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San Francisco/Union Square-Financial District

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San Francisco : Union Square-Financial District
Revision as of 04:37, 10 June 2009 by 122.169.66.0 (talk) (added listing Hilton San Francisco Financial District)
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San Francisco/Union Square-Financial District

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Union Square

Union Square-Financial District is an area of Downtown San Francisco, bounded by Market Street to the southeast, the San Francisco Bay to the east, Mason Street to the west, and Sutter Street (between Mason and Kearny) and Washington Street (between Kearny and the bay) to the north.

Understand

Union Square

Surrounded by upscale hotels, Union Square is one of the largest shopping areas in the U.S. and is home to some of the nation's finest department stores, malls and specialty stores. As if that wasn't enough, it also boasts many fine art galleries, some of the best restaurants in the city, and it also serves as San Francisco's main theater district, featuring many Broadway and off-Broadway shows. The city earmarked the area as a park in 1850, and its name was derived from the many lively, pro-Union Civil War demonstrations that were held there. The square itself, a public plaza, which is bordered by Post, Stockton, Geary, and Powell streets, got a major refurbishment in 2002 when most of its grass was paved over with granite stone. Built in 1903, the monument dedicated to the Goddess Victory still remains at the heart of the square. Today, people use the square mostly as a space to relax and soak up a bit of sun, and to wallow in the atmosphere created by the surrounding cable cars, hotels and shoppers.

Financial District

The Financial District is among the top financial centers in the United States and its many skyscrapers add a very impressive skyline to the city. It is home to the headquarters of the 12th District of the United States Federal Reserve, as well as the iconic Transamerica Pyramid building. It also houses the corporate headquarters of many financial giants such as Visa, Wells Fargo Bank, Mckeeson Corporation and Charles Schwab Corporation. Despite the fact that the area was almost completely destroyed by the 1906 earthquake and fire, many of its original skyscrapers have survived. Today the architecture reflects a mix of both contemporary as well as more historic buildings such as the Merchant and Exchange building, the Bank of America building and the Russ building. There are also plenty of shopping opportunities in the area with centers such as the Embarcadero Center, the Ferry Building, and the Rincon Center. It begins at Montgomery, which was once known as the "Wall Street of the West," and ends at the Embarcadero.

Get in

Map of Union Square-Financial District

By car

On-street parking is all but non-existent. Parking garages, while plentiful, can be expensive. Major parking garages for the Union Square area can be found at the NE corner of Sutter and Stockton, between Ellis and O'Farrell between Stockton and Powell, on Sutter between Kearny and Grant, and under Union Square.

By ferry

Several ferry companies operate service from around the bay to the Ferry Building on the waterfront.

  • Golden Gate Ferry, +1 415 923-2000, [1]. Service to and from Larkspur and Sausalito. $7.10 one-way adults, $3.55 one-way seniors/youth.
  • Blue & Gold Fleet, +1 415 705-5555, [2]. Offering services between the Ferry Building and Angel Island, Oakland/Alameda, Tiburon and Vallejo. One-way fares range from $14.50 adults, $8.50 children to $6 adults, $3.25 children, depending on destination.
  • BayLink Ferry, +1 707 648-4349, [3]. Service to and from Vallejo. $12.50 one-way adults, $6.25 one-way seniors/children.
  • Alameda Oakland Ferry, +1 415 705-5555, [4]. Service to and from Alameda and Oakland. $6 one-way adults, $3.50 one-way seniors, $3.25 one-way children.
  • Harbor Bay Ferry, +1 510 769-5500, [5]. Service to and from Bay Farm Island in Alameda. $6 one-way adults, $3.50 one-way seniors, $3.25 one-way children.

By public transit

Cable car at Powell and Market

Extensive public transit is offered through the neighborhood, provided either by the regional BART [64] system or the city-wide MUNI [65] system, which encompasses the MUNI Metro, buses, cable cars, and the F-Line streetcar.

BART and all of the MUNI Metro lines (J, K, L, M, N and T) run under Market Street with three stations serving this part of downtown: the Embarcadero, Montgomery Street and Powell Street. The Powell Street stop is just a few blocks down Powell from Union Square. The Powell-Hyde and Powell-Mason cable car lines run from Powell and Market past Union Square to Fisherman's Wharf. From the Embarcadero station you can catch the California cable car line.

