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“What a gem!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Hotel Drisco

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Hotel Drisco
2901 Pacific Avenue, San Francisco, CA 94115   |  
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Ranked #1 of 236 hotels in San Francisco
GreenLeadersSilver level
San Francisco, California
1 review
“What a gem!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 3, 2012

My wife and I stumbled upon this quaint little gem unexpectedly and our expectations were exceeded at every turn - from the gracious reception and good bye we received from the front desk staff - to all the perfectly executed details: a spotless room with beautiful linens, complimentary slippers, interesting Pacific Heights architecture from another era, beautiful central location, and the great downstairs room where we relished in our complimentary continental breakfast complete with smoke salmon, clotted English cream, lemon curd, and, oh yes, of course I'll have a cappuccino. The Drisco dream I call it and it is. A dreamy, beautiful setting, wonderful staff and really nicely run organization with a really nice old world European feel on a small and intimate scale that I miss amidst larger scale hotels. Our last stay was at the Ritz on Nob Hill and I loved that, too, but next time we're going back to the Drisco.

Room Tip: We stayed in a room on the 3rd floor with a private bathroom across the hall. The separate bathroom...
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 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.
DriscoManager, General Manager at Hotel Drisco, responded to this review, December 9, 2012
Dear Guest,

Thanks so much for your lovely review -- it's great to know that you'll be visiting us again instead of the Ritz! The "Drisco dream" awaits your return...

Kind Regards,

John Spear
General Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (170)
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English first
Chicago, Illinois
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 18, 2012

This hotel is a great find. We had always stayed downtown when in San Francisco but this will be our new destination. We were put in a king suite, which was spacious and well appointed, including a large and modern bathroom. The service was outstanding and started before we arrived. Although we were only booked for one night, we received a call in advance of our stay checking to see if we had any special requests or needs. Both the wine reception and breakfast were nice touches. The neighborhood is beautiful, and we enjoyed exploring a new part of the city. We had a car with us and found very convenient on-street parking.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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2 reviews
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 16, 2012 via mobile

We stayed 1 week at the Hotel Drisco during our first visit to San Francisco & now we couldn't imagine staying any where else. For us, the neighborhood was much preferable to downtown. Pacific Heights is quiet & beautiful & close to great boutique shopping streets & wonderful restaurants. We felt like locals. It was easy to take municipal transit to all the touristy sites. The entire staff was lovely & extremely helpful. Our room was large & well-appointed. The complimentary breakfast was far superior to all others we have experienced. We look forward to our next visit.

  • Stayed November 2012
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Fort Worth, Texas
Senior Contributor
46 reviews 46 reviews
17 hotel reviews
Reviews in 19 cities Reviews in 19 cities
42 helpful votes 42 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed November 13, 2012

Our experience at Hotel Drisco was a mixed bag. It is a very lovely historic hotel and the service is second to none. Every single employee treated us with the utmost courtesy and respect.

The room was nice with everything we needed, though it was VERY SMALL. We booked a standard king room and asked for one on the top floor but the room we got was much smaller than the photo on their web site portrays. BUT, it had a great view which I was very pleased with, being my first time in San Fran.

We enjoyed the wine reception the evening we arrived and it was very welcoming with various wines and appetizers. It was wonderful. The morning breakfast service was a nice variety of various breads, croissants, pastries, cheeses, cold meats and hot oatmeal. It was just right for us. And the coffee was some of the best I have ever had!!

After checking out, we walked outside with our luggage only to discover that our rental car had been towed!! Evidently my husband unknowingly parked in front of a private driveway the night before. All the parking spots on the side street were taken and he had to find a spot in the front at night and in the rain. He did not see a garage door or driveway and it was definitely not marked as "no parking". The hotel manager called & found out it had been towed that morning, just hours before. She called us a taxi to take us to retrieve the car. It cost a whopping $500 and we were also ticketed!! That fiasco way more than DOUBLED the cost of our stay at this hotel. Fortunately we did not miss our flight.

Now we do take responsibility for our mistake and acknowledge that the front desk clerk did offer assistance with parking the night of the offense, though the car was already parked by that time. However, we feel the hotel could do a WHOLE LOT MORE to make sure this doesn't happen to their guests. They brag on their web site about free street parking and how hotels downtown can cost more than $60/night for parking. But they do not show you where can & CANNOT park or tell you the car has to be moved every 4 hours on weekdays or you'll be ticketed. I only found this out beforehand from other trip adviser reviewers so I asked the doorman if he would move our car us one day, which he did.

Also, I feel that since the hotel knows how strict they are about parking (not to mention one of the highest towing costs in the US!), they could provide some kind of hotel sticker or something to put in your car which would alert the police that you are a guest at the hotel and hopefully contact the hotel with any problems to avoid guests getting towed.

Because of this, I deducted a whole review point. It was a big, costly negative for us. Otherwise, I would have rated this hotel a four.

Room Tip: Ask for a top floor for a great view & don't bring a car!
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  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
DriscoManager, General Manager at Hotel Drisco, responded to this review, November 14, 2012
Dear Guest,

I am so glad that you were able to experience all of the wonderful amenities we offer at the Drisco, but I am saddened that the towing of your car left you with a mixed impression of your experience with us. For our part, we advise guests of local parking restrictions in our Introductory Guide that you are given at check-in, in the welcome letter in your room and on a framed sign at the front desk. Our bell staff will even move your car for you during the day to comply with the time restrictions -- we mention this in several places too. I am sorry to say that placing some sort of Drisco placard on our guests' dashboards will not dissuade the local parking enforcement officials from ticketing or towing an illegally parked car. San Francisco, like many municipalities across the country, is very strict when it comes to enforcing local parking laws.

