The beautiful Fairmont San Francisco Hotel in California opened its gates more than 100 years ago, in 1907. Therefore, in 2002 it was put on the National Register of Historic Places. Given this fact, a holiday here can truly have historical significance for anyone who visits it. Below are more details about this fabulous establishment that carries over a century of history in its walls.
Accommodation Type: 5-star hotel
No. of Rooms & Suites: 591
Pricing: starts at $409 for single rooms
High Season: May to September, but the hotel is open for business at all times
Nearest Airport: San Francisco International Airport (SFO)
Suitable For: couples, honeymooners, business people, birthdays, celebrations, visits
- Traveler’s Choice Award from TripAdvisor in 2016
- One of the best hotels in the world on Conde Nast Traveler’s Gold List in 2016
- The AAA Five Diamond Rating in 2016
- Certificate of Excellence from TripAdvisor in 2015
- T+L 500 World’s Best Hotels from Travel and Leisure in 2015
- The winner of the Extraordinary Golf Hotel Award by Extraordinary Traveler Magazine in 2014
Its interior is still pretty much the same as it was back in the 1900s. The lobby has outstanding Corinthian columns, the ceilings are vaulted, the chairs are covered in velvet and the staircase is still wraparound. The rooms themselves are top notch, they are very large and elegant in design, with black furniture and high technology included. While the bathrooms are among the biggest you will ever see. The views are excellent as well since the Fairmont San Francisco is perched high up in the city, on Nob Hill.
Apart from that, the Fairmont San Francisco is home to the Tonga Room, a very kitschy bar, but famous nonetheless in popular culture and literature. The hotel houses the Venetian Room, where Tony Bennett sang I Left My Heart in San Francisco for the first time. Also, many movies were shot at the Fairmont: Dirty Harry, Vertigo, and The Rock included.
Moreover, this is the hotel where the United Nations was created. The participants drafted the United Nations’ Charter in the Fairmont’s Garden Room where a plaque still stands today to honor that event. In fact, the Fairmont San Francisco Hotel is also known as the White House of the West. It housed every single president that came to be elected since William Taft. Among the most notable are Truman, who stayed here in 1945, then there are also Presidents Kennedy and Bill Clinton.
As far as eating at the hotel goes, there are plenty of options to choose from. Our advice is to take them because there is nothing much else in the area.
- Laurel Court Restaurant & Bar which is Fairmont’s main restaurant sitting just off the lobby. It is way beyond other hotel restaurants. A meal here is a bit pricey, but it will be worth it. The menu includes dishes such as Monterey cod with a chorizo crust and butternut squash risotto.
- Caffè Cento for wonderful coffee and tea, a great selection of local wines and beers, fresh house-made pastries, as well as breakfast and lunch.
- Tonga Room & Hurricane Bar, one of the most famous locals in all of America. It’s a bar and restaurant with a Polynesian theme and lots of history to it. Even thouth the food here is mainly Polynesian, there are also local dishes for those that are not into island food.
The room service is 24-hours and the concierge is on duty starting early in the morning and finishing late at night, the minibars are filled with snacks and guests also get Le Labo complimentary toiletries. Throughout the hotel, there is free internet, as well as iPod docks and flat-screen TVs in the rooms.
The hotel has a large ballroom which is perfect for organizing a meeting or a corporate event. There are also meeting spaces galore for key-note speeches and team building activities, as well as parties. Moreover, they have a business center which is open at all times and comes equipped with computers, printers, copiers, and a person in charge of helping if it is necessary.
They also offer yoga mats for people who are interested in yoga classes, and a fitness center equipped with modern training machines. The cardio machines have a personal TV screen on each one. Complimentary, guests can also receive free cribs if they travel with a baby.
The nearest Airport is the San Francisco International Airport (SFO). From the airport, guests can arrive at the hotel in a rental car or with a taxi. As far as walking goes, guests should be aware of the fact that the hotel sits atop Nob Hill, as already mentioned. In other words, going down can be a breeze, but climbing back up can be quite cumbersome or tiring, especially with children.
Main Attractions Around the Fairmont San Francisco Hotel
When it comes to local attractions, there are definitely some interesting places to see near the hotel itself. Here are the options:
1. Fisherman’s Wharf
It stands only a mile away, and you can easily take a cable car to it and back again. While here, you can visit Ripley’s Believe It or Not Museum, Fisherman’s Wharf’s Wax Museum, the Boudin Sourdough Museum or the Aquarium of the Bay.
2. The curvy block of Lombard Street
This famous street is only half a mile away from the Fairmont San Francisco Hotel.
Which is located right down the street, in case you get a hankering for really good Chinese food in the middle of the night.
You can also take a ferry to see Alcatraz or sit in the sun and watch the world-famous sea lions which live on Pier 39. The view of the Golden Gate Bridge is amazing as well, and it’s a good opportunity to take some nice selfies. There are also tons of street performers and great restaurants where you can enjoy freshly caught seafood dishes.
There are few hotels in the United States and the world, for that matter, which can pride themselves in being so immensely important as the Fairmont San Francisco Hotel is. The main attraction remains the hotel’s history and culture where the United Nations was created and almost all the Presidents once spent the night. For more details on Fairmont hotels around the world, you can look at Fairmont Mayakoba or Fairmont Copley Plaza. If you have ever visited this hotel tell us what you liked most about it in a comment below!