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“Trying to be more than they are”

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Argonaut Hotel, A Noble House Hotel
Ranked #14 of 231 Hotels in San Francisco
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersGold level
Reviewed 10 January 2013

We were only going to be in SF for three full days, so we decided to pick a more unusual place than our typical Hilton. It's a cool, funky place with a STRONG maritime theme, but you get the impression, from the helmeted door man to the wine tasting every night, that they WANT to be better than they really are.

The location is close to the wharf and walking distance from Ghirardelli Square and a great breakfast place called Joanie's (do not miss Joanie's!), so the location was good.

Our bed was debatabley barely a king, closer to a queen...we let that pass. The king "deluxe" room we got was micro and the windows looked out on the roof top. There was a distinct formaldehyde-chemical out-gassing smell to the whole room. Not sure what that was and it didn't go away. Hmmm. Decor is VERY nautical. If you like that style, this will make you very happy. lol

The bell staff was ok if they were handling your bags with a tip waiting, but the front desk really didn't know much that was helpful. And what they didn't know, they didn't try to find out. The hotel restaurant was barely passable and we only had dinner there when we got in because it was late. The clam chowder, by their own admission, was like water, so don't get that if you go. My boyfriend had the asparagus and chicken, which were both heavily salted and inedible. But like most people say, don't eat at hotel restaurants, so there you go.

It's the little things that count during a stay. For instance, we stayed there through Christmas Day, so on that day, we thought we'd pick up some iced tea or coffee at the restaurant, only to find out they closed it early. Ok, it was Christmas, but really? For the guests? So, I asked where else we could go that wasn't closed. They had no idea. Wow. I mentioned Cioppino's near the restaurant and the door man quipped "Do you HAVE to go there? I mean, I hear the restrooms are really dirty." lol Tacky, and, since we went there for dinner that night as it turned out, totally untrue. It was a great, clean place.

Hotels should be in the know about the city they're in...the Argonaut staff was not.

So, all in all, not impressed with the level of service, the room was cute but micro, the price was about $140 a night plus fees and taxes, the location is great, but I doubt we'll be back.

Room Tip: We had a room with a window facing in to the roof, which was pretty quiet, sans view though.
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  • Stayed: December 2012, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Jaybird61
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
David_von_Winckler, General Manager at Argonaut Hotel, A Noble House Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 16 January 2013

Hello, Jaybird, we take pride in being the quietly cool kids on the block, not the poser, the nerd, and only sometimes the jock. I am glad we had an exterior view for you at a holiday discount, but of course we regret that that dining snafu. The chowder here is award-winning, so I am very concerned that it had an off night and that the staff made that strange comment as well. Thanks for bringing this to our attention, and I hope that we will get a second chance to show you our a great time. We have a new iPad in our lobby with all kinds of local recommendations and of course our concierge is here 8am-7pm daily and the other staff are available 24 hours. We promise to give you some more useful tips and suggestions for exploring next time. Please reach out to me if we can be of any help in showing you a truly cool time.

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3,246 - 3,252 of 6,025 reviews

Reviewed 10 January 2013

This was the 2nd to last stop on a whirlwind tour of USA & Mexico....and Argonaut left the others in its wake.
Hotel Reception was excellent.....couldn't be more helpful.
Rooms were great ...clean..spacious...
Gym all good
Location outstanding..close to great restaurants etc

One tends to think that if you don't like it here you will never be pleased

Take a bow

Room Tip: Pick rooms looking toward street
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  • Stayed: January 2013, travelled with family
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Thank Zulu0175
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 9 January 2013

I stay here every time I come to San Fran
It is such a charming hotel
And I always get a good night's sleep.
The rooms are decorated beautifully and the robes so cozy.
The have complimentary beverages at 5 and the staff goes out of their way to make sure you're happy
The bell staff are outstanding.

I love this property. It's so convenient too.

