Review: St. Regis San Francisco

Introduction
Review: St. Regis San Francisco
Review: British Airways Lounge San Francisco Airport
Review: British Airways Club World 777 San Francisco To London
Review: St. Regis Rome
Review: Hotel Cala Di Volpe Porto Cervo
Review: Dining At Hotel Cala Di Volpe
Review: Hotel Romazzino Porto Cervo
Review: Dining At Hotel Romazzino
Review: Hilton Rome Airport
Review: British Airways Lounge Rome Airport
Review: British Airways Club World A380 London To San Francisco


Ford and I met up in San Francisco before our flight to Italy. Ford was coming in from Los Angeles, and I was coming in from New York on JetBlue. Yes, I realize that’s quite a bit of backtracking, but we had booked the tickets to Italy before I realized I needed to be in New York those days. Besides, flying more than I have to isn’t exactly a new concept for me. 😉

As anyone who has ever tried to book a hotel in San Francisco probably knows, it can be outrageously expensive. Hotel prices are highly variable depending on whether or not there’s a big conference or event in town. However, even without anything going on, it’s still a very expensive hotel market.

In this particular case, the St. Regis San Francisco was ~$400 for the one night stay through a “Hot Escapes” rate. That’s more than I’d usually want to pay, though in practice most other mid-range hotels were ~$300, so that seemed like a reasonable premium.

It’s worth noting that I’d usually book this hotel through Starwood Luxury Privileges, which would come with a $100 food & beverage credit, free breakfast, a room upgrade, etc., but in this case the flexible rate (which is the same as the Luxury Privileges rate) was $100 more expensive than the rate I booked, so I figured it wasn’t worthwhile.

As a point of comparison, this is a Category 7 SPG property, meaning a free night redemption would cost 30,000-35,000 Starpoints. Given that I value Starpoints at ~2.2 cents each, paying definitely represented the better value.

We arrived in San Francisco at around 10AM, and took an Uber to the St. Regis, which took about 30 minutes.

The St. Regis is located on Mission & 3rd, so has a good location as far as I’m concerned. As you can probably see based on the exterior, the St. Regis is in quite a tall building. That’s because the hotel only takes up the bottom half of the building, while the top half are residences.

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St. Regis San Francisco exterior

The hotel’s driveway is in a side street, so it’s quite easy to get in and out of the hotel.

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St. Regis San Francisco driveway

Upon arrival we were greeted by the bellman, Louie, who said “and you’re…. Mr. Schlappig? Let me show you to check-in.” I had given my estimated arrival time, and we arrived exactly around then, so I was very impressed by that.

Some might say I was getting special treatment for being a blogger and/or an SPG Ambassador member. I’m not sure whether either is true, though I can certainly say that I’ve never been greeted like that at any hotel in the US, and that’s under the same circumstances. So kudos to them either way.

The St. Regis’ lobby is gorgeous, with floor to ceiling windows and sparse furnishings. To me it feels more like a minimalist Park Hyatt than an over-the-top, gaudy St. Regis (that’s a good thing, in my book).

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St. Regis San Francisco lobby

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St. Regis San Francisco lobby

Just past the entrance is a fire pit, which I think is a cute touch.

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St. Regis San Francisco lobby seating

Reception is located past the entrance and to the right.

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St. Regis San Francisco reception

The flawless service continued at check-in. I wrote a separate post about how this hotel has the best service of any US hotel I’ve stayed at, and I stand by that. The associate who checked us in was friendly and extremely professional, without coming across as forced or annoying (which I often find to be the case at US luxury hotels, where they just try too hard). I’ll take genuine hospitality over scripted hospitality any day (if the latter can even be considered hospitality… to me it’s more like acting).

She explained that we were entitled to butler service since we were in a suite (I booked a standard room, but used a Platinum Suite Night Award to confirm an Astor Suite). I was grateful she asked, since I far prefer not being brought to the room by a butler, since it inevitably feels like this “Curb Your Enthusiasm” interaction every time:

Yes, I realize that’s a first world preference…

She reminded us that we were entitled to complimentary tea & coffee 24/7, which is really the thing I value most from St. Regis butler service.

