When the hotels in San Francisco get booked up because of the endless series of conventions, I just stay in Berkeley and use BART to get back and forth quickly (I don't like paying more than $200/night, but I aim for a 4-star experience). The Shattuck Plaza is -- quite literally -- across the street from the Downtown Berkeley BART stop and in the heart of Berkeley's restaurant district (yes, a few homeless gather there, but even when I arrived on BART well after midnight, there were many others getting off BART at the same stop, and the area is well lit). Beautiful old building nicely restored just a few years ago with some fun and funky common-area finishes. Rooms are smallish, as expected in a 100-year-old hotel. But the decor is extremely well done so the accommodations feel current but cozy. Like nice European hotels, if you aren't happy with the room you're assigned, and there's alternate availability, they will gladly show you options. And do look if you're unsatisfied with your first assignment. Different rooms have different configurations, different bathroom sizes and variable angles on the TV (e.g., in my room, the TV wasn't on an extendable swivel so the viewing angle from the bed wasn't ideal). All bathrooms that I saw were very small (room for one)...but done up with first-class finishes. Only suggestion I would make is for management to install a magnifying make-up mirror in the bathroom as well as a full-length mirror somewhere in the room (e.g., back of the closet door). View from my room was a spectacular -- albeit distant -- panoroma of the Golden Gate Bridge and San Francisco skyline (but I'd focus more on a room you like v. a view you'll enjoy once or twice briefly). Spectacular sunsets my first evening there. While I'm not a fan of the on-site restaurant, the hotel is a great place to stay while visiting Berkeley or San Francisco.