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Vela Reviews List

Vela

There’s something special about the coast that draws people to want to live near it, travel to it and celebrate it. One lives for satisfaction and finds it in simple things. Throughout the world’s coastal resort destinations eateries thrive on the finest products, grown locally where “from farm to fork” is a way of life. At Vela, diners will enjoy the freshest meats, daily caught fish, locally grown market produce and home baked desserts with casual excellence.


Vela’s focus is on the use of the freshest, seasonal, local and sustainable products available to achieve modern interpretations of classic culinary traditions from the most desired coastlines of the planet.


From breakfast to dinner, Vela will surprise you at every turn.
See more Vela details
48 Current Reviews
Summary of Diner Ratings & Reviews
Overall 
3.9 / 5
(Very Good) 3.9 / 5
(48 Reviews)
Open Ratings Snapshot
Rating Breakdown 48 reviews
5 stars
(20)
4 stars
(10)
3 stars
(12)
2 stars
(4)
1 star
(2)
Food 
3.8 / 5
(Very Good) 3.8 / 5
Service 
4 / 5
(Outstanding) 4 / 5
Ambiance 
3.8 / 5
(Very Good) 3.8 / 5
Noise Level
1.6 / 3
Moderate
Value 
2 / 5
(Fair) 2 / 5
Filter Reviews By:
Diners classify this restaurant as:
  • scenic view(25)
  • good for groups(12)
  • fit for foodies(11)
  • great for brunch(10)
  • great for lunch(7)
  • great for outdoor dining(7)
Vela Reviews List
Review 1 for Vela
Overall rating 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5

Customer Avatar
OpenTable Diner Since
Dined on 2/11/2016
 2009
Dined on 2/11/2016
 2009
Food 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Service 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Ambiance 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Noise Level
Moderate
Moderate
"Lovely wait staff and delicious food and drink specials. Just the ticket after a long day's drive from nor cal."
Dined on 2/11/2016
 2009
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Review 2 for Vela
Overall rating 
2 / 5
(Fair) 2 / 5

OpenTable Diner Since
Dined on 1/25/2016
 2008
Dined on 1/25/2016
 2008
Dined on 1/25/2016
 2008
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Review 3 for Vela
Overall rating 
3 / 5
(Good) 3 / 5

OpenTable Diner Since
Dined on 1/23/2016
 2012
Dined on 1/23/2016
 2012
Food 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Service 
3 / 5
(Good) 3 / 5
Ambiance 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Noise Level
Quiet
Quiet
"Foodwas good. I order the short rib w risotto & the rice could have cooked a bit more. But the meal was very flavorful. My sister ordered the brussel sprouts w poached egg & she thought it was okay. She didn't quite like the sauce. We had plenty to eat. The svc was a bit on slow side. Overall it was a prtty good meal."
Dined on 1/23/2016
 2012
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Review 4 for Vela
Overall rating 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5

Food 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Service 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Ambiance 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Noise Level
Quiet
Quiet
Value 
3 / 5
(Good) 3 / 5
Dined on 12/27/2015
 2003
Special Features: good for groups, great for brunch, scenic view, kid-friendly
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Review 5 for Vela
Overall rating 
3 / 5
(Good) 3 / 5

The food taste and presentation was wonderful.

Food 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Service 
3 / 5
(Good) 3 / 5
Ambiance 
2 / 5
(Fair) 2 / 5
Noise Level
Moderate
Moderate
Value 
1 / 5
(Poor) 1 / 5
"The price of the 3 course meal was too high. The tables were too bright with spotlights. The squirming and noisy children were distracting for what would seem to be a quiet, expensive restaurant. The courses were served about 5-10 minutes apart, which seemed excessive."
Dined on 12/25/2015
 2012
Special Features: scenic view
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Review 6 for Vela
Overall rating 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5

Dined on 12/05/2015
 2008
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Review 7 for Vela
Overall rating 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5

