More about St. Regis Hotel, San Francisco
Hard to Go Wrong with the St. Regis
I just retruned from a three night stay at the St. Regis, San Francisco. I was a little hesitant to book this hotel based on some of the mixed reviews about this new property. However, my overall experience at the St. Regis made my three day trip very special and memorable (with one notable exception which I will explain below). The property is gorgeous. I loved the Asian inspired decor, the room amenities, the service, and the overall feel of luxury. This is not the place to stay if you are on a budget. With that in mind, I thought the rooms were indulgently comfortable, the food was first rate and the pool and spa were amazing. The service was not overly solicitous and up to par with what one might expect from a five star hotel.
My one and only complaint was the noise. The exterior and interior walls are very thin. I had a corner room with glass floor- to-ceiling exterior walls. Although I was on a high floor, I could hear the traffic outside pretty clearly. One morning, I literally felt like I was sleeping on the sidewalk as the garbage trucks rolled by. I could also hear conversations from neighboring rooms and clearly heard my neighbor as he blew his nose one morning. Had this property not been so nice otherwise, this would have ruined (as opposed to detracted from) my stay and overall impression of this hotel. The sad part is that I am not sure this is a problem that can be remedied. It seems like the architect and designers paid attention to the smallest of details but overlooked a big part of a comfortable hotel experience -- a QUIET/TRANQUIL room. Some better sound deading materials would have made a world of difference.
Beautiful hotel in ideal location
My husband and I stayed at the St. Regis Hotel for the first part of our honeymoon. We were very impressed with the decor and service as soon as we stepped inside the lobby of the hotel. All of the decor is very modern and tastefully decorated.
We arrived at the hotel early in the morning and didn't have to wait to check-in to our room. Our butler immediately took us upstairs and showed us the features of our room. All of the lights, shades, phone access is controlled using a small monitor that is next to the bed. The two LCD tvs in the main bedroom and bathroom are a very nice touch. The shower is beautifully tiled and always replenished with the finest toiletries. The black-out shades give total privacy if you want to have a nap during the daytime hours. The room service and the restaurants in the hotel have great food and impeccable service.
Everything at this hotel says style and comfort. A stay here is worth every penny. It is a luxurious hotel in a great location, close to restaurants and shopping. The St. Regis San Francisco is a great place to stay if you're in the San Francisco Area.
I loved the St. Regis. So many hotels call themselves luxurious when they are merely expensive, but the St. Regis takes classic Old World service into the 21st century. Our luggage was whisked away at the front door as we were led to the reception desk. After registering, our “butler” – a bit pretentious, but I still liked it – escorted us to our room. Our room was one category up from standard and it was beautiful – leather walls, wenge wood trim, silk shades, Pratesi sheets, limestone bathroom with Kallista fixtures, soaking tub, separate shower with rainhead and nozzle, plasma TVs in the bedroom and bathroom, huge windows letting in lots of light - no expense was spared in construction and furnishings. In addition, the room was fully automated. A touch pad next to the bed controlled everything - the sheers, the blackout curtains, the temperature, the TV, the lights, music, and the phone. As our luggage arrived, the butler asked if we needed anything ironed and when we’d like turndown service. After a comfy night’s sleep, we checked out the room service menu for breakfast. Once again, a lot of care was put into it - most of the food on the menu is organic and regional. It was totally delicious and served with the same standards as in a restaurant. The hotel even has a Bentley and driver that we used that night to get to a restaurant. I have only one potential criticism. On our last day, the music and TV from the adjoining room were really noticeable and disturbing. I don’t know if it was due to a loud neighbor or thin walls. I hope it’s the former – what a waste to spend so much money outfitting the rooms and have thin walls. I’ll see how this goes on my next visit. In summary, the St. Regis San Francisco is one of the best urban hotels that I’ve ever visited.
Modern Luxury - Comfortable w/ Excellent Service!
We were invited to spend a long 4th of July weekend with my parents at the St Regis San Francisco. As frequent Starwood guests, we had heard many things about the legendary service of the St Regis brand, and for the most part, all things were true.
