The San Diego Seaport Village Revitalization Has Been Awarded

The Seaport Village Revitalization Effort was recognized with the Prestigious Downtown San Diego Partnership Award for the efforts made to advance, secure, or introduce innovative ideas to downtown San Diego's economy.

SAN DIEGO— On March 30, the Port of San Diego and its partners at Protea Properties and SLP Urban Planning announced they had been recognized for the prestigious Economic Prosperity Award for the revitalization of Seaport Village. The award is part of the Downtown San Diego Partnership’s “Create the Future Awards” program. The award is presented to recognize efforts to advance, secure, or introduce innovative ideas to downtown San Diego’s economy and was presented to the port at a ceremony held on March 24 at the Hilton San Diego Bayfront.


The successful repositioning and revitalization of Seaport Village results from the shared vision and collaborative efforts among the Port, Protea, and SLP Urban Planning.


 According to Page, since the port took ownership of Seaport Village in 2018, the Board of Port Commissioners has approved investment spending at Seaport Village of approximately $7.8 million to date. 


This includes:


• Approximately $2.5 million was spent for sitewide enhancements, activations, and deferred maintenance. Notable improvements include a brand refresh with new signage and exterior painting on the property’s iconic buildings; upgraded amenities like the Urban Beach, a picturesque seating area with Adirondack chairs facing the bayfront vista; flexible furniture throughout; and new, flourishing native plants.


• Approximately $1.2 million has been paid so far to help new tenants renovate their spaces before opening for business.


• Another $4.1 million (approximately) committed towards future tenant improvements for new restaurant concepts that have not yet opened.”


The partners transformed the waterfront shopping, dining, and entertainment center with a strategy that artfully combines strategic site enhancements and activations, community engagement, placemaking, human-centered design, and integrated communications.


According to Page, Funding for the revitalization did not come from tax dollars; the port reinvested revenues from hundreds of businesses from its dynamic waterfront back into the communities and local economy to provide prosperity.



“Thanks to our revitalization efforts at Seaport Village, San Diegans are rediscovering our waterfront hub and taking notice of its forward evolution – it’s always been beloved by tourists, and now it’s becoming a San Diego hotspot as well. It’s also attracting the attention of major regional players in the food and beverage space,” said Chairman Dan Malcolm, Port of San Diego Board of Port Commissioners, in a press release from March 30. “We are honored to receive the Economic Prosperity Award for this effort and proud to collaborate with Protea and SLP Urban Planning on Seaport’s success.”


Since the port took over Seaport Village, the retail center has gone from 20 to four vacancies, achieved in close coordination with the port’s leasing broker, Retail Insite. Operating at 94 percent occupancy, Seaport Village has a variety of exciting offerings for guests and visitors, including specialty retail shops, full-service, fast-casual restaurants, and outdoor entertainment.


“We are so delighted that our collaborative and innovative approach is being recognized by the Downtown San Diego Partnership,” said Stacey Pennington, President, SLP Urban Planning, in the March 30 press release. “We couldn’t have asked for better partners in the conceptualization and execution of a vision and strategic plan that included robust data collection and human-centered design strategies resulting in immersive and experiential art installations and robust regular programming.”


The team’s approach to repositioning the property was extensively and closely coordinated with existing tenants and businesses. As a result, despite recent impacts to the retail market and overall economy from the COVID-19 pandemic, Seaport Village not only retained local businesses but secured over a dozen new leases and demonstrated a more than 100% percent increase in engagement on social media and beyond.


“We’re elated for Seaport Village’s interim activations to be honored as an impactful initiative contributing to the economic prosperity of downtown San Diego’s waterfront,” says Jeffrey Essakow, President & CEO of Protea Property Management. “At Seaport Village, we aim to tell the story of a great public space that serves visitors and is also built around the needs and desires of a community. Thanks to our partnership with the Port of San Diego and SLP Urban Planning, these campaigns are bridging the gap between past, present, and future to show how today’s iconic Seaport Village reflects San Diego’s unique identity through arts, and culture, and engagement.”


The project’s success can also be attributed to a thoughtful schedule of activations, an artist-in-residence program, a podcast studio, a monthly live music series, and improvements such as refreshed signage, common areas, landscaping, and new exterior paint. One of the most popular improvements has been the creation of an urban beach with flexible seating.


