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“We agree--the best small hotel around.” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Hotel Drisco

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Hotel Drisco
2901 Pacific Avenue, San Francisco, CA 94115 (Pacific Heights)   |  
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Ranked #1 of 234 Hotels in San Francisco
GreenLeadersGold level
New York, NY
Top Contributor
60 reviews 60 reviews
47 hotel reviews
Reviews in 45 cities Reviews in 45 cities
124 helpful votes 124 helpful votes
“We agree--the best small hotel around.”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 20, 2013

We agree with the chorus of TripAdvisor members, whose reviews sent us here, that the Drisco is superbly managed, beautifully appointed, features a sumptuous breakfast buffet, in a part of town that can make you feel that you, too, founded a dot-com juggernaut and moved to billionaires row. Its location in residential Pacific Heights is the perfect antidote to all things touristy. It's charm is its intimate scale and old-world feel; what it lacks in on-site amenities it makes up for with accommodating staff and an agreement with the local YMCA that allows you to use their athletic facilities while you are a guest. We loved the DVD collection that highlights movies filmed in San Francisco! Our two-room "city-view" suite was immaculate and peaceful and cost $585/night with all taxes. We would avoid a first floor room that opens on to the tea-and-coffee lounge. And there are apparently rarely-offered, special suites that one can book only by calling the front desk directly and asking for by name!

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
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, October 25, 2013
Dear Guest,

I just loved your review -- thank you!

Kind Regards,

John Spear
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,097 reviews from our community

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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 (206)
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English first
Senior Contributor
35 reviews 35 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 20, 2013

I booked this hotel after reading all of the great reviews on TripAdvisor and it was definitely a great decision. We spent a bit more than we usually would on a hotel but it was definitely worth it. Really charming boutique hotel in a lovely area of town amongst some beautiful houses, so it was lovely just to walk around the area and admire the character homes. The breakfast was great, as was the wine hour. They had different wines every night and some nice cheese to go with it, so it was a very nice way to start the evening. The hotel obviously prides itself on customer service and the extras, like complimentary shoe shine and town car service on weekday mornings, are a really nice touch. We liked it so much that we booked to go back there at New Year before we had even checked out!

Room Tip: I would ask for a king room as they are bigger and I think they cost about the same.
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  • Stayed October 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
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, October 25, 2013
Dear Guest,

I'm very pleased you enjoyed our excellent service and all the little extras. We'll see you again around New Year's!

Kind Regards,

John Spear
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sarasota, Florida
Top Contributor
57 reviews 57 reviews
18 hotel reviews
Reviews in 23 cities Reviews in 23 cities
28 helpful votes 28 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 13, 2013

This location was a refreshing change from craziness of most other locations. We walked for hours to parts of SF that many don't see - Presidio, Lyon St, Billionares Row. Our room was warm at night, so sleep quality suffered. Breakfast is just perfect, with excellent service and presentation.

Room Tip: Interior rooms have no view, but are quieter as they do not have any street noise.
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  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 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.
DriscoManager, General Manager at Hotel Drisco, responded to this review, October 25, 2013
Dear Guest,

I'm so sorry you did not enjoy a good night's sleep due to the warm weather. There were indeed a few days this fall that were much warmer than usual here in San Francisco. I would like to assure you and all of our readers here on Trip Advisor that we are exploring a wide variety of options to assure a comfortable temperature for our guests at all times.

Thanks very much for taking the time to post a review.

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.
Senior Contributor
25 reviews 25 reviews
17 hotel reviews
Reviews in 16 cities Reviews in 16 cities
28 helpful votes 28 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 13, 2013 via mobile

I've been fortunate to stay in some of the larger hotels such as the Ritz or Fairmont, but the Drisco has by far been my favorite as it embodies what life must be like living in an exclusive yet quaint residential area in one of the most fabulous cities in America.

The floors have an inviting creak and the decor is tasteful and understated- just like the staff. We were literally given a warm greeting of hot towels on our arrival after a chilly and fun jaunt around the bay. Then we were shown to our lovely and traditionally appointed suite which was stocked with modern amenities such as flat screens, fridge, suit press and coffee bar. Our suite was perfect for ladies on vacation and we've slept so peacefully here only to begin the morning with a thoughtful continental breakfast displaying freshly baked pastries, fruits, creamy local cheeses and jams plus other niceties such as lox and savory deli meats, lovely teas, cappuccinos and morning paper. Early evening features a local wine and cheese tasting.

