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“Annual visit at Knob Hill” 5 of 5 stars
Review of The Fairmont San Francisco

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The Fairmont San Francisco
5.0 of 5 Hotel   |   950 Mason Street, San Francisco, CA 94108   |  
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Ranked #11 of 235 Hotels in San Francisco
GreenLeadersSilver level
Los Angeles
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
“Annual visit at Knob Hill”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed yesterday NEW

I stay at the Fairmont San Francisco every year. It is a lovely hotel and my home away from home. The staff is extremely professional and friendly and the location of the hotel couldn't be better for me being a few blocks from Chinatown. I ride the cable cars to get around to fisher-mans wharf which are right outside the hotel. The world famous Tonga Room cannot be missed!

Room Tip: I love the main building for its charm. The tower affords the best views of San Francisco. All roo...
See more room tips
  • Stayed January 2014, traveled solo
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 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.
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622 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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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
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (151)
Date | Rating
  • Arabic first
  • Chinese (Traditional) first
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Indonesian first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
San Diego, California, United States
1 review
1 of 5 stars Reviewed yesterday NEW

I made a reservation late last night for next week , and needed to cancel it within 12 hours due to confusion over the reservation. I was passed the buck to six different people, two of whom laughed at me, and finally to the manager that refused to give me 500 dollars back for the error. Bad customer service, especially under the circumstances and within 12 hours of the reservation. Merry Christmas fairmont hotel. I will never return.

  • Stayed December 2014, traveled with family
    • 1 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lincoln
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed yesterday NEW

Truly a World Class Hotel. The staff were extremely professional and very attentive to detail. The front desk was helpful. The rooms were very well appointed and the location was great. We will definitely stay there again when in San Francisco.

  • Stayed November 2014, 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

Review collected in partnership with Fairmont Hotels & Resorts

Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
FairmontSF, Online Marketing Manager at The Fairmont San Francisco, responded to this review, yesterday
Thank you for your kind words about the hotel. I'm thrilled to hear you had such a nice stay and we look forward to your return.
Sincerely,
Lucas Schumacher
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
1 review
1 of 5 stars Reviewed 2 days ago NEW via mobile

Currently staying at this hotel. I had such high expectations coming to this hotel but all that came crashing down in a heart beat. We were locked out of our room at 9.30pm after ordering room service due to extra charges on our room. Someone else had charged $120 for breakfast to our room. When we told the front desk that we had been locked out of the room, we were then asked for ID. Our ID was in the room you had locked us out of! The staff upon check in did not let us know of hotel policy so charge after charge was added on and we had no clue about it. The staff who handled the situation did not handle it appropriately at all and had passed it onto a manager, we had to go back down and that manager had finished her shift so obviously nothing had been done to help our situation. On our first night, the window did not shut and had to call someone to come at 11.30pm to shut it or else we would have be cold throughout the night. As I said, I had such high expectations for this hotel but I am extremely disappointed. Although, we have another night left here before we head to another city, I already want to leave.

  • Stayed December 2014
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
FairmontSF, Online Marketing Manager at The Fairmont San Francisco, responded to this review, yesterday
Thank you for taking the time to comment on your recent stay with us. I'm sorry to hear you had such a poor experience at the hotel. I can understand the frustration your interaction with the front desk staff caused and for that I apologize. I would like to put you in touch with the hotel manager so that he might address your situation personally. If you could email me at lucas.schumacher@fairmont.com I would greatly appreciate it. Thanks again and I await your response.
Sincerely,
Lucas Schumacher
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dallas, Texas
Top Contributor
67 reviews 67 reviews
50 hotel reviews
Reviews in 43 cities Reviews in 43 cities
218 helpful votes 218 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed 3 days ago NEW

I stayed here three nights for a business conference at a wonderful rate of $249 per night. Lovely lobby, quick check-in (looks like an old fashioned check in desk from 1930). Lobby all decorated for Christmas and beautiful, although the seating is sparse, I assume this is due to the massive Christmas tree. Lots of people in and out for holiday tea with the little ones.

OK, lots of good stuff to report!

