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“Good overall, great service BUT nickel'd dime”

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InterContinental Mark Hopkins San Francisco
Ranked #64 of 229 Hotels in San Francisco
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersGold level
The World
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Good overall, great service BUT nickel'd dime”
Reviewed March 7, 2008

The hotel is centrally located- all of the major attractions of San Francisco are easily accessible from the hotel by car, public transportation, walking, or taxi, e.g. Fisherman's Wharf, etc. The top of the hotel also has a great view of the city- it s on top of the hill and is the highest building in the area. Just as a fyi, it is a steep hill so be prepared but then so is most of San Francisco. The service is also excellent- from the bellhops to room service to the Top of the Mark.

BUT be prepared to pay for that service. The parking is reasonably priced relative to the area- there is cheaper parking just around the block so you can save money that way but lose the valet service- your call.

While all (or most) hotels have a room service fee, the Mark Hopkins adds an additional 15% gratuity to your room service automatically- no discretion. Maybe they like to ensure their room service gets their fair due but it is a bit much to force you to pay what is considered discretionary.

If the rationale is that guests might not know what to tip and this is a way to help with that, a better way that is less presumptuous would be to do what many other establishments do- put on the bill the suggested tip by percent (e.g. 15%, 18%, 20%)- that way if you are unsure of what to tip, you can see what is suggested and decide for yourself as opposed to being forced to tip- it'd be like when you are at a restaurant for 2 and the bill comes with the tip included- it's a bit presumptuous of the waiter to tell you how good their service is. While other parts of the world may include gratuity in the bill, that is not so here in the US barring a large party or something similar.

The biggest complaint though is that they make you pay for internet service...per computer. Yes, they make you pay for internet service- that is being nickel'd dimed. It is not complimentary and instead of a per room access charge, it is a per computer access charge. So if you have 2 laptops, you pay per laptop.

For a 4 star hotel, this is simply unacceptable- when motels give you free internet access, you know there is something wrong when you have to pay for basic service here. It is not as if the internet access is secured wireless, it is simply wireless (and ethernet) that you have to pay. While the charge itself is not much, it is too much to pay for something so basic now-a-days, especially for a 4 star hotel. Just for comparison, as someone else mentioned, the Fairmont across the street provides free wireless. Hell, the coffee shop across the street offers free internet. This left an unpleasant taste in my mouth- if it wasn't for this, my rating would have been at least 1 star more. It's one of those little things that just annoys...

Other than those things, the overall experience was great- the view and service was very good. And if you book through hotwire they do provide you with the option to upgrade (to an higher floor) for a small fee (it would still be less expensive than if you paid full price so it would still be a fair deal).

  • Stayed February 2008
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
1 Thank Traveler1A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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  • Value
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McHenry, IL
Level 6 Contributor
129 reviews
39 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 97 helpful votes
Reviewed February 26, 2008

Stayed here on business two nights. First night was fine. Room is small but cushy, nice view, hyper-priced internet connection. Hotel bar upstairs also has beautiful view, high prices, lousy service. Second night checked out at 4am to catch plane back to Chicago. Printer wasn't working, so they promised to e-mail me a bill. 3 weeks later, still no bill. I had to fax a request! Got my bill: they had added over $200 to the second night's price. After 6 more weeks of calling, I finally got it reversed. If you are rich and don't know any better, this hotel is fine. If you care about service try someplace else.

  • Liked — The view
  • Disliked — They can't figure out a bill
  • Stayed October 2007, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
Thank McHenryDad
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Warsaw, Poland
Level 3 Contributor
17 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed February 19, 2008

We got this hotel from priceline for a very reasonable price so it wasn't our choice, but it turned to be avery nice base for city excursions. The hotel itself is maintained in an early 20 century style, the rooms are large (I mean comparing to European standards all romms in US are huge ;)) ) and well furnished, the views are spectacular as the hotel is on one of the highest spots in town. Cable car stops just outside front door on the other hand most of the cities attractions are in walking distance, although walkin up and down the hill may be painful. Breakfast is expensive (over $30 per person) but very good, you can find healthy food besides bacon, beans and sausages ;)

  • Stayed January 2008, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
Thank marek1978
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
st louis
Level 2 Contributor
7 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed February 12, 2008

i just returned a few days ago from a 5 day stay at the mark hopkins. this is such a nice hotel, one of the finest i have stayed in. the bed was perfect, high quality linens, down mattress, down pillows, very comfortable for a great nights sleep. i was very sick with a cold, the front desk was very helpful in finding anything i needed. the food at the top of the mark, a must go to place on the top floor with a fantastic veiw of san francisco, food was very good, breakfast was expensive, but perfect. early morning sun on the water and sky line was worth the $63!!
the colors throughout were calm and elegant. the service was truly what you expect in a hotel of this price range.
this was my first trip to san francisco, as much as i have traveled, i can not beleive i overlooked this gem of a city. cable car (california line) runs in front of the hotel. go to china town, eat at the great eastern on jackson, best mongolian beef ever!
i could taste it with a bad cold. go the extra expense, stay at the mark hopkins. i will again.