The brand positioning, interventions, site improvements, activations, educational entertainment, and traditional entertainment and arts partnerships have resulted in a revitalized Seaport Village. As a result, the Seaport Village has become a vibrant and prosperous waterfront destination for all who live, work, and play on and around San Diego Bay.


Completed Projects:


• Tuk Tuk Eatery, an Asian-themed fast-casual eating and drinking establishment featuring BBQ bowls and a Bao bar.


• Mike Hess Brewing – features 23 handles of craft beer, kombucha, cider, and soda and an extensive menu of tacos, burritos, and more from Quiero Tacos.


• Mr. Moto Pizza – serving authentic New York-style pies blending old and new world flavors. 


• Spill the Beans – a specialty coffee café featuring sustainably sourced and exceptionally roasted coffee and teas, kombucha, and other morning staples


• Influencer Boutique – a fashion-forward boutique specializing in women’s apparel and chic accessories.


• Chris Harvey Studio – a pop-up art gallery and studio with workshops, classes, lectures, and performances.


• Something Sweet – A confection that offers an assortment of treats and candies and a variety of giftware and toys. 


• Introstem – luxury skincare products based on science-backed ingredients, including hemp seed oil and grape stem cell extract. The Seaport Village location marks the beauty bar concept’s first downtown San Diego outpost.


• Mosaic Handcraft – A novelty gift store offering a variety of ornamental décor items and lighting.


• Geppetto’s – a San Diego tradition for over 40 years. Locally owned and operated by the Miller Family, Geppetto’s is a world of classic toys that inspire creative play for the entire family. Seaport Village is the newest Geppetto’s location, adding to the collection of stores from Carlsbad to downtown San Diego and many neighborhoods in between.


• XEWT Channel 12 Studio – owned and operated by Televisa, the largest Spanish language programming and content producer globally, XEWT recently opened a bayside studio in Seaport Village, its first studio across the border in California.


• San Pasqual Wine Tasting Room – San Pasqual Winery is a small, family-owned winery located in La Mesa.


Projects coming soon: 

• Louisiana Charlie’s – a Southern-style restaurant that offers barbeque and Cajun-style food with a unique Mardi Gras-themed atmosphere (opening soon.)


• Malibu Farm- a farm-to-table, California-inspired cuisine that is fresh, organic, and locally sourced whenever possible (anticipated opening summer 2022).


• Zytoun Gourmet Mediterranean – a full-service Greek and Mediterranean restaurant featuring healthy and fresh premium-quality Mediterranean cuisine (anticipated opening in summer 2022).


• Shorebird – with successful launches in Newport Beach and Sedona, Arizona, Shorebird Restaurant brings its coastal flavors and relaxed vibes for its third opening at Seaport Village. The menus boast sophisticated culinary techniques and casual plating styles, an emerging concept under the Wild Thyme Restaurant Group umbrella. Its scratch-made kitchen is headed by Director of Culinary, Chef Jay Bogsinske (anticipated opening in summer 2022).


• Crack Taco Shop – a locally owned-and-operated fast-casual restaurant that will offer a variety of unique and authentic Mexican tacos with homemade corn tortillas and burritos (anticipated opening in summer 2022).


• Gladstone’s – a historic beachside restaurant founded in Malibu in 1972. A licensee opened another location in Long Beach and is opening a third at Seaport Village. It will bring a new concept focusing on classic seafood dishes, including fish plates, king crab, Maine lobster, and more (anticipated opening in winter 2022).


• Eclectique Boutique – selling women’s and men’s apparel, accessories, and other gifts (anticipated to open in summer 2022).


For more information, please contact Marguerite Elicone at

3 thoughts on “The San Diego Seaport Village Revitalization Has Been Awarded

  • April 19, 2022 at 6:36 am

    Nice improvements I hope. Needs a variety of ‘interesting’ restaurants. PF Changs would be nice or similiar…

  • April 19, 2022 at 6:39 am

    Needs a variety of interesting restaurants and a beach front ‘feel…’

  • June 9, 2022 at 8:50 pm

    Keep seaport village as it is, invest in quality restaurants and establishments and places that are open in the evening for drinks and food maybe with some gentle live music – so that it attracts locals and not just tourists (and overlaid mediocre junk food). Expand seaport village over the existing parking lot using the same quaint architecture and put the parking underground. Don’t let developers tear it down to put in 7 hotels and other towers, paving over passive open space, the water and the sky!



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