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“Classic style and close to everything!” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Hotel Rex, a Joie de Vivre hotel

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Hotel Rex, a Joie de Vivre hotel
3.5 of 5 Hotel   |   562 Sutter St, San Francisco, CA 94102   |  
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Ranked #36 of 236 hotels in San Francisco
Puyallup, Washington, United States
2 reviews
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
“Classic style and close to everything!”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 22, 2013

We stayed at the Rex and loved its proximity to EVERYTHING the Bart drops you off just blocks away, the Powell trolley lines are likewise just down the street, and amazing shops and restaurants are everywhere. With a nightcap after a long day of sight-seeing, the bartender made us feel at home with a delightful conversation. Additionally, upon our arrival, the staff was informative and delightful, and the room was pleasantly appointed. Finally, the bed was amazingly comfortable and I would really like to know where I can buy those pillows - best hotel bed I have ever experienced. We would definitely stay here again. Thank you,

Room Tip: The higher floors have the best views.
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  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,103 people have reviewed this hotel

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (127)
Date | Rating
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English first
Woodbridge, England, United Kingdom
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 21, 2013

Wendy and I stayed 3 nights at the end of a whistle stop tour of the South-western USA. Reception at the front desk was friendly despite our early arrival - no hassle while we divessted ourselves of the rental car.

The room was typical of a UK period hotel i.e. small in a US context but nicely furnished with original sash windows and at least some original glazing judging by the ripple and gas bubbles in the pane. The 1960's era in window air conditioner functioned but was not linked to the heat thermostat so you had to control heat and air separately. It also could have easily woken the dead with the noise it made (would explain the room 509 ghost!).

The library bar was cosy and well stocked with booze and local 'regulars' ready to engage with the guests - great conversational bar tenders who could mix a stiff Manhattan too. Complimentary free wine 5-6pm was super flexible - turn up and you got a drink if not always in a wine glass ( ran out on combined book club and S-F related movie night - a packed house indeed)

Overall a friendly and slightly quirky take on the city boutique - loads more fun than a chain clone hotel - we would definitely stay again.

Room Tip: Room 509 is definitively haunted according to my wife - could be Tony's cocktails though!11
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  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Newcastle, Australia
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed August 18, 2013

I expected the Rex to be unique and was not disappointed. Quirky, colourful decor to highlight the heritage building, library bar was quaint and full of life. Rooms are painfully small, not unlike some London or NYC small hotels however very comfortable and the location is sooo very convenient to Union Square, shopping, all transport and restaurants and cafes. Big problem with room AC being very noisy but necessary in mid August heat. Staff were genuinely helpful. Hotel hosted a cabaret on one night and jazz in the salon the next. Overall it probably was ahead of the plethora of hotel chains which are priced higher during this busy tourist season, but only just!

Room Tip: Ask for a lower floor room as there is only one lift and its better to use the stairs on the way dow...
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  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
swansea
Senior Contributor
31 reviews 31 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 16 cities Reviews in 16 cities
19 helpful votes 19 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 17, 2013

The location is excellent, just a short walk to Union Square,the shopping mall,the tram line and a couple of Irish bars.The rooms are lovely and feel modern and classy.The staff are friendly,polite and helpful.
The hotel lift(elevator),is rubbish,and needs to be sorted out.

Room Tip: Try to get a room on the 1st or 2nd floor,so you don't have to be a slave to the rubbish lift
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  • Stayed July 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Las Vegas, Nevada
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
1 of 5 stars Reviewed August 17, 2013

I booked this room based on reviews from other travelers They all must have been tripping on some substance. We arrived ate 7:30pm. Check-in is at 3:00pm. The room was not yet ready! We brought our luggage to the room, which was small (but OK). The decor was dated. The front desk clerk had given us a few suggestions for dinner. We immediately went out as it was late and we were hungry. When we returned, we discovered that the heat was on. We turned it off and switched to air conditioning. Even though it was getting cool outside, it did not call for the heat that was pouring out of the unit. The heat would not shut off and the air never came on. We called the front desk at 6:00am. They sent somebody up immediately. He tried doing what we did the night before, then suggested we open the window! We had already done that (the window slammed shut). Now I know why the room was not ready upon arrival - somebody else had checked into this room, complained and got moved. When we asked to be moved, we were told that they were completely booked. Worst night of sleep and at $200+!!!! Totally disappointed.