Again, I am extremely sorry that your stay was colored by this negative experience, but I honestly believe that we at the Drisco do absolutely everything possible to streamline and simplify your parking experience. At the end of the day, our guests do need to take a measure of personal responsibility to make sure that they do not park in front of a neighbor's driveway.

Kind Regards,

John Spear
General Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Edmonton, Canada
Contributor
17 reviews 17 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 12, 2012

I have travelled to San Francisco many, many times and recently have been staying in the downtown/Union Square area at a variety of quality hotels. This time, mostly because the downtown prices were outrageous in October I chose Hotel Drisco which was reasonable. I was very happy with my choice. I knew the neighbourhood wasn't far from the Union Street and Fillmore Street areas which meant lots of dining and shopping options. The hotel is in the midst of the beautiful, classic old mansions of Pacific Heights which means it is quiet, clean and scenic.

A great feature I only learned about after check in was a free morning shuttle service in a Lincoln SUV to downtown; in my case the door of my conference hotel. My own car was parked on the street nearby and the hotel moved it when needed to comply with the parking rules. My room was very large with every comfort. There was a very elegant European style breakfast included.
In short it was a wonderful stay. A new visitor to SF who wanted to see all of the usual tourist sites might prefer to stay in the center. For someone who knows the city and likes the neighbourhoods this is ideal.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled solo
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 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.
Kansas City, Missouri
Senior Contributor
46 reviews 46 reviews
41 hotel reviews
Reviews in 31 cities Reviews in 31 cities
49 helpful votes 49 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 11, 2012

My girlfriend and I stayed here the night before I proposed to her. The hotel was perfect in almost every way. However, no hotel is perfect which I will delve into later in my review. Our room was very spacious with a separate sitting area and over sized bathroom. The location can't be beat as the views are incredible and it is away from all of the hustle & bustle of the city. Parking was a bit difficult to find at certain times of the day. We arrived back at the hotel pretty late the night that we stayed here and I had to drive around for about 5 minutes to find a spot. I ended up finding a spot about a block away from the hotel so I highly recommend dropping the luggage and everyone else off at the front of the hotel before finding a spot. I would have been rather difficult to haul our bags up some of the hills after finding a parking spot.

The only complaint that we had about the room was that the walls are very thin and if you are a light sleeper will hear activity from other rooms as well as outside. I woke up once during the night due to this, but I am a light sleeper so it is a common occurrence.

When we visit San Francisco again in the future we will not hesitate to stay at the Hotel Drisco again.

Room Tip: Be sure to ask for a room on a higher floor further away from street noise.
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  • Stayed December 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 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.
Oakham, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
157 reviews 157 reviews
56 hotel reviews
Reviews in 64 cities Reviews in 64 cities
70 helpful votes 70 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 8, 2012

We stayed for four nights in this very comfortable and quiet hotel situated in the Pacific Heights area of San Francisco. Unsurprisingly It is on a hill and has a corner position so the rooms on the front do have a view towards the harbour. The public rooms are tastefully and comfortably furnished, it felt rather like being in a friends country house. The staff are discreet and efficient and we found the concierges helpful and welcoming. The room was large as was the ensuite bathroom, Agraria products, with a very comfortable bed and pillows. The breakfasts were delicious with fresh and dried fruits, various fruit juices, cereals, fresh breads and pastries, porridge, yoghurts, cold meats and cooked items to order. Tea, coffee and water are available 24/7 in the sitting room and bottled water and chocolate biscuits provided every afternoon, ice too if required. A wine reception is offered each evening from 5pm to 6.30pm accompanied by cheeses, fruit, charcuterie and a hot hors d'oeuvres. A daily newspaper is provided to each room with others available in the sitting room, and there is a chauffered car service each weekday from 7 to 9.30am to the city centre. This is the only place where we heard classical music played, but not exclusively. The minor criticisms are that the room safe is too small for a laptop, the walk-in wardrobe has no light and there is no restaurant. However, local restaurants are within a 10-15 minute walk and bus routes are closeby. It is fully carpeted with creaky floorboards (!) and a small lift. Whilst we loved it, I can appreciate that it may not suit those in the 20-30 age-group.

Room Tip: Suites are on the front and have large windows giving views towards the harbour.
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Additional Information about Hotel Drisco

Also Known As:
Drisco Hotel San Francisco
Drisco San Francisco
Address: 2901 Pacific Avenue, San Francisco, CA 94115
Phone Number:
Location: United States > California > San Francisco
Amenities:
Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Room Service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Family Hotel in San Francisco
#2 Romantic Hotel in San Francisco
#2 Business Hotel in San Francisco
#10 Green Hotel in San Francisco
#23 Best Value Hotel in San Francisco
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Hotel Drisco, constructed in 1903, blends traditional elegance with the convenience, comfort, and amenities of a world-class modern hotel. Our warm hospitality, inviting atmosphere, and impeccable service are designed to please business and leisure travelers alike. Our complimentary services include a gourmet continental breakfast, evening wine reception, chauffeured sedan service to several popular San Francisco locations and complimentary high-speed Internet access. ... more   less 
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