Sir Francis Drake Hotel - A Kimpton Hotel

4 out of 5 stars4 Stars

450 Powell Street, Union Square, San Francisco, California, 94102, United States

10 Reviews

Sir Francis Drake Hotel - a Kimpton Hotel
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Satisfaction Very Good
Very Good

Value Score Average Value

Similarly priced and rated as other 4 star hotels

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Good For Couples
  • Families69
  • Couples71
  • Solo66
  • Business60
  • vichatherly's Profile Photo

    We "Chose to Conserve"


    We stayed here in a Deluxe Queen Room on the eighth floor, for three nights in June 2010. It was very decent hotel and we got a half price rate via "Expedia".

    The hotel has a plush feel to it and has loads of amenities, but as we were out exploring in San Francisco from early morning until early/late night we didn’t get to try them all out.

    It had a good central location for us in Union Square, walking distance from Powell Street station.

    Breakfast was not included in our price, but this was not a problem as we grabbed some fruit and cakes at the Saturday market by the port, and then went across the road to Sears for some serious pancakes on the Sunday and finished off on Monday at the lovely Scala's Bistro, which is attached to the hotel.

    Unique Quality: When we stayed, the hotel was running a "Choose to Conserve" program, whereby if you didn't have you room cleaned, the hotel would slip a $10 voucher for the Scala’s Bistro, Bar Drake, or Harry Denton’s Starlight Room.

    As we were only staying a short time, we took advantage of this and spent our $20, which worked out roughly to half the bill on a delicious breakfast for two in Scala's Bistro.

  • MATIM's Profile Photo

    Historic hotel near Union Square


    Our stay here was absolute amazing.
    The hotel is beautiful, our room had a view at Union Square.
    THe fun part was the beefeater at the enterange of the hotel.

    Unique Quality: Beautiful historic hotel, near Union Square

  • WheninRome's Profile Photo

    Great Location, Great Hotel


    My company put us up at the Sir Francis Drake Hotel during the time I was on the job. We had a corporate discount so we decided to stay in this hotel even after I was off the clock and we had to pay for it ourselves. With the corporate discount we couldn't beat the price for such a great location (next to Union Square) - in the middle of the shopping district and not far from anything. I am not sure how expensive it would be without the discount however.

    The hotel was exceptional. It was in the model of a European hotel, the rooms were small, but sufficient, and very nicely decorated. You could hear a little bit of the street noise in the room, but I don't imagine there are very many centrally located hotels in SF where you can't hear street noise. The lobby area was meticulously decorated, the lobby bar was almost always full of people in the evenings and was a nice place to stop by for a nightcap before retiring to bed. On the top floor was a nightclub called "Harry Denton's Starlight Room". We never went in, but it also looked very plush and always crowded.

    Directions: Near Union Square at the corner of Powell and Sutter Streets.

  • Nice to see, nice to touch, but don't stay


    The Sir Francis Drake Hotel on Union Square is in a great location. The cable car stops are right outside the entrance (this is also a problem due to the noise they generate at night). Famous for it's Beefeater doormen, it's nice to be met with a smile after returning from an exploration of nearby Chinatown or the wharf precinct.

    Reception staff are efficient, but very rude. Concierge service is the absolute worst I've experienced anywhere - you're probably better off DIY - or do what I was forced to do - go to the hotel across the street and see their concierge.

    The hotel lobby has a quaint almost Aladdinesque feel to it - a little tacky for some. The carpeting in the hallways is reminescent of that in "The Shining". The rooms are clean, but need serious updating - peeling wall paper, every tile in the bathroom was cracked - plumbing needs checking (seems to take the bath forever to drain), and cracked bathroom mirrors. The window mounted airconditioning is noisy (useful for blocking out the clamour of the cable cars). The toiletries provided are nice though (Aveda).

    The hotel restaurant serves Italian food - competently prepared with service to match. The cafe/bistro has a nice ambience to it, friendly staff and the coffee is very good. The Starlight room is spectacular - wonderful views, cocktails, a quality wine list. Live music some nights - great if you're into jazz and lounge, or for pre-dinner drinks - make sure you book on weekends. Gentlemen should wear a jacket.

    So the verdict - great amenities - all open to the public. Poor service, dated rooms needing some TLC. Come for the bar and the restaurants, but stay elsewhere.

    Unique Quality: The famous Beefeater doormen - get a photo with one - they're very friendly.
    Unbeatable location - close to cable cars, Chinatown, and with a bonus 24 hour Walgreens across the road for thos last minute "oops I forgot (my toothbrush again)" emergencies.

    Directions: Union Square - Powell St.