This is such an inviting and warm place to spend a little retreat from the usual hectic pace of life and rejuvenate the soul while staying in the heart of an amazing landmark. Charm; grace; elegance. Who could ask for more?

  • Stayed October 2013
    • 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 2
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, October 25, 2013
Dear Guest,

I so enjoy reading all of the reviews here on Trip Advisor, and I particularly liked the little things that you chose to highlight in your review, such as the warm towels at check-in, our excellent whole-leaf teas and even the slightly creaky floorboards!

Thanks for taking the time to post your lovely review.

Kind Regards,

John Spear
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bogota, Colombia
Senior Contributor
23 reviews 23 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
16 helpful votes 16 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 12, 2013

I chose this hotel because of TripAdvisor ratings and was not disappointed. Every single member of the staff went the extra mile, especially Mr Tahn. We had a very nice room. They are having trouble with their elevator which they hope they will correct. When you leave the hotel there is no other way but down and when you go back you have to climb. The neighborhood is amazing. The wine hour is one of the best, good wines and lots of nice foodies to go with.

Room Tip: Ask for a n external room the inner rooms are dark
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Green Features: I did not realize they had them Maybe they need to better communicate
  • Stayed October 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 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.
DriscoManager, General Manager at Hotel Drisco, responded to this review, October 31, 2013
Dear Guest,

You are so kind to mention Thanh -- I will make sure he sees your review. And thankfully our elevator is fixed!

Kind Regards,

John Spear
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Campbell, California
Senior Contributor
34 reviews 34 reviews
16 hotel reviews
Reviews in 17 cities Reviews in 17 cities
18 helpful votes 18 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 9, 2013

My husband and I were originally going to stay at the SF Fairmont for a birthday celebration but after reading such wonderful reviews of Hotel Drisco we decided to stay here and are glad we did. We had a One Bedroom Suite on the 4th floor (Room 403), overlooking Pacific Avenue and the San Francisco Bay. Our view was quite nice because we were on the top floor of the hotel which is situated on one of the highest hills of San Francisco. Over the rooftops of some of the most wealthiest and sophisticated mansions of the city, we could see all the way to Alcatraz Island, the Marin Headlands, and we even had a tiny view of the Golden Gate Bridge.

The room was quite spacious and well appointed except for the Nespresso Machine which I could never get to work. The bed was comfortable yet firm and was just the ticket for providing a nights rest. There was even a pillow menu to choose from if you desired a bit more custom comfort which we took advantage of. We also appreciated the adaptive-sound machine on the night stand which offered us a variety of sounds to sleep by. We chose the "ocean" sound as this was soothing to the soul and a good solution for drowning out a bit of street noise just outside our window. If you got up during the night and wanted to watch some T.V. or a DVD like my husband did, you could seal off the bedroom with the sliding doors that separated the living room from the bedroom and wouldn't disturb your partner. The only complaint was that on Monday morning we were awoken before 7 a.m. by construction crews, delivery vehicles, and garbage trucks with their beep, beep, beep annoying sounds. Not a pleasant way to be awoken.

We looked forward to the complimentary wine and cheese reception everyday with it's elegant display of meats, artisan cheeses, fruits and great selection of wines. Oh and you can't forget the signature meatballs which tasted like the Swedish variety that my mom use to make. We weren't even hungry for dinner afterwards. The breakfast was very good too offering a variety of meats, cheeses, bagels, lox, cream cheese, hard boiled eggs, pastries, breads, yogurt, fruits, and coffee. Espresso or cappuccino is offered upon request. The only thing missing was scrambled eggs, I'm not a fan of the hard boiled variety.

In my opinion the hotel was an intimate version of the Fairmont where you felt special and not just another number. When we arrived home my husband said that it felt like we had actually been somewhere else because it didn't feel like a city visit. If you want to feel like you're in the city but not really IN the city stay here. It's just blocks away from several shopping areas such as the Fillmore, and Union Shopping Districts and footsteps away from the Presidio. Our morning walks were great to people watch and take in views of the Bay, spectacular mansions, perfectly manicured gardens and colorful flower beds. Just be careful not to venture down too far as the walk back up will exhaust you. The streets in this neighborhood are VERY steep!

