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“Horrible Redesign, Looks Like a Vampire Brothel”

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The Scarlet Huntington
Ranked #10 of 229 Hotels in San Francisco
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 10 June 2014

It pains me to say that one of the most historic and classically beautiful San Francisco hotels has recently been converted into what looks like a vampire brothel. The redesign of this hotel is so puzzling to me, I truly cannot understand it. The now "Scarlet" Huntington has been redesigned such that their original beautiful white wood walls with crown molding have been covered with cheap red faux velour fabric. Beautifully upholstered club chairs have been replaced with faux velour couches in bright red, purple, green--essentially any color in the rainbow--that give you a headache just looking at them. The overall design of the lobby resembles the pediatrics wing of your local hospital, without the children's books and toys. The guest rooms, once calm and comforting, are now outfitted with green lizard skin headboards and gilded furniture. Are you familiar with Quagmire's bachelor pad in Family Guy? I feared the flip of a light switch would result in the lights turning down, a disco ball descending from the ceiling, and the bed flipping over to reveal a heart-shaped headboard and zebra sheets.

Overall, the decor is loud, tasteless and looks as though it was borrowed from the set designers of True Blood. I understand the need to update an old hotel and I, myself, am a contemporary and modern design enthusiast, but this redesign falls so flat in its attempt at modern design that I am certain a 5-year-old child could design with more grace than this.

The service is friendly and the restaurant is still wonderful.

  • Stayed: June 2014, travelled with friends
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2  Thank Nicole N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
William M, Public Relations Manager at The Scarlet Huntington, responded to this reviewResponded 12 June 2014

Dear Nicole N,

First and foremost, thank you for taking the time to review us, and for providing us with your feedback. Regarding the new decor, the Scarlet Huntington (formerly the Huntington) has a reputation as being one of the most beautiful, ornate, and classic hotels in San Francisco. When we began the renovation, our intent was to preserve the classic features of the hotel, while replacing the items which needed much attention, such as the carpet, fabrics, elevators, etc. We have preserved the crown molding, hand carved wood work, the chandelier in the lobby, and other features that are original from 1924. Building upon the classic foundation of the hotel, we incorporated aspects that represent the rich cultural heritage of San Francisco. Indeed, the new aesthetic is bold and consists of vibrant colors and rich fabrics, and may not be congruent with everyones tastes. On behalf of the hotel, I do apologize that you found it to be unsatisfactory. We are never happy to hear when our guests are dissatisfied.

Thank you for mentioning the friendly, superb service we continue to offer, as well as the wonderful Big 4 restaurant. We appreciate your review, and will bear it in mind moving forward.

Sincerely,

William Miller IV
Public Relations

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685 - 691 of 1,397 reviews

Reviewed 10 June 2014 via mobile

We have enjoyed our visit and the hotel has exceeded our expectations. We are celebrating our 20th wedding anniversary and this hotel had an air of charm and grace. Big rooms decorated beautifully. The staff is friendly, knowledgable and informative about the area. Looking forward to our next visit. I will be leaving a bit of my heart in this stunning city.

Stayed: June 2014, travelled as a couple
2  Thank Robin112300
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
William M, Public Relations Manager at The Scarlet Huntington, responded to this reviewResponded 12 June 2014

Dear Robin112300,

Thank you ever so much for taking the time to write us a review. Congratulations on 20 years of marriage! San Francisco is a fantastic place to celebrate such an event, and we're glad you chose to stay at the Scarlet Huntington. Thank you for noting the 'large, beautifully decorated rooms', and friendly, knowledgable staff. You can be sure to expect the same level of service upon your return. Thank you again, and we look forward to your next stay in San Francisco!