My room was on the 3rd floor of the older part of the hotel. I joined the President's Club when I made the reservation, and the desk clerk said she upgraded my room, so I believe these rooms (street side) are much larger than the usual rooms. The ceilings are quite tall and the window (which opens slightly) provides lots of natural light. The hallways are very nice and even have a bit of glitz with glittering stones in the light sconces. The "key" is a card you tap against the door pad to enter (battery operated, which was nice later on when the lights went out). As you walk in, there was a nice bath on the right, with a marble vanity and a nice soaking tub. Two plush robes were hanging on the door.

Across the entryway, there is a massive closet. I mean huge - bigger than my walk-in at home. Great fun for dressing, but there were only 10 hangers for this enormous closet - wth? Great mirror, too, and I'm highly suspicious that it was angled to show you at your best! There is a safe and a few cubby spaces for shoes and folded items.

The bed was incredibly comfy, although I like a bit more weight to the linens. I used the microfiber blanket in the closet to beef up the warmth. There were 4 pillows on the bed and I ended up using them all - they must be down filled, since they quickly mashed down to nothing. I travel with a satin pillowcase and shoved 2 of them in one case to make a firmer pillow. The mattress was heavenly and bedside lighting is great, with an outlet in the light for convenience.

There is a nice coffee bar in the credenza with a Keurig and four or more Kcups. There is also an expensive mini-bar with local and snack-y items like nuts and Ghirardelli chocolates (I would have much preferred an empty fridge for my water). There was a spacious desk near the window, which came in handy when the electricity went off due to a storm - I was able to put on my makeup and work with the light from the window. The TV was a large flat screen and had plenty of channels, even some premium sports ones.

Room service was prompt and brings you an entire rolling cart instead of a tray. Be warned that it is quite expensive - $5 delivery fee + 20% service charge on top of prices. There is a gift shop downstairs for drinks and snacks that were better priced. The food was vey good, however, and there was plenty of it.

This is an older hotel, and while they keep it very nice and it's age adds to the glamour, be advised to keep some things in mind. The wait was sometimes long for the elevator. There are a few sub-lobby floors and they are not well marked in the elevator - G, T, A and L were the buttons, I believe. If you have mobility issues, prepare for a long walk to the ballroom, Tonga room or coffee bar. Also, the hotel is not readily accessible through any public transportation except the trolley. Walking in any direction involves incredibly steep hills, up or down. One of the tourist attractions of SF is the hills - you'll get first hand knowledge if you venture out in the neighborhood :)

The bellmen outside are some of the nicest in the area - ask then for directions or info on the area. Prepare for crowds during the holiday season. I departed during an event (complete with bagpipes) and the wait for the valet was ten people deep (and expect to pay $55 for parking, which is about the norm for Nob Hill).

The meeting rooms are beautiful ad I hope they use them for public often. If you get a chance to visit the Crown Room, the views compare to none, looking out on Coit Tower and the Transamerica Pyramid, and on clear days, both bridges can be viewed. Spectacular at night!

The problems I had were few and I still loved this hotel.I'll outline them, but none were of a nature that would prevent me from returning.

1) Laurel Court is very expensive and there really are no low priced options nearby. Plan accordingly with your budget, your footwear, or your health. I tried to meet a business associate in the Laurel Court area at 10:30am (plenty of low, lush chairs and tables, 50% unoccupied) and told the waiter/greeter that. He said we could not sit down unless we were going to order food! And suggested we go to the basement coffee bar. Very embarrassing for me for my meeting and I would have asked for a manager if I had been alone.

2) Noise outside my 3rd floor room was incredibly loud with street noise and the sounds of the catering and service trucks. The garage across the street at the Mark Hopkins had a loud alarm that sounds at 7am each morning, and continues throughout the day. The trolley dings and clangs (charming for the first day). Bring earplugs.

3) The ice machine on my floor was out of order during the entire visit. Not once was anyone seen working on it and there were no directions on where to find the nearest working machine. I ended up climbing stairs each night to fill my ice bucket. I did ask room service to include ice with my meal one night.

Would I return again? Absolutely - especially for business and at that great rate. I recommend this hotel for any traveler that enjoys a bit of old style glamour and luxury.

