Where to Explore When you Move to San Diego

Laid-back, hip, and perpetually sunny, San Diego is a slice of beachy paradise—and a hotbed of wonderful culture, worldly cuisine, shopping, and nightlife. Apart from well-known attractions like the famed San Diego Zoo and the iconic Balboa Park, there are numerous art galleries, quirky-cool museums, and high-end eateries to discover. If you’ve just taken a leap and moved to the area, check out these top places to explore in San Diego!

Arts & Culture

San Diego is a city in which the arts, in all their forms, are widely beloved. From well-established museums to small-scale galleries, these are the top arts & culture experiences to have when you visit San Diego:

Visit world-class art museums.

San Diego Museum of Art
San Diego Museum of Art

Though Balboa Park is touristy, the San Diego Museum of Art and the Timken Museum of Art are must-see destinations for serious art lovers. The former attraction houses masterworks by Rembrandt and Jacques-Louis David, and the latter has works by dozens of popular American painters, from Georgia O’Keefe to Stuart Davis. Fight the crowds or go on a weekday; both museums are well worth it. Either way, you’ll avoid San Diego traffic, as Balboa Park is a highly walkable area. Park your car in a convenient lot and leave it for the day!

See Chicano murals.

In the neighborhood of Barrio Logan, you’ll find Chicano Park, which features the biggest collection of Chicano murals in the world (there are over 80 paintings on seven acres), as well as several art galleries and shops. Head here in the daytime to be able to appreciate the true vibrancy and beauty of the murals.

Stroll around an artsy neighborhood.

In North Park, art loving-travelers can experience an abundance of cool street art, in addition to galleries and studios, performance art spaces, and under-the-radar concert venues.

Dining & Drinks

Historically influenced by Mexican cuisine, the food scene in San Diego is thriving and growing all the time. The city is now home to a variety of farm-to-table restaurants, top French and Italian eateries, and some of the best fresh seafood in the country. And the drinking scene is diverse, as well. Take your pick from upscale oceanfront cocktail bars, neighborhood watering holes, and over 150 craft breweries.

Little Italy in San Diego

Little Italy in San Diego
Little Italy in San Diego

The best place to get an all-around feel for the local food & drink scene is the lively, cool Little Italy neighborhood, where you’ll find a plethora of awesome eateries, cool coffee shops, wine bars, craft brew pubs, and more. Stroll through the buzzing Mercato Farmers’ Market on a Saturday to sample fresh-baked bread, locally-made jams, farm-fresh produce, and other artisanal foods from over 175 farmers and vendors. This is the city’s biggest downtown market, and it’s definitely a local fave spot.

Also in Little Italy, James Coffee Co. is the perfect spot to enjoy handcrafted roasted coffee blends, Bottlecraft Beer Shop & Tasting Room has excellent local brews, and Craft & Commerce has tasty small plates (think grilled oysters, charred eggplant dip, and marinated olives) and craft cocktails. Even a drive down the main drag, India Street, is a great way to explore the area.

Here are three other can’t-miss San Diego food & drink experiences:

Check out a hip food market

At Liberty Public Market, a 25,000-square-foot public market in Point Loma’s Liberty Station, visitors can peruse a dazzling array of food and goods from 30 local chefs and artisans—there’s also live music every week, and a dog-friendly market patio every Sunday.

Sample the best tacos in the city. 

Best Tacos in San Diego
Best Tacos in San Diego

Craving tacos? Look no further than El Paisa Mexican Grill, easily one of the most beloved taquerias in the city—they make their own tortillas here, and you can pretty much get any type of taco you want.

Dine at a five-star French hotspot.

And for those who want to splurge on a decadent five-star meal during their trip? Make a reservation for Addison, a critically acclaimed Grand Del Mar resort with incredible dishes like langoustines with caviar and parsley and mussels with green curry, as well as a killer wine list.

The Outdoors

It’s near-impossible to go to San Diego and not spend some time at the beach—not only is the weather here perma-beautiful, but the city boasts over 70 miles of scenic coastline punctuated by pristine beaches, rugged cliffs, and gorgeous blue-green bays. Take a drive out to one of the many beaches. Although you can’t really go wrong with any of the beaches here, there are a few standout spots to check out:

La Jolla Cove
La Jolla Cove

La Jolla Cove is the place to be if you want to try your hand at snorkeling or scuba diving—this tiny gem of a beach has crystal-clear waters and exciting marine life, like the bright orange Garibaldi fish.

