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Kimpton Sir Francis Drake Hotel
Ranked #94 of 230 Hotels in San Francisco
GreenLeadersGold level
Reviewed 6 May 2012 via mobile

Hotel is in great location next to Union Square.
Rooms are nicely decorated but need detailing cleaning.
Service is excellent and quick.
Food drinks at the bars is good but over priced.

  • Stayed: May 2012
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Thank Skotch09
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Jim G, General Manager at Kimpton Sir Francis Drake Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 7 May 2012

Dear Skotch09:

Thank you for your feedback! I already informed my Housekeeping team to thoroughly clean each room. I appreciate your bringing this to my attention. The guest comment is always appreciated.

Lastly, I can't agree with you more on our location and I am glad to know that you enjoyed our service.

Hope to see you back at the Drake.

Jim Gross, General Manager

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Reviews (3,274)
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2,207 - 2,213 of 3,277 reviews

Reviewed 4 May 2012

Good location in downtown San Francisco. Quite a way from Fishermans Wharf though. The doormen are dressed as English beefeater guards, slightly out of place in SF!!! It has no restaurant and a limited room service menu. There is a nightclub on the top floor of this hotel so the lobby and bar areas are often very crowded especially at the weekend and can be noisy. However the concierge, Leif, is the most helpful, charming and knowledgeable concierge I have ever come across in any hotel in the world. There are better hotels close by to this one for the same money.

  • Stayed: March 2012, travelled as a couple
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Thank Bellicious
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Jim G, General Manager at Kimpton Sir Francis Drake Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 7 May 2012

Dear Bellicious:

I appreciate your review on our hotel. Eccentric, indeed...our Beefeater doorman has beenn an iconic fixture in the SF travel industry!

I'm sorry to know that you missed our Scala's Bistro located in our lower lobby (street level on Powell) area. Our culinary staff creates wonderful meals for both our guests and shoppers from all over the world. Hope you'll get to experience it on your next trip to SF.

Lastly, but not least, thank you for mentioning Leif in your review. I certainly agree that he is the best concierget there is!

Jim Gross, General Manager

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Reviewed 2 May 2012

I found this place completely pretentious and would not stay here again as a business traveller. Yes the decor is funky, but I must have had the worst room in the hotel, it was tiny, the bathroom wasnt clean, the paint on the ceiling was peeling, it was very noisy being next to the lift well and looked out onto theroof next door. The staff were just a little too cool for school (besides the bellmen, who were great).

Room Tip: Ask to be away from the lift well and higher up than level 4
  • Stayed: April 2012, travelled on business
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Thank alihoops
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Jim G, General Manager at Kimpton Sir Francis Drake Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 7 May 2012

Dear alihoops:


I appreciate your feedback on your recent visit to our hotel.

Please know that it is certainly not our intention to make our guests feel that we are pretentious, I sincerely apologize for making you feel that way. If there is anything that we could have done differently, please feel free to contact me by calling the hotel.

Additionally, as we speak, our staff is doing the touch-up paint jobs in our rooms.

Regards,

Jim Gross, General Manager

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Reviewed 1 May 2012

This was my wife and my first visit to San Francisco after 8 consecutive New York trips, and we now love San Francisco! The Sir Francis Drake is a very grand hotel with quite possibly some of the best hotel staff I have encountered. From the moment we checked in we felt like we were VIPs! Every morning in the lobby there is a free coffee/tea setup for the guests of the hotel, very nice. The location of the hotel is perfectly located and very convenient to everything San Francisco has to offer.

Now the bad. The hotel property itself does not justify the 4 star ranking it has received. With much appreciation to the hotel management we were upgraded to a larger room, which itself was still small but I had no objections to it. The bathroom is the worst bathroom I have ever encountered in the area of size and amenities. The only toilettries were the shampoo, conditioner, and body wash which were in a wall mounted dispenser inside the shower. When we checked in, there was no body wash, and we called down for it to be replenished. They did replenish it, but with more shampoo! The electical outlet had no faceplate and the wires were exposed wich concerned me greatly. With no exaggeration, I had to have the door open to use the bathroom. I wanted to complain, but my wife convinced me we wouldn't be in the room enough to worry about it.

All in all, the Drake is a beautiful hotel with excellent staff and a great location. But, it is entirely overpriced and does not compare to the other 4 star properties situated around it. If you can get a deal on a room, take the chance, but do not pay the rack room rate.

Room Tip: Do not choose their smallest rooms, definitely upgrade to the next room category.
  • Stayed: April 2012, travelled as a couple
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4  Thank Moondogge
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Jim G, General Manager at Kimpton Sir Francis Drake Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 2 May 2012

Dear Moondogge:

Thank you for staying at the Drake on your first trip to San Francisco! I am certainly happy to know that you enjoyed our service and our location! Additionally, indeed, our hotel is beautiful and is one of the historical buildings that was built in 1928!

I am sorry that the body wash was not replenished in your room. Lastly, but not least, I appreciate your bringing to my attention about electrical outlet. Our engineering team conducts routine check ups, and I will definitely re-address to do a thorough check.

Hope to welcome you back to the Drake on your next SF trip!

