With respect to the good-folk of San Francisco they are obsessed by two things; traffic and the weather- fog in particular!
It dominates both the newspaper and their local television “news” channel Kron4. Which in my opinion is the worst “news” channel in the English speaking world (and that’s saying something). That said, from a consumer perspective, when looking for a hotel, one should not underplay the potential depilating effects “hospitality fog” can have when it comes to choosing a 5 star hotel in which to spend your hard-earned dollar.
One can get disorientated in the ‘fog’ of glossy P.R. material that emanates from all these establishments-reassuring you that their hotel is the one you should seek sanctuary in until the ‘fog’ has lifted. So what to do?
My wife and I spent 11 nights at the St. Regis hotel during the festive season Dec/Jan 2012 on the strength of the reviews on Trip Advisor, as well as the soothing and reassurance words published in their in-house publication: “Bespoke.”
From the moment we stepped through the lobby doors we knew we had made the right choice! While outside the air was frigid an cold, upon entering, we were enveloped in warmth of subtle brown tones, which underpins the décor, giving the entire hotel a warm, understated contemporary luxury feel.
Check in by Alan was fast, efficient and friendly and most of all welcoming, and after an 18 hour flight from Australia-that’s important!
In fact during our entire stay not once did our presence go unacknowledged by any of the staff we encountered. As we left of a morning, eye-contact by at least one employee was made, be they front desk, concierge or door. It was always: “have a good day” or “good morning” and again on our return in the evening we received the same warm greetings. In large hotels such as the St Regis it’s the little things that are very important.
Our room was on the 10th floor. I could really stretch the thesaurus here with all sorts of superlatives to describe it- safe to say it was lovely! Plain white pastel walls, capped off the delightful open-air feel the room had. Again, very important if you are going to spend 11 nights in the room is not to feel claustrophobic.
Being first time visitors to San Francisco, (and being totally unfamiliar with the vagrancies of ‘fog’), we felt that we needed to employ the services of a: “fog-master” to ensure that we continued to make the right choices when it came to choosing where to go and eat and what to see in San Francisco. The “fog-masters” of the St Regis concierge ensured that we never took a faltering step.
In no particular order: Antonio, Caroline, Kathleen, Mariah, Eric and Selena – who recommended probably the best steak house we have ever eaten at (5A5) - all of them really known San Francisco!! Every time, their recommendations on whatever we asked (tours, places to eat et al) were right on the money. Collectively they were the foundation upon which a wonderful holiday was constructed! Thank you!!
Food at the hotel is a serious business.
We ate a couple of times at Vitrine which serves local Californian-fare with the freshest of ingredients. We also enjoyed a lovely room service one evening brought to our room by the very hospitable Casey. Unfortunately we didn’t get the opportunity to dine at their signature restaurant: Ame. My wife and I hope to rectify this on our next visit at years-end.
The hotel is in a good location, a short walk from Union Square and all the public transport facilities.
So in short:
If you are planning a trip to San Francisco, pray for ‘fog’ and enjoy the refuge that is the St Regis.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.