Know Before You Go: The Se San Diego is Operating Illegally
UPDATE: See the comments section for an update from Jan McCormick of Prism Hotels and Resorts, who are now overseeing the affairs of the SE San Diego. Currently, there are no compliance issues with health and safety regulations and the hotel is working with the city to sort out their certificate of occupancy problem.
We're no fans of the Se San Diego here at HotelChatter, not after they so rudely denied our request for double beds and we had to have Hotwire step in and assign us a new hotel. Not to mention this hotel has some serious financial woes, having filed for bankruptcy back in June. But this latest development with the Se might be the final straw.
The San-Diego Union Tribune reports that the hotel is operating without a valid certificate of occupancy.
The 23-story hotel, currently in bankruptcy, did have a temporary occupancy certificate when it opened to much fanfare in December 2008. But that certificate expired last October following a protracted battle with city officials over nearly a half-million dollars in fees they say the developer owes.
The hotel also has been cited for other violations, including incorrect restoration of the historic building’s facade, some improperly installed doors and stairway handrails, and electrical problems in the outdoor pool area, according to documents obtained by The San Diego Union- Tribune.
Prism Hotels & Resorts, which is overseeing the hotel's business affairs while in bankruptcy, told the paper that the hotel was working hard to resolve the issue. However, it looks like the hotel's problematic owner/developer is not going to pay up on the nearly $500,000 development fees owed to the city. Meaning this joint still does not have an official certificate of occupancy nearly two years after opening.
This is not only egregious from a business/development perspective (we're pretty sure that owner will never be able to do anything new in San Diego ever again) but it's also a major safety concern for hotel guests. This means that the hotel might not be up to safety and fire codes, putting guests at serious risk during their stay.
Despite all this, the reviews on TripAdvisor seem rather decent and folks report scoring rooms for well under $200. Still, we wouldn't chance it.