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“Mixed Feelings”
2 of 5 bubbles Review of Seal Rock Inn

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Seal Rock Inn
Ranked #145 of 227 Hotels in San Francisco
NE Ohio
Level Contributor
36 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 96 helpful votes
“Mixed Feelings”
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 25, 2006

We arrived at the Seal Rock Inn after a long day of driving. My first impression was that it definately did NOT remind me of a 1950's national park lodge as described in a travel book I had picked up. It is on a relatively busy street corner and the sound of city buses is prevalent. My second impression came to me as I looked out the window - yes, we could see the ocean from our third floor window- but in the foreground, I observed an apparent homeless drunk sleeping in the bushes across the street. After several minutes, he woke up, staggered several steps, urinated in the plants, stumbled several more steps and lay down to sleep again. As I looked around the fairly shabby room of questionable cleanliness, I thought "Oh my God, I can't stay here with my family."
But, I tried to set a good example for my kids and roll with the punches. Amazingly we had a quiet night sleep. The buses stop running and the traffic outside dies down. We had a roomy third floor room with one queen and two twin beds, so the kids were happy to each have their own space. The next day we took the bus downtown. The "end of the line" is right across the street from Seal Rock Inn. So the bus was empty when we first got on, and there was standing room only by the time we got off. But it was a great way to people watch and meet some of the locals who live by public transportation. Many were quite friendly. We did our sightseeing thing that day and returned tired once again by bus. It was nice to not have driven in the car for a day, but one day of bus riding was enough.
The next morning my husband and I got up and walked to a charming diner down the hill. We had breakfast and a spectacular view of the ocean and the Sutro bath ruins. The neighborhood was looking a little better. Later, we drove ourselves to Fishermans Wharf and found a parking garage for another round of tourist stuff, which worked fine too.
Originally our reservations were for three nights, but we decided that two were more than enough. We cancelled our third night and opted to return to an airport hotel that we knew would be clean and reliable, we had an early flight in the morning anyway and we'd seen most of what we came to see for this trip.
In summary, Seal Rock Inn has potential to be a very nice place in an interesting location, but it needs major updating. Most of the staff is friendly, but they reside behind glass in a small office off a non-existant lobby. It doesn't give the guest a very confident feeling about the neighborhood. Free parking is a definite plus. And the price of the room was looking pretty good after experiencing how expensive everything in and around San Francisco is. Still, if we ever find our way back to San Francisco, we will probably save our pennies and pay more for a hopefully nicer place.

  • Stayed April 2006
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
14 Thank BNice3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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210 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (79)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
New York
Level Contributor
14 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 33 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 1, 2006

Based on a 4 night stay at The Seal Rock Inn in February...

Pros:
*Large rooms including separate sitting area
*Near the ocean for spectacular views
*Away from downtown so it's quiet and safe
*Kitchenette
*Very, very reasonably priced for SF
*Close to transportation for easy commute to downtown and attractions
*Walking distance to good eats and drinks w/ incredible views at The Cliff House
*Walking distance to a convenience store
*Convenient to western SF sites e.g. Golden Gate Park, The Presidio, Palace of the Legion of Honor, Ocean Beach, and more
*Free parking
*Nice, friendly, helpful staff

Cons:
*Rooms are *not* clean...a major issue for me
*Place needs an upgrade/renovation including new paint to cover up years worth of handprints and dirt on doorways and walls, new carpet, new bathroom (the floor tiles felt grimy and slimy under my feet...disgusting), better air filtering system (the place had a dank, musty smell that would not go away), the list goes on
*Use of kitchenette requires additional fee
*Takes about 1/2 hour to get to downtown by bus...fine for a couple of days, but then the commute up and down Geary Blvd. gets tired...take the 38L bus, which is faster than the local 38 or rent a car (the Hertz on Geary near 3rd Ave. has good rates)

  • Stayed February 2006
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
13 Thank NYMary
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 14, 2005

Great last minute place to stay, ocean view and near alot of attractions. Very spacious inside, with a bit of romance by the fire place. I will absolutly stay there again...Oh and dont forget the resturant down stairs!