  • Stayed: December 2012
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Thank Fabtrav001
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 9 January 2013

We stayed 4 nights and this hotel is one of our favorites. The location is terrific. Right on Jefferson Street (the street that runs the length of the waterfront). Very close to cable cars etc. The hotel was well appointed, staff really friendly and helpful and rooms well laid out and very comfortable. In addition, the hotel provides complementary wine and hot toddy's each afternoon dorm 5-6pm which is a lovely way to meet other guests and exchange holiday tips. Couldn't have been happier with our choice. Our room looked straight out to Alcatraz.

Room Tip: Comfortably slept 4 (self, hubby & 2 teenage girls) in 2 x QB's
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  • Stayed: January 2013, travelled with family
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Thank Instafe
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 9 January 2013

I stayed at the Argonaut twice in the past ten days. The first time was for one night and the experience was terrific. I was somewhat disappointed the second visit for five nights where I found the level of service and staff's interest in or commitment to the guests seriously lacking.

The hotel is in a great location but I don't think I would stay more than three nights as Fishermens' Wharf loses its appeal after a while - there are only so many crab and chowder meals you can have, it is crowded and there really isn't that much to do. Also the restaurant in the hotel was closed indefinitely due to a problem with a gas main which wasn't going to be fixed anytime soon (I think the hotel was using the opportunity to refurbish the kitchen).

Would I stay again? Maybe, but the other Kimpton hotels I have used are much friendlier and service oriented.

  • Stayed: December 2012, travelled with family
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Thank Willie R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 8 January 2013

We loved this hotel. Perfect location - a bit touristy near fishermans wharf but at the good end near the cable car area. Great beds, very quiet considering location. Really fresh clean too a dour teenage son loved the gym. Nice welcome complimentary wine happy hour. One tip: give the wine tasting place attached to hotel a miss. Complete rip off. We will go back to the argonaut for sure!!!

Room Tip: Ask for a bay view room.
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  • Stayed: December 2012, travelled with family
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Thank arwen1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 8 January 2013

This is a very nice hotel located in the heart of Fisherman's Wharf. The Wharf area has plenty of nice shops and decent eateries. There is a nautical theme to this hotel that - unlike some areas of Fisherman's Wharf - is not tacky. The lobby is gorgeous and it being winter, they had a open fireplace with surrounding sofas to sit on. There was also wine hour where you could sample local Californian wines. The decor of the room is actually quite stylish and quirky. We booked a suite which was generously sized, with a main bedroom with ensuite and a separate room with a dining table and living space. My kids slept on the sofa bed and a rollaway bed which were both comfortable, given the circumstances. My only complaint with this hotel - hence, the four stars - was that there was no kitchenette, or at least a "kitchen" type space. There was a bar fridge and a little tray with cups but no cutlery or plates. The coffee machine was in the bathroom. It didn't really make sense and it just needed a bench space where you could at least make a cup of coffee.
Nonetheless, everything else was wonderful. Highlights of San Francisco were Alcatraz, Union Square, day trip to Yosemite and the delicious Ghiradelli chocolates. :)

Room Tip: The King Suite will comfortably sleep 4 four people
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  • Stayed: December 2012, travelled with family
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Thank HolidaymamaMelbourne
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Argonaut Hotel, A Noble House Hotel

Address: 495 Jefferson St, San Francisco, CA 94109-1314
Phone Number:
Region: United States > California > San Francisco > Fisherman’s Wharf
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#4 Family Hotel in San Francisco
#6 Romantic Hotel in San Francisco
#7 Green Hotel in San Francisco
#11 Luxury Hotel in San Francisco
#16 Business Hotel in San Francisco
Price Range: £192 - £612 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Argonaut Hotel, A Noble House Hotel 4.5*
Number of rooms: 252
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Located in the heart of Fisherman's Wharf, San Francisco's most popular destination, the boutique Argonaut Hotel features breathtaking views of the Golden Gate Bridge and Alcatraz Island. This luxury hotel is historically set in a former timber and brick warehouse across from the waterfront. With its exceptional service, its charming style and the adjacent family-friendly Blue Mermaid restaurant, the Argonaut Hotel is an ideal spot to enjoy San Francisco. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Kimpton San Francisco
Argonaut Hotel San Francisco

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