The F Streetcar Line runs along Market Street and up the Embarcadero to Fisherman's Wharf. There are several streetcar stops along Market Street. Numerous MUNI bus lines run through the area as well, such as the 38-Geary which runs past Union Square and the 1-California which runs through the Financial District past the Embarcadero Center. The #9X, #10, #30 and #45 lines run north-south through the district, connecting to Chinatown, North Beach, and Fisherman's Wharf to the north.

On foot

From Fisherman's Wharf, take a 25 minute walk down the Emabarcadero, which will take you all the way down to the Ferry Building, at the edge of the Financial District.

From west of the area, it is also easily accessible by getting first to Market Street and then walking eastbound.


See

Ferry Building
Transamerica Pyramid
  • Embarcadero Center. Consists of many buildings between Sacramento and Clay Streets running from the Embarcadero to Battery Street housing a shopping center, offices, and the Hyatt Regency hotel, which has a wonderful 17 story atrium used in the film Towering Inferno.
  • Ferry Building, One Ferry Building (at the end of Market Street on the bay), +1 415 983-8000, [6]. A historic ferry terminal which survived the 1906 earthquake and fire, and had 100,000 people pass through it every day before the big bridges were built. Ferries across the bay still depart from here, and there are also several restaurants and shops in the building. A large farmers market takes place year-round on Tuesdays and Saturdays and on Thursday evenings in the summer. Together with its surroundings, the Ferry Building is very beautiful by night.
  • Pacific Heritage Museum, 608 Commercial Street (at Montgomery), +1 415 399-1124, [7]. T-Sa 10AM-4PM. Exhibits on the art and culture of the peoples of the Pacific Rim. Free.
  • San Francisco Railway Museum, 77 Steuart Street (at Steuart and Don Chee Way, near the foot of Market), +1 415 974-1948, [8]. Tu-Su 10AM-6PM. Exhibits on the history of transportation in San Francisco, with an emphasis on rail systems.
  • Transamerica Pyramid, Montgomery and Washington, [9]. San Francisco's tallest and most famous skyscraper, controversial when it opened, but now accepted. There used to be an unusual observation deck on the ground floor with 4 big TV monitors, showing live views of the city transmitted from cameras at the top of the building. They now have a happy worker at the bottom that tells you anything and everything you want to know about San Francisco and has some great stories. Then he tells you that they no longer have the 4 big TVs and are building a restaurant where you can view the city from inside.
  • Union Square. The most important site is the square itself, which was revamped in 2002 to provide more space for outdoor events and less space for napping homeless people (an earlier version of the square appeared in the film The Conversation). The square now includes a theater ticket outlet, gift shop, and Emporio Rulli Cafe [10], along with an underground parking garage. For blogging people-watchers, there is free wi-fi provided by the city. Look under the leaves of the greenery in the planters, and you'll find a few power outlets for your laptop.
  • Architecture. Union Square is the bustling name-brand shopping area for the city, where high-end chains put their West Coast flagship stores, or at least a major retail outlet. The neighborhood's visual extravaganzas tend to be stores, including the beautifully restored glass dome and rotunda salvaged from the former City of Paris department store (at the Neiman Marcus store that replaced it 1981, at Geary and Stockton), the interior lavishness of the flagship Williams Sonoma, and Niketown on Post. This area of downtown is also a hotbed of Art Deco and Beaux Arts architecture.
  • Water Fountains. A quick overview of San Francisco geography is provided by the San Francisco Fountain on the steps of the Grand Hyatt on Stockton just north of Post. This massive wall of sculpture was created by Ruth Asawa, using schoolchildren's bread dough models as a basis for the casting. Another famous water feature is Lotta's Fountain, at the intersection of Geary, Kearney, and Market. Donated by singer Lotta Crabtree in 1875, it is the city's oldest piece of public art. You can also see the controversial Vaillancourt Fountain at Justin Herman Plaza at the foot of Market Street, believed by many to be a parody of the former (and much loathed) Embarcadero Freeway.
  • Wells Fargo History Museum, 420 Montgomery Street, +1 415 396-2619, [11]. M-F 9AM-5PM. This interesting museum has many artifacts associated with the bank company, such as old stagecoaches. Free.

Do

  • Gourmet Walks, (Tours meet at the plaza at the foot of Market Street), ''+1 415 312-1119, [12]. Offering two gourmet tours of the neighborhood - the Gourmet Chocolate Tour and the Gourmet Chocolate and Wine Tour. Both tours will take you to some of the local businesses where you can sample their delicious fare. $48 for the Gourmet Chocolate Tour and $72 for the Gourmet Chocolate and Wine Tour.
  • Ferry Plaza Farmers Market, +1 415 291-3276, [13]. Tu 10AM-2PM, Sa 8AM-2PM. A large, very popular year-round organic farmers market.

