Plus, San Diego Humane Society's new Adoptions Center.
 
February 15, 2024 6AM-Top banner logo-small.png

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67º | 10% chance of precipitation | Sunrise 6:31 a.m. | Sunset 5:34 p.m. | High tides 1:01 a.m. and 2:04 p.m. | Low tides 8:06 a.m. and 7:01 p.m. | Full Weather Report | Traffic Report

 
🗝️ Hot Homes: Welcome to The Barcelona
The big, white Barcelona apartment building in Bankers Hill, with palm trees and cars parked out front.
The Barcelona in Bankers Hill was originally designed as an apartment-hotel in the early 1920s.|Photo via Haley Hill Photography
Nestled at Juniper Street and Fourth Avenue in Bankers Hill stands The Barcelona, a residential complex flanked by palm trees that’s been there since 1923. The building recently completed a $2 million glow-up, but its roots in San Diego history still shine.

SENTRE is the local real estate investment firm behind The Barcelona. We chatted with SENTRE CEO, Doug Arthur, about the “real estate jewel’s” history and renovation.

A close-up an official bronze plaque marking The Barcelona Historical Landmark No. 440 in San Diego.

This plaque marks The Barcelona’s historical significance in San Diego.

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Photo via Haley Hill Photography

Back in the day

In 1921, developer James E. Collumb partnered with architect Eugene Hoffman to design The Barcelona. It was completed in 1923 as a full-service apartment-hotel with a ballroom, solarium, restaurant, and golf course. Arthur said there were doors in the back that allowed for carriages to be drawn in.

“It really was a hallmark of that era,” he told SDtoday. “It was developed in a style that meshed art deco and Spanish colonial, so it has a little bit of that ‘Great Gatsby’ look and feel to it, a little bit of that Miami South Beach feel to it; palm trees in front of it.”

In 2001, the building was designated as Historical Site No. 440 by San Diego’s Historical Resources Board for its distinct architecture.

The skydeck at The Barcelona featuring tables and chairs, plus views of the downtown San Diego skyline, San Diego Bay, and Coronado.

The city views from the skydeck are epic.

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Photo via Haley Hill Photography

The renovations

According to Arthur, The Barcelona’s multi-phased renovation had been underway since SENTRE acquired the project in 2014. Work wrapped just in time for its centennial.

“Everything we did was intended to preserve the historical charm and relevance of the asset — to engage and embrace with it, instead of departing from it,” he explained.

Upgraded amenities include a 15,000-sqft basement storage area that’s been transformed into a gym and community space featuring a library, co-working area, and bike storage. There’s also 1923 Lounge featuring a skydeck with views of the downtown San Diego skyline, San Diego Bay, and Coronado. This is where residents tend to spend time with their family and friends.
 
Events
 
Thursday, Feb. 15
  • Bratty | Thursday, Feb. 15 | 7 p.m. | House of Blues, 1055 Fifth Ave., San Diego | $28 | Jennifer Abigail Juárez Vázquez — a Mexican singer-songwriter from Culiacán, Sinaloa — brings her viral sounds to SD.
  • “Chicago” | Through Sunday, Feb. 18 | Times vary | Civic Theatre, 1100 Third Ave., San Diego | $63+ | This jazzy musical set in the 1920s is so good it’s almost criminal.
  • The Return of Galentine’s Day | Thursday, Feb. 15 | 7:30-9 p.m. | Mic Drop Comedy, 8878 Clairemont Mesa Blvd., San Diego | $15 | Grab your best gals for this showcase of some of SD’s funniest female comics talking all about love — or maybe anti-love.
Friday, Feb. 16
  • San Diego Tết Festival | Friday, Feb. 16-Sunday, Feb. 18 | Times vary | Mira Mesa Community Park, 8575 New Salem St., San Diego | Free | The Vietnamese-American Youth Alliance and Vietnamese Federation of San Diego will highlight the Year of the Dragon with lion dances, live entertainment, a pageant, vendors, and arts and crafts.
  • Valentine’s Super Love Jam | Friday, Feb. 16 | 7:30 p.m. | Pechanga Arena, 3500 Sports Arena Blvd., San Diego | $55-$125 | Get ready to boogie — this jam sesh features Keith Sweat, Next, Jon B, All-4-One, Rose Royce, and The Delfonics.
Saturday, Feb. 17
  • Chinese New Year Fair | Saturday, Feb. 17 + Sunday, Feb. 18 | 11 a.m.-5 p.m. | International Cottages, 2191 Pan American Rd. W., San Diego | Free | The House of China will lead this celebration filled with entertainment, fun activities, and vendors in the heart of the historic, multicultural hub.
  • Unwritten Law | Saturday, Feb. 17 | 8 p.m. | The Observatory North Park, 2891 University Ave., San Diego | $80 | If you miss this Poway-formed band you’ll be “Seein’ Red.”
Sunday, Feb. 18
  • SD Auto Swap + Car Show | Sunday, Feb. 18 | 6 a.m.-1 p.m. | North Island Credit Union Amphitheatre, 2050 Entertainment Circle, Chula Vista | $15 | Gearheads — cruise over to this gathering to check out cool rides and sell, shop, or trade auto accessories.
  • Harlem Globetrotters | Sunday, Feb. 18 | 12 p.m. + 5 p.m. | Pechanga Arena, 3500 Sports Arena Blvd., San Diego | $35-$135 | Ah, we can just hear “Sweet Georgia Brown” now — the Globetrotters bring out all the jazzy tricks for this head-to-head game against the Washington Generals.
  • Daygo Eatz | Sunday, Feb. 18 | 12-4:45 p.m. | Marie Widman Memorial Park, 449 Ritchey St., San Diego | Free | Discover the small businesses and artists spanning the San Diego Black Arts & Culture District while enjoying food and live entertainment.
Click here to have your event featured.
 