The elevators for guest rooms are located to the right of the reception desk (across from reception are the elevators to the residences).

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St. Regis San Francisco lobby

We took the elevator up to the 15th floor, where our room was located.

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St. Regis San Francisco hallway

We turned left and walked to the far end of the hallway, where our room was located on the right.

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St. Regis San Francisco hallway

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St. Regis San Francisco room exterior

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St. Regis San Francisco floorplan

The Astor Suite, which is advertised as being 711 square feet, features an entryway which leads into the living room.

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St. Regis San Francisco Astor Suite entryway

Even though the Astor Suite isn’t huge, I love how it features two distinct rooms, which is great if you’re with someone who is on a different schedule. The living room featured an “L” shaped couch along with a lounging chair.

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St. Regis San Francisco Astor Suite living room

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St. Regis San Francisco Astor Suite living room

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St. Regis San Francisco Astor Suite living room

Waiting on the center table was a welcome letter, along with some beautiful flowers.

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St. Regis San Francisco Astor Suite living room flowers

That faced a flat screen TV.

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St. Regis San Francisco Astor Suite living room

In the very right corner of the room was a desk, with amazing views of the city on both sides.

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St. Regis San Francisco Astor Suite desk

There was a gorgeous orchid in the window.

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St. Regis San Francisco Astor Suite orchid

The bedroom was separated from the living room by a sliding door, and was on the small side. I love a small bedroom, as it’s easy to keep cold, and is a nice separate space to have from the living room.

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St. Regis San Francisco Astor Suite bedroom

The bed was exceedingly comfortable, as I find to be the norm at St. Regis properties.

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St. Regis San Francisco Astor Suite bedroom

The bed faced a wall-mounted flat screen TV, and there was also a small closet in the corner of the room.

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St. Regis San Francisco Astor Suite bedroom

Next to the closet was a small leather bench, which I suppose could also be used for luggage.

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St. Regis San Francisco Astor Suite bedroom bench

The room featured great views of the city in all directions. Admittedly the hotel is sort of located in the middle of the city, so you won’t have direct views of the Golden Gate Bridge, Alcatraz, etc., but it’s still a great view.

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St. Regis San Francisco Astor Suite view

Back towards the living room, a sliding door separated the bathroom from the rest of the room.

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St. Regis San Francisco Astor Suite bathroom

The bathroom featured double sinks, a soaking tub, a walk-in shower, and a toilet.

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St. Regis San Francisco Astor Suite bathroom

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St. Regis San Francisco Astor Suite double sinks

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St. Regis San Francisco Astor Suite bathtub

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St. Regis San Francisco Astor Suite toilet

The shower featured two shower heads.

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St. Regis San Francisco Astor Suite shower

Toiletries were Remede branded, as is the norm at St. Regis properties. I love them for the most part, especially how the body wash has beads. At the same time, their shampoo seems to create a tingling sensation, so almost reminds me of toothpaste.

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St. Regis San Francisco Astor Suite Remede toiletries

Wifi in the room was fast, and the extent of our interaction with butler service was to get coffee at 4:30AM the next morning. I know it sounds minor, but I love that they offer biscottis with the coffee. Most St. Regis properties I’ve stayed at don’t offer anything to munch on.

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St. Regis San Francisco complimentary coffee via butler service

In terms of the hotel’s other features, there’s an indoor swimming pool, which is a fairly rare amenity at San Francisco hotels. Given that we wanted to explore the city, we didn’t have a chance to use it. There’s also a gym, though given that it was full when I visited, I didn’t want to take pictures.

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St. Regis San Francisco pool

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St. Regis San Francisco pool

The hotel has a beautiful lobby bar, and in the morning they have complimentary coffee & tea on offer (which was great for grabbing my sixth or seventh cup of coffee later in the morning). 😉

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St. Regis San Francisco lobby bar

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St. Regis San Francisco lobby bar

We chose breakfast as our SPG Platinum amenity. Ford had a local friend he wanted to meet for breakfast, so I just suggested they have breakfast in the restaurant, since I had work I needed to get done before a meeting and then eventually heading to the airport.