For dinner we enjoyed a limousine ride (provided by the hotel for an extra fee), to Yoshi’s Jazz Club & Restaurant where the food was great but service was lousy. So lousy that we were comped entrance to the Jazz Show afterwards. We enjoyed the entertainment of Roy Rogers and The Delta Rhythm Kings featuring special guest Carlos Reyes. An amazing performance which wiped away our memories of the bad service.

We would definitely stay at the Drisco again!

Room Tip: Parking: Make sure you get the hotel to park your car and don't self park. The only available pa...
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  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 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.
DriscoManager, General Manager at Hotel Drisco, responded to this review, October 31, 2013
Dear Guest,

You took such care to write a wonderful and comprehensive review -- thank you! If you come visit us again be sure to ask for me and I will personally show you how to use the Nespresso machine. It can be a little finicky but it is so worth it!

Kind Regards,

John Spear
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Washington, DC
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
16 helpful votes 16 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed October 6, 2013

My husband and I stayed here for our 25th wedding anniversary, and our expectations were high based on the reviews here. While this was a fine, upscale hotel, it is hardly the #1 hotel in San Francisco. The good: warm, friendly staff, good breakfast, nice bedding. The location is a mixed bag. It is in a lovely, exclusive neighborhood, but it is at the top of a steep hill and not really walking distance to anything. There is also no outdoor space whatsoever...not even a bench to sit on outside on a beautiful day. Disappointing: the size of the room...it was tiny...much smaller than I expected from the photos. It was also quite noisy, between street noise and noise from rooms upstairs and across the hall. The elevator was broken for the entire four days of our stay...I got very tired of walking up and down the stairs (which visibly needed to be vacuumed more frequently given the constant use they were getting.) I don't want to dis this place because it is quite pleasant overall, but I wouldn't choose it again for a special occasion.

Stayed October 2013, traveled as a couple
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, October 8, 2013
Dear Guest,

Please accept my apologies for the problem we recently experienced with our elevator. You are quite right to hold us accountable for the inconvenience that caused you.

Regarding your additional concerns about your experience with us, unfortunately it seems you may have had some expectations of us that we were not in a position to meet:

* We are indeed at the top of a steep hill (one reason why we offer gorgeous city views from our designated "City View" guestrooms).

* We are in a residential area of San Francisco -- Pacific Heights, a beautiful neighborhood with tree-lined streets and amazing homes. The closest shops and stores are three blocks away.

* You are quite right that we do not have any publicly-accessible outdoor space, nor do we claim to have.

* Our non-suite guestrooms range in size from 290 to 320 square feet, which is quite common for older hotels in a dense city like San Francisco. Granted that may seem small by Las Vegas standards, for example. Many of our guests celebrating special occasions choose one of our suites for extra space, but of course that is entirely a personal preference.

Lastly, on the issue of noise, I must offer you my apologies there as well. The Drisco is a 1903 Eduardian wood-framed structure, and even though we have worked to reduce noise transmission in a variety of ways (and even though our guests are usually extremely courteous), we unfortunately cannot claim to have the same level of soundproofing as a more modern concrete structure.

In closing, I would like to offer up my oft-repeated phrase here on Trip Advisor, that the Hotel Drisco is an absolutely amazing hotel, but it is absolutely not the perfect hotel for everyone. If you are not deterred by the above, and are looking for incomparable service and amenities, then you can't do better than the Drisco -- I will guarantee that personally!

Many thanks to you for taking the time to post your review.

Kind Regards,

John Spear
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hotel Drisco

Address: 2901 Pacific Avenue, San Francisco, CA 94115
Phone Number:
Location: United States > California > San Francisco > Pacific Heights
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 Romantic Hotel in San Francisco
#2 Family Hotel in San Francisco
#2 Business Hotel in San Francisco
#4 Green Hotel in San Francisco
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Number of rooms: 48
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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Also Known As:
Drisco Hotel San Francisco
Drisco San Francisco

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