Ocean Beach feels like 70s-era hippie California, with its barefoot surfers, funky beach communities, and collection of novelty and vintage shops. Head here if you’re into bohemian vibes, oceanfront live music, and boho-chic boutiques.

At Mission Beach, you’ll find over two miles of oceanfront boardwalk, tons of surf shops, and an old-school amusement park right on the water. In other words, it’s pretty much impossible to get bored at this bustling, action-packed beach.

Finally, although Coronado Beach is a bit touristy, it’s well worth a visit—with the postcard-perfect Hotel del Coronado, sparkling white sand, and the city skyline in the background, it’s the quintessential San Diego beach.

All in all, San Diego is chock-full of exciting culture, cuisine, and nightlife—and, not to mention, some of the most stunning beaches in the country. Whether you’re looking for the ideal romantic getaway, a great place to spend the weekend with friends, or the perfect family-friendly destination, San Diego has a little something for everyone.

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Earthquake Safety

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Prepare for an Earthquake:

According to the American Red Cross

  • If you are inside, stay inside. Most injuries occur from glass, brick and other materials falling from the
    outside of buildings.
  •  DROP, COVER, AND HOLD ON during the shaking.
  • Ÿ If a table or desk is not available to get under for safety, crouch next to a wall without bookcases or windows and cover your head and neck. Bookcases and windows are hazardous since bookcases may tip over and windows may shatter.
  • If you cannot drop to the floor, stay where you are and cover your head.
  • If you are in a wheelchair, lock the brake and cover your head.
  • Ÿ If you are in bed, stay there and cover your head with your pillow

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What to do After a Disaster:

  • Do not light any matches, candles, or turn on electrical switches
  • Use flashlights to check for damage such as gas leaks, fires, or chemical spills
  • Do not return home until officials give you the OK
  • Stay away from flooded roads and downed power lines
  • Check in on your family members and loved ones
  • Monitor local broadcasts for information on disaster relief assistance

Community Focal Point: Melanie Burl and Rodan + Fields

“I was working in corporate America when I was suddenly laid off in early 2014. While I didn’t love the job all that much, I did love the flexibility it afforded me to be with my two children. As I began searching for a new job, that flexibility was key for me. That’s when I joined Rodan + Fields in August of 2014. Not only was I selling great products I believed in, I finally had a job that allowed me to work around my children, so I could be there for them,” says Melanie Burl, local San Diegan and  Rodan + Fields consultant.

ALON DAVID PHOTOGRAPHY

Rodan + Fields is the 4th largest skin care company in the US. It is also the fastest-growing company in the nation. All of their products not only provide great results, but they are clinically based and backed up with real studies by certified dermatologists. The products can also be used by everyone, men, women, and even children and babies.

There are four target skin concerns that Rodan + Fields products address: Anti-aging, Sun Damage, Acne, and Sensitive Skin. “Most people fall into one or more of these categories,” explains Melanie. “Babies can suffer from eczema and we have products for that. Children as young as 9 years old can use the acne products to help combat teenage acne.”

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The Reverse Regimen works to return the youthful appearance of your skin by erasing signs of sun damage like brown spots, dullness, and discoloration.

The Unblemish Regimen, as the name suggests, helps you clear and control breakouts.

The Redefine Regimen defends against and reduces the visible signs of aging for noticeably firmer, smoother, flawless-looking skin.

The Soothe Regimen shields against the biological and environmental aggressors associated with dry, irritated, sensitive skin.

All during the month of February, Melanie is offering a special promo: anyone who refers someone to her who either becomes a customer or joins her as a Rodan  + Fields consultant gets entered into a raffle to win a full regimen of your choice ($200 value)!

“If anyone is looking for a way to earn some extra income in a friendly and flexible environment, I would love to talk to them about becoming a rep for this great company!” says Melanie. “Our business is primarily done through social media and word-of-mouth. There’s no parties and no inventory like some other companies.”

You can shop the Rodan + Fields products here, as well as learn more about the company. You can also reach Melanie at (619) 368-8415

4th largest

 

Community Focal Point: Blueridge Homes

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Looking for a quality home design and remodeling contact? With over 37 years of experience, Richard Carvalho, owner of Blueridge Homes, is your all-in-one resource.

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Richard got his architectural engineering degree in the 1970s and started out working for another contractor, before branching off to own his own company. He started out doing a lot of remodeling work, which eventually led to working on bigger, custom homes and doing builds from the ground up. Whatever people need, Richard and Blueridge Homes are there to make it happen.

