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Sunset from the Oceanside Pier. photo: Steve Marcotte / OsideNews

Oceanside Transforming Visitors Scene with New Projects

Oceanside CA- (Visit Oceanside)- Summer visitors will enjoy an updated downtown, new beach-side hotel and flagship craft brewery among other things. Oceanside, San Diego’s North Shore, is making waves in 2014 with city-wide development and improvement projects aimed at increasing its appeal as a premier Southern California beach getaway. Following years of planning, the “new face of Oceanside” includes a beautified downtown, new beach-side hotel and flagship craft brewery to name just a few.

“It’s an exciting time for Oceanside with so many projects coming together to enhance the visitor experience,” said Leslee Gaul, CEO of Visit Oceanside. “Many of these projects were put on hold due to the declining economy, but are finally getting off the ground after years of planning. What remains unchanged is our laid-back, friendly spirit and the accessibility of our wonderful coastal amenities including the beach, pier and harbor.”

New Surf-Inspired Hotel Opens One Block from the Pier

springhillsuitesAmong the first of the major projects to be completed this year is the brand new SpringHill Suites Oceanside Downtown, which opened February 2014 and enjoys an enviable location just one block from the beach and pier. The 149-room hotel resembles a chic, beach retreat with incredible ocean views and a host of “local” touches including a custom art collection featuring up-and-coming Oceanside and Southern California-based artists. Designed to LEED silver certification standards, the hotel is the first coastal property to open in Oceanside since 2008 and offers visitors an incredible value in a coastal vacation. www.shsoceanside.com

Mission Avenue: All New Gateway to the Beach

Next up for Oceanside is the completion of the Mission Avenue beautification project currently underway. This summer, Oceanside’s “gateway to the beach” will welcome visitors with a stunning, new pedestrian-friendly design that includes a tree-lined, one-way street, widened sidewalks with cafes and an overall beautiful ambiance. Visitors will be enticed to sit, stroll and explore the many local eateries and shops in downtown Oceanside while en route to the beach.

Flagship Craft Brewery on Coast Highway

beer_tourAdding to Oceanside’s growing reputation as a locale for top-notch craft brew will be the highly anticipated Bagby Beer Company. Expected to open at its downtown Coast Highway location in June, the expansive brewery and restaurant will feature two stories, an ocean view deck, outdoor patios and signature beers from the award-winning Jeff Bagby, one of the area’s most decorated brew masters. The brew company is expected to be a draw for visitors from around the country in search of fine, locally crafted beer. www.bagbybeer.com

For an easy and safe way to hit all the local brew spots, Scavengers Beer Adventures new route in North San Diego is the way to go. Visitors ride in open-air Swiss Troop Transporters and stop at local Oceanside hotspots that currently include Stone Tasting Room Oceanside, Legacy Brew Company and Breakwater Brewing Co. www.brewerytoursandiego.com

Recreation: If You Build It, They Will Come

Grading is currently underway for 22 new soccer fields at Oceanside’s El Corazon development, which will officially be called the “SoCal Sports Complex”. The soccer fields are expected to draw thousands of visitors each year and are just the first in what’s planned for a 465-acre site that will eventually include park land, open space, an aquatic center, residential development and possibly two hotels.

For those ready to play now, Visit Oceanside’s new “Hero For A Day” program offers family reunions, guys/girlfriend getaways and other groups traveling together the opportunity to sample life as a military hero through Navy SEAL and U.S. Marine-inspired activities with some activities actually taking place on base at Camp Pendleton. Similar to popular mud runs and obstacle races in the area, the hero activities bring people closer together and solidify relationships. They also showcase Oceanside’s amazing coastal beauty and variety of recreational activities available. www.visitoceanside.org/hero-for-a-day/

The Dining Buzz

Oceanside’s dining scene continues to buzz with new offerings, many owned by locals who infuse Oceanside’s casual spirit with unique flavors and experiences. A few of note: Succulent Café offers gourmet coffee and pastries by the sea in an open-air venue decorated with the owner’s artistic succulent creations. The Privateer Coal Fire Pizza, locally owned by a former surf magazine publisher, is a favorite hangout known for creative pizzas and features the only coal fire oven in the region. Hello Betty Fish House, a baja-style fish restaurant adjacent to the new SpringHill Suites, offers a trendy spot for lunch and dinner while savoring ocean views.

About Oceanside

Celebrating its 125th year, Oceanside is located along the beautiful Southern California coastline and considered the gateway city between metropolitan San Diego and Los Angeles. A classic Southern California beach town, Oceanside enjoys a rich history as an ideal place to stay and experience California’s casual spirit. The city boasts a number of important historical and cultural attractions such as Mission San Luis Rey (The King of Missions), California’s longest wooden pier, vintage 101 Café, 1920’s era Robert’s Cottages, Top Gun House, California Surf Museum and the Oceanside Museum of Art. The city has served as a film location for dozens of Hollywood productions and was once the preferred getaway of many of Hollywood’s elite. Bordering Camp Pendleton, Oceanside has long enjoyed a strong relationship with the U.S. military and a deep commitment to the men and women serving the nation. Today, with 3.5 miles of sandy beach, a quaint New England-style harbor and a stellar year-round climate, Oceanside is a highly sought after location for enjoying active pursuits including surfing, stand up paddling, kayaking, boating, fishing, bike-riding, skydiving and more.

About Visit Oceanside

Visit Oceanside Conference and Visitors Bureau is the official tourism marketing organization in Oceanside, Calif; promoting travel to the city for both leisure and group visitors. Visit Oceanside also operates one of the state’s official California Welcome Centers. With just one stop, visitors can find local, regional and state maps, purchase discount tickets to major Southern California attractions, make hotel reservations or shop for the perfect California keepsake. The Visit Oceanside CVB and California Welcome Center- Oceanside are conveniently located just off Interstate 5 at 928 North Coast Highway. For more information, please call (800)350-7873 or visit www.visitoceanside.org.