4 January 2019:
San Diego, United States:
California Dreaming

By Corey Sandler, Destination Consultant Silversea Cruises

San Diego is a beautiful setting, a great year-round climate, a natural deepwater harbor, great beaches, and an economy based to a great extent on the U.S. Navy and tourism.

But San Diego has a bit of a second-city complex. It is, in fact, the second most populous city in California after Los Angeles. In my opinion, L-A gets all the attention but San Diego—and San Francisco—deserve some more of the praise.

One of my favorite things about one of my favorite cities is the wonderful mix between old Spanish style structures and new buildings. Although San Diego certainly is booming, at least thus far they have not destroyed their past.

Here are some of the things I saw today, beginning with the arrival of the pilot to guide us into San Diego Bay and continuing on land to the historic Santa Fe Railroad Station and then into a bit of the Gaslamp District.

Our cruise from Florida through the Panama Canal to California follows the path of some of those who came to San Diego for the Panama–California Exposition in March, 1915 as part of the celebration of the opening of the Panama Canal.

The exposition was held in San Diego’s large urban Balboa Park. At a time when many architects (including at a simultaneous fair in San Francisco) embraced the over-the-top Beaux-Arts style, in San Diego they chose Spanish Baroque, which includes some Moorish Revival elements, and a bit of Spanish Colonial design.

The fair was decorated with more than two million plants of 1,200 different types. Philadelphia’s Liberty Bell made a three-day appearance in November 1915.

Some of the Exposition’s buildings are still standing, including the Botanical Building, with a changing display of rare and notable plants, the 200-foot-tall California Bell Tower, shaped like a Spanish ship, the Chapel of St. Francis of Assisi, and the Fine Arts Building , now part of the Museum of Man.

And the Spreckels Organ Pavilion. In 2015, the organ was expanded to 80 ranks and 5,017 pipes, once again making it the world’s largest pipe organ in a fully outdoor venue.

All photos and text Copyright 2019 by Corey Sandler, all rights reserved. See more photos on my website at http://www.coreysandler.com

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Now available, the revised Second Edition of “Henry Hudson Dreams and Obsession” by Corey Sandler, for the Amazon Kindle. You can read the book on a Kindle device, or in a Kindle App on your computer, laptop, tablet, or smartphone.

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Henry Hudson Dreams and Obsession: The Tragic Legacy of the New World’s Least Understood Explorer (Kindle Edition)

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SEE THE “How to Order a Photo or Autographed Book” TAB ON THIS PAGE FOR INSTRUCTIONS