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“A truly enjoyable experience” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Mandarin Oriental, San Francisco

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Mandarin Oriental, San Francisco
5.0 of 5 Hotel   |   222 Sansome Street, San Francisco, CA 94104 (Financial District)   |  
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Ranked #6 of 236 hotels in San Francisco
Sydney, Australia
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
“A truly enjoyable experience”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 3, 2013

I stayed at MOSF for 2 nights from 30/7-1/8. It was the last stop of my month-long round-the-world trip. I stayed at some top-notch hotels, such as Park Hyatt Tokyo and Peninsula NYC, during my trip, but MOSF was clearly head and shoulder above the rest.

Hotel location: 5/5
In the heart of financial district, MOSF is a 5 min walk to Chinatown/Union Square and the shopping areas. It's also an easy 5 min walk to the ferry building. Some might think it's not as centrally-located to the shoppings as other hotels of the same calibre such as Four Seasons or St Regis, I actually don't find it too much of a hassle.

Hotel entrance/lobby: 3/5
Considering MO is a 5-star hotel, the entrance and the lobby seemed a bit modest. Not as grand as some of MO's counterparts in the world, you can quite easily miss the slightly angled (to the street) entrance if you are busy checking Google map on your iPhone.

Check-in: 4/5
The front desk people were very attentive but efficient at the same time. Effortless is the word that best describes it. The girl who checked me in was able to strike a very pleasant and friendly conversation (acknowledged I'm from Australia and worked it into the conversation effortlessly). No awkward silence or unnecessary chatter. She was spot on. The only reason why it's a 4/5 is because after being offered a comfy seat, a cup of authentic Japanese tea, a plate of fruit, and a sampler of Japanese sweets all just within the first 30 seconds of check-in at Park Hyatt Tokyo, I can't really give out 5/5 that easily...

Guest room: 4/5
I stayed at the Deluxe City View room on the 44th floor. It has 3 big windows looking at the city and the Bay Bridge. It's clean, spacious, very comfortable, but a bit bland. The bed itself is amongst some of the most comfortable ones I've ever rested my body on. I guess if I have to be picky I'd say the bathroom/bathtub is a bit on the small side compared to the rest of my room. The shower doesn't have the rainforest style. But don't get me wrong, this is still a very very high quality guest room.

Services: 5/5
Now here comes what makes me want to stay with them again next time when I visit SF. Everyone I interacted with in that hotel just radiated this positive energy and made me believe that they genuinely were happy to help and took pride in what they did. From the people at reception to the waiters in the restaurant, not only were they professional, they were also humorous and friendly, but not to the degree of flippant. They were either very carefully trained or just born to be in customer service. The concierge and doorkeepers were just amongst the most helpful I've ever come across. They are true SF locals who know their city well and are proud to share SF with me!

Overall: 4.5
A luxury city hotel with easy access to most of the major attractions. It doesn't have a grand facade that impresses you at the first glance but as soon as you start interacting with the staff, you will be truly impressed with their professionalism and their passion for making your stay a memorable one. Oh, just so you know, MOSF has a breathtaking view from the airbridge that connects the two towers. Even if you don't stay at one of the expensive suite, you still have the panorama from Golden Gate to Bay Bridge, not to mention the Transamerica Pyramid building.
Highly recommended.

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled solo
    • 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
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (118)
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Lisbon, Portugal
Contributor
20 reviews 20 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 31, 2013

Very nice hotel with amazing views! The staff is very helpful and always ready to help you with any questions you may have.
From the bedroom I could see Alcatraz, the Golden Gate and the Coit Tower!
Really a great stay.

  • Stayed October 2012, 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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Chicago
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
31 helpful votes 31 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed July 29, 2013

My husband and I took our teenage son up the California Coast and after reading all the great reviews we decided to stay at The Mandarin Oriental when we arrived in San Francisco. We normally stay at The St. Regis or The Four Seasons and really regretted that we chose this hotel instead. It's a decent place, but for the $ (approx. $700/night for a Deluxe Bay View) it was disappointing. We don't mind spending extra for a great place to stay but this was not it. The room was clean, the bed was heavenly and the view was very impressive (we could see the Bay Bridge and Alcatraz). However, those were the only real perks to staying here. The room was small & narrow and the decor was unimpressive (basic beige everything). We used our Amex Platinum Card and were hoping to get upgraded to a Bridge to Bridge Room but they said they had no more rooms available (btw- our Platinum Card never seems to allow for an upgrade anymore -is anyone else noticing that?).

The entrance to the hotel was about as small as our room - the Check-in desk reminded me of a Holiday Inn Kiosk- just a tiny counter with minimal design. Then you walk 20 feet to your left and you are in the "Lobby", which consists of a small Brasserie (which is the ONLY restaurant in the hotel). Because there is almost no barrier between this small restaurant and the Lobby you feel like you've walked into a huge dinner party - and the noise is overwhelming at peak meal times. Hardly a relaxing, elegant entry point for a 5 star hotel.

