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“Great Location, Slept SO Well!”

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The Westin St. Francis San Francisco on Union Square
Ranked #74 of 228 Hotels in San Francisco
GreenLeadersBronze level
Melbourne, Australia
Level Contributor
32 reviews
31 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 264 helpful votes
“Great Location, Slept SO Well!”
Reviewed January 7, 2005

I managed to get a great rate of $75/night on priceline for my three night stay at the Westin St. Francis.

The location cannot be beat, right on Union Square and great for shopping. I was given a "12% off for a day" Macy's voucher with my check in key, which came in handy for the sales.

Entering the hotel, there is a sense of the European Grand Hotel, with plenty of marble and brass furnishings, however a modernisation of the lobby gives a contemporary feel and there are plenty of places to meet with friends or colleagues.

On check in, the agent asked if I was a priceline or expedia customer. He was courteous, though not overly friendly (did not ask how I was etc.). I confirmed I was a priceline customer, and asked if that affected the room I received. He said only "standard" rooms in the older part of the building were allocated for priceline guests. Check in took about 10 minutes as his computer broke down, though he apologised for this delay.

Having read other reviews here, I asked if any rooms in the newer tower were available, and this was accommodated for a $30 premium per day, which I paid. Still a bargain.

Also requested the $16/day hi-speed internet package which saves you money. No in room WiFi, though.

I had a ninth floor room, only rooms about about level 15 in the new tower have a view of Union Square. View was of windows in old section of hotel, and cement roof of connecting buildings. Elevators are very fast - you feel a little unwell when descending!!

The room was as others have said quite standard for higher end properties, I had two large beds, and it was spacious. The great Westin selling point is the 260 thread count ultra soft sheets, six pillows including a neck pillow and the dual "heavenly" showers. Terrific! You can purchase the bed ensemble for your own home for $2,965. The bath did however keep leaking water even when the plug was in, requiring replenishment, and seemed a little old with grip strips on the surfaces. New tiles and bright lighting compensated for the tired bath.

I had one problem as my a/c would not heat the room. An engineer was dispatched within 20 mins to fix it - very courteous and great service, except in the morning I now noticed that the room would not cool down. I guess a system fault, but not great had I been paying full price. Luckily windows opened so fresh air was available.

Turndown service is only available if you request it between 5pm and 9pm. I was not charged for any newspapers, although variously USA Today, Wall Street Journal and San Fran Chronicle appeared on my doorstep each morning.

Maid Service seemed efficient, bed always made between me leaving my room at noon, and returning around three. Room was noticeably not vacuumed during my stay, and some dust on the glass shelves in the bathroom was never dealt with. A cleaning cloth was left on my sink unit. Maid was very apologetic when i returned it to here - no problem. Amenities were generously replenished every day, though. Not bad, but not great either.

Would definitely stay here again at the bargain rate I received, I recommend you request a stay in the new tower to the rear of the historic hotel which seems to elimiate many of the gripes people have with this hotel. The Westin St Francis is really two types of accommodation offered under one brand, which cannot do Westin's reputation any good.

Frankly, the Heavenly Bed (which is in ALL rooms) is so good it takes the medal and allows you to forgive this hotel's little shortcomings. Slept like a baby!

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6 Thank RovingTraveller1900
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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LAS VEGAS
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
Reviewed January 6, 2005

I was expecting nostalgia an old world charm but instead I found an old world dump that should be retired and taken down and rebuilt from the ground up! CANT BELIEVE THIS IS WESTIN

  • Stayed January 2005
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Helpful?
Thank WORLWIDETRAVELER
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
A TripAdvisor Member
Reviewed January 5, 2005

Stayed here over the holidays and found the entire experience unsatisfying. Be warned, if you stay in the "older" section, the rooms are completely sub-par and do not match the 4/5 star designation that the hotel likes to proclaim. Although the lobby is grand, the older floors are worn and the rooms definitely not luxurious. The bathrooms are small, unrenovated, and really unsavory. More like an old motel. Ours had dirty tiles, and old toilet, chipped floors, an old sink, and no place to put toiletries. The rest of the room just felt old and unclean, with chipping paint around the woodwork. We were put in a queen in the older section because we booked through priceline probably, so this does not speak to the modern tower rooms. Finally, the fitness center charged $12/day, when other hotels in the area are all free. We complained, were blown off by management, and checked out to stay elsewhere. Would never stay there again. Only the location is decent.