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St. Regis San Francisco restaurant

The breakfast menu read as follows:

Breakfast-Menu

I was under the impression that Platinum members were restricted to the “St. Regis Continental,” though Ford said the server told him they could order whatever they wanted, and they weren’t even presented with a check.

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St. Regis San Francisco breakfast

So he had a fruit plate and waffles, though forgot to take a picture of the waffles before eating them. Grrrr. At least I guess that means they were good. 😉

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St. Regis San Francisco breakfast — fruit plate

In addition to this hotel physically being beautiful, I can’t emphasize enough how impressed I was by the service at this hotel. Every single person I interacted with was friendly, helpful, and professional, but in a non-annoying and non-forced way. That’s so rare at hotels in the US, in my opinion.

From the doorman Louie, to everyone at the front desk, the staff at this hotel are top notch.

Bottom line

San Francisco can be a tough hotel market, with outrageously variable pricing. Rates at the St. Regis seem to vary from $350 to $1,000 per night for a standard room, depending on the time of year (then again, an average four star hotel can range from ~$150 to ~$800 per night, depending on the time of year).

The St. Regis San Francisco is one of my favorite city hotels in the US thanks to the stylish, minimalist design, and the flawless service. I love returning whenever I’m in San Francisco, assuming the premium isn’t too great compared to some other hotels I’d consider.

I can’t recommend this hotel enough…

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About lucky

Ben Schlappig (aka Lucky) is a travel consultant, blogger, and avid points collector. He travels about 400,000 miles a year, primarily using miles and points to fund his first class experiences. He chronicles his adventures, along with industry news, here at One Mile At A Time.

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Comments

  1. I love the St. Regis brand in general. Love how they continue to have proper desks and proper, enclosed bathrooms, unlike some other chains that sometimes aim for the high end market. It isn’t cheap, but I’ve never had an experience that wasn’t worth it. Good to see that the SF location is excellent.

  2. I don’t mean to be negative for the sake of it but this looks like a very very dull hotel. Bland. You might be anywhere -and pay a good deal less for it.

  3. Great review as always.

    I am curious with other Starwood members if they receive the same beautiful flowers in the room for being a loyal guest? You deserve the extra attention as you are a great blogger but knowing if this is a blogger amenity or Platinum amenity would be interesting.

    Either way, looks beautiful.

  4. @evan–I’m not sure where you stay that looks more exciting, but calling the StR bland is just laughable. It’s a beautifully modern hotel.

    @Lucky–I couldn’t agree with you more. This StR San Francisco is my favorite city hotel in the entire USA. I love it. I’ll be there 3 times on paid stays in the coming 3 months…and a 4th time for a comp’d stay in December. Everyone at the hotel is incomparably gracious, friendly, and warm and goes out of their way to help.

  5. @Lucky is the hotel’s breakfast only a la cartè or is there a (cold) buffet set up extra?

    Thanks for the review!

  6. Looking at this trip schedule, I am slightly blown away that you will feature dining reviews of hotel restaurants in Rome of all places.

  7. At the St Regis SF right now and you need to mention how worn a lot of the furniture is. The pillow and bed skirts were in tatters in my room. The chaise lounge had a few stains on it too. I spoke to the front desk and they acknowledged that things haven’t been replaced in 10 years and they’re waiting for corporate to approve the changes. Sigh.

  8. Third and Mission is so ghetto…how many homeless psychos did you have to fend off outside the hotel doors to go anywhere? And what’s so spectacular about the lobby…it look like a Howard Johnsons to me.

  9. @ Philip: That’s ridiculous that “things haven’t been changed in 10 years” and even more preposterous that someone working there would tell you that. It sounds like you are a troll trying to create negativity where none exists. Of course, let’s forbid there be any stains on a chaise! Of course, your pillow and bed skirt tatters sounds far fetched since I’ve stayed in the hotel many times (including 2x already this past year with 2 more coming up in the next few weeks) and never seen anything remotely like you pretend to be true. Please go bother other idiots like you where they can’t so obviously spot your duplicity and utter nonsense.

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