Customer Avatar
OpenTable Diner Since
Dined on 12/02/2015
 2013
Dined on 12/02/2015
 2013
Food 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Service 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Ambiance 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Noise Level
Quiet
Quiet
Dined on 12/02/2015
 2013
Special Features: good for groups, great for brunch, hot spot, great for lunch, scenic view, great for outdoor dining, fit for foodies, kid-friendly
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Review 8 for Vela
Overall rating 
3 / 5
(Good) 3 / 5

Food 
2 / 5
(Fair) 2 / 5
Service 
3 / 5
(Good) 3 / 5
Ambiance 
3 / 5
(Good) 3 / 5
Noise Level
Quiet
Quiet
"Very disappointing. The menu was nothing if what we had read online. Very limited choices and the food was not tasty at all. also overpriced for the quality!"
Dined on 11/19/2015
 2011
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Review 9 for Vela
Overall rating 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5

Dined on 11/20/2015
 2010
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Review 10 for Vela
Overall rating 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5

Food 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Service 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Ambiance 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Noise Level
Moderate
Moderate
Dined on 10/29/2015
 2009
Special Features: romantic, neighborhood gem, scenic view, special occasion, great for outdoor dining, fit for foodies
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Review 11 for Vela
Overall rating 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5

OpenTable Diner Since
Dined on 10/18/2015
 2010
Dined on 10/18/2015
 2010
Food 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Service 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Ambiance 
2 / 5
(Fair) 2 / 5
Noise Level
Quiet
Quiet
Dined on 10/18/2015
 2010
Special Features: scenic view, fit for foodies, kid-friendly
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Review 12 for Vela
Overall rating 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5

Great food, great view

Food 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Service 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Ambiance 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Noise Level
4 / 3
Energetic
"I had read mixed reviews and was hesitant to try this restaurant, but I was very pleasantly surprised. The staff was attentive and the food was delicious. They also have a great breakfast."
Dined on 9/30/2015
 2014
Special Features: good for groups, scenic view, fit for foodies
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Review 13 for Vela
Overall rating 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5

Food 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Service 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Ambiance 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Noise Level
4 / 3
Energetic
"This was our best experience over the last week of eating at great restaurants. There was absolutely nothing I would change about the experience!"
Dined on 9/18/2015
 2007
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Review 14 for Vela
Overall rating 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5

Food 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Service 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Ambiance 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Noise Level
Quiet
Quiet
Dined on 9/13/2015
 2010
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Review 15 for Vela
Overall rating 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5

Vela Great Cheft

Food 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Service 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Ambiance 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Noise Level
Quiet
Quiet
"Vert inventive chef New flavors mixed tasteful flavors"
Dined on 9/04/2015
 2010
Special Features: neighborhood gem, great for lunch, scenic view, vibrant bar scene, fit for foodies
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Review 16 for Vela
Overall rating 
3 / 5
(Good) 3 / 5

Decent but not Great

Food 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Service 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Ambiance 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Noise Level
Quiet
Quiet
"Vela was okay. The beet salad was delicious. The other food was just okay. The wine selection was limited. The food was pretty overpriced."
Dined on 9/04/2015
 2010
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Review 17 for Vela
Overall rating 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5

Food 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Service 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Ambiance 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Noise Level
Quiet
Quiet
Dined on 9/01/2015
 2015
Special Features: scenic view, special occasion, vibrant bar scene
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Review 18 for Vela
Overall rating 
2 / 5
(Fair) 2 / 5

Food was over cooked and service was slow

Food 
2 / 5
(Fair) 2 / 5
Service 
2 / 5
(Fair) 2 / 5
Ambiance 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Noise Level
Moderate
Moderate
"My fish was over cooked and the kids pizza was as well. One of the pizza's was so over done my daugther could not bit through the crust. Our server was friendly, but the services for getting orders in and getting our food was very slow. For the prices I would expect a lot more. We were not impressed at all."
Dined on 8/29/2015
 2014
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Review 19 for Vela
Overall rating 
1 / 5
(Poor) 1 / 5

