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  • Caroline at EatDrinkLA

    Don't Overpay for your next Vacay: Fall in Carlsbad has Family Fun for Everyone for Less!


    Carlsbad, California, is known for its gorgeous lagoons, stunning waterfront, and proximity to the Legoland Themepark. But there's much more to Carlsbad than bricks and beaches - especially if you choose the right place to stay. Here are some of the best family hotels in Carlsbad with so much to do that you won't even have to leave the property - and at prices that will make it easy to stay another night.

    *EatDrinkLA was a guest of The Sheraton Carlsbad and The Cassara Carlsbad - but this post is not sponsored.

    The Sheraton Carlsbad

    The Sheraton Carlsbad Resort & Spa is just minutes from Legoland and the famed Carlsbad Flower Fields. You're also just a Complimentary Shuttle Ride away from the Beaches, Restaurants, and Shopping Centers. The hotel has a Mediterranean feel, complete with fountains and firepits, and while the property is expansive, everything flows together seamlessly, so you never feel lost. It's on the same compound as The Westin Carlsbad Resort & Spa, which means you get the benefit of two resorts in one.
    Sheraton Carlsbad PoolPhoto byThe Sheraton Carlsbad

    Family Rooms at The Sheraton Carlsbad

    Long gone are the days of the family of four forced to share a two-queen-room, thanks to affordable options that prioritize sleeping for all! The Ponto Family Suites include a Living Room space off the Main Bedroom along with a second bedroom with two twin beds and a DOOR! Anyone with a toddler will appreciate being able to put the little one down for a nap and not have the entire family sitting in darkness for two hours.
    King Bed Sheraton CarlsbadPhoto byEatDrinkLA

    The room also has Three TVs in total, so complaints will be minimal about sharing screen time. Personal Streaming Connectivity with Netflix® and Hulu® is also available, along with complimentary Wi-Fi.
    Second Bedroom Sheraton CarlsbadPhoto byEatDrinkLA

    The Bathroom is centrally located off the Living Room area. It features a Vanity Space separate from the toilet and bathtub, which is ideal when you have multiple people getting ready. The Bathroom is equipped with Soap and Lotion from Gilchrist & Soames.
    Bathroom Sheraton CarlsbadPhoto byEatDrinkLA

    What the Adults will Love

    When you're a guest of the Sheraton Carlsbad, you also have access to the Westin Hotel, which is within walking distance and includes the newly renovated Ocean Pearl Spa. Treatment options include Massages, Body Polishes, and Custom Facials, as well as the use of the Eucalyptus Steam Room and Invigorating Aromatherapy Showers.

    Relax in the waiting room with Fruit Infused Water and Tea and watch as your responsibilities drift away from you for an hour or two.
    Ocean Pearl Spa Fruit Infused Water and TeaPhoto byEatDrinkLA

    Back at the Sheraton, the Fitness Center is available all day with state-of-the-art equipment to get your heart pumping, and the Pool and Hot Tub are heated year-round for your convenience. You can also take advantage of the Westin Pool and Hot Tub after your spa treatment.
    Sheraton Carlsbad Fitness CenterPhoto byEatDrinkLA

    Travel Tip: Visit the Ocean Pearl Spa on Thursdays from 2 to 6 p.m. to take advantage of Happy Hour pricing and goodies like Sparkling Wine and Appetizers.
    Ocean Pearl Spa Waiting RoomPhoto byEatDrinkLA

    What the Kids will Love

    The Sheraton is ideal for families at any time of the year. You can visit in the fall and still take advantage of the Signature Water Slide from Friday to Sunday, as well as the heated Pool with a Toddler-Friendly side that begins at 1 foot deep.

    There are Bikes for all sizes and coupons for FREE Scoops of Gelato upon check-in. Lastly, don't forget the Private Access to Legoland.
    Waterslide at Sheraton CarlsbadPhoto byEatDrinkLA

    What to Eat at The Sheraton Carlsbad

    The award-winning restaurant 7 Mile Kitchen is available for both indoor and poolside dining and serves California-Mediterranean cuisine from Breakfast to Dinner by Chef Jason Luke. Breakfast begins at 6:30 a.m. until 11 a.m., Lunch is from Noon all the way to 5 p.m., and Dinner is from 5 to 9 p.m. The sunsets during the evening service are fantastic and make you feel like you're right on the beach.