  • Liked — fancy place, nice everything!
  • Disliked — i liked it all!
  • Stayed February 2008, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
1 Thank rideonchance
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Denver, CO
Level 2 Contributor
8 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 45 helpful votes
Reviewed January 17, 2008

My husband and I just stayed at the Mark Hopkins for 5 nights. Having booked via Hotwire and read many complaints from other Hotwire/Priceline guests here, I was braced for possible negative treatment and attitude. However, we experienced nothing negative and thoroughly enjoyed our stay at the Mark Hopkins. We'll be happy to return.

All the staff we encountered were pleasant, friendly, courteous and ready to help (with one minor exception that's not worth detailing here). We felt that most everyone, from the bellhops to the housekeeping staff, demonstrated good training and a friendly service attitude.

We had booked a standard room but, since we were staying 5 nights, we were pleased that we were given a corner room that was a little larger than a typical standard and had lovely city views on two sides. It was well-appointed and quite comfortable for our stay, and we had no problems with noise.

The Nob Hill location is splendid, making for easy walks to Chinatown, North Beach, Union Square and other areas of interest. Walking the hills is fun -- just wear good walking shoes and take a cab when hauling luggage. We had a great time and would be happy to stay at the Mark Hopkins again.

  • Liked — The location, service, and Top of the Mark
  • Disliked — High prices, though to be expected. (We would not have stayed there without Hotwire discount)
  • Stayed January 2008, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
2 Thank moonflower68
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Diamond Bar, California
Level 3 Contributor
13 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 35 helpful votes
Reviewed January 13, 2008

We are a family of 5 with 3 small children, usually 5 star hotels or small boutique hotel dont always let us feel welcome......We booked this hotel after I saw it on travel channel, the room is good size , clean, bed is comfy, but since the hotel is older , I think the AC just blew on one side of the room, We love the size of our bathroom, but they can improved of the toiletries. Aside from that, we love this place, they have the 5 star concierge without the 5 star attitude !! We asked information on shuttle to the fishermen's wharf but didnt make reservation, when we arrived at lobby, we decided to change our plan and take the hotel shuttle, the conciege greeted me with my name and said he had a limo reserved for me, keep in mind I NEVER made the reservation! The Limo came though the front in less than 5 minute, again the chauffer greeted us with OUR NAME again, introduce himself and gave us a bit of the history of the place we were going. If you are just looking for a luxury hotel, there is plenty in SF with the price tag, but Mark Hopkins tops my chart for customer service, their well train friendly staff made us felt like home.

  • Liked — The bathroom!~
  • Disliked — The AC
  • Stayed May 2007, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
2 Thank Bmama88
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kapolei, Hawaii
Level 3 Contributor
18 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
Reviewed January 1, 2008

I wanted to take my wife somewhere special for our 20th anniversary, and knew we couldn't go wrong in San Francisco. Did a ton of research online looking for a great hotel. We'd been disappointed at other "deluxe" hotels in the past and were a little cautious, but the Mark Hopkins was everything we'd hoped! Booked a package on Travelocity with R/T air from Honolulu and 6 nights in a deluxe king for $2,100. Everything about the hotel was perfect! Great location near Chinatown, perched on Nob Hill where 2 cable car lines intersect. Staff was extremely attentive, and the room was beautiful. We had incredible views out our window of the city with partial views of Alcatraz and Golden Gate. The bed was very comfortable and the marble bathroom was great. Guests enjoy free entry to the "Top of the Mark", the world-famous 19th floor penthouse bar, with 360 degree views, live jazz and a 100 martini menu. We bought passes that were good on all cable cars, busses and street cars, and had no use for a car in the city. (Traffic is heavy and parking is very expensive.) The original Fairmont across the street was even more opulent, but much more expensive. But be sure to go there at least to visit the famous "Tonga Room".

  • Liked — Location, location, location.
  • Disliked — Having to leave when our vacation was over!
  • Stayed June 2007, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank PNWShawn
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about InterContinental Mark Hopkins San Francisco

Property: InterContinental Mark Hopkins San Francisco
Address: 1 Nob Hill, 999 California Street, San Francisco, CA 94108-2228
Phone Number:
Location: United States > California > San Francisco > Nob Hill
Amenities:
Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Restaurant Room Service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#15 Green Hotel in San Francisco
#37 Luxury Hotel in San Francisco
#44 Romantic Hotel in San Francisco
#55 Business Hotel in San Francisco
#65 Family Hotel in San Francisco
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4 star — InterContinental Mark Hopkins San Francisco 4*
Number of rooms: 383
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
HISTORIC GRANDEUR ON THE CREST OF NOB HILL As splendid now as when it opened to great fanfare in 1926, InterContinental Mark Hopkins San Francisco is one of the city’s finest hotels with a long legacy of service excellence. Located at the crossing of three cable car lines, the venerable landmark is minutes from Union Square, Chinatown, and the Financial District. Fisherman’s Wharf and the Golden Gate Bridge are short drives away. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Intercontinental Mark Hopkins San Francisco Hotel San Francisco
Intercontinental San Francisco
San Francisco Intercontinental

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