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One Paseo: A day in the life of San Diego’s new urban village

One Paseo visitors relax near the koi pond in the retail area of the 23-acre mixed-use development in Carmel Valley.
(Courtesy of Jim Simmons)

Planners say residents can live, work and play without ever leaving the 23-acre campus. We put their marketing slogan to the test

Nearly seven years after plans were first unveiled for the 23-acre mixed-use project known as One Paseo, the massive $600 million development is moving swiftly toward completion.

The last of its 40-plus shops and restaurants will open this summer, along with the first phase of its 608 luxury apartments. Still to come next spring: two office buildings with 286,000 square feet of space that’s now 75 percent pre-leased.

Since the beginning, developer Kilroy Realty Corp. has promoted the project at the southwest corner of Del Mar Heights Road and El Camino Real as an “urban village,” where residents can live, work and play without ever leaving the property. That’s a tall order, so we decided to see how possible it would be satisfy our near-every need in one day at One Paseo.

To accomplish this task, we allowed for a few cheats. We’re calling it a Saturday, so we don’t have to deal with work and school schedules. And with so many restaurants to choose from at One Paseo, we will adopt the Hobbit eating habit of seven meals a day. And finally, we’ll pretend that the apartments, which start at $2,350 a month for a studio, are move-in ready.

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Start the day with a pour-over coffee at Blue Bottle Coffee Co. at One Paseo.
(Courtesy of Haley Hill)

6 a.m.: Time to start the day in your three-bedroom, $6,625-a-month apartment by taking the dog for a walk in the complex’s private dog play yard or for a morning bath and toenail trim at its luxury pet spa.

6: 15 a.m.: Kick the morning off with a strong Hayes Valley espresso at the sleek, no-nonsense Blue Bottle Coffee shop, the first San Diego County location for the Oakland-born chain. Or, if it’s one of those Santa Ana kind of mornings, cool off with a New Orleans iced coffee sweetened with chickory root and a dash of whole milk.

6:30 a.m.: Get set to pedal your pounds away in a 45-minute Soulcycle spinning class, where a curated music playlist, mood lighting, candles and hand weights enhance the full-body workout.

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7:30 a.m.: Head back to the apartments for a cool swim in the saltwater pool or a warmup in the jacuzzi.

8:30 a.m.: Time for first breakfast. Dive into a gluten-free Icelandic Skyr bowl of berries and house granola, a slice of mango chutney toast and a mug of mushroom cacao chai latte at Parakeet Cafe.

9:30 a.m.: Take a breather by the shaded koi pond, or watch the kids climb on “The Log,” a giant sequoia tree trunk playground in the center of the shopping district plaza.

Children play on a giant log structure at the center of One Paseo urban village in Carmel Valley.
(Courtesy of Ryan Kuratomi)

10 a.m.: It’s time for second breakfast at North Italia. The rustic Italian patio restaurant is better known for its white truffle garlic bread, wood-fired pizzas and handmade pasta, but the hearty weekend brunch menu includes nonna casserole, short rib hash and prosciutto bruschetta.

10:45 a.m.: Errand time. Pick up your new prescription sunglasses at Specs Optometry (opening in August), a tube of Becca Ultimate Love lipstick at Sephora cosmetics and some sunblock, flip-flops and a stylish beach hat at Urban Beach House.

11 a.m.: Elevenses, in Hobbit speak, is first lunch and there are so many quick-service options to choose from. How about a ShackBurger, crinkle-cut fries and shake from Shake Shack? Savor a bowl of hummus, braised lamb and califlower quinoa tabbouleh at Cava Grill, or a watermelon and heirloom tomato salad from Tocaya Organica. Try a gochujang salmon poke bowl from Sweetfin Poké or a build-your-own plate of chipotle barbecue chicken, kale salad and sprouted brown rice from Tender Greens.

Shake Shack at One Paseo.
(Courtesy of Ryan Kuratomi)
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12 p.m.: Time for another workout to burn some calories before your main lunch. There’s BodyRok, a Pilates-style 40-minute workout set to mood lighting that changes as the class progresses. Or, beginning Aug. 3, check out Vibe Flow Yoga, offering a 50-minute yoga class with custom audio headsets on a vibrating floor in a room heated to 80 degrees.

12:50 p.m.: Catch your breath. Swing by the firepit, where live music is offered from noon to 2 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays.

