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“Location Location Location - not much else” 3 of 5 stars
Review of The Wharf Inn

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The Wharf Inn
2.0 of 5 Hotel   |   2601 Mason Street, San Francisco, CA 94133 (Fisherman's Wharf)   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #141 of 235 Hotels in San Francisco
Lookout Mtn, TN
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
31 helpful votes 31 helpful votes
“Location Location Location - not much else”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed August 12, 2014

My small family (2 adults / 1 child) last minuted needed 2 nights in the Fisherman's Wharf area of San Francisco. An hour of online searching only turned up hotels that were $375 to $500 / night - which didn't include parking - which added another $40 (lowest) to $80 (highest) to the bill. Then I came across the Wharf Inn - with a AAA nightly rate of $264 with parking. The website made the place look pretty decent - plus the location was incredible - so we jumped. We really didn't care (or so we thought) much about the room - we would only be sleeping there and not much else.

When we arrived, the place looks like a motel - a tiny lobby with all rooms accessed from the outside. The first thing we noticed is there are no air conditioners - which we initially thought would be an issue but if you know anything about San Francisco nights, there's very cool so an open window should do the trick. The problem was the window was so small that it did get fairly stuffy. The first night we discovered the garbage truck picks up about 4:00 in the morning - right outside our window and seems to take it's sweet time doing it's job. There's a musty smell in the room, there is zero "curb appeal" to the decor - but on the upside, the shower was great, the TV works, and the bed is mostly comfortable. The front desk guy was very cheery and helpful and the whole place is clean. Bottom line - if you want a cheap hotel in one of the best locations of Fisherman's Wharf with free parking, this is the place. Keep your expectations low and you'll be happy. No food / breakfast (cheap coffee in the lobby), no newspaper, no frills. You can't really blame the place since the price is so low. Would I stay again? Absolutely (I hate spending alot on hotels). It would be nice to have AC - despite the cool San Fran nights. But by the end of our trip, value was the key. You just gotta accept the fact that this place "is what it is" and not be disappointed by it being something it was never supposed to be - a fancy hotel.

Room Tip: Don't get a room that faces Mason Street - the garbage truck will wake the dead!
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  • Stayed August 2014, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 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.
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481 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (87)
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Ormond Beach, Florida, United States
Senior Contributor
39 reviews 39 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
20 helpful votes 20 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed August 11, 2014

..........and a hard place. That's where I would put The Wharf Inn. This motel is in a great location. It's near Fisherman's Wharf, Pier 39, a short walk to Ghiradelli Square, Trolley cars, Cable cars, various restaurants. It is also one of the least expensive motels in the area. But, it definitely has needs. That's the problem. If they sink a lot of money into it then they will have to raise the prices. Another BIG plus is free parking. That just doesn't happen in most cities especially in such a good location. The room clean but worn. The bed was comfortable. The man at check in and the woman at check out were very friendly and helpful. Would I stay there again? I can't honestly answer that question.

  • Stayed August 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 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.
Everett, Washington
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed August 8, 2014

If you are reading this, please take my advice and book ANY other hotel.

My experience with the Wharf Inn completely ruined my one night stay. A classic example of bait and switch, THE PICTURES posted on the Wharf Inn Website BY The Wharf Inn (the rooms you are supposedly booking) admittedly (by the front desk) are actually handicapped accesible rooms. Not only will the couch in the picture be missing - as well as the space to have a couch, any kind of noise barrier to the outside will be also missing (with an entire wall of windows - many facing into the beautiful cement wall). The noise was so bad, I woke up twice thinking someone had entered my room. When I asked for a fan to drown out the noise, I was told the hotel did not have any available for guests. You also have to go to the desk to request the hotel hair dryer. We were missing our top dresser drawer as well but did not bother requesting another of those. I do have pictures I am happy to share of the Wharf Inn's actual rooms. Our room is especially great - the Wharf Inn's version of "righting" their mistake - a roll away crammed into a room that barely fit a questionable queen bed (eventhough I booked a king) with absolutely no room to touch the floor. This place obviously isn't in to fire codes - and without the pictured couch, there should have been so much room...
Another interesting fact is that the front desk/lobby has only one person working. If that person steps out (like in our case to get a piece of pizza) you are left standing outside a locked entry with no way of checking in. If that one person is assisting you, say trying to cram a square puzzle piece into a triangle opening, you are left outside a locked door - waiting - in an undesirable area. There is no one to help with bags or special requests - there is no one to help you get the room you requested - there is no one to right the wrongs they created using deceptive pictures and changing bed size without notifying their guests.