Our flight arrived late, and my parents had arranged for a car to pick us up via the concierge. A courteous driver was awaiting us at SFO and whisked us away to the St Regis. We were already checked in apparently -- when we walked in and told them our name, they handed us our keys immediately.
Our room was in the corner of the 15th floor and the room was enormous. Flat-screen TV, comfortable bed, and glistening bathroom -- it was all glamourous, luxurious, and modern. Sometimes modern isn't comfortable, but that isn't so at the St Regis. Everything is luxuriously appointed. There were leather "tiles" lining the bathroom walls as well as the hallway. The bathroom amenities were from Aqua di Parma and smelled amazing.
And to make things even more lovely, there was a "Happy Anniversary" cake awaiting us in our room with complimentary bottles of water. (We were celebrating our 1-yr wedding anniversary, and my parents' 49th wedding anniversary).
The computerized system for the lights, curtains, etc. was a cool touch. My only complaint was that the curtains were really loud - but the blackout curtains definitely did their job as it was very dark in the room.
We had breakfast two times at Vitrine. The first time, the service was impeccable. The staff were so friendly and they even offered us another perk for our anniversary -- a yummy peach crepe that was delicious. Our second visit to Vitrine was less than acceptable; service was ridiculously slow and the food was not as great as previously experienced. While prices were ridiculously exorbitant (and we knew it going into it), we were still shocked at $5 for two pieces of toast. For $5, I expect a LOAF of sourdough toast.
We never met our butler once, but my parents met theirs. Their room, by the way, was a junior suite and was also absolutely fabulous.
There were complimentary bottles of Evian on our nightstands every single night. We also visited the spa and pool, as well as the fitness room. Tip: if you are thirsty and want a cold bottle of water, just run up to the fitness room -- there's a minifridge chock full of free Evian! Also, if you want to use the spa facilities (i.e. steam room, hot tub, etc.) it is free to hotel guests. Spa hours were not as advertised, so call beforehand.
The bar downstairs is definitely the place to see and be seen as it was packed at all hours of the night, but not obnoxiously so, as it can be at the W hotels, which frequently turn into nightclubs at dusk.
All in all, a fabulous experience. I would definitely return!
Best in SF
I've stayed in virtually all the top San Francisco hotels (Four Seasons, Mandarin, Fairmont, Le Meridien -- formerly Park Hyatt, Palace, St. Francis), and the St. Regis, for me at least, is the best by a significant margin. The rooms are truly distinctive, with very cool technology and phenomenal attention to detail. The only negative relative to the Four Seasons (in my opinion the closest competitor) is the gym, which is fine but not quite up to Sports Club/LA, to which Four Seasons provides access. On the other hand, the pool is *much* nicer than the pool at SCLA (FS doesn't have their own pool). Food is also superior...the best I've had at any hotel anywhere (this includes breakfast, room service, and "ame", the hotel restaurant). I've stayed 3 times in the last 3 months and every stay has been great.
Overall, highly recommended.
This is a BEAUTIFUL hotel with GORGEOUS rooms!
Wonderful hotel that easily beats the Mandaran Oriental and the Four Seasons ... in some respects. I usually stay at the Four Seasons but ended up at the St. Regis at the urging of a co-worker. The rooms are amazing, contemporary, very roomy, well designed, and exceptionally executed. I will be making this my regular stop in San Francisco
My only complaints involve small details and occasionally lax service that I think is only a function of the hotel's growing pains (it's only 8 months old). I was also baffled by the VERY small "closet," I actually missed it several times because I though it was just storage for the bath robes. It was so small that there was no place to put my suitcase except along the wall in the room.
I rated it above average, but with clear potential to become excellent in short order.
I decided to take my husband on a relaxing weekend in San Francisco for our anniversary. I wanted to make it special and booked at the St. Regis. We would not return to either the hotel or the spa. The room was very noisy. We couldn't sleep all night do to the many sirens going on and screaming in the streets. The room was not totally obscure as advertised. In the morning we were right awake by the sunshine coming through the shades. The amenities in the room were very poor. No special touches at all for the $500 room! No special treatment for anniversaries either. The spa was only OK. Nothing special. There are no prices stated anywere for the massage treatments, be careful what you order, and we were added 20% gratuity! But they said Happy Anniversary! At the end we were charged an additonal $50 for parking during our stay at the Hotel.