Sincerely,

William Miller IV
Public Relations

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Reviewed 9 June 2014

We stayed for a three day mother/daughters weekend. We were greeted by the super friendly valet and Cornelius the doorman. We were ushered into the beautiful lobby, luggage and car taken care of without a hitch.Ours was a beautifully decorated suite on the 10th floor. The views were awesome, we could see nearly the whole city! The bathroom was gorgeous double vanity and a soaking tub/rainshower. Linens and towels were beautiful.The flat-screen TV and Keurig coffee were icing on the cake. All the staff; frontdesk, bellman, doorman and maids were very kind and friendly, made our stay feel very personal. The pool and spa were very nice, made me wish I'd made time for a spa treatment :) The hotel is a great location for sightseeing and shopping, the cable car is adjacent. Daily we walked to Union Square shopping and Chinatown.
We will definitely be going back again!!

Room Tip: Our tenth floor corner suite has lots of windows and great views! Loved it, it was very quiet too!
  • Stayed: June 2014, travelled with friends
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2  Thank Rhonda M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
William M, Public Relations Manager at The Scarlet Huntington, responded to this reviewResponded 12 June 2014

Dear Rhonda M.,

Thank you for your beautifully written review! I couldn't have described the hotel better myself. I'm delighted to hear that your mother/daughter experience at the Scarlet Huntington was a success. I see that you enjoyed your fabulous 10th floor suite, the superb service, our location, and of course the staff. Cornelius will be glad to hear that his dedication to the guests is appreciated. Thank you again for your excellent review. We look forward to welcoming you back upon your return to San Francisco. Please let us know ahead of time if you would like to stay in the same room; we are more than happy to accommodate.

Best,

William Miller IV
Public Relations

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Reviewed 7 June 2014

Have stayed at the Huntington Hotel for several years and always felt very comfortable. However, it was badly in need of a complete update, particularly the carpeting, bathrooms, etc. We just stayed again after the re-opening last month. Loved the new decor and colors. Rooms are spacious; carpeting is beautiful; rooms painted and decorated very smartly, yet you feel comfortable. Also loved the flat screen TV, beautiful linens and extras like a Keurig coffee machine in our room. As always, the service is superb. Glad to see they didn't change the Big Four bar/restaurant much; it's still very old San Francisco. We'll definitely be back again soon.

Room Tip: The park-side rooms, particularly on higher floors, have lovely views of the Cathedral, city and SF...
  • Stayed: June 2014, travelled with friends
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2  Thank KayG_10
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
William M, Public Relations Manager at The Scarlet Huntington, responded to this reviewResponded 10 June 2014

Dear KayG_10,

Thank you for your laudatory review! We love to hear from our guests who have stayed with us before the renovation, and we're glad to hear you are pleased with the new décor! The renovation was indeed necessary, and we agree that the changes look fantastic. Thank you for noting that the service continues to be superlative. We are working hard to uphold the level of service and hospitality our guests have come to expect over the years. Thank you again for taking the time to review us, we look forward to welcoming you back in the not so distant future!

Best,

William Miller IV
Public Relations

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Reviewed 6 June 2014

We stayed 2 days after the hotel re-opened. The rooms are an excellent size, nice furnished and our room was not as loud at the web page may have you believe!!

The only issue we had was the shower - a pull (very very hard) and turn. Once you get it working the better.

It's a city centre hotel so the higher the better.

Service is excellent - and very attentive.

Breakfast makes you realise what an institution this place is - loved by the locals - and the early evening the restaurant and bar is busy.

  • Stayed: June 2014, travelled as a couple
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Thank Chris H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
William M, Public Relations Manager at The Scarlet Huntington, responded to this reviewResponded 9 June 2014

Dear Chris H.,

Thank you very much for your thoughtful review. I'm glad to hear you enjoyed your stay at the Scarlet Huntington! I see that you found the rooms to be quiet, spacious, and nicely furnished.

I have addressed the issue regarding the shower handle with our staff. I am told that the issue may be due to the hardware being brand new.

Thank you for noting the excellent service we provide, and the overall great impression we left you with. We look forward to welcoming you back upon your return to San Francisco.

