Luxury Hotel & Spanish Restaurant Heading Into Downtown San Diego | The Guild Hotel Set To Open In Historic Former YMCA Building

March 29, 2018

Anticipated to unveil later this year in the historic 1920s-era building that housed the downtown San Diego YMCA for more than 90 years is The Guild, a 168-room luxury hotel from Starwood Hotels & Resorts' Tribute Portfolio that will also house an onsite Spanish-style tapas restaurant tentatively named Luca.

Anticipated to open in late October 2018, The Guild Hotel is an upscale hotel that is being installed in the iconic YMCA building in the center of downtown San Diego. The 168-room hotel will preserve the building’s historic facade that is adorned with modern art, as well as reimagine the former gymnasium into a decadent ballroom - the Grace Ballroom - embracing its historic beauty with distinctly modern elements and utilizing the running track as a stylish mezzanine.  The lush Grace Garden will serve as an overflow from the Grace Ballroom, serving as an ideal location for anything from a small intimate party to a large event, among lanterns and greenery. Located on the lower level, the Society ballroom will be a stylish, modern event space. The hotel hopes to also preserve and modernize the colored-tiled basement swimming pool.

Part of Marriott-owned Starwood Hotels new line of luxury accommodations - Tribute Portfolio - The Guild will be independently operated by Oram Properties, a local hospitality investment and management company that includes such hotels as Cardiff by the Sea Hotel and Four Points by Sheraton on its portfolio. Managing the property will be Azul Hospitality (The Nolen), a San Diego-based management firm that oversees various resorts and restaurants around the country. 

Luca is the current name of The Guild Hotel's onsite three-meal restaurant, although the concept may change during the course of the year. The eatery is expected to serve an array of Spanish tapas and entrees like calamari fritos, chorizo con queso, meat & cheese boards, and salmon a la plancha, as well as a full bar with an ambitious bar program featuring craft cocktails, an extensive wine list, and local and macrobrewed beers. More details on food and beverage options will be released later in the year. 

The former Army-Navy YMCA opened at 500 W. Broadway in downtown San Diego in November 1924 and was eventually operated as a low-cost hotel before shutting down in late 2014. The six-story building was designed by architects Lincoln Rogers and Frank W. Stevenson, and constructed at a cost of about $850,000.  San Diego was quickly transforming into a major military city in the years surrounding World War I and the YMCA project was launched in order to serve the city's growing military presence. In 2003, the building was purchased by Barone Galasso & Associates and converted into a low-cost, European-style hotel, which closed in October 2014. 

For more information on The Guild Hotel, visit and check out the video below.