened the Del Mar Race Track and famous jockeys including Bill Shoemaker and Chris McCarron.

Weddings – In addition to six hotels equipped to handle a variety of weddings, Del Mar also offers unique venues such as Seagrove Park, Powerhouse Park, and the Ocean View deck at Del Mar Plaza.

Ocean View Shopping and Dining – Del Mar Plaza, an outdoor collection of boutiques, restaurants, and wine bars, offers a meandering, European-style dining and shopping experience with an ocean view.

Culinary – New culinary talent has moved to Del Mar Village: Chef Scott Thomas Dolbee has joined Kitchen1540 from Four Seasons Resort Whistler in British Columbia; Brian Redzikowksi from the Thompson Hotel in Beverly Hills joins Flavor; and Mark Bolton joins Pacifica. Local chefs love that Del Mar has its very own Farmers Market every Saturday from 1-4 p.m.

Spa and Wellness – Del Mar offers are variety of pampering and wellness experiences including Place360, a integrated wellness environment including acupuncture, Chinese herbal medicine, and homeopathy; Spa Namara, located in the new Hotel Indigo, is a full service spa; and Spa L’Auberge offering a collection of treatments that draw on the healing wonders of the ocean.

Outdoor Recreation – In addition to the beach and coastal bluffs, Torrey Pines State Park and the trails through Crest Canyon provide picturesque trails for runners and hikers. In the northern part of Del Mar, the Scripps Bluff Preserve and the newly restored San Dieguito River Lagoon offer extraordinary views, native plants and wildlife viewing.

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