Stayed August 2005
Helpful?
10 Thank Jen W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Riverside, California
Level Contributor
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common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 65 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 22, 2005

OK, so it's not a five star hotel. But it's clean, secure and very affordable. Ask for a room with a view ... and if you get a third floor room you can also have a fireplace! The rooms also come with a small fridge tucked in the cabinet under the television. (ignore the microwave in the photos. We brought that ourselves!)

our third floor room was large and comfortable. The motel is quite a ways from downtown in a residential area near Cliffhouse, which is exactly what we wanted. If you don't have a car, it can probably be quite a ride to downtown, but there is a bus line that stops right across the street. We chose to drive our car everywhere we went. Traffic is a heavy and the roads are steep, but we had no major problems finding parking--minor ones, yes. Be warned, parking garages near the wharf are expensive.

We stayed at Seal Rock Inn April 2004 and will definitely stay here again when we return to SF. In addition to seeing Fisherman's Wharf and Golden Gate Bridge, you must visit the nearby park. It's a tiny version of NY's central park.
There is a windmill and in the spring the tulips surrounding it are beautiful! It was one of my favorite places in SF.

  • Stayed April 2004
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
34 Thank Budget_Traveler
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
A TripAdvisor Member
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 11, 2005

The Seal Rock Inn is a lovely place. We had a bedroom plus a large sitting area and fireplace with an ocean view. The interior courtyard with swimming pool was a pleasant spot when it was warm enough to swim. Because the Seal Rock is quite a drive from downtown SF, the restaurant is a welcome bonus. We had several good meals there with fine service. Overall, laid back without being slack or lazy. A very good value.

  • Stayed June 2004
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
17 Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Buffalo
Level Contributor
77 reviews
27 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 94 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 3, 2005

If you like a lot of space and an ocean view, this is the place for you. Housekeeping here is excellent and the staff is helpful. Free parking is a definite plus. This is a great place for a family and the bus at the corner takes you right in to downtown. We've stayed here on two occasions and we'll definitely be back!

  • Stayed July 2004
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
16 Thank Nell55
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
A TripAdvisor Member
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 6, 2004

If you are looking for something different than the regular old corporate hotel room in a busy, crowded, overpriced central business district ... try the Seal Rock.

I was in SF on business recently and just did not want to stay downtown. I remembered the Seal Rock In and it was just perfect. The rooms were clean and comfortable ... although not at all fancy. The location is perfecrt. At the end of Geary Street off Golden Gate Park ... with an awsome view of the Pacific Ocean. I never heard any buses, but even if they would have been loud ... it would not have changed my opinion.. A big thumbs up!!!

Helpful?
16 Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Seal Rock Inn

Property: Seal Rock Inn
Address: 545 Point Lobos Ave, San Francisco, CA 94121-1499
Location: United States > California > San Francisco
Amenities:
Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#3 Best Value Hotel in San Francisco
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Number of rooms: 27
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Situated next to the quiet, scenic surroundings of Sutro Heights Park and Land's End, we are located away from the noisy downtown traffic and crowds, yet still in the city in a resort-like location. We are just a block up the hill from the historic Cliff House and a few steps further to miles of beach along Ocean Beach. Enjoy a wonderful breakfast or lunch at our own restaurant which serves all day and every day. Our spacious guest rooms, many of which have excellent park and ocean views, provide our guests with many amenities including free high-speed Wi-Fi , cable TVs, dual-line phones with voice mail, free locals calls, in-room iron/ironing boards, and hair dryers. Other hotel amenities incude complimentary but limited covered parking, a private patio with swimming pool, ping pong and badminton. All our guest roomsrooms are non-smoking and some with fireplaces. So if you are ready to try something different in San Francisco then consider us as your home away from home along San Francisco's ocean front. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Seal Rock Hotel San Francisco
Seal Rock San Francisco
Seal Rock Inn San Francisco

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