Sincerely,

William Miller IV
Public Relations

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Reviewed 6 June 2014

While the rooms & bathrooms are of a nice size, the décor is cold/hard and does not fit the architecture; the rooms have no charm. I understand that this is a recent change with the new ownership; it's too bad they have no sense of what's appropriate for a building of this style and history. There was only one person working at check-in with at least three parties in line; the concierge did not assist, and check-in took a long time. The hotel was not at all full, and we were given a room next to a family with a baby. It was an adjoining room so the door (rather than a solid wall) allowed more crying to come through at 3 a.m. When we told the desk person about this at check-out, he said he was sorry to hear it but did nothing to mollify the situation. On the positive side, the doorman was very helpful, and the location was great for us. Other than the crying baby, the room was very quiet as our room was not on the street side. I would only stay here again if I got a very good price, wanted to be in that location, and wasn't expecting a charming hotel.

Room Tip: Ask for a room not on the street side to make sure you have a quieter room.
  • Stayed: May 2014, travelled as a couple
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Thank trvlquestions
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
William M, Public Relations Manager at The Scarlet Huntington, responded to this reviewResponded 6 June 2014

Dear Trvlquestions,

First and foremost, thank you for taking the time to review us, and to provide us with your feedback. I was most displeased to hear about the issue you noted with the front desk and the noise you heard in the adjacent room. Our front desk agents are instructed to offer our guests a different room if the one they are staying in is unsatisfactory for any reason. I have informed our management of this issue and it will be addressed immediately. Additionally, I do apologize our new décor is not congruent with your tastes. We are often applauded for the fashion forward aesthetic (indeed, we are being featured on an 'interior design tour of SF'); however we understand that a bold décor will not be loved by everyone.

On another note, I see that you enjoyed our fantastic location atop Nob Hill, and our exceptional
doorman. The items you have noted are being addressed immediately; and you can expect a different, improved experience when you come back to see us.

Best,

William Miller IV
Public Relations

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Reviewed 5 June 2014

I am writing this from our lovely and very spacious room overlooking Huntington park. Decor is fun; not your usual hotel decor. Staff is super friendly and professional. TA forums recommended a number of hotels in Union Square....so happy I did not take their advice. Love this location and liked exploring neighborhoods in Nob Hill and Russian Hill. We would return in a heartbeat!!

Room Tip: Loved our room overlooking California St.
  • Stayed: June 2014, travelled as a couple
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Thank jfitzp1741
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
William M, Public Relations Manager at The Scarlet Huntington, responded to this reviewResponded 6 June 2014

Dear Jfitzp1741,

Thank you so much for your glowing review! I'm so pleased to hear you're enjoying your stay at the Scarlet Huntington. The rooms overlooking Huntington Park offer such a special view; unparalleled in the city. Nob Hill is often referred to as 'the crown jewel' of San Francisco for good reason!

Thank you again for taking the time to review us. We look forward to welcoming you back upon your return to the city!

Best,

William Miller IV
Public Relations

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about The Scarlet Huntington

Address: 1075 California Street, San Francisco, CA 94108-2251
Phone Number:
Region: United States > California > San Francisco > Nob Hill
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#4 Spa Hotel in San Francisco
#7 Romantic Hotel in San Francisco
#8 Luxury Hotel in San Francisco
#15 Family Hotel in San Francisco
#17 Business Hotel in San Francisco
Price Range: £235 - £485 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4.5 star — The Scarlet Huntington 4.5*
Number of rooms: 134
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Designed to spark the imagination and provide an adventure for the senses, the much beloved and newly renovated Huntington Hotel re-emerges in May 2014 from a $15 million renovation as The Scarlet Huntington. The Scarlet Huntington builds upon the property's original charm, graciousness and exceptionally high standards while introducing locals and visitors to a unique and avant-garde style that is influenced by a vibrant Singapore Peranakan heritage woven together with the opulence of San Francisco. More than just a name, The Scarlet possesses a distinguished charm and charismatic aura, likened to a gracious hostess who indulges guests with a luxurious stay experience. Providing a warm ad familiar welcome, the iconic red of the former Huntington Hotel's exterior - as displayed in the brick facade and illuminated sign high atop the hotel - will permeate the new aesthetic, representing the hotel's heritage while embracing the passion and allure defined by The Scarlet; offering uninhibited luxury to every guest. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Huntington Hotel & Nob Hill San Francisco
The Huntington Hotel And Nob Hill Spa

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