    The Appetizers are anything but ordinary. Choose between Deep Fried Deviled Eggs, Loaded Brisket Fries, and Gochujang Cauliflower, among other dishes.
    Deep Fried Deviled EggsPhoto byEatDrinkLA

    There are light Salads to choose from, like the 7 Mile Caesar and the Shrimp Coastal Cobb, but the stars of the show are the Pizzas and Burgers.

    You can't go wrong with a Margherita (which you might even find your child prefers over the Kids' Pizza) or the crowd-pleasing Sweet & Spicy Sausage. There's even a Cheeseburger Pizza and a Prosciutto and Brussels Sprouts.
    Sweet & Spicy Sausage PizzaPhoto byEatDrinkLA

    There are 9 Different Burgers on the menu, from a Classic to a Chef's Choice in a variety of meat options, including the Impossible Patty. There's also a Chicken Sandwich. All are served with your choice of Fries, Tater Tots, or Salad.
    Burgers at 7 Mile KitchenPhoto byThe Sheraton Carlsbad

    The Kids' Menu is full of choices your littles will love, including Burgers, Chicken Fingers, and a Mini Cheese Pizza, along with Drinks like Italian Sodas or a Shirley Temple.
    Kids Cheese PizzaPhoto byEatDrinkLA

    Adult Drink options include a full bar with Specialty Cocktails like the Black Manhattan, Frozen Drinks including a Spicy Mango Margarita, and a nice Beer and Wine Selection.

    Visit from 4:30 p.m. to 6 p.m. Monday to Thursday to take advantage of their Happy Hour. Featured deals include $2 OFF Beer, Wine by the Glass, and Cocktails.

    If you need a quick bite, the Grab and Go Section of the restaurant is open from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. (which is where you pick up your FREE Gelato).

    There is also a Market in the Lobby with Snacks and even Swim Diapers, which is always open.
    Frozen Mango MargaritaPhoto byEatDrinkLA

    Why Choose This Hotel

    There are over 40 Ponto Suites available, which keeps the price down to around the mid $300s a night for a luxuriously large family suite. Remember, this also includes access to a Waterslide, Heated Pool and Hot Tub, and a Kids Club in the high season - so it's like buying a hotel room and getting a theme park for free. The hotel is maintained to perfection and quiet despite being full of happy families.

    Book your stay directly through the website here - often, you won't find the suites on third-party retailers.
    The Sheraton Carlsbad ExteriorPhoto byThe Sheraton Carlsbad

    The Cassara Carlsbad

    The Cassara Carlsbad, Tapestry Collection by Hilton is a Mediterranean-inspired enclave with views that stretch out over the Pacific. The Cassara feels like two hotels in one because it has access to the Grand Pacific Palisades Resort, which is bursting with family-friendly activities. The newly renovated lobby also includes a stunning bar and intimate restaurant space.

    The Cassara Carlsbad is so close to Legoland that you might be able to see it from your room, and there's a private pedestrian entrance to get you immediately into the action.

    You're minutes from the Carlsbad Strawberry Fields, which during fall turns into a Pumpkin Patch. A Free Hotel Shuttle will get you around within a 5-mile radius - which is all you need to explore the Beaches, Shopping, and Golf at Carlsbad Crossing.
    The Cassara CarlsbadPhoto byPhoto Credit: The Cassara Carlsbad

    Family Rooms at The Cassara Carlsbad

    There are 29 Two Bedroom Family Suites on the property, which offer a similar layout to the Sheraton with a King Bed in the studio space, a Living Room in the center, and an enclosed Bedroom on the other side with two Twin Beds for the kiddos. These suites were redone in 2020, so the condition is excellent, and some even offer Balconies.
    King Bedroom with BalconyPhoto byEatDrinkLA

    In-room entertainment options include Three Large Flatscreens and Free Wi-Fi during your stay.
    Twin Bedroom The Cassara HotelPhoto byEatDrinkLA