The restaurant was very good. We might go back to Vitrine or Ame but we will never come back and stay at the hotel or have a spa treatment there. There are many other places in the bay area that give you much, much more for your money. If you want to waste your money, this is the best place to do so.
A great hotel
We booked two nights at the St. Regis as a birthday getaway and enjoyed every minute of it. The hotel is intimate, no huge lobby with people milling around. It's beautifully decorated in soothing colors and elegant finishes and there is original art located throughout the hotel, including the guest rooms.
We had a room on the 12th floor, with a city view, very bright and relaxing. There were blackout shades for those who prefer to sleep in pefect darkness and sheer roman shades to cut the sunlight as desired. The shades, lighting and nearly all other needs are controlled by a bedside electronic console, which also includes the telephone.
The room had a kingsize bed, a chaise longue set by the window so one could read or relax looking out at the view, a desk, and a flat screen TV set in a wall of cabinets that concealed the mini-fridge, a CD player/radio, a safe and the clothing storage. Complimentary bottles of Evian were offered, unlike many hotels that put water in the rooms and charge outrageous amounts for them.
We tried to reserve online and found that the cost was more than we liked, so called the St. Regis directly and found a promotion that included full American breakfast and parking for less than the lowest room cost we had found online. It's always a good idea, in my experience, to check with any hotel directly for the best price.
I plan to return to the St. Regis at every opportunity. It was a fabulous experience, and its location, 3 blocks from Union Square, next door to the SF MoMA, around the corner from the new MoAD and across the street from Yerba Buena Gardens, is ideal, out of the tourist rush but convenient to everything.
Not worth it, no way
The St. Regis reminds me of Texas culture: a mile wide and an inch deep. Once you get past all the very ostentatious artistic touches, you find that the design is ALL there is, because the management hasn't got all the practical details of running a hotel nailed down. At this price level, there should be absolutely NO negatives on one's list, but this property has many:
The street noise in the room is indescribable. Evidently Market Street, a block away, is a main route for fire equipment on that end of town, so an unrelenting cacophany of their sirens, horns, and bells goes on all night. The architects should have spent much more on soundproofing and far less on frippery.
No night lights. With the blackout curtains drawn, it is impossible to find the bathroom without awakening one's partner by turning on a light. A small thing, perhaps, but a continual annoyance unanticipated in a $450 room. The LCD control panel is handy, but it needs a brightness control.
The TV menu didn't reflect what was actually playing at the moment. Another minor inconvenience, but frustrating when one is trying to find a specific program. Motel 6 level service.
The hall carpets on our floor (15) had a track down the middle that appeared nearly worn out. My companion thinks the look was intentional. If so, it was a lousy style choice.
The food is run-of-the-mill hotel fare, only at Michelin 5-star prices. I don't care what you put in a short stack of pancakes - nothing makes them worth $16. But I will acknowledge that the coffee was awesome.
The housekeeping staff doesn't seem to understand the concept of a "Do Not Disturb" sign on the door to a guest room. On more than one occasion, we were napping with the sign "on" and a housekeeper let herself in to refresh towels or turn down the beds. Nice service; lousy co-ordination.
No coffee or tea in the room. I like a hot cup when I get out of bed (not when room service finds it convenient).
An iron and/or steamer in the room would be nice for those touch-ups that don't warrant a $20, 2-hour round trip to the valet.
In short, the amenities, details, finishing touches, weren't up to the standard one finds in a run-of-the-mill chain. For them to be lacking in a property of this price is near criminal.
Can a "smart" hotel be warm and inviting?