I think it can best be summed up by a letter written to the manager over a week ago - a letter I sent a second time - and still have not received any kind of response. There was no delay in charging my credit card - an amount I was promised would be reduced - but the manager is either too busy or not interested/ ready to admit what kind of hotel he is actually running. I am disgusted with the service and the entire experience.
Please see below:

I had asked to be contacted immediately yesterday and still have not heard from you a day later. I was told you were in a meeting until 11:30 and offered to wait. I was first told I could wait and speak with you and shortly after 11AM, I was told I should not wait for you because your meeting might go longer and you would still have to cross the bridge. I was told you were aware of my situation and had no sympathy and that I may or may not be able to speak with you. I asked the woman at the front desk to please request you call as soon as possible and left a note on my receipt for you to please contact me. I also made sure your hotel had my correct phone number.

This entire situation is especially upsetting because I booked through your hotel. I did not use an app. I did not use a discount website. I found you using your website and I called and spoke to a live person to make sure we had the correct reservations. When I called your hotel on Sunday, I requested the AAA Special with King Bed, and I even mentioned using the couch in your website's picture to the person I spoke with. (I now know his name to be ----.) I asked for e-mail confirmation before I hung up, but that e-mail was never sent. I did not think anything of it at the time, but I now see this as very suspicious. There were two people on this one night trip - a special birthday trip - that was absolutely ruined by the actions of your hotel. My traveling companion (who I am not in a relationship with) does not fit comfortably in queen bed alone. The accommodations in your very small room with bed that did not even appear to be a queen were much too close for comfort.

After arriving in our room, my friend and I went downstairs and spoke with ----, who was very helpful. Even though we thought ---- was great - and even invited him to go out with us - we were very upset when ---- told us people who requested king beds had been given queens approximately "five times in past two weeks," which would point to it being common in your hotel. This was not at all acceptable for our situation. He told us it should not happen, but it had been happening quite often.

---- also told us the picture your hotel has posted for a standard king room is a handicapped room and very misleading. He told us he was very surprised your hotel was using this particular picture on your website. ---- told us he did not think the situation was acceptable and that we would receive a discount upon checkout. He told me he was making a note of this on the computer.

----, my partner, and I all tried to find different accommodations but were unable. Since ---- was only one working, he and my traveling companion got a roll away and together moved around furniture to cram it into the room. I asked about it being a fire and safety issue, but I was told it was my only option. We could not walk in our room. To enter, we had to partially open the door and avoid hitting the dresser (with missing drawer), step on the roll away, step on the bed, and then jump off the bed and into the bathroom. That is just plain not acceptable. We could not be in the room. We left and came back after 1 AM only to sleep in a bed where one of us did not fit and the other had feet in their face on the rollaway.

---- was great - but your accommodations and the rest of your customer service was atrocious. Being on the phone for hours trying to find different accommodations and being squished into a room that was not the room we requested in the first place ruined the only night we had in San Francisco. It was the most embarrassing birthday present I have ever given. It was more than the wrong room and bad service, it was all the run around, what feels like a bait and switch, and then to either be treated rudely or ignored. I am hoping I can soon forget the whole traumatic experience.

Upon checkout, not only was OUR PROMISED discount denied, I received a receipt for 326.07. Not only did I not agree with the amount, my credit card was charged 346.07. While I am aware we did receive a service from your hotel and we are not disputing we owe for staying, we were promised a discount that we did not receive. Not only did we not receive our discount, we were given one print out and then charged even more.

I have been requesting a response, so I would appreciate a response to this e-mail. I can also be reached via phone at --------.

I look forward to hearing from you.

... STAY ANYWHERE ELSE!!!