    The restroom includes a Separate Shower and Sink area and a nicely sized Tub and Shower combination, along with Lockwood New York Soaps and Lotions.
    The Bathroom at The Cassara HotelPhoto byEatDrinkLA

    What the Adults will Love

    Being one of the best family hotels in Carlsbad doesn't have to mean constant chaos. The Cassara Carlsbad features a Quiet Pool and Hot Tub Area, which is located directly off the lobby. The Pool is large enough to swim laps, while the Hot Tub is large enough to have a party - but you won't hear ANYTHING - because it's a Quiet area. The views are spectacular from here, and it's the perfect getaway without having to go too far away from your family.
    The Quiet Pool at The Cassara HotelPhoto byEatDrinkLA

    At night, there are several Fire Pits that get torched up around this area near the lobby, and if you're visiting during fall in Carlsbad, you can take advantage of their Stay S’more Treat Package, which includes S'mores Kits in your room upon check-in. This is something the kids will love, too.

    On select nights, there is also Live Music in the Lobby Patio.
    One of many firepits at Cassara CarlsbadPhoto byEatDrinkLA

    What the Kids will Love

    There are innumerable Kid-Friendly amenities available thanks to the Grand Pacific Palisades Resort, and 24 hours is almost not enough time to conquer it all.

    To begin, there's an Activity Room with a Pool Table, Games, and a Juke Box that plays everything FOR FREE!

    Next is the Kids Arcade with FREE Air Hockey and Arcade-style Games and Prize Machines beginning at 50 cents a game.
    Arcade at Cassara CarlsbadPhoto byEatDrinkLA

    Outside, you'll find a Camelot-centric Playground and a Basketball Court.
    The Playground at The Cassara CarlsbadPhoto byEatDrinkLA

    As you enter the Family Pool Area, there is Table Tennis and a Splashpad that resembles a waterpark. The Pool is enormous and not too cold, even in late October. If it is, you always have the Hot Tub. Last but certainly not least, Bike Rentals are included in your stay.
    The Splashpad at the Cassara HotelPhoto byEatDrinkLA

    What to Eat at The Cassara Carlsbad

    The Cassara Kitchen & Bar is located in the lobby and is accessible off the quiet pool during the high season. You are also welcome to get food and drinks to go and bring them to the pool yourself any time of year.

    The restaurant is open from 6:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. for Breakfast and then again from 3 to 10 p.m. on weekdays or Noon to 11 or 10 p.m. on weekends for All-Day Dining. Happy Hour takes place Monday to Friday from 3 to 5 p.m., where everything is $2 off.

    The menu changes seasonally, and current House Specialties include a Fried Chicken Sandwich with pineapple fennel slaw and a Steak Sandwich with arugula, caramelized onions, gouda, and horseradish aioli. All are served with a side of Fries.
    Steak SandwichPhoto byEatDrinkLA

    The Kids' Menu includes the heavy hitters: Chicken Tenders and Grilled Cheese, as well as every parent's favorite, the Fresh Veggie Plate.

    If you're in the mood for something sweet, a Jumbo Fresh Baked Chocolate Chip Cookie or Glass of Crème Brûlée is the way to go.

    Now, what are you drinking? Frozen Cocktails like a Frosé scream summer, but when the weather starts to cool, it's hard not to reach for a Daily Double Specialty Cocktail with Botanist gin, orange blossom water, and absinthe, or something classic like a Manhattan or a Negroni. There's also a wide array of Wine and Bottled Beer available.
    Manhattan CocktailPhoto byEatDrinkLA

    The Cassara Carlsbad is also directly next to the Karl Strauss Brewing Company, which even offers Room Service! They are open from 7:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. on weekdays and 7:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. on weekends. The vibe is sports brewpub, and the noise level is perfect for kids and fans alike.

    Why Choose This Hotel

    The Cassara Carlsbad is an excellent choice if you have kids and want to keep costs down. Prices for the Family Suites begin in the mid $200s, and you have access to all the resort amenities mentioned for $20 a day, which also includes a $20 Food and Beverage Credit - which you would be spending anyway!

    Book your stay here for one of the best family hotels in Carlsbad.
    The Cassara CarlsbadPhoto byThe Cassara Carlsbad

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