Absolutely. I spent three nights at the St. Regis in San Francisco in August because my usual hotel in the city was booked. At $200 more per night, the St. Regis had a long way to go to represent a good value in my book. It surpassed my expectations. A characterizing feature is the "smart" technology in each room that allows the guest to control the HVAC, lighting, and alarm clock through a small, flat panel on the nighstand. The panel also affords access to the telephone and the -- wait for it -- butler. I arrived on a Monday after a harrowing cab ride from Berkeley during which the cab was firmly rear-ended by an early-model Honda, giving me what can only be characterized as the Platonic ideal of whiplash. Nerves shot, I was met at the front desk by a clerk and by the butler assigned to my room during my stay. He tactfully and kindly helped me upstairs and, unsolicited, brought me ginger tea (alleged to be soothing). The rest of my stay was just as nurturing: one night, I left my BlackBerry in the booth of the lovely restaurant around the corner, and hotel staff graciously and quickly retrieved it. Dinner at the excellent Ame downstairs was truly memorable, the talented chef spending at least ten minutes describing in loving detail the excellent tasting menu that was one of the highlights of my time in San Francisco. Gorgeous furnishings, two flat-panel televisions, spacious shower and soaking tub, thoughtul cabinetry--but most of all the warmth and professionalism of hotel staff--all made my all-too-short stay at the St. Regis memorable.
Ocean Beach in Winter
Grilled Cheese and Fries
san francisco hotel choice
My husband, 22 yr old son and I will visit SF latter part of July. I wanted to book the Hotel Monaco but feel hesitant because the very close proximity to Tenderloin. It seems like one wrong turn out of the hotel can be a totally differenet scene. I would rather not experience that in full concentration. Can you reccomend a nice hotel in Union Sq further from Tenderloin ( and still close to transportation without walking major hills ) or perhaps staying at the embarcadero or fisherman's wharf would be better? I felt union sq would be good because it is very lively later in the evening than the other areas. Our price range is in the $200s and we like to have nice visuals. Thanks for your input!
Re: san francisco hotel choice
You might look at the Sir Francis Drake on Powell, or the Mark on nob Hill, I have stayed at the Monaco and had no problems with its location. Staying in the Union Square area gives you a more central location than at the Embarcadero or Fisherman's Wharf. Unfortunately no matter where you stay in the downtown area you are going to see homeless people on the streets, panhandling etc, there really is not anyway to get away from it.
Re: san francisco hotel choice
Three or four years ago, we spent Thanksgiving at the Andrews Hotel (see my tip at http://members.virtualtourist.com/m/2ebbe/b870f/3/ or look at the hotel website at http://www.andrewshotel.com/), which is one block north of the Monaco. I did the research but felt from the research - and confirmed it by actually being there - that the hotel was not "too close" to the Tenderloin.
Each day, we walked east to Union Square (very hard to miss), then walked farther east to the small French area around a French church and consulate, or walked north east up through Chinatown all the way to the Fisherman's Wharf area. In walking through Chinatown, you are going a little out of your way, but that avoids the steeper hills that you would hit if you went due north from Union Square.
There are, as I am sure you know, cable cars up these hills on Powell Street, just 2 blocks east of both hotels.
The comment about homeless everywhere is true, but Union Square has high end shopping and there are security guards everywhere...the presence of the homeless didn't seem to reduce the local crowds any (of course, we were there during the beginning of the Christmas shopping season - it was very lively then).
So, I would not abandon your choice simply because of its location...
P.S. if you combine your SF stay with a daytrip out of town (like to Napa/Sonoma as we did), there is an Avis car rental office on the block north of you (same block as the Andrews)...very easy to pick up the car there and then return it. Most people, of course, won't use a car in SF itself (although it's no different than other older urban cities in the US like Chicago or New York), but to use one for the day to drive outside of town can be a big help...
Re: san francisco hotel choice
If you'd like a smaller, boutique-style hotel, the White Swan near Union Square is a lovely place and I'm pretty sure it's in your price range. It's like a small bit of England right in SF. Next door, is their sister hotel, Le Petit Auberge - also very charming. I loved my stay there many years ago.
Re: san francisco hotel choice
The Union Square is pretty much the center of easy access in San Francisco. My favorite there is the St. Francis covering the entire block facing U.SQ. If too expensive, there are several boutique style hotels right around the square, like the Union Square Hotel. Here it is alomg with several others.