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
HotelRexGM, General Manager at Hotel Rex, a Joie de Vivre hotel, responded to this review, August 19, 2013
Dear Captainsmom:
I am sorry to hear about the poor experience you had at the Hotel Rex. As a 100 year old building we do sometimes have problems with climate control but your overall experience was definitely not up to our standards. I will address all of your concerns with the staff and with our engineering crew.
thank you,
Ina
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York City, New York
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed August 13, 2013

My fiance and I booked this hotel through Jetsetter, which inaccurately portrayed it as a boutique, library-style hotel with unique, interesting rooms and great service.

We'll start with the pros:

- Admittedly fantastic location
- Decent lobby bar, which was convenient for grabbing drinks before dinner
- Cute dog on the property

And now the cons:

- The rooms were awful. And I wasn't expecting five-star quality, either. But our room had drab, overused furniture, hard linens, an extremely uncomfortable bed, a weak shower, and a tiny window facing out into an alley, which provided us with virtually no light whatsoever.
- No central air in our room, just a noisy and fairly useless window unit
- Overpriced. Granted, we were staying during the high season, so rates were high overall, but at nearly $300/night, we would have been better off staying at one of the area's larger chains, which at least would have provided us with a comfortable room.
- Service - The service was blah - no truly poor experiences to write of, but the people manning the desk seemed relaxed to the point of being lazy.

In all truth, if I had paid $99 for this room, I probably wouldn't have much to complain about. That being said, when staying at a hotel that invites you to "[i]ndulge in accommodations that exude 1920's glamour," touting itself as a "beautifully appointed San Francisco hotel" with luxurious guestrooms, I expect, at the very least, a decent place to stay.

Room Tip: If pushed to stay here, be sure to request an exterior room that doesn't face out into an alley.
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  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 8, 2013

This charming bijou hotel is very handy for Union Square and all the shopping. It's also a few minutes walk from China Town and also lots of good restaurants. They have free tea and coffee in the lobby every morning and you don't feel weird going down with bed hair to get your morning fix because it's small quaint character makes you feel right at home. I'm not sure if it's all year round but when we were there they had a free glass of wine for all the guests between 5 and 6 pm. A really nice touch that creates a nice atmosphere in the Library Bar. The rooms are nicely furnished and very comfortable. The only comment I would make is that the huge flat screen TV on the wall is a little out place with the nice furnishings.

Room Tip: Opt out of room service once, for the environment, and get a $5 bar voucher
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  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
HotelRexGM, General Manager at Hotel Rex, a Joie de Vivre hotel, responded to this review, August 19, 2013
Thank you for the great review!
We often do feel conflicted about modern amenities such as flat screen tvs in our classic furnishings. I appreciate your feedback and it gives us a lot to think about .
-Ina
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Additional Information about Hotel Rex, a Joie de Vivre hotel

Address: 562 Sutter St, San Francisco, CA 94102
Phone Number:
Location: United States > California > San Francisco
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#8 Spa Hotel in San Francisco
#27 Business Hotel in San Francisco
#31 Romantic Hotel in San Francisco
#86 Family Hotel in San Francisco
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Hotel Rex, a Joie de Vivre hotel 3.5*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Hotel Rex was inspired by the San Francisco art and literary salons of the 1920's and 30's. Vibrant and alive, the clubby lobby surrounds guests with distinctive period furnishings, walls of antiquarian books, and an exceptional collection of exotic objects and original portraits and murals.The Hotel Rex was designed by noted San Francisco interior designers Candra Scott & Anderson.The Library Bar is where travelers meet the local arts and social scene with themed evenings such as Movie Night, Records at Rex - our bartender plays real vinyl records, Live Jazz on Friday and other days featuring Poetry readings, live coffee house type acoustic guitar performances and more. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Rex Hotel San Francisco
Hotel Rex San Francisco
Rex San Francisco

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