Performing arts

Most of the theaters and performance spaces are located just to the west in the Civic Center-Tenderloin area, but there's still a few theaters surrounding Union Square:

  • TIX Bay Area, on the corner of Union Square at Powell & Geary, [14]. Tu-Th 11AM-6PM, F-Sa 11AM-7PM, Su 11AM-3PM. A ticket booth run by Theater Bay Area [15], this booth offers many half-price tickets for local performances if you purchase on the day of the show, and you can sometimes buy full-price tickets in advance here as well.
  • Geary Theater, 405 Geary Street, +1 415 749-2228, [16]. Home to the American Conservatory Theater, a Tony Award–winning institution and the largest theater company in the city, who put on many Broadway shows and original performances at this historic theater.
  • Shelton Theater, 533 Sutter Street. Home to Shelton Studios [17], SF Playhouse [18], and Stage Werx [19].
  • Union Square Theaters, +1 415 771-6900, [20]. Two theaters - the Marines Memorial Theater at 609 Sutter Street and the Post Street Theater at 450 Post Street, play host to local, regional, and nationally renowned shows.

Buy

The purpose of Union Square is shopping. Most upscale national chains can be found in the neighborhood, including Macy's western flagship store on the south side of the square, Neiman Marcus on the southeast corner, Saks on the north side, and Nordstrom two blocks south, on Market opposite the cable car turnaround. Other chains include Victoria's Secret, Borders, Harry & David, Sur La Table, a four-level Ross, a four-level Loehmann's, one of the rare H&M stores in the U.S., Forever 21 in a restored bank, Armani, Crate and Barrel, and numerous upscale stores at San Francisco Shopping Center. More interesting are the stores that can't be found in every suburban mall. There are numerous art galleries and a fascinating selection of local or unusual businesses. The Financial District also has some decent shopping centers to choose from.

  • Gump's, 135 Post Street (between Kearny and Grant), +1 415 766-7628, [21]. M-Sa 10AM-6PM, Su Noon-5PM. San Francisco's source of luxury housewares, from couches to crystal. Though famous names like Waterford appear on the shelves, the selection emphasizes home furnishings as art, often with an elegant Asian feel. The dominant style is not quite modernist but hardly middle-American traditional. It's difficult to do justice to a native's feelings toward Gump's without sounding like a bad marketing piece. This is the "look" that says one's parents and grandparents went to the right private schools. If your home looks like Gump's, you've not only "arrived" -- you've been here longer than just about anyone else. As well as housewares, Gump's sells jewelry, holiday decor, and the odd bit of upscale soap.
  • Britex, 146 Geary Street (between Grant and Stockton), +1 415 392-2910, [22]. M-Sa 10AM-6PM. Arguably the largest fabric store on the west coast, filling four floors of a narrow building. Don't look for calicos for your quilting project: this is the land of luxury fabrics for faking couture at home. If you've ever wanted to make a cheap sweater look expensive by adding deluxe buttons, head straight for the third floor, where 30,000 styles await your approval (don't even think of touching a button - the clerks do that). Britex is also notable for selling remnants that are big enough for a real project.
  • Williams Sonoma, 340 Post Street (between Stockton and Powell), +1 415 362-9450, [23]. While it is technically a national chain, the Union Square store is the flagship store, and it's a cathedral to the gracious kitchen. Acres of housewares gleam beneath twin spiral stairs that lead to the land of crystal and tablecloths. This isn't your mother's mall-store Williams Sonoma. There are usually pretty good free samples being passed out, too.
  • Thomas Pink, 255 Post Street (between Grant and Stockton), +1 415 421-2022, [24]. M-F 10AM-7PM, Sa 10AM-6PM, Su 11AM-6PM. This place might seem obsessed with its eponymous color, if you judge by the store displays, but the upscale clothier also knows about white, beige, blue, and yellow.
  • Wilkes Bashford, 375 Sutter Street (between Grant and Stockton), +1 415 986-4380, [25]. M-W and F-Sa 10AM-6PM, Th 10AM-8PM. This is just the place to pop in for a $1,000 jacket, a $500 cashmere sweater, or those delicious Jimmy Choo shoes. Every now and again, there is a major sale on the top floor. You don't need to watch for the sales banners -- just notice when the crowds mobbing into the store look suspiciously like the same people who bussed your table the night before.
  • Embarcadero Center, between Sacramento and Clay Streets running from the Embarcadero to Battery Street, +1 415 772-0700, [26]. Daily 10AM-5PM. Spanning five city blocks, this center is one of the largest mixed-use centers in the Western United States. It has over 100 stores and a 5-screen movie complex.
  • Rincon Center, 101 Spear Street (between Mission and Howard near the Embarcadero), +1 415 777-4100. This is mostly for dining but there are also many shops here as well.

