by Whitney Rife
Sir Francis Drake is not your typical upscale hotel. Though it presents grand architecture and elegant design, it has an air of nonchalance. It rooms are colorful and modern, complete with adult- and child-sized luxurious terrycloth robes, video games and pet-friendly amenities. Cribs are available free of charge upon request. Also, kids under 17 stay for free when staying with parents. Kimpton Kids is a program that provides accessories and activities for kids of all ages. Babies are covered with cribs, playards, booster seats and safety kits for the room. Kids receive a special welcome gift upon arrival and comment cards at the end of their stay. Parents are given a list of nearby attractions that are perfect for kids, such as the Yerba Buena Gardens or the Exploratorium. Parents can take a night off with Sir Francis’s onsite babysitting service. Scala’s Bistro is a chic Italian eatery run by recent “Top Chef” contestant, Jen Biesty.
Our Editor Loves
- Kimpton Kids program
- Elegant architecture
- Nearby family-friendly attractions
- Onsite Dining
This early 20th century hotel has been renovated in the past 10 years and is fine for the non-luxury traveler. The service is good and the rooms are small but have all necessary amenities. A good substitute for the St Francis, Palace, or Marc Hopkins for the budget minded. Location right off Union Square and on the cable car line to Fisherman’s Wharf is fantastic.
It’s a take it or leave it attitude at the hotel as well as the City. It’s outrageous to see what they charge for a dinky room yet the worst part is the bed. My hips and ribs are sore from trying to sleep on the aged bed. I’ve had benches while stranded at airports that were more comfortable.
They only had one elevator working. It took longer to go down than it did to walk across town.
The attached bistro is no better. Runny eggs and raw bacon. But they are extremely proud of their food, even a small bowl of oatmeal came out to over $20.
For a place that wants $899 per night, you would think it would have some redeeming quality, but no.