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“I think we really excel on residential builds, taking someone from concept to completion. We put the dream together for them, covering every aspect from drawing to building to interior design,” says Richard.

Previously located exclusively in Montana, Blueridge Homes did a lot of rustic remodels and builds. When the log cabin look was popular, they used to do lots of builds using actual logs. They also pioneered a barn and residential home combo that was very popular. They have experience in blending a variety of architectural styles to get a more rustic look if the client requires or whatever mode of project they envision. In the San Diego area, the Santa Barbara or Mediterranean styles are very popular as well as more modern designs. Whatever you envision, Blueridge helps you achieve it.

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Richard’s background in architectural engineering means that when you hire Blueridge Homes, you’re getting someone who is knowledge about the process from start to finish.

“On most of our projects, we do our own drawing and designs,” explains Richard. “I find that it keeps a better connect with the client, when the designer and builder are the same person. We can evaluate what the client is trying to achieve with their build or remodel. This allows us to evaluate what options in the design and building process will keep the costs down or save time, if that’s what the client needs. We also know that if the client is having the project commissioned with the intent to flip the home right away or within a few years, that we need to consider what the average home buyer is going to like. If the client is building their dream home and plans to stay there forever, that’s a different sort of conversation.”

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Blueridge Homes is capable of handling any project, whether residential, commercial, or public works. Since relocating to California, most of their projects have involved either a residential remodel or public works projects like hospitals. They are a licensed and bonded contracting company. They also have a designer on staff to assist their clients with picking out colors and materials for their project whether that’s furniture, paint colors, or countertop types.

 

Contact Richard and Blueridge Homes With Questions or a Service Request:

Email: blueridge@montana.com

Office: (760) 712-6795

Cell (Richard Direct): (406) 580-7906

Website: http://www.blueridgehomesinc.com

Upcoming Event: Blinging Out Deserving Seniors

NORTH COUNTY OWNED SILVER LININGS TRANSITIONS…  HELPS PUT A”SPRING” IN THE STEPS OF PEOPLE WITH MOBILITY CHALLENGES
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March 2015 — Spring is a time of fresh beginnings.  Flowers are blooming, birds are chirping, new animals are being born.  For local seniors in wheelchairs or using canes or walkers, it’ll be an opportunity to decorate their largest accessory and celebrate life.
 
On March 31 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., Silver Linings Transitions and their team of volunteers will be at Temple Solel at 3575 Manchester Avenue, Cardiff-by-the-Sea “blinging out” wheel chairs, canes and walkers in exchange for a donation of any amount.  All proceeds from the event will be distributed to Interfaith Community Services and Jewish Family Services to support their programs for underprivileged seniors.
 
On April Fool’s Day (April 1) from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. the team will be at Temple Adat Shalom 15905 Pomerado Road, Poway.
 
The Silver Linings Transitions team who assists anyone with the task of moving, downsizing or organizing will be doing a craft drive to repurpose silk flowers, ribbons and other decorations finding a home for items that would be discarded during “spring cleaning” and keeping these items out of landfills.  To make a monetary donation or to donate items for decorating, contact Jami Shapiro, Owner of Silver Linings Transitions at 858 522-9518.   You can also visit us at our website www.SilverLiningsTransitions.com
 
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More information about Silver Linings Transitions — Every day for the next 16 years, 10-thousand baby boomers will turn 65 years-old and many of these seniors will need to transition into new housing and on the other end of the spectrum research shows that going back to work after having children presents unique challenges for mothers.  Now there’s a local company addressing both of these life transitions. Today, Carlsbad mom and longtime realtor, Jami Shapiro, announces the launch of  Silver Linings Transitions, a senior move management company, that helps people find the “Silver Lining” in their new living arrangements.   
Seeing the need for services that support the aging Baby Boomer population, Jami Shapiro, Owner of Silver Linings Transitions and herself a one-time stay-at-home mother, decided her senior move management company could do more by serving both groups.  As seniors lose their independence due to declining health, moving or home modifications become necessary for them to remain safe.  Seniors who chose to work with Silver Linings Transitions, benefit from home-makers helping them settle into their new surroundings while offering team members the opportunity to do meaningful work and make it to carpool. 

Silver Linings Transitions, a senior move management company, helps people find the “Silver Lining” in their new living arrangements.  Whether it’s aging in place or moving to a smaller, easier to maintain home giving them more time to enjoy life or into an assisted living residence where they are free from cooking and washing dishes, Jami uses her own experience as a ten year cancer survivor to point out that aging is for the lucky.

