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“Nicely appointed rooms, but not the best area” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Hotel Monaco San Francisco - a Kimpton Hotel

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Hotel Monaco San Francisco - a Kimpton Hotel
4.0 of 5 Boutique Hotel   |   501 Geary St, San Francisco, CA 94102   |  
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Ranked #28 of 233 Hotels in San Francisco
Certificate of Excellence 2014
GreenLeadersBronze level
San Francisco
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
“Nicely appointed rooms, but not the best area”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 10, 2013

I booked a room here last minute on Priceline for a single night to avoid drinking and driving on Cinco de Mayo weekend, and got a really good rate for a 4-star hotel in downtown San Francisco. I lived in the city for nine years, so know most neighborhoods quite well and though the hotel is only a block or two from what is considered the theatre district, it is technically located in the Tenderloin (TL), which is a shame because it's such a nice and charming hotel. However, if you stick to taxis and remember, when walking, to stay on Geary and only head west towards Union Square, you should be fine and will avoid the not so pleasant areas of the TL.

The standard rooms are on the small side, but not cramped at all, and they're very nicely decorated. The bed was super comfy and I slept like a baby. Bathroom was immaculate, and quite nicely designed, but not very luxurious: tub and shower combo is more 3-star level.

I only interacted with two staff members, but both gentlemen were nice and professional.

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 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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1,528 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
    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 (243)
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London
Top Contributor
102 reviews 102 reviews
22 hotel reviews
Reviews in 30 cities Reviews in 30 cities
55 helpful votes 55 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 4, 2013

When we stayed here the first time a number of years ago, I was not overly impressed I have to say. But after having looked at the available hotels for this stay (granted we did not check months in advance) we ended up with this one again. It was a birthday trip and as such we splurged and got a superior kings suite. my my we did NOT regret it! The room was gigantic, the shower was just gorgeous (I could live in it!) and the service was magnificent. The lady in reception, whose name I never got unfortunately, helped us get reservations for birthday drinks and dinner and even sent us a complimentary bottle of champagne. So nice! No door slamming this time, although there was no 'do not disturb' sign so housekeeping knocked on our door every morning. But at least it got us out of bed! Location as always was brilliant the staff is very friendly at all times too. This time everything was just wonderful, definitely 5 stars! But really, next time we MUST try and find the time to try the spa... 3rd time's a charm right?

Room Tip: If you can afford it, go for a superior kings suite!
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  • Stayed April 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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Raleigh, North Carolina
Top Contributor
107 reviews 107 reviews
44 hotel reviews
Reviews in 46 cities Reviews in 46 cities
117 helpful votes 117 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed May 3, 2013

Recently spent five nights at the Hotel Monaco for a conference. We had a nice room, fairly average in size, nothing small or large. The furniture was nice, and the rooms were completely updated with colorful wallpaper in the bedroom and bathroom. The bathroom was updated. A safe was provided in the closet, free of charge. The room had a mini-bar (dorm fridge) with very pricy items as one would expect. As Kimpton chain members, we were able to access wifi in our room for free, which was faster than expected. The television in the room was a good size, but the channel selection was poor (20-25 options), omitting some standards like HGTV and Bravo. Our fifth-floor room looked out onto a busy street which was quite noisy at all hours through windows that were bolted shut and provided very little in the way of soundproofing. The hotel left a newspaper outside the room every morning (for Kimpton members perhaps). The room did not have a coffee/tea machine as one might expect. You could get free tea and coffee in the lobby each morning, and a wine reception was held every afternoon for one hour (5-6pm). The hotel provided no breakfast for guests as part of the rate, but there was a restaurant we did not use. The hotel lobby was very nice with several seating areas, sofas, comfy chairs, etc. I would say the best asset of this hotel was its staff, who spoke every time we entered or left (hello, etc.), and who were always willing to help wrangle a taxi or provide advice to the wayward tourist. The housekeeping staff were likewise extremely friendly at all times. Well managed property--it shows. I would say the worst feature of this hotel was its price, at $240 a night, ringing in at a whopping $280+ per night with staggering city taxes and fees. And this was a special "conference rate," presumably discounted. Ouch. San Fran is fun to visit, but it isn't all that, especially this grimy downtown location with panhandlers and homeless begging for cash on every corner. We were hit up five times for cash on a three block walk back to the hotel from dinner. Perhaps the city should redirect some of its hotel taxes toward this glaring "issue," but I digress. If you need to be a few blocks from shopping around Union Square, the American Conservatory Theater, the Powell-Hyde streetcar line, the transit options on Market Street, or convention facilities, this location will work for you. Admittedly, there are reasons to stay here. But I have to wonder, is there an equivalent hotel or B&B in a nicer part of town at this price point?

