Splashes of morning light in the city.

As I walked through downtown San Diego early this morning, my eyes climbed up the sides of walls and buildings. They found unexpected splashes of light.

Another adventure in the city!

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

Cool sights on a walk to catch the trolley.

As I headed off to work early this morning, I felt compelled to walk down Seventh Avenue past the El Cortez.
As I headed off to work early this morning, I felt compelled to walk down Seventh Avenue past the El Cortez.

This morning I walked down from Cortez Hill to catch a trolley for work. I had no set plan. I had ample time. Any downtown trolley station would be just fine.

My feet followed my wandering eyes.

The San Diego Symphony has a brand new banner on the west side of Symphony Towers. Find Your Music.
The San Diego Symphony has a brand new banner on the west side of Symphony Towers. Find Your Music.
Almost to B Street. Some cool reflections produced by the early sunlight.
Almost to B Street. Some cool reflections produced by the early sunlight.
This reflection of a tree on glass windows seems unreal.
This reflection of a tree on windows seems dreamlike, unreal.
The old Centre City Building might have peeling paint, but it still rises handsomely into the San Diego sky. One edge is touched by the morning sun.
The old Centre City Building might have peeling paint, but it still rises handsomely into the San Diego sky. One edge is touched by the morning sun.
The Caliente ad remains on the rear of the abandoned California Theatre building. I don't know if it will be preserved when the historic building makes way for a new 40-story The Overture high-rise.
The cool old Caliente ad remains on the rear of the abandoned California Theatre building. I don’t know if it will be preserved when the historic building makes way for a new 40-story The Overture high-rise.
Shall I catch a trolley at the Civic Center station? Nah. I still have plenty of time.
Shall I catch a trolley at the Civic Center station? Nah. I still have plenty of time.
Workers were cleaning awnings over the ground floor windows of the U.S. Grant Hotel.
Workers were cleaning awnings over the ground floor windows of the U.S. Grant Hotel.
As I walked along Broadway through some construction, it looks like I frightened a couple of people!
As I walked along Broadway past some construction, it looks like I frightened a couple of people!
The brand new San Diego Central Courthouse always provides interesting photographic opportunities.
The brand new San Diego Central Courthouse behind the Hall of Justice provides an interesting photographic opportunity.
Almost to Santa Fe Depot. Just missed a trolley. I'll wait for the next one.
Almost to Santa Fe Depot. Just missed a Green Line trolley. I’ll wait for the next one.

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

Amazing morning clouds above the El Cortez.

Amazing, brightly glowing clouds filled the sky this morning above San Diego's beautiful Cortez Hill neighborhood.
Amazing, brightly glowing clouds filled the sky this morning above San Diego’s beautiful Cortez Hill neighborhood.

The first thing I noticed upon stepping outside this morning was the amazing sky above Cortez Hill. The clouds were glowing and so beautiful and complex that I almost got a kink in my neck.

I took lots of photos as I walked. As it turns out, my most incredible images all seem to include the handsome El Cortez building–so the subject of this blog post became obvious!

A crescent moon is just visible to the left of the historic El Cortez sign.
A crescent moon is just visible to the left of the landmark El Cortez sign.
A street lamp is still on. Another fantastic morning in downtown San Diego for a pleasant walk.
A street lamp is still on. Another fantastic morning in downtown San Diego for a pleasant walk.
Amazing clouds paint the blue sky above the landmark El Cortez and other nearby, more modern high-rises!
Amazing clouds paint the blue sky above the historic El Cortez and other nearby, more modern high-rises!

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

Mysterious morning fog in downtown San Diego.

Flags, palm trees and early morning fog on Cortez Hill in San Diego.
Flags, palm trees and early morning fog on Cortez Hill in San Diego.

My walk early this morning was a real treat. Magical, mysterious fog had crept during the night into the very heart of downtown San Diego, where I live. High skyscrapers disappeared into the gray. Please enjoy a few photos…

The historic El Cortez Hotel seems to vanish into the gray morning fog.
The historic El Cortez Hotel building seems to vanish into the gray morning fog.
Many seagulls were enjoying the fog, and were circling over the city streets everywhere I walked.
Many seagulls were enjoying the fog, and were circling over the city streets everywhere I walked.
Skyscrapers aren't scraping so much this morning. They are being softly engulfed by the elements!
Skyscrapers aren’t scraping so much this morning. They are being softly engulfed by the elements!
Looking up toward the unusually thick fog past a San Diego Symphony banner downtown.
Looking up into the unusually thick fog past a San Diego Symphony banner downtown.
An Orange Line trolley heads down a quiet C Street.
An Orange Line trolley heads down a quiet C Street.
Cranes and construction next to several high towers, in a San Diego fog.
Cranes and construction next to several high towers, in a San Diego fog.
The magical, mysterious fog made the forms of buildings seem like abstract things emerging from some other world.
The magical, mysterious fog made the forms of buildings appear like abstract shapes emerging from some other world.
Looking down Kettner Boulevard past Santa Fe Depot and America Plaza into the distant fog.
Looking down Kettner Boulevard past Santa Fe Depot and America Plaza into the distant fog.
A fairly heavy fog made downtown San Diego appear very atmospheric and mysterious this morning. I loved walking through it!
An unusual fog made downtown San Diego appear very atmospheric and mysterious this morning. I loved walking through it!

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Stunning sunrise over downtown San Diego.

Blazing sunrise seen from Tweet Street park in San Diego.
Blazing sunrise seen from Tweet Street park in San Diego.

Check out these photographs!  I captured these three amazing images early this morning.  Sunrises over San Diego are often beautiful, but today the brightly painted clouds were absolutely stunning!

Fiery sunrise over Cortez Hill in downtown San Diego.
Fiery sunrise over Cortez Hill in downtown San Diego.
Beautiful sunrise colors clouds above El Cortez Hotel.
Beautiful sunrise colors clouds above El Cortez Hotel.

Just for fun, here are a couple more photos! I took these in March of 2015…

El Cortez seen from a couple blocks away early one morning at sunrise.
El Cortez seen from a couple blocks away early one morning at sunrise.
The sun begins to rise as I take a picture on Cortez Hill.
The sun begins to rise as I take a picture on Cortez Hill.

San Diego’s landmark El Cortez Hotel.

san diego's landmark el cortez hotel

The historic El Cortez Hotel, now converted into condominiums, has been an iconic landmark in San Diego since 1926. Decades before gleaming skyscrapers rose to shape our modern skyline, the El Cortez dominated Cortez Hill and was the city’s tallest building.

The large sign on top, illuminated at night, brightly flashes the sequenced letters of “El Cortez” like a beacon out of the past. The El Cortez years ago had the world’s very first outside glass elevator. Known as the Starlight Express, the elevator brought visitors to the hotel’s penthouse restaurant, which featured amazing views of the growing city and the bay below. The hotel also had the world’s first motorized moving sidewalk!

I live several blocks from this wonderful building and love to gaze at it whenever I walk or drive past!

Looking up at the famous El Cortez sign.
Here’s the famous El Cortez sign.
The elegant front entrance of the El Cortez.
The elegant front entrance of the El Cortez.
Looking up at the stately old building.
Looking up at the stately old building.