The main reason we decided to jump ship and try the Mandarin Oriental instead of our usual hotels was because we just came back from Thailand and loved the service and hospitality we received at the hotels there. Since the M.Oriental is known for it's impressive "Far-East service" we thought we'd give this place a try. Ironically, it was some of the most unimpressive service we've had at a hotel. The employees all seemed to be rushed and under a lot of pressure. They had a smile on their face but you could tell they were anything but serene. We had breakfast daily in the Brasserie in the Lobby. The food was average but the service was almost funny it was so bad. You had to flag down different servers to get anything -even a cup of coffee took 10 minutes one day (and 2 requests). There seems to be a management issue in the Restaurant as the first day we saw two servers roll their eyes when the manager went by. The last day I overheard a server, who had just finished talking to the manager, say "Great. Now I'm lazy and stupid". Wow. Interesting stuff for a reality TV show, but not real conducive for a relaxing vacation.

If you are going for business and aren't necessarily looking for a relaxing, luxurious hotel experience than you might not mind all this so much. But when you can get so much more at the other 5 star hotels in town I don't know why you'd bother with this one. My hope is that this review is helpful to someone who is now planning a trip and wants to avoid the pitfalls of a disappointing hotel experience. Good Luck!

Room Tip: You want to be on the high floors 43 or above for the best views. Bridge to Bridge rooms have the b...
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  • Stayed July 2013, traveled with family
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 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.
MO_SANFRANCISCO, Public Relations Manager at Mandarin Oriental, San Francisco, responded to this review, August 5, 2013
Dear Valued Guest,

Thank you for staying at Mandarin Oriental, San Francisco and for reviewing on Trip Advisor.

On behalf of the team, we apologize sincerely for not meeting your expectations during your recent stay with us. As seen from the other favorable reviews on TripAdvisor, your experience was not the norm, one off but crucial issues that we are taking action on to rectify and make sure they don't repeat. We greatly appreciate your extensive feedback about your visit to Brasserie S&P at breakfast which we have taken immediate steps to address.

Please feel free to contact us directly upon your next visit to San Francisco so that we may have an opportunity to change your viewpoint about us with an experience we are known to deliver.

Sincerely,
Edwina Kluender
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Top Contributor
73 reviews 73 reviews
38 hotel reviews
Reviews in 45 cities Reviews in 45 cities
299 helpful votes 299 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 28, 2013

We could not have been more pleased with our experience. The service was outstanding - from the doorman who remembered our last name as we came and went to them greeting us with bottled water and towels after our morning run. We were also pleasantly surprised when they upgraded us to a Deluxe Bay View Room and were mezmorized with the view both day and night from our room on the 42nd floor. The location of the hotel was very convenient to sightseeing in the city and near many fantastic restaurants. We highly recommend the Mandarin when staying in SF!!

Room Tip: Splurge on a Bay View room - you won't regret it!
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  • Stayed July 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
    • 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.
Newport Beach
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 25, 2013

I travel to SF every month and this was my first stay at the Mandarin Oriental. I can safely say that this was the best stay I have ever had at any hotel in San Francisco and would be going back often. It did not feel like staying at a hotel. In fact it felt like no other place I have ever experianced. I would highly recommend.

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled on business
    • 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.
Aspen, Colorado
Senior Contributor
25 reviews 25 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 16 cities Reviews in 16 cities
23 helpful votes 23 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 24, 2013 via mobile

From the appointments in the room to the view to the service, nothing better in SF! Staff is extremely on their game and is amongst the best I have seen at a Mandarin which should tell you something. Location is in the business district but you have a trolly not even 2 blocks from the hotel.

  • Stayed July 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
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Carmel, Indiana
Senior Contributor
24 reviews 24 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 21, 2013

Love, love, love this hotel! My husband surprised us and booked this yummy hotel for a 3 night stay in SF. I found myself looking forward as much to coming back to our room as much as I did enjoying one of our favorite cities, SF. The beds totally suck you in and envelope you in high quality linens and duvet. Our view was stunning- looked out onto Alcatraz and the Bay.

Room Tip: Choose a room on the highest floors
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  • Stayed May 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 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
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Additional Information about Mandarin Oriental, San Francisco

Address: 222 Sansome Street, San Francisco, CA 94104
Phone Number:
Location: United States > California > San Francisco > Financial District
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Spa Hotel in San Francisco
#3 Luxury Hotel in San Francisco
#4 Business Hotel in San Francisco
#10 Romantic Hotel in San Francisco
#14 Family Hotel in San Francisco
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:5 star — Mandarin Oriental, San Francisco 5*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The 158-room Mandarin Oriental, San Francisco is located in the heart of the city and offers unparalleled panoramic views of the bay and beyond from the top 11 floors of San Francisco's third tallest building, 345 California Center. Having recently completed an extensive refurbishment during its 25th Anniversary year with the addition of Brasserie S&P restaurant and bar, and an 8,000 square foot Spa and Fitness Center, the hotel is consistently ranked among the world's top hotels by leading authorities. Features include Conde Nast Traveler 'Hot List' 2013 and Readers Choice Awards 2012 'Top 25 Hotels in N. California', Institutional Investor's 'World's Best Hotels 2012', Travel + Leisure 'World's Best Hotels' Awards 2011, U.S. News & World Report's 'Hotels in the USA', and is one of Andrew Harper's Hideaway Report's 2011 'Top 20 City Hotels in the World'. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Mandarin Oriental, San Francisco Hotel San Francisco
Mandarin San Francisco
San Francisco Mandarin Oriental

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