I know I'm just adding to the choir here, but the words that best describe the Grant are "basic", "functional," "clean" and "reasonably-priced."
I paid less than $100 a night. What I got was a fourth floor room that was about 12x12 with a basic queen bed that could probably use a new mattress. Not sure I wasn't sleeping on two box springs--but hey, I was so tired by the time I got back to my room, I could have slept on the floor and conked right out. The rest of the room includes two basic nightstands, a basic desk and a really basic TV. Surprisingly, the room also included an L-Shaped walk in closet and a bathroom that had been remodeled recently. The other guests I saw were either college-aged or closer to retirement age and many were European. In other words, open-minded, budget travelers more interested in convenience than opulence--sort of a step up from the hostel crowd. There's a small lobby with a seating area and a couple computer stations. Mornings in clude a free, very basic breakfast (coffee, juice, very generic pastries). Overall, it wasn't the Four Seasons, but it was perfectly functional and sort of charming in a "hey, this reminds of one of the bedrooms in my Grandma's old house" sort of way.
1. LOCATION, LOCATION, LOCATION: in the City Center and easily walkable to Convention Center, Chinatown, North Beach, Tenderloin and really, even to Fisherman's Wharf.
2. Price: as I said, under $100 a night. Easy to pay two or three times that for a more modern hotel.
3. Friendly staff. They're not professionals like at a big chain hotel. No matching uniforms and probably nobody who got their job coming out of an HRI program at the local college. Just "regular" people who varied between polite and friendly to really knowledgeable about the neighborhood and the city. I found it refreshingly non-corporate.
4. Theoretical Free WiFi. I say "theoretical" because the password I was given didn't work. I was only in my room first thing in the morning and right before bed, so it wasn't worth the 20 minutes it would have taken to sort it ou.
1. It's old. Although it has been maintained well, the carpet is old. The walls are old. The floors are old (and not 100 percent level). The doors are old. The stairs are old. The smell is ...old. You will not in any way, shape or form confuse this with a modern luxury hotel.
2. The neighborhood. Although centrally-located and safe, not very "Disney" if that's your thing. Most of the block is business/residential and you get high volumes of local foot traffic. Given San Fran's high level of homeless and obviously mentally ill, that's something to consider. Also, for families, there is an adult theater that caters to homosexual men located two doors down. It has a marquee with a racy show title and some mildly suggestive photos/playbills on the front wall. That could be awkward if you're easily moved from your comfort zone and/or you are traveling with children. Once again, the key thing to remember is I never once felt unsafe anywhere in or around the hotel and I'm from a small, non-diverse, midwestern town.
3. Beds and TV: if they are a key part of your travel experience, this is not for you.
4. I had a window that opened on to a brick wall two feet away. Open windows also mean noise...although I had no issue with it at night.
Overall: I'd say the Grant is a solid, low-cost option for anybody coming to town without children, looking for a cheap, safe, no-frills home base they can use as a jumping off spot for exploring one of the truly unique American cities.
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- Also Known As:
- Grant Hotel San Francisco