Overpriced

Customer Avatar
OpenTable Diner Since
Dined on 8/29/2015
 2012
Dined on 8/29/2015
 2012
Food 
1 / 5
(Poor) 1 / 5
Service 
1 / 5
(Poor) 1 / 5
Ambiance 
1 / 5
(Poor) 1 / 5
Noise Level
Quiet
Quiet
"I was very disappointed in this restaurant. I would not recommend it at all, the service was slow, the food was overdone( I ordered the salmon), the view was blocked by pillars, then just at sunset they put shades down so you couldn't see anything. Would not go back at all, way overpriced when there are so many other tasteful options nearby."
Dined on 8/29/2015
 2012
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Review 20 for Vela
Overall rating 
3 / 5
(Good) 3 / 5

Good but not a recommendation

Customer Avatar
OpenTable Diner Since
Dined on 8/22/2015
 2014
Dined on 8/22/2015
 2014
Food 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Service 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Ambiance 
3 / 5
(Good) 3 / 5
Noise Level
Quiet
Quiet
"This hotel is special to my husband and I so we have dined at Vela for that reason. However, it's not anything I'd recommend to anyone over the countless options in downtown SD. Both weekend nights we've been there showed just a handful of customers. The menu is pretty limiting - only a handful of entree options yet the one I ordered was not available after the server put order into the kitchen. The portions are fairly small, especially considering the upscale prices. Once dark, there's not much of a view factor so one should consider the purpose of coming. This restaurant would seem ideal for the hotel guest needing an onsite elegant meal, but not a draw for non-guests when so many other unique options exist in the area and for less cost."
Dined on 8/22/2015
 2014
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Review 21 for Vela
Overall rating 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5

Food 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Service 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Ambiance 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Noise Level
Quiet
Quiet
Dined on 8/16/2015
 2010
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Review 22 for Vela
Overall rating 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5

Food 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Service 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Ambiance 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Noise Level
Moderate
Moderate
Dined on 8/14/2015
 2010
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Review 23 for Vela
Overall rating 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5

Customer Avatar
OpenTable Diner Since
Dined on 7/14/2015
 2008
Dined on 7/14/2015
 2008
Food 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Service 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Ambiance 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Noise Level
Quiet
Quiet
Dined on 7/14/2015
 2008
Special Features: scenic view, vibrant bar scene, great for outdoor dining
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Review 24 for Vela
Overall rating 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5

Customer Avatar
OpenTable Diner Since
Dined on 6/25/2015
 2014
Dined on 6/25/2015
 2014
Food 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Service 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Ambiance 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Noise Level
Quiet
Quiet
Dined on 6/25/2015
 2014
Special Features: romantic, scenic view, late-night find
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Review 25 for Vela
Overall rating 
3 / 5
(Good) 3 / 5

Customer Avatar
OpenTable Diner Since
Dined on 6/03/2015
 2009
Dined on 6/03/2015
 2009
Food 
3 / 5
(Good) 3 / 5
Service 
3 / 5
(Good) 3 / 5
Ambiance 
3 / 5
(Good) 3 / 5
Noise Level
Quiet
Quiet
Dined on 6/03/2015
 2009
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Review 26 for Vela
Overall rating 
2 / 5
(Fair) 2 / 5

Unfortunately Kitchen Issues Same with Hotel

Food 
1 / 5
(Poor) 1 / 5
Service 
3 / 5
(Good) 3 / 5
Ambiance 
3 / 5
(Good) 3 / 5
Noise Level
Quiet
Quiet
"We felt really sorry for our Server. She was super nice. The kitchen was pretty confused. Our dinner took way to long to come out from the kitchen. My pork tenderloin was cold and my husband's short rib was not cooked enough and chewy. A kind gentleman came by to check in on us and we expressed the chewy short rib. Did not offer a replacement or anything, but did not matter since we had to head over to Petco. The folks sitting next to us, who ordered after us, received all their food at once, 3 courses. The restaurant was not super busy when we dined so we really could not see any reason for the issues. Later we came back from Petco to the bar and it was packed. There were not enough bartenders or servers or even any food available after 11pm. The hotel was sold out due to Rolling Stones and they should have known that guests would want food and drink after the show."
Dined on 5/24/2015
 2004
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Review 27 for Vela
Overall rating 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5

