9. Hotel del Coronado, San Diego

The Hotel del Coronado hovered in my mind as I drove south from L.A. I'd never stayed there but knew about it from the 1959 Billy Wilder movie "Some Like It Hot," which was filmed partly at the hotel. Storied, elegant, traditional, the Del opened on Coronado Island (actually a 5.3-square-mile peninsula west of downtown San Diego) in 1888 and is one of a handful of grandes dames in the West such as the Fairmont Empress in Victoria, Canada, and the Ahwahnee Hotel in Yosemite National Park.<br>
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<a href="http://www.latimes.com/travel/la-tr-hoteldel21-2003dec21,0,2295926.story"> >> Read more</a>
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( Christopher Reynolds / Los Angeles Times )

The Hotel del Coronado hovered in my mind as I drove south from L.A. I'd never stayed there but knew about it from the 1959 Billy Wilder movie "Some Like It Hot," which was filmed partly at the hotel. Storied, elegant, traditional, the Del opened on Coronado Island (actually a 5.3-square-mile peninsula west of downtown San Diego) in 1888 and is one of a handful of grandes dames in the West such as the Fairmont Empress in Victoria, Canada, and the Ahwahnee Hotel in Yosemite National Park.

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