Jim Gross, General Manager

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Reviewed 29 April 2012

I cannot rave enough about the time we had at the Sir Francis Drake. I took my mom there for her 60th bday celebration and they treated us like royalty. Everyone was super helpful, the rooms and decor are very unique, and they have a great location right on Union Square. We didn't really have a lot of price limitations and had tons of options and choices of places to stay, but I am SO glad we stayed here. There is a great breakfast place- Sears- across the street, and they have a Starbucks right on site as well. For anyone considering a similar trip, Hubert Keller's Fleur de Lys is a short walk up the street and totally doable-- even in heels. I travel all the time for work but I really was taken aback at the excellent level of service I received here. I will 100% be coming back!

  • Stayed: April 2012, travelled with family
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Thank LawyergirlOH
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Jim G, General Manager at Kimpton Sir Francis Drake Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 30 April 2012

Dear LawyergirlOH:

I am very pleased to read your review on your recent stay with your mother! I really appreciate your taking the time to post such a nice comment.

Nothing makes me more happy to learn the level of the service you received from my staff! I am very proud to have them on my team. And you are absolutely right about the location where our hotel is located - very accessible to many shopping and dining places and other tourist attractions.

Hope to see you at the Drake soon!

Jim Gross, General Manager

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Reviewed 29 April 2012

Very friendly and great location hotel! the staff is incredibly helpful, friendly and insightful. The room was very nice, newly updated and excellent service. Elevators are a little messy on the weekend if the hotel is at high capacity, but nothing too crazy. Only negative is the parking fee. Outrageous at $57 a night and expectations to tip each and every time. Good news though-for next time, public transit is the way to explore the city and save on parking. Will definitely come back and will recommend to all my friends!

Room Tip: definitely spend the money for deluxe. better views and not much more on the expense. staff was aw...
  • Stayed: April 2012, travelled as a couple
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Thank Maria H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Jim G, General Manager at Kimpton Sir Francis Drake Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 30 April 2012

Dear Maria H:

Thank you very much for a nice review on the Drake!

As a general manager of the hotel, I am very pleased to know that our staff has provided with friendly service!

We are one of the historical buildings in SF and with the recent renovation in 2011, we offer a good mixture of old and new. I am happy to know that you liked it! Also, because of our hotel location, most tourist attractions, shopping and dining are within the walking distance, if not easily accessible by cable car and other public transportation.

Visit us soon!

Jim Gross, General Manager

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Reviewed 28 April 2012

I stayed here for two nights in early March on a business trip. On the plus side, the room was clean and quiet, everyone tried to be helpful, and the hotel is extremely close to good restaurants, Union Square shopping and theaters. On the minus side, the decor is tacky in lobby, rooms and restaurant, the elevators were often backed up, and the information provided by the concierge is not always accurate. (contrary to what he told us--you SHOULD make reservations for theater want to attend since they do get sold out). Red seems to be a common theme throughout. Not as restful to the eyes as other hotel decor. The large bright red Sir Francis Drake statue greets you at the bar when you go into the reception area. Those who need to avoid gluten--you really need to stay on top of your order. Despite repeatedly requesting "gluten-free", I was served vegetable lasagna and had to wait almost an hour to finally get my very good gluten-free lunch--a large grilled portobello mushroom with other veggies. As others have noted, the hotel really has a problem with backedup elevators due to large parties and receptions in the evenings. So many people are waiting in line, that they block the stairway entrance if you choose to take the stairs.

  • Stayed: March 2012, travelled on business
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Thank lacontessa1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Jim G, General Manager at Kimpton Sir Francis Drake Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 30 April 2012

Dear lacontessa1:

I appreciate your feedback on your recent stay at the Drake.

Firstly, I apologize for any inconvenience that you experienced. I have addressed to our Concierge department to extend their assistance in double-checking for availability whenever possible.

Secondly, I very much appreciate noting the positive comments on our staff, as well as the location of our hotel.

Hope to welcome you back at the Drake in your future.

Jim Gross, General Manager

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Additional Information about Kimpton Sir Francis Drake Hotel

Address: 450 Powell Street, Union Square, San Francisco, CA 94102-1504 (Formerly Sir Francis Drake Hotel)
Region: United States > California > San Francisco > Union Square
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#18 Green Hotel in San Francisco
#46 Luxury Hotel in San Francisco
#58 Business Hotel in San Francisco
#70 Romantic Hotel in San Francisco
#75 Family Hotel in San Francisco
Price Range: £154 - £468 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Kimpton Sir Francis Drake Hotel 4*
Number of rooms: 416
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Kimpton Sir Francis Drake Hotel, housed in a landmark building in the heart of Union Square, is quintessential San Francisco: exciting, romantic, timelessly elegant and unique. The ornately decorated lobby, old-world hospitality, and Tom Sweeney, the hotel's infamous Beefeater doorman, transport you to another time and place. The legendary Starlight Room, the adjacent Scala's Bistro and unmatched hospitality complete the picture to create an unforgettable San Francisco experience. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Kimpton San Francisco
Sir Francis Drake Hotel San Francisco
Drake Francis Sir

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