Food 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Service 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Ambiance 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Noise Level
Quiet
Quiet
Dined on 5/25/2015
 2007
Special Features: romantic, scenic view, notable wine list, fit for foodies
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Review 28 for Vela
Overall rating 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5

Mother's Day brunch was nice

Food 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Service 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Ambiance 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Noise Level
Quiet
Quiet
Dined on 5/10/2015
 2015
Special Features: good for groups, great for brunch, hot spot, scenic view, special occasion, vibrant bar scene, great for outdoor dining, fit for foodies, kid-friendly
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Review 29 for Vela
Overall rating 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5

Customer Avatar
OpenTable Diner Since
Dined on 5/10/2015
 2015
Dined on 5/10/2015
 2015
Food 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Service 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Ambiance 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Noise Level
Quiet
Quiet
Dined on 5/10/2015
 2015
Special Features: great for brunch, great for lunch, scenic view
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Review 30 for Vela
Overall rating 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5

Customer Avatar
OpenTable Diner Since
Dined on 5/10/2015
 2015
Dined on 5/10/2015
 2015
Food 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Service 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Ambiance 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Noise Level
Quiet
Quiet
Dined on 5/10/2015
 2015
Special Features: good for groups, great for brunch, special occasion, kid-friendly
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Review 31 for Vela
Overall rating 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5

This was my first time at Vela and I loved it.

Food 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Service 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Ambiance 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Noise Level
4 / 3
Energetic
"The food was perfect. Well cooked salmon and roasted veggies. My mom and I truely enjoyed breakfast and dinner. I will eat here again even if we are not staying in the restaurant. Thank you"
Dined on 5/09/2015
 2015
Special Features: good for groups, great for brunch, great for lunch, scenic view, great for outdoor dining, fit for foodies, kid-friendly, late-night find
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Review 32 for Vela
Overall rating 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5

OpenTable Diner Since
Dined on 5/08/2015
 2013
Dined on 5/08/2015
 2013
Food 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Service 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Ambiance 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Noise Level
Quiet
Quiet
Dined on 5/08/2015
 2013
Special Features: good for groups, great for brunch, great for lunch, scenic view, great for outdoor dining
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Review 33 for Vela
Overall rating 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5

Food 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Service 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Ambiance 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Noise Level
Quiet
Quiet
Dined on 4/23/2015
 2006
Special Features: scenic view
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Review 34 for Vela
Overall rating 
3 / 5
(Good) 3 / 5

Customer Avatar
OpenTable Diner Since
Dined on 4/22/2015
 2014
Dined on 4/22/2015
 2014
Food 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Service 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Ambiance 
3 / 5
(Good) 3 / 5
Noise Level
Energetic
Energetic
Dined on 4/22/2015
 2014
Special Features: great for brunch
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Review 35 for Vela
Overall rating 
2 / 5
(Fair) 2 / 5

Agree with others, overpriced.

OpenTable Diner Since
Dined on 4/22/2015
 2014
Dined on 4/22/2015
 2014
Food 
2 / 5
(Fair) 2 / 5
Service 
2 / 5
(Fair) 2 / 5
Ambiance 
2 / 5
(Fair) 2 / 5
Noise Level
Quiet
Quiet
"The main issue with this place is the price. For the food quality, service, ambiance, everything this restaurant compares poorly to everything else at the same price point in this area. If it were half the price it might rate 4 stars or in the high 3 range but with all the choices in easy walking distance I wouldn't even recommend this if you were staying at the hotel. One positive thing was they validated parking so that wasn't an extra charge like you might incur for other downtown locations. Still not worthwhile though."
Dined on 4/22/2015
 2014
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Review 36 for Vela
Overall rating 
3 / 5
(Good) 3 / 5

Good overall, nothing spectacular.

