We stayed for 5 nights at this hotel during Spring Break 2013. The hotel is PERFECT for families that want to see the Wharf, everything was a short (5-15 minute normal walk) distance from this hotel. Wonderful, fresh crab and sourdough 2 blocks away and we all agreed we would highly recomment this hotel for the price. The staff were EXTREMELY nice, especially Brandy, considering how busy they were with 2 large school groups staying at the hotel also for Spring Break. Our room was bottom floor in the back (#180) and we did not have any problem with noise at all.
We like HIE because of the free breakfast, it was typical like all the others which is enough for us and there was plenty, even with the large groups. The only bad thing was I am gluten-free and not much for me offered at breakfast, but there is a Trader Joe's a block and a half easy walk away that had everything I needed cheap. My teens loved to snack on the fresh sourdough large loaf ($5) I bought each morning at the factory 2 blocks away. We road cable cars ($14 daily pass or multi days for $28), road the antique electric trolley cars (you use the same pass), and went to Alcatraz ($30pp).
The kids thought the Segway tour we did with Electric Tour Company, near Ghiradelli factory, was the best. We had Jasmine as our guide and she made this 2-3 hour tour a blast. You drive on the streets as a group and my kids said "even mom did good" and considering I have have back surgery in the past I was surprised how easy this was. Jasmine gave lots of history and fun facts to our group and even stopped for a quick slice of pizza when traveling through the Italian part of town. It was expensive for us, $70pp, but was well worth the time if this is something you have never done before. We thought about using bikes, but at $50pp for that, we decided to splurge. And again, only 6 blocks from the hotel so again hotel is perfect location.
We had to fly into Oakland airport from where we live. I had read about using Quake Super Shuttle and it was perfect. Again a little pricey, $180 round trip for family of 4, but you schedule before you leave home, they were extremely prompt, and drive you around the LONG traffic jam on the Bay Bridge and got us to our hotel within 30 minutes. Same for the trip back. We saw others using BART and trolleys, and then dragging bags several blocks, and that takes twice as long. Quake was worth the convenience.
Overall, great trip. We booked air and hotel through Allegiant because that is what flew direct for us. With teens, they can make these walks without problems and get to enjoy some of the wierd street people at the same time!!