Recognizing the environmental impact of moving, Silver Linings Transitions strives to find homes for everything and re-uses whatever packing supplies can be re-used safely.  This includes utilizing plastic bins and re-using  boxes.  Another way we help the environment and community is by packing “Moving Kits” shared with Interfaith Community Services.  Participating clients who are downsizing allow the Silver Linings Transitions team to assemble and package together these kits from their discarded items.  This includes sheets, towels, pots and pans and other necessities a person or family will need as they transition from shelters to their own homes.  

In 2001, Jami worked for a large corporation and was pregnant with her first child.  She approached the company about job sharing or part time work, but was told “no”.  Jami left the company and began a more than 10 year real estate career.  While real estate offered, flexibility, working nights and weekends made it tough when her children were in school and no longer home during the day.  Jami also had a strong desire to make a difference in the world and be a role model for her three daughters.

Jami tells people “Silver Linings Transitions is the company for which I was looking to work.”  

Working as a Realtor, especially during the time people were losing their homes to foreclosure, gave Jami the empathy needed to work with seniors who often are leaving their homes (some by choice and some by necessity).  She says much of juggling between selling a home and buying another one gave her the skills necessary to coordinate the move for seniors.

So far more than 12 women have joined the Silver Linings Transitions team.  The benefits of working for Silver Linings Transitions include career and management training,  a collaborative working environment, flexible work schedules with most hours (except for move days) between 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m., profit sharing and bonuses, and most importantly, fulfilling and meaningful work.

Move management services include floor planning and space design for the new residence; sensitive and guided decisions in the sorting process including identifying the right charities for donations; mindful packing and unpacking with an environmental consciousness; photo organization and a meaningful way to honor and preserve the lifetime of memories created in their homes.

For clients who remain in their homes, Silver Linings Transitions is able to help organize and de-clutter the home to improve safety.


While Silver Linings Transitions specializes in seniors, they are able to help anyone transitioning from one home to the other.

Grace-ful Living Home Furnishings

Grace-ful Living Home Furnishings

1044 North El Camino Real, Suite B

Encinitas, CA 92024

www.northcountysandiegofurniturestore.com

619-399-3460

“Style You Can Afford”

Their Encinitas store has been open for just six months, but Grace-ful Living Home Furnishings in making a big splash in San Diego. With a catchphrase of “Style You Can Afford” this is one home furnishings store you’ll have to check out.

Owner Mark Matheson has been in the furniture business for over twenty years. Previously the owner of Metropolis in San Diego, the first Grace-ful Living store opened in North Park in 2012. They have since relocated to North County and their current Encinitas location.

Full of beautiful design pieces and specializing in bedroom, living, and dining furniture, in Matheson’s own words: “I wanted to give the feel of a high-end store with moderate pricing.” How does he accomplish that? With an attention to quality.

Stop by their new show room. At over 5,000 square feet, it’s full of pieces to inspire your own design aesthetic. If you see something you like, you can even take it home.

Bonus: Say you saw them online and they’ll pay sales tax on your next purchase.

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Community Focal Point: PEERS Program

PEERS Program

[Functional Integrated Therapeutic Services]

2820 Roosevelt Road Suite 106

San Diego, CA 92106 (Point Loma)

855-542-2121

For special needs children and teens, there are several programs available to them, both inside and outside of school. But once these teens reach the age of 18 or pass out of compulsory education, there are fewer programs offered to support them and their families. The Program for the Education and Enrichment of Relational Skills (PEERS) seeks to fill this void. Aimed at teens between the ages of 18-25 who have been diagnosed with, among others, autism spectrum disorders, ADHD, pervasive developmental disabilities, and nonverbal learning disorders, the PEERS ® program is an important resource for special needs young adults and their families.

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Developed at UCLA, this program seeks to help these special needs young adults by providing them with an opportunity to continue learning necessary social and life skills. The 16-week PEERS ® program focuses on:

-Conversational Skills

-Choosing Appropriate Friends

-Finding Common Interests

-Peer Get-Togethers

-Teasing & Bullying

-Sportsmanship & Fair Play

-Use of Humor

The first session of the PEERS ® program will be held on Tuesday, October 29th, 2013. The program lasts from 6:30-8:00pm and will be held every subsequent Tuesday for sixteen weeks (contact for holiday exceptions). Each session of the program is taught by PEERS ® certified instructors.

If your child or someone you know could benefit from the PEERS ® Program, call 855-542-2121 today to find out more information and to reserve a spot in the program!

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