50 Grand: Bahia Resort Hotel Celebrates a Half-Century on the Beach and Bay

50 Grand: Bahia Resort Hotel Celebrates a Half-Century on the Beach and Bay

Mission Bay’s first and foremost beach resort counts 50 years of memories at San Diego’s beloved marine park with festivities, amenities and discounted rate packages.

San Diego, California (April 2003) – The Bahia Resort Hotel turns 50 this year, celebrating its longevity, prosperity and storied history as the original resort in San Diego’s beloved Mission Bay Park. The 320-room destination beach resort, which sprung to life on a prominent piece of peninsula in 1953 and has been attracting generations of vacationers for traditional family-style beach getaways ever since, will mark its gold anniversary throughout the year.

Get set to share in the Bahia’s memories with 1950s-era movies around the pool, themed menus with ’50s style food, $50 credits at the resort, and more. All of which spells F-U-N in the S-U-N for everyone!

The Bahia Resort Hotel – which is ideally situated on a wide stretch of white-sand beach – is owned and operated by Evans Hotels, the premier purveyor of resort accommodations throughout Southern California, including the Catamaran Resort Hotel on Mission Bay and the Lodge at Torrey Pines in La Jolla. The very model of a “destination resort,” the Bahia offers a wealth of beach activities, guest facilities and extracurricular activities for memory-making family vacations, as well as a spectacular location from which to take in the marine park and the Pacific Ocean just two blocks away.

The contemporary visitor to Mission Bay Park may not realize the pivotal and pioneering role the Bahia Resort Hotel played in the development of one of San Diego’s most popular vacation destinations and the Southern California beach tradition. The bay was little more than a brackish tidal maze in 1953 when William D. Evans and his wife Anne journeyed out to the mudflats to survey the possibilities – and envision the results. Though the dredging hadn’t started, the bond issues were yet to pass, and little financing was available for construction, the Evans bid for the development’s first commercial lease.

“Bill’s vision was something I didn’t understand at first,” says Anne L. Evans, Chairman of Evans Hotels since her husband’s untimely death in 1984, who was recently named Entrepreneur of the Year by the California Travel Industry Association. “The bay smelled funny. He drove us past the place where the Bahia is now and said, ‘I’m going to build a hotel there!’ I thought he was some kind of extremist.”

Hardly. In 1953 the 52-room hotel opened on the white and sandy Mission Bay beach. Another 20 units were added just two years later, and an additional 40 units soon after that. Legions of vacationers arrived to soak up the sun, surf and tanning oil. As Mission Bay grew, helped by the tremendous popularity of the Bahia Resort Hotel, the Evans opened the Catamaran and became operators of the historic Belmont Park, that is home to the legendary roller coaster, in Mission Beach.

Today the Bahia remains an icon for generations of vacationers and a splendid base from which to experience the Southern California beach tradition. Its 320 guest accommodations include beach-front cottages, studios with panoramic views and spacious bayside suites. The Bahia is home to two 1860′s era sternwheelers that offer a unique Mission Bay experience. The resort sports an Olympic-sized swimming pool, whirlpool, two lighted tennis courts and a state-of-the-art exercise facility. The award-winning Bahia Café offers festive cuisine, and the Tangier Bar’s Piña Coladas are the most talked about in Mission Bay. A dozen meeting rooms offer stunning ocean and bay views, as well as 20,000 square feet of meeting space for groups from 20 to receptions for 1,200. And if you really have to do business, there’s a fully equipped state-of-the-art Business Center for all your needs.

For more information on the Bahia’s hotel packages and rates, please call reservations at (800) 576-4229.