1 p.m.: Lunchtime! Rest over a meal at one of the village’s sit-down restaurants. From the owners of Carlsbad’s Tomoyama Sushi comes Mizukiyama Sushi, offering traditional Japanese sushi, sashimi and udon dishes. Or visit The Butchery, a one-stop premium butcher shop and seafood market, deli, supermarket and restaurant. Order a plate of The Butchery’s signature grilled Angus steak tips and shop while you wait for exotic groceries like elk steak, black truffle hot sauce and high-end wines. And coming in August, URBN Coal Fired Pizza & Bar will open, offerering New Haven-style thin-crust pizzas and local beers on tap.

2 to 3 p.m.: After such a fast-paced morning, it’s time for a beauty break at a row of four shops near the north end of the center. Touch up your roots at ColorCounter, a first-of-its-kind hair salon offering a 45-minute color treatment in just 45 minutes, among other services. Blow out your new ‘do two doors down at Drybar. And at Nathan West salon, children can get a haircut while seated in in a pint-size Porsche convertible or Luke Skywalker’s landspeeder. Men, women and children can all indulge in a spa pedicure or manicure at cürBAR, which offers hourlong services in a nontraditional, smell-free, uncluttered salon space. Or head over to the Bowery, a men’s barber and shave shop.

At cürBAR nail salon at One Paseo there’s a men’s side on the left with leather lounge chairs and TV sets, and a women’s side with fluffy pillows and overstuffed cloth chairs.
(Courtesy of Haley Hill)

3 p.m.: Tea time. Relax in the zen lounge at Joe & the Juice over an A.C. Perch tea, herb tonic, turmeric juice shot or purple latte. Still to come this summer is Juice Crafters, offering bottled teas, coffees and cleansing juice drink mixes.

4 to 5:30 p.m.: Shop for luxury and casual apparel, beauty goods, jewelry and houseware at a nest of shops grouped together in the Log plaza at the center of the shopping district. Pot your own air fern and buy greeting cards and housewares at Pigment. Accentuate your engagement solitaire with some stacking rings by jeweler Jillian Sassone at Marrow Fine. High-end swimwear and loungewear can be found at Black Book, as well as Whiskey & Leather, which also sells clothing, shoes and candles (but no whiskey). Van De Vort, which opened its first shop at Flower Hill in Del Mar, sells boho chic and upscale women’s wear for a day at Coachella, KAABOO or the Del Mar racetrack. New York-based Faherty sells casual surfwear in Mexican, Japanese and American Indian designs. West of Camden sells edgy surf and skate wear, like artist Shepard Fairey’s Obey clothing line and King brand sneakers and T-shirts from London. Finish up at Shop/Good, a San Diego-born clean skincare and cosmetics store carrying Goop, Tata Harper, Kjaer Weis and Sun Potion products, and also offering organic facials and waxing services. Still to come this summer: Roark men’s clothing store from Laguna Beach.

Shoppers stroll past the Pigment store at One Paseo.
(Courtesy of Jim Simmons)
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5:30 p.m.: Happy hour! Harland Brewers of San Diego will open its first brick-and-mortar beer tasting room in the center’s Plaza West section opening in August. Founded by Saint Archer alumni Josh Landan, Jeff Hansson and Anthony Levas. Harland makes a blonde ale, a Mexican lager and regular and hazy IPAs.

6 p.m.: Dinnertime. Hopefully you got a reservation for International Smoke, the hotly anticipated fine-dining entry from super-chef Michael Mina and cookbook author Ayesha Curry. The name comes from their shared goal of creating a global menu focused on cooking with wood-fire, grilling and smoking techniques. It opens July 19.

7:30 p.m.: If you didn’t have dessert at International Smoke, there are three dessert shops in the center to sample. In Plaza West, visit Le Macaron for featherlight 80-calorie French maracon cookies (opening in August), or go whole hog at SusieCakes, which is famous for its dense layer cakes, frosting-filled cupcakes, and bar cookies. Or, queue up at Salt & Straw, the Oregon-based ice cream chain known for its unusual flavor combinations, like this month’s Oregon wasabi and raspberry sorbet and goat cheese marionberry habanero.

A line forms each night at the Salt & Straw ice cream scoop shop at One Paseo in Carmel Valley.
(Courtesy of Jim Simmons)

9 p.m.: Time for the last Hobbit meal of the day: Supper. Opening later this year, Ways & Means Oyster House is a full-service seafood restaurant with fresh-shucked and dressed oysters, seafood sliders, chowders, fish tacos and crab cakes. Wash it all down with a Mother Shucker cocktail or the cognac-based Beach, Please ....

Everything on this day trip can be done at One Paseo, but if you don’t live there, there’s onsite garage parking, premium spaces for carpools and bicycles, electrical vehicle charging stations and a free shuttle service to the Solana Beach Coaster station.

One Paseo

Address: 3725 Paseo Place, San Diego

Online: onepaseo.com


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