Eat

Though Union Square appears to be awash in cafes, it's one of the more difficult neighborhoods for good eating. Dining selections are crowded and geared toward the tourist market, though there are a few iconic restaurants that have must-see status just from their fame and age. It's also a center of high-end hotel dining. However, a short side trip west on O'Farrell or Geary to the Tenderloin for bargain Indian or Vietnamese food, a quick walk up Grant to Chinatown or (further) to North Beach may be worthwhile alternatives to fast food, long waits, or $200 a plate meals. In the Financial District there are various restaurants catering to those who work in the surrounding buildings.

  • Azul Restaurant Bar and Lounge, 1 Tillman Place (on Grant between Post & Sutter St.), +1 415 362-9750, [27]. Wonderful tapas menu.
  • Aqua, 252 California Street (between Front and Battery), +1 415 956-9662, [28]. M-Sa 5:30-10:30PM, Su 5:30-9:30PM. Simply prepared fresh seafood. Also landed a spot on reputed restaurant-critic Michael Bauer’s list of “One Hundred Best Restaurants”, of the San Francisco Chronicle.
  • Boxed Foods Co, 245 Kearny St (between Hardie Pl & Sutter St), +1 415 981-9376, [29]. M-F 8AM-3PM. Healthy and delicious option for the working crowd. The line goes out the door around lunchtime so phone in or order early in order to beat the lunch time rush. The ingredients are fresh and wholesome. The Boxed Chicken Salad comes highly recommended.
  • Daffodil Restaurant, 665 Bush Street (on Bush between Powell & Stockton St.), +1 415 343-0130, [30]. An elegant dining escape serving seasonal, organic cuisine paired with flavorful wines in a chic, romantic atmosphere.
  • John's Grill, 63 Ellis Street (between Powell and Stockton), +1 415 986-3274, [31]. M-Sa 11AM-10PM, Su 12PM-10PM. Seafood and steak joint.
  • Krivaar Cafe, 475 Pine Street (between Montgomery and Kearny), +1 415 781-0894. M-F 6:30AM-5PM. A great local deli that serves an assortment of Middle Eastern, Mediterranean, Armenian and American dishes at good prices. Their hummus is considered the best in San Francisco.
  • Kuleto's Restaurant, 221 Powell Street (at O'Farrell), +1 415 397-7720, [32]. Breakfast M-F 7AM-10:30AM, Sa-Su 8AM-10:30AM, Lunch/Dinner Su-Th 11:30AM-10:30PM, F-Sa 11:30AM-11PM. $10-$25.
  • Little Delhi, 83 Eddy Street (at Mason), +1 415 398-3173, [33]. Daily 11AM-11PM. This is a very good Indian restaurant at very reasonable prices. Decor and ambiance is average, but high on taste and cleanliness.
  • One Market Restaurant, 1 Market Street (between Steuart and Spear, near the Embarcadero), +1 415 777-5577, [34]. Lunch: M-F 11:30AM-2PM, Dinner: M-Sa 5:30PM-9PM. Organic food dishes.
  • Puccini & Pinetti, 129 Ellis Street (between Powell and Cyril Magnin), +1 415 392-5500, [35]. M-Th 11:30AM-10PM, F-Sa 11:30AM-11PM, Su 11:30AM-10PM. Popular Italian restaurant.
  • Tadich Grill, 240 California Street (between Battery and Front Streets), +1 415 391-1849. M-F 11AM-9:30PM, Sa 11:30AM-9:30PM. The longest operating restaurant in California, dating back to the Gold Rush. You'll find delicious seafood and a classic atmosphere where groups can sit in their own wood-paneled quarters. Price range is high with most entrees over $20. 20-30.
  • Yank Sing, 101 Spear Street (in the Rincon Center near the Embarcadero), +1 415 781-1111, [36]. M-F 11AM-3PM, Sa-Su 10AM-4PM. This is the best place for dim sum, and thus you might need to wait 30 minutes (at most) to have a table. You do not need a menu to order your food; the staff lets you choose what you want to eat from carts pushed around from the dining room. The shrimp, dumplings, and duck here are delicious. The setting of the restaurant is also wonderful.