  • stappm's Profile Photo

    Good Location


    This hotel is in a great location, just off Union Square, but is showing some serious signs of aging. One great part is that the night club, "Starlite Room", on the top floor is a great place that always has lots of people and lots of great dancing. Up-scale, dress-code, R & B - mix of tourists and locals, great view. Be sure to check out the roses in the entry room, they are the most beautiful I have ever seen. Flown in weekly from So. America, you will not believe they are real.

    Directions: Union Square

  • TANjarin's Profile Photo

    "... a San Francisco legend..."


    Sir Francis Drake is a historic hotel, built in 1928. It offers a mixture of timeless elegance and high style. Very chic! The service from it's entire staff was very professional and very friendly.

    Unique Quality: The concierge available assists in almost anything, from taxi cabs, tickets to shows, meusums, or local attractions, to rental car reservations. The hotel offers Scala's Bistro for fine dining (i highly recommend it). Harry Denton's Starlight Room, which is a 1930's style nightclub with a 180 degree view of downtown from the 21st floor (also highly recommended!) Plus a european coffee shop, Caffe Espresso, complete with breakfast, lunch, and dinner. The rooms come complete with Aveda products such as shampoo, conditioner, lotion, soap, and facial wash. A fully stocked mini bar, and great views from the rooms!

    Directions: by Union Square right behind Macy's!

  • AndreasK's Profile Photo

    We stayed at the Sir Francis...


    We stayed at the Sir Francis Drake Hotel at Union Square in downtown San Francisco. The hotel was built in 1928 and is a San Francisco legend. It is conveniently located near the theatre district and just a few steps from Chinatown. We made reservation for our room while we were still in Germany and got a very good deal !

  • bluewilldo's Profile Photo

    The Sir Francis Drake Hotel


    This is a rather average hotel with the regular amenities... minbar, concierge, airport shuttle, exercise room, room service, etc. They also have two restaurants/ coffee bars and even a club. But what really sets this hotel apart from the others is it's history. Built in 1928 the Drake still retains that old time charm, forever captured in the style of the time.

    Unique Quality: The Sir Francis Drake Hotel is a landmark that I often use with my friends (e.g. 'let's meet in Caffe Espresso in the Drake hotel at six'). It is so convenient, just blocks from Chinatown, Nob Hill, Moscone, SOMA, and the theatre and financial districts.

    Directions: Union Square

  • Stay at Sir Francis Drake,...


    Stay at Sir Francis Drake, just recently renovated (1999).
    About $170 US

    Unique Quality: At the top floor is the Starlight Room which offers a 270 degree view of the area! It is a restaurant/nightclub with a big band orchestra.

    Directions: At the heart of Union Square, just behind Sak's Fifth Avenue.

  • Stayed at the Sir Francis...


    Stayed at the Sir Francis Drake on Powell Street. I would also recommend the Westin St. Francis or the Grand Hyatt also nearby.

More about Sir Francis Drake Hotel - A Kimpton Hotel


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Forum Posts

Rooftop restaurants in Union Square

by hera23

Somewhere on a forum someone had suggested a rooftop restaurant in one of the big stores on Union Square. I should have printed it off, but didn't! Does anyone know which store has this restaurant? Thanks much for your help.

RE: Rooftop restaurants in Union Square

by YVRDave

The Westin St. Francis, The Grand Hyatt, The Sir Francis Drake Hotel all have roof top restaurants.

RE: Rooftop restaurants in Union Square

by yvr

Cheesecake Factory in Macy's, I beleive it is the 8th floor, they also have an outside patio, facing Union Square. It is a great place to view and very good food. Be sure and go there.


RE: RE: Rooftop restaurants in Union Square

by Rixie

The Rotunda Restaurant in Neiman-Marcus has a wonderful view of Union Square.

RE: Rooftop restaurants in Union Square

by sunkizt

also Harry Dentons Starlight Room for after dinner cocktails, live music and panoramic views of the city and beyond.(21st floor of the Sir Francis Drake Hotel )

RE: Rooftop restaurants in Union Square

by yvr

Regarding the suggestions for your rooftop restaurant, the most reasonable priced of all the suggestions is the Cheesecake Factory,in fact there prices are down to earth, the other suggestions you will find the prices, excuse the expression, sky high.

RE: RE: Rooftop restaurants in Union Square

by rmdw

Yes, I think it's the Cheesecake Factory that people most commonly go to - a hip place and great food. BUT ... I tried to get in there in December and there was an hour+ wait. So best to stop in there first when you get to Union Square and book a reservation.


RE: Rooftop restaurants in Union Square

by CeCelovestravel

As a tourist, you should not go to a chain restaurant, so skip the Cheesecake Factory and it's crowds. The hotels mentioned are great.


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 Sir Francis Drake Hotel - A Kimpton Hotel

We've found that other people looking for this hotel also know it by these names:

Sir Francis Drake Hotel San Francisco
Kimpton San Francisco

Address: 450 Powell Street, Union Square, San Francisco, California, 94102, United States