 
News Notes
 
Civic
  • Chula Vista councilmembers are talking with SANDAG about ending the state Route 125 tolls by 2027 — fees that leaders argue are burdening South Bay drivers and businesses. According to SANDAG, it could take until around 2026 to figure out a solution, including Caltrans potentially taking control over SR-125. (CBS 8)
Development
  • The Port of San Diego voted to demolish a shop at Seaport Village damaged by an October 2020 fire. The structure was the former site of Seaport Market — which has since relocated to another building at the landmark — and will be razed over 90 days starting next month. (San Diego Union-Tribune)
Open
  • Rise and Shine hospitality group has debuted Ox Coffee, a Mission Valley shop at 8590 Rio San Diego Dr., Ste. B, brewing house-roasted coffees and fun specialty drinks. The buzzy biz will also offer educational, coffee-focused monthly classes — from tastings to latte art. It’s open daily, 7 a.m.-3 p.m.
Traffic
  • SANDAG has started construction at the Interstate 5/Chestnut Avenue underpass in Carlsbad, where crews will add a bike lane, widen the underpass, and create space for community art as part of Build NCC. The project — slated to be completed in summer 2025 — will shift the area’s parking and bus stops.
Edu
  • SDSU recently broke ground on its Imperial Valley Sciences and Engineering Laboratories in Brawley — about 120 miles east of San Diego. The 37,000-sqft research hub will be designed to expand STEM programs, research, and career opportunities in California’s so-called “Lithium Valley”, and is set to open in fall 2025. (SDSU NewsCenter)
San Diegan
  • Did you know? Oscar-nominated “Nyad” actress Annette Bening grew up in San Diego and graduated from Patrick Henry High School. Tomorrow, the former San Diegan will receive the inaugural Arlington Award at the Santa Barbara International Film Festival, which honors her admirable commitment to her craft.
Cause
  • San Diego Made and The Chicano Federation will host a fundraiser for locals impacted by the recent floods this Saturday, Feb. 17, 5-9 p.m., at Bread & Salt. The free event will include a silent auction, raffles, spoken word poetry, live music, and food and drinks for sale. Register.
Announced
  • Tequila & Taco Music Festival is coming to Thrive Park at Snapdragon Stadium Saturday, April 6 and Sunday, April 7. It’ll feature tequila tastings, taco vendors, live music — “with a primary focus on Latin music” — and local artisans. Tickets go on sale today at 10 a.m.
Sports
  • Is it Padres season yet? For now, listen to analysis on Padres players — particularly the ones that haven’t been so loved since 2020. Go beyond the scoreboard and behind the scenes of the San Diego Padres with Locked On’s daily, team-focused podcasts.
Drink
  • Common Theory Public House in the Convoy District has launched a late-night happy hour on Fridays and Saturdays, 9 p.m.-12 a.m., featuring half-off deals on bottled beers and glasses of wine. More tea: Common Theory will open a second location next month in Chula Vista.
Try This
  • Want to advertise with us but not sure where to start? Check out our self-service advertising, a quick and easy way to get acquainted with our local audience through Listings, Banner Ads, and Articles. Get started today.
Wellness
  • Regain’s couples therapy is accessible via phone, text, and video call and is FSA/HSA-friendly. Get 25% off your first month for Valentine’s Day.*
 
 
Development
 
🐶 Every dog (and cat) has its day
People gather around San Diego Humane Society's redesigned Adoptions Center; the entrance is blue with the words "Woof Woof" over the doorway.
The upgraded Adoptions Center is part of San Diego Humane Society’s campus on Gaines Street.|Photo via San Diego Humane Society
After nearly two years of construction, the San Diego Humane Society (SDHS) has reopened its redesigned Adoptions Center at its San Diego campus — 5500 Gaines St.

The facility’s improved layout features:
  • A transformed adoptions lobby
  • Expanded outdoor exercise yards — including “catios” for cats
  • Upgraded animal habitats — 58 dog rooms featuring calming solar tubes for natural light, 55 cat kennels, 11 communal cat rooms, and 53 spaces for small pets
“This marks a new era for San Diego’s homeless animals,” said Dr. Gary Weitzman, SDHS President and CEO.

SDHS hopes the new habitats increase visibility for SD’s adoptable pets, leading to shorter stays in shelters and more forever homes.

The Adoptions Center is open to the public Tuesday-Sunday, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Adoption fees are 50% off through Sunday, Feb. 18.

And don’t forget — SDHS also runs animal shelters in Escondido, El Cajon, and Oceanside.
 
The Buy
 
Some stylish sunglasses by Rheos or I Am Girl Stephanie, because we’re dreaming about summer and soaking up sunny rays. Pro tip: With the days already getting longer, it’s never too soon to start protecting your eyes.
 
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TEGNA
 
The Wrap
 
Monica Garske headshot Today’s edition by:
Monica
From the editor
Hello, SD — we hope you’re enjoying the sunnier weather. You were absolute rays of sunshine when you shared your local love stories with us this week.

I want to give some love to Nat Z. — our reader who pinpointed Petco Park as the special place where her love story began. She told us how she and her now-husband were on their second date at the ballpark when he told her, “I’m going to get the ball for you,” and a ball flew straight into his hands. They still have the ball — marked with the date, “5/07/19.”
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