Drink

  • Cantina, 580 Sutter St (between Mason St & Powell St), +1 415 398-0195, [37]. M-Sa 5PM-2AM. Excellent drinks and a relaxed, casual atmosphere. The mixers try to serve up new and unusual drinks as well as old standbys. It can be kinda snug on weekends, but the attention to detail in the decor along with the drinks are well worth it.
  • E&O Trading Company, 312 Sutter St (at Grant), +1 415 693-0303, [38]. M-Th 11:30AM-10PM, F-Sa 11:30AM-11PM, Su 5PM-9:30PM. Decked out in an upscale but not trying decor, EO Trading has the kind of cocktail list that impresses but doesn't overwhelm. The menu of small plates and appetizers of Asian fusion cuisine, satay platters and a selection of naan bread is the perfect partner for their lychee martinis and Anchor Steam beers. Happy hour is from 3 to 6PM.
  • 83 Proof, 83 1st St (between Elim St & Mission St), +1 415 296-8383, [39]. This narrow lounge sits precariously between a Walgreens and a Wachovia. Friendly bartenders will concoct any type of drink you desire, which makes it great for a quick, after-work drink or late-night cocktails. 83 Proof is also well-suited to group outings with its cozy atmosphere and chill vibe. Along with the DJ, weekend nights can get pretty loud sometimes.
  • Press Club, 20 Yerba Buena Ln (between Market St & Mission St), +1 415 744-5000, [40]. This bar focuses on wine, with some of the finest from the nearby Wine Country. Sneak a peek at the wine cellar, and don’t be surprised if you’re super critical of the next glass of wine you drain outside the Press Club. Be prepared, however, to put a dent in your credit card or wallet by the end of the night.
  • Tunnel Top, 601 Bush St (between Burritt St & Stockton St), +1 415 722-6620. This two-floor, cash-only bar is a neighborhood staple, where you’ll find an eclectic mix of locals downing shots of Fernet-Branca (the unofficial drink of San Francisco) or egging on the bartenders to make up a new drink.

Sleep

This guide uses the following price ranges for a standard double room:
Budget under $100
Mid-range $100 - 175
Splurge $176 and over

This is the hotel district, with a broad range of choices, from chain to boutique.


  • Hilton San Francisco Financial District, 750 Kearny Street San Francisco, CA 94108, 415-433-6600, [41]. Raise the bar on your San Francisco business trip or vacation by reserving a spacious guestroom or suite at the Hilton San Francisco Financial District, a full-service downtown hotel that delivers upscale amenities and hotel packages with discounted rates.

Budget

  • Hostelling International-Downtown, 312 Mason Street (at O'Farrell), +1 415 788-5604, [42]. Clean, cheap, safe and fun. $23 dorms.
  • Pacific Tradewinds Backpackers, 680 Sacramento Street (between Kearny and Spring), +1 415 433-7970 (), [43]. The highest rated and smallest hostel in San Francisco. On the edge of Chinatown and the Financial District. Friendly, clean, modern and safe. Free internet. $22-24/night.

Mid-range

  • The Donatello, 501 Post Street (at Mason), +1 415 441-7100, [44]. checkin: 3PM; checkout: 12PM. 94 deluxe rooms, the most spacious accommodations in San Francisco. Elegantly decorated with original Italian art, Travertine marble, Venetian glass and European antiques.
  • Hotel Bijou, 111 Mason Street (at Eddy), +1 415 771-1200 (fax: +1 415 346-3196), [45]. Hotel Bijou is inspired by San Francisco's rich cinematic history, adorned with movie palace stylings and Hollywood portraits, and features a mini movie theater in the lobby.
  • Handlery Union Square Hotel, 351 Geary Street (between Powell and Mason), +1 415 781-7800 (fax: +1 415 781-0269), [46]. A family hotel with a European flair, and the feel of upscale boutique accommodations providing warm, personal attention. The cable car is located at the corner and attractions are within walking distance.
  • Hotel Abri, 127 Ellis Street, +1 415 392-8800 (fax: +1 415 398-2650), [47]. Recently renovated hotel that lacks a pool or free breakfast. Rooms are small but has everything you need for a reasonable price. The cable car, MUNI and BART stations are within walking distance.