Room Tip: Exterior rooms are pretty noisy with buildings across the street looking right into your windows. In...
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  • Stayed April 2013, traveled on business
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 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.
california
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 2, 2013

I enjoyed my stay here at Hotel Monaco. I like the decoration in the room and it is kept clean. I also love the friendly service of the staff and appreciate the free one hour wine that offers at the lobby lounge at 5pm.This hotel is located near shopping/restaurant and it is perfect for exploring the city by just walking around the area. If you do need to park your car there are a few other 24hr parking garages across the street that offers more affordable rates.

  • Stayed November 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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SG
Top Contributor
98 reviews 98 reviews
23 hotel reviews
Reviews in 36 cities Reviews in 36 cities
44 helpful votes 44 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 30, 2013

It's a really sweet boutique hotel. Old but refurbished and comfortable and nice. The staff were very helpful and attentive. The room was smallish but I've been in smaller. Bed was nice and big and comfy. Very important. It was a little bit colorful... the wall paper and stuff. So a bit not me but it's fun! And they are a pet friendly hotel. I'd never been at a hotel where out in the front door there is a sign and two doggie bowls. One with water, the other dog biscuits to welcome furkids who travel with their humans! The location is not bad, it's on Geary and Taylor. A few blocks from Union Square and the heart of SF city. Free wifi for those on their loyalty program!! That was a great plus for me. I don't think there is much of a view (my room overlooked the dumpter at the back). There's only one restaurant but the people are so nice and friendly and helpful, the food's ok but you can get better elsewhere within walking distance. They even have a wine happy hour in the evening, ice water in the lobby while you wait. I felt welcome and at home!

Room Tip: Sign up for the loyalty program and get free wifi and $10 for mini bar use (you can get at least 2 c...
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  • Stayed April 2013, traveled on business
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 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
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Sacramento, California
Contributor
16 reviews 16 reviews
10 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 28, 2013

The decor and layout are different that most hotels. Comfortable and convenient when is SF, but decor is definitely modern, but tasteful. Good work out facility, but is could be a little larger. Nice bar downstairs. I did not get to eat in the restaurant, but it is SF so there are many good restaurants close by.

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled on business
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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Brighton
Contributor
17 reviews 17 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
23 helpful votes 23 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 15, 2013 via mobile

Excellent, quirky hotel in a great location just up from Union Square. I travelled with my Dad and we had a double/double room, loved the decoration and modern room. Wasn't the most spacious room I've ever stayed in but it was perfect for us as we were exploring the city most the time! Lovely breakfast room and bar. Would definitely stay here again or at another Kimpton hotel!

  • Stayed June 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hotel Monaco San Francisco - a Kimpton Hotel

Address: 501 Geary St, San Francisco, CA 94102
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 Shuttle Bus service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#13 Luxury Hotel in San Francisco
#23 Family Hotel in San Francisco
#23 Romantic Hotel in San Francisco
#31 Business Hotel in San Francisco
#36 Green Hotel in San Francisco
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Hotel Monaco San Francisco - a Kimpton Hotel 4*
Number of rooms: 208
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The award-winning Hotel Monaco San Francisco provides old-world hospitality in an eclectic, luxurious environment. The lobby's dramatic spaciousness, whimsical frescoed ceiling and delightful "Tree of Life" sculpture are instantly engaging. Situated next to the celebrated Grand Cafe Brasserie and Bar, and within easy walking distance of Union Square, San Francisco's famed Chinatown, the Financial District, Moscone Convention Center and many top-notch theaters, restaurants and shops, Hotel Monaco offers an unparalleled experience for a memorable stay. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Kimpton San Francisco
Hotel Monaco San Francisco

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