Room Tip: join the President's Club for upgraded rooms and free wifi
See more room tips
Green Features: Saw regular ecological and recycling choices in the hotel.
  • Stayed December 2014, traveled on business
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 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.
FairmontSF, Online Marketing Manager at The Fairmont San Francisco, responded to this review, yesterday
Thank you for taking the time to comment on your recent stay with us. I'm happy to hear you had such a nice stay and enjoyed your business meetings in spite of some challenges. As you mentioned the main building is the original building and the layout and size of the rooms offer a glimpse into the past. I'm very sorry to hear of your interaction in Laurel Court and have shared your feedback with our Director of Food & Beverage. There is no excuse for that and I sincerely apologize. Thanks again for your feedback and we hope to welcome you again in the future.
Sincerely,
Lucas Schumacher
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Atlanta, Georgia
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 3 days ago NEW

Beautiful, old hotel with modern updates. We had a king room in the historic building and loved it. Panoramic views of the bay, Coit Tower, Alcatraz, and more. Great Nob Hill location. A quieter area than, for example, by Union Square or Market Street. Hotel is a quick walk to Chinatown and the main cable car lines. Room service was expensive but nicely done. We also received some special treats as we were celebrating a birthday. The lobby was decked out for the holidays. Somewhat crowded due to a conference, among other events. Overall, a lovely stay.

  • Stayed December 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
FairmontSF, Online Marketing Manager at The Fairmont San Francisco, responded to this review, yesterday
Thank you for your kind words about the hotel. I'm pleased to hear you enjoyed your stay and the holiday decor. As you mentioned our location atop Nob Hill affords us the proximity to many of the City's most desirable attractions while maintaining the relative peace the distance affords us. Thanks again and we hope to welcome you again in the future.
Sincerely,
Lucas Schumacher
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Calabasas, California
Top Contributor
82 reviews 82 reviews
26 hotel reviews
Reviews in 27 cities Reviews in 27 cities
36 helpful votes 36 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed 4 days ago NEW

We stayed for a business meeting but were overwhelmed by the Christmas crowds coming to see the lobby decorations. Admittedly the giant gingerbread house is a cool attraction for families, however, the hotel is ill equipped to handle the crowds. Additionally they are horribly understaffed. Trying to have a cocktail in the lobby lounge was nearly impossible. The room in the old building are redone but not well soundproofed. The room is nicely redone and comfortable if you don't mind road noise, doormen whistling for taxis, noise continuously in the wide commodious hallways or housekeeping staff yelling to each other early on the morning. The walls were so thin that we awoke to the passionate romance being enjoyed next door. With so many great places to stay in the city I would never return here.

Stayed December 2014, traveled on business
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
FairmontSF, Online Marketing Manager at The Fairmont San Francisco, responded to this review, 3 days ago
Thank you for taking the time to comment on your recent stay with us. It sounds like your experience was an uneven one and for that I apologize. As you noted the holidays are an extremely busy time at the hotel and the lobby can get quite full. I've shared your feedback with the staff and I thank you again for your review. Hopefully you would be willing to consider returning and allowing us the opportunity to give you the stay you deserve.
Sincerely,
Lucas Schumacher
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 The Fairmont San Francisco

Address: 950 Mason Street, San Francisco, CA 94108
Phone Number:
Location: United States > California > San Francisco
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:
#2 Spa Hotel in San Francisco
#5 Luxury Hotel in San Francisco
#5 Romantic Hotel in San Francisco
#9 Family Hotel in San Francisco
#14 Business Hotel in San Francisco
#17 Green Hotel in San Francisco
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:5 star — The Fairmont San Francisco 5*
Number of rooms: 591
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
World-renowned, The Fairmont San Francisco hotel presents an awe-inspiring picture of historic San Francisco. The grandeur of the hotel coupled with its reputation for impeccable service promises a truly memorable experience. Known for turning moments into memories for leisure and business travelers alike this luxury San Francisco hotel has been host to some of the most influential meetings and events, breathtaking weddings and personalized special occasions of the century. Each of the San Francisco hotel's spacious guestrooms and suites have been elegantly updated including flat screen TVs, Frette linen ensembles, pillow top beds, and MP3 docking stations.In addition to its 591 guest rooms and suites this luxury San Francisco hotel offers fine dining with three renowned restaurants and lounges, as well as 55,000 square feet of spectacular function space. With a panoramic view of the City and the Bay from high atop Nob Hill, The Fairmont San Francisco hotel presents an unmatched blend of luxurious accommodations, elegant meeting spaces and superb services, which make for an unforgettable stay. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Fairmont San Francisco Hotel San Francisco
Fairmont San Francisco
Fairmont Hotel San Francisco
San Francisco Fairmont

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