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Need Hotel Help

Huntingdon...
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Need Hotel Help

Never been to SF but DW and I are staying for two night layover in route to Maui. (Wife has lifelong desire to ride trolley) Basically, we will have one full day to explore. We're looking for hotel in the SFO area with airport shuttle, gym, and preferably a free breakfast. We would like to be within walking distance to shopping and restaurants. There are so many SFO hotels listed, I don't know where to start looking. Any help would be GREATLY appreciated!!

San Francisco, Ca
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1. Re: Need Hotel Help

I was originally assuming you didn't literally mean SFO (since that's the airport), but you did use SF and SFO separately, so are you looking for airport accommodations?

If so, most here strongly recommend against staying at the airport if your goal is to explore the city of San Francisco. While those hotels will offer free airport shuttles, they are not generally within walking distance of shopping and restaurants. (And the area is an industrial district, rather than a charming neighborhood or busy downtown area.)

Plus you will have at least a 30 minute commute to/from your SF sightseeing each day (with an attendant cost of anywhere from $16/pp round trip for public transit to $100/total round trip for taxis).

If you are looking to stay in SF proper, take a look at the top questions on the upper right side of this page, where that question is addressed.

--
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2. Re: Need Hotel Help

1. When you write "SFO" do you mean within San Francisco proper, or in the vicinity of San Francisco International Airport (SFO) some 14 miles south of the city of San Francisco? No San Francisco hotel offers free shuttle service to SFO and precious few free breakfast; airport area hotels may have both. We don't refer to San Francisco as SFO.

2. If you are looking for places to get started in finding a hotel in San Francisco, not SFO, start with the Union Square, Fisherman's Wharf, and Embarcadero links in the "top questions about San Francisco" sidebar.

3. We have streetcars which are called trolleys in some other places, trolley (overhead electric line powered) buses, and cable cars. I'm guessing your wife has a lifelong desire to ride a cable car, although some of the vintage streetcars that run on Muni's "F" line, like the Blackpool "Boat" tram http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JKDyJ9qU0Yg are definitely desire-worthy. Having a lifelong desire to ride on a Muni trolley bus would be just plain weird and should be discussed with a qualified therapist, not in public.

Edited: 25 February 2012, 22:02
Santa Cruz...
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for Santa Cruz
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3. Re: Need Hotel Help

If you mean the airport area, it is 13 miles south of the city and there are not hotels within walking distance of the city's shopping and restaurants.

You want to be in the city in the Union Square area, near the shops and restaurants and all the different kinds of public transportation.

If you want a gym, I can recommend the Donatello, which is a block from Union Square, has large rooms with wet bar, fridge, microwave, a roof top lounge with two terraces, and, yes, a fitness center.

Hotels in the city of San Francisco do not have airport shuttles, and an included breakfast is not common here.

(I see that caffiend and I were typing at the same time, but generallyI think we agree.)

Edited: 25 February 2012, 22:06
Huntingdon...
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4. Re: Need Hotel Help

Wow, lots of information for this obvious out of towner! My plan was and is still to find a hotel near the San Francisco airport area. Given those parameters, any suggestions for hotels in the several areas listed as having airport shuttles? Also, since exploration will require some sort of travel, a hotel near BART may prove quite helpful. We can probably forego walking to shopping and food if necessary. Don't need a fancy gym, but can't miss my workouts! Again, thanx!

San Francisco
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5. Re: Need Hotel Help

For a two night stay I would recommend staying IN the city rather than attempting to commute to and fro.

Generally climbing our hills is a workout enough for most but if you long for more, the abovementioned Donatello would be a good choice.

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6. Re: Need Hotel Help

If riding a cable car, which I'm assuming you mean by "trolley", is indeed one of your wife's lifelong desires, why not take it out of the amusement park trivialization of lining up with hundreds of other tourists at one of the cable car turnarounds, and put it into a real San Francisco perspective? By staying in the City, rather than some sterile, "am I in San Francisco or am I in Pittsburgh" airport hotel you can:

- be able to hop off a cable car and walk straight into a restaurant for your dinner,

- have an evening Irish Coffee or three, and then cross the street to catch a cable car back to your hotel, and/or

- choose a hotel where you're serenaded by the cable car's clank and ding-ding-ding as you go to bed at night.

It's a lot more difficult to make any of the above happen from an airport area hotel.

Paris, France
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7. Re: Need Hotel Help

I agree that you should stay in the city and not near the airport, especially with such a short amount of time - and it will probably be less hassle too. You can take the Bart into the city and walk a few blocks to your hotel and the city will be at your doorstep.

If you choose an airport hotel you will need to get the shuttle to your hotel - then take it back to the airport to take Bart into SF, then do this all over again when you return. Just doesn't make sense to me.

canada
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8. Re: Need Hotel Help

Hi - I am currently staying at the Donatello. While it is :

-centrally located

-close to all that you are looking for

-a very nice hotel with great staff

I would NOT recommend staying here. There is an ongoing (6mo+) labour dispate at the nearby Hotel Frank. Instead of having the luxury of sleeping in -in my very comfortable k.s.bed- this morning I was awoken by angry picketers at the nrby Hotel Frank. The picketers have a bull horn .Their chants went on non-stop from 7-8am. Appar. this will be repeated tomm.morning & every day thereafter. I am in a huge dilemma as I made a timeshare exchange to stay here for one week. The Donatello is caught in the middle of this. Although sympathetic to their guests-appar.there is nothing that they can do. My room is in the "quietest section of the Donatello." I would never have believed that. Incredibly the Police attend to "protect the persons picketing !" I cannot believe that there is not a noise by by-law. Good luck choosing somewhere far away from Hotel Frank.

Santa Cruz...
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9. Re: Need Hotel Help

Well, if you cannot stay at the Donatello because of the labor dispute at the Frank, this may leave out the Monaco and the Clift and the Warwick, which are also only a block from the Frank.

canada
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10. Re: Need Hotel Help

Oops-excuse typos..."dispute"