Historic San Diego
Throughout the Hotel Indigo San Diego Gaslamp, we give a nod to many of the historic stories behind our neighborhood. From pet-friendly hospitality inspired by Bum the Dog, to our contemporary refreshed style to reflect New Town architecture and vibes, we invite you to enjoy each unique aspect of our neighborhood!
Gaslamp Quarter Early Beginnings
The sensible son of a ship Captain, William Heath Davis, convinced the founders to move the city closer to the bay which is how the Gaslamp Quarter or "New Town" as it was called back then, came to be. Alonzo Horton would later make New Town an urban center south of Old Town in 1867 and this growth would explode into the 1880's.
San Diego flourished through the late 1800’s and it was in this era that the Gaslamp Quarter got its signature style which it maintains to this day. The neighborhood’s first fifty gas lamps were originally installed in 1868 to illuminate the newly-minted streets. It was around this time that Balboa Park emerged and gained later fame in 1915 when it was host to the Panama-California Exposition. Following the Exposition, the park welcomed a Herschell-Spillman menagerie carousel that still offers kids of all ages the same five minutes of exhilaration today, with a top speed on the outside ring of the carousel of 13.5 miles per hour!
Like today, the Gaslamp was not without man's best friend. Born to a stray, "Bum the Dog" disembarked off a ship in San Diego in 1886 and proceeded to win the hearts of all those he encountered. He was a free spirit who belonged to no one but was loved by everyone. All the townsfolk attended to Bum's needs. The Chinese butchers fed him well, he slept on people's front porches, and the local doctors met his medical needs. Half St. Bernard, half Spaniel, Bum became the town mascot and when San Diego issued its first dog license, an image of Bum adorned it.