Food 
3 / 5
(Good) 3 / 5
Service 
3 / 5
(Good) 3 / 5
Ambiance 
3 / 5
(Good) 3 / 5
Noise Level
Quiet
Quiet
"Had the 1/2 natural chicken dinner. It was good, but not superb. Service was not bad. Overall rating is below of what I usually give to most of my reviews."
Dined on 3/22/2015
 2008
Special Features: scenic view
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Review 37 for Vela
Overall rating 
3 / 5
(Good) 3 / 5

Nice Sunday Buffet

Food 
3 / 5
(Good) 3 / 5
Service 
3 / 5
(Good) 3 / 5
Ambiance 
3 / 5
(Good) 3 / 5
Noise Level
Moderate
Moderate
"Very nice buffet. A bit pricey if you are paying your own way (non expense account) and a long wait with no real reason as there were plenty of open tables on a Sunday. Not sure if they were short servers or kitchen staff. Overall very nice."
Dined on 2/15/2015
 2010
Special Features: great for brunch, great for lunch
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Review 38 for Vela
Overall rating 
3 / 5
(Good) 3 / 5

A bit slow

Food 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Service 
3 / 5
(Good) 3 / 5
Ambiance 
2 / 5
(Fair) 2 / 5
Noise Level
4 / 3
Energetic
"Our waiter was very nice, and attentive. However it did feel like a hotel restaurant and the food took forever! A really long time before the appetizers were served, and then an equally long time til dinner. It was a good thing we weren't in a rush.
- delicious papaya Mai tai and short ribs
- tasty cheese and salami platter
Unremarkable steak, shrimp, and pork belly. I have eaten breakfast at the bar, and that was delicious.
"
Dined on 2/06/2015
 2010
Special Features: great for brunch, scenic view
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Review 39 for Vela
Overall rating 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5

Good and convenient

Customer Avatar
OpenTable Diner Since
Dined on 12/07/2014
 2012
Dined on 12/07/2014
 2012
Food 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Service 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Ambiance 
3 / 5
(Good) 3 / 5
Noise Level
Energetic
Energetic
"I experienced Vela while at the Baseball Winter Meetings this year. We arrived late from a delayed flight into town and wanted to go somewhere close. Turned out to be a pretty good choice. We were one of only three groups in the restaurant by 8:30 that night. The service was excellent. We were greeting promptly and seated immediately. Good attention from our server though, considering he really didn't have anyone else to watch over, he did not hover. My tuna was well presented and prepared. Reasonable portion. The views of the harbor added to the atmosphere. The décor led a little to be desired. it reminded me very much of a Disney hotel restaurant. I would not have been surprised if a movie character would have come out to spend some time with us. Pricing was a little high, but then I hear that is more a condition of San Diego than of the restaurant in general. Overall, a good experience."
Dined on 12/07/2014
 2012
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Review 40 for Vela
Overall rating 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5

Fine Dining on the Bay

Food 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Service 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Ambiance 
3 / 5
(Good) 3 / 5
Noise Level
Energetic
Energetic
"Vela is the high-end restaurant at the Bayfront Hilton. It is situated almost on the water so it has a good view of San Diego Bay just north of the Coronado Bridge.
The ambiance is fairly dressy but as usual for San Diego no-one dress up.
The young staff is attentive and seem to know their food and wine.
As for the food the menu is fairly limited but I think it covers the bases of modern American style for most people,
I had Beef short rib - very tender in a rich sauce - with OK broccoli and a tasty risotto. Not exactly advanced cuisine but enjoyable. My wife had a shrimp appetizer with the shrimp just lightly cooked for an excellent flavor. We were also pleased with the beets and greens salad. The flourless chocolate cake and homemade ( I think) ice cream for dessert hit the spot.
The reason I downgraded the ambiance was the free light show. The light in the high ceiling over our table would dim and go out every few minutes. We noticed a few other lights were also doing this. A bit distracting when trying to read a menu, Our server offered to relocate us but we decided to stay put because of the excellent view.
"
Dined on 12/05/2014
 2009
Special Features: scenic view, special occasion, fit for foodies
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Ratings-Only Reviews for Vela
Based on the average of (8) ratings-only reviews
Overall 
3.6 / 5
(Very Good) 3.6 / 5
6 out of 8 recommend this product
Food 
3.3 / 5
(Very Good) 3.3 / 5
Service 
3.9 / 5
(Very Good) 3.9 / 5
Ambiance 
3.6 / 5
(Very Good) 3.6 / 5
Noise Level
1.3 / 3
Moderate