  • Stayed July 2014, traveled with friends
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hamilton, Ohio
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed August 3, 2014

The only good thing I can say about this hotel is the desk staff was nice about our cancelling the second night's stay. The amenities offered were completely unacceptable. We paid for a "mini-suite" so we assumed we would have a mini-refrigerator and microwave. Not only was it void of those items, it also didn't have a clothes iron or hair dryer. There was a sign in the room that said an iron could be borrowed from the front desk. Really? The television was a tiny tube-type television with terrible reception. But, of all the flaws the worst problem was the shower. The water pressure was virtually zero. It literally dribbled from the shower head, and the temperature fluctuated from searing heat to cold. A sign glued to the bathroom mirror warned of temperature fluctuations. What does it say for the management of an expensive hotel when a problem like this is not fixed; rather it is simply confessed with a warning sign? We left this hotel and stayed in an America's Best Value Inn that we had stayed in the previous night. The $80/nt hotel was a better option than The Wharf Inn at $275/nt. I travel a lot and in terms of value this was the worst hotel I have stayed in. If it was $49/nt I would accept the many problems. You don't always get what you pay for! Ironically, the owner of the next hotel we stayed, whom I told about The Wharf Inn, said that The Wharf Inn just sold for 10 or 11 million dollars to a friend of his. Who knows whether this place will be demolished and a new structure built, or it will be renovated. Those are the only two options if the new owner wants to succeed. In the age of social media you can't hide serious flaws from consumers.

  • Stayed June 2014, traveled with family
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 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.
Perth, Australia
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 2, 2014

The best thing about this hotel is the location.
One block form Fisherman's Wharf, a short stroll to Pier 39. There is a rental car company just around the corner and the hotel has FREE parking which is almost unheard of in this area.
There are tram and bus stops around the corner for access down past the Exploratorium, Giants Stadium and into Market Street near Union Square
There are plenty of cheap eateries within easy walking distance or for a more refined palate Gary Danko's Michelin Star restaurant is also within walking distance and the food there is fantastic.

We had a 3rd floor courtyard room which was surprisingly quiet...we had been expecting the worst after reading several reviews on here. It would pay to ask for this when booking as the area is very lively and especially so over the weekends when it was the noisiest.
There is no air-conditioning just ceiling fans and windows you can open (ours had bars on it for added security). It wasn't too hot so this was not a problem for us but maybe for some.
We would consider this hotel again if only for the location and convenience....oh and as an added bonus even though we do not have an AA membership as we are not from the States they did accept our RAC membership from Australia and so we got a discount on the room...so don't forget to ask for it.

Room Tip: Ask for a top floor courtyard room if you want less noise
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  • Stayed July 2014, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 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.
Denver, Colorado
Top Contributor
51 reviews 51 reviews
10 hotel reviews
Reviews in 22 cities Reviews in 22 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 27, 2014

This is the second time I have stayed at this motel/hotel. While the rooms are older, they are clean and the office staff most amenable. It is within one block of all the action at Fisherman's Wharf and walking distance to Pier 39 and Ghiradelli Square. Parking is free too...another bonus.
Beds were comfortable. The furniture and TV's could use some upgrades. There is no air conditioning, but then most of the shops around Fisherman's Wharf do not have AC since the climate is so mild.

Room Tip: There are two mini suites. Each is large and each has a lot of room to "spread out". Furn...
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  • Stayed July 2014, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 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.
Tavernier, Florida
1 review
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed July 19, 2014

If you don't care about cleanliness,having no A.C. and spending a lot of money come here.This place is a DUMP.There are other places across the street that are a lot nicer.Had to open balcony door to keep it cool in the room.Very noisy on the street in the wee hours of the morning.People yelling and screaming, garbage truck emptying dumpsters right below us.Lousy experience.Woke up tired every morn.Ended up cancelling res. for later in the week after going to Yosemite for 3 days.Booked a much much nicer room I block from this place.

  • Stayed July 2014, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 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.
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Additional Information about The Wharf Inn

Address: 2601 Mason Street, San Francisco, CA 94133
Location: United States > California > San Francisco > Fisherman's Wharf
Amenities:
Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Shuttle Bus service Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #141 of 235 Hotels in San Francisco
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:2 star — The Wharf Inn 2*
Number of rooms: 51
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
The Wharf Hotel San Francisco
Wharf Hotel San Francisco
Wharf Inn San Francisco

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