Splurge

  • Chancellor Hotel, 433 Powell Street (between Sutter and Post just north of Union Square), +1 415 362-2004 or +1 800 428-4748 (, fax: +1 415 362-1403), [48]. A classic hotel overlooking Powell Street.
  • Galleria Park Hotel, 191 Sutter Street (at Kearny), +1 415 781-3060 (, fax: +1 415 433-4409), [49]. A boutique hotel with a half-acre private urban park. Good linens, flat-screen TVs and complimentary wine hour.
  • Hotel Nikko, 222 Mason Street (between O'Farrell and Ellis), +1 415 394-1111 (, fax: +1 415 394-1106), [50]. Swanky large hotel with a boutique feel and very large bathrooms. Ask for the few rooms with Japanese style amenities. Hotel dining includes restaurant ANZU [51]. ANZU serves fresh sushi and excellent steak. Also located inside the hotel's lobby is the Rrazz Room Theater, with nightly cabaret and R&B [52].
  • Hotel Rex, 562 Sutter Street (between Powell and Mason), +1 415 433-4434 (fax: +1 415 433-3695), [53]. The Hotel Rex was inspired by the San Francisco art and literary salons of the 1920s and 30s. The clubby lobby surrounds guests with distinctive period furnishings, walls of antiquarian books, and a collection of exotic objects, original portraits and murals.
  • Hotel Vitale, 8 Mission Street (at the Embarcadero), +1 415 278-3700 (, fax: +1 415 278-3750), [54]. Great boutique hotel, right on the waterfront, across from the historic Ferry Building. Rooms with city or bay views, rooftop day-spa, and a restaurant and bar with outside terrace seating. $250-$500.
  • Hyatt Regency San Francisco, 5 Embarcadero Center (at the Embarcadero Center, next to the California and Market cable car turnaround), +1 415 788-1234 (fax: +1 415 398-2567), [55].
  • JW Marriott (former Pan Pacific), 500 Post Street (at Mason, one block west of Union Square), +1 415 771-8600 (fax: +1 415 398-0267), [56]. This AAA four diamond hotel has 338 rooms.
  • Le Méridien (formerly the Park Hyatt), 333 Battery Street (between Commercial and Sacramento, next to the Embarcadero Center), +1 415 296-2900 (, fax: +1 415 296-2901), [57]. The Le Meridien is a luxury hotel that mostly caters to business travelers. It is part of Embarcadero Center, which includes retail shops and restaurants on the street and lobby levels, 4 office towers, and a second hotel, the Hyatt Regency, which borders Justin Herman Plaza. The Le Meridien has large rooms and very nice furnishings and art work. If you stay at this hotel, make a point not to eat breakfast here, as it is expensive and there are other good options nearby.
  • Mandarin Oriental, 222 Sansome Street (at Pine), +1 415 276-9600 (, fax: +1 415 433-0289), [58]. A 150 room hotel located on the top eleven floors of the First Interstate Center, the third tallest building in the city of San Francisco. The view from the rooms are exceptional, with floor to ceiling windows and great views.
  • Marriott Union Square, 480 Sutter Street, +1 415 398-8900 (fax: +1 415 989-8823), [59]. A trendy San Francisco boutique hotel. Formerly the Hotel 480, this hotel has been completely renovated to become a Marriott.
  • Omni San Francisco Hotel, 500 California Street (at Montgomery), +1 415 677-9494 (fax: +1 415 273-3038), [60].
  • The Palace Hotel, 2 New Montgomery Street (at Market), +1 415 512-1111 (fax: +1 415 543-0671), [61]. Established in 1875, The Palace has 552 guest rooms. In 1945, the official banquet honoring the opening session of the United Nations was held in The Garden Court at The Palace.
  • Parc 55 Hotel, 55 Cyril Magnin Street (between Ellis and Eddy), +1 800 595-0507, [62]. Two blocks from Union Square.
  • Westin-St Francis Hotel, 335 Powell Street (west side of Union Square, between Post and Geary), +1 415 397-7000, [63]. Now a member of the Westin chain, this is an iconic San Francisco hotel. The lavish lobby and cafe area are used as a meeting place by quite a lot of people who aren't guests there, despite the pricey lattes and ritzy atmosphere. In a peculiar bit of design, the lobby has a side entrance to the Harry & David store, should you need to pop over for a few chocolate-covered cranberries. Although the St. Francis has a reputation for being pricy, it runs off-season specials.

Contact

  • Golden Gate Perk Internet Cafe, 401 Bush Street (at Kearny), +1 415 362-3929. M-F 8:30AM-8PM, Sa 11:30AM-5PM. Free wi-fi and computer terminals for rent.
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