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1 Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Diego, California
Level Contributor
20 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
Reviewed January 3, 2005

Stayed 12/30/04-1/2/05. Room was booked through Hotwire for $110 night (a steal over NYE, but I will return to this topic later). We arrived at 9:30 am for a 3:00 pm check-in and were provided a made-up room without much trouble, which was great. The room itself (tower courtyard view) was nice enough, but nothing special - roughly on par with marriot, hilton and hyatt in town. Decent size with 2 double beds (very comfortable) as requested, small table with 2 wooden chairs and 2 stuffed chairs. The room was as clean as would be expected in a good hotel - no complaints. All employees were courteous (e.g. removing a single erroneous mini-bar charge without any debate, providing addtional towels quickly). Lobby is very nice, as is the view from the tower elavators. There was a lack of a decent bar, but at the prices, anyone but the very affluent are well advised to drink elsewhere. Not a complaint, just an observation. Expensive hotel usually equals expensive amenities.

If you book this hotel through Hotwire, however, beware. I specified 4 people in the room and the room i was initially assigned was a single main building room. An upgrade to a room with 2 beds was $30/night. I do not blame the hotel for this. They showed me a fact sheet describing their fee structure, and the small main building rooms, the majority of which have only one bed, are priced lower than all tower rooms.

Overall though, nice place, no complaints.

Helpful?
2 Thank cuss
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
A TripAdvisor Member
Reviewed January 2, 2005

We booked 2 nights at the Westin St. Francis through Hotwire and because of the heavy rains, we called in to let them know we were running late. They assured us that our room will be ready when we get there, because it is a prepaid reservation. We got there 7pm and they happily gave us a free upgrade, bigger room on a high level. WOW. Moreover, room service gave us a free dish on New Year's Eve! I was concerned that they will treat us differently for booking thru a third party agent, but we were treated very well. Security on New Year's Eve was very well observed. My kids, friends and I will come back every New Year's Eve, because THE PARTY is right at the hotel's doorstep!

PLUS: Heavenly Beds - immensely comfortable, soft and warm. Service calls were taken promptly and they were at your door within minutes!

We had an unforgettable stay at the Westin St. Francis. Convenient, luxurious, historic, and heavenly. Staff at this hotel appear to be content, wearing a smile all the time, even joking around with my children.

PS. I read about the review about returning newspapers. I was never charged for them, whether I read them or not.

  • Stayed January 2005
    • Value
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Helpful?
3 Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
SF
Level Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed January 1, 2005

Our first room smelled bad, actually the whole floor smelled like a convalescent hospital. And, there was paint chipping off the ceiling! After switching rooms, we got something not much better. ( at least it wasn't smelly any more ) The ceiling in the bathroom was moldy and there was someone's hair stuck to the tile around the door which was there during our whole stay. (even though I mentioned it to the front desk - they never got back to me ) The room was extremely small with outdated furnishings & old carpet. We had asked for a king size bed but was told that the old tower didn't have any king size beds in it. We tried to upgrade our room, but was told they didn't have anything else available. Our stay was for 4 nights, but we wanted to go home after the first night as it was very noisy all night long. I guess the walls are really thin. The bathroom had no fan and no counter space. I had to put my personal stuff on the floor. There was a small window that was extremely hard to reach and open. I had to stand on the counter to budge it open. The heater also didn't work and just blew out cold air all night. To top it off, our key stopped working our last night there. Even after a replacement key, we had to keep calling security to open the door for us. I've stayed at westin hotels before and thought they were all very nice with the whole "heavenly" thing.

Basically, I think if you can't stay in the new towers which have renovated rooms, don't stay at all. The old towers is like a 2 star hotel.

  • Stayed January 2005
    • Value
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Helpful?
3 Thank yellowgoldfish
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
A TripAdvisor Member
Reviewed December 31, 2004

We have stayed her many times and never a problem. The employees are friendly and accomodating and the location can't be beat. We asked for a roll-away and it was promtly delivered with no extra charge. We asked for extra towels and again..quick delivery. The lobby is crowded and sometimes chaotic but it makes for good people watching. We have stayed at other hotels and have looked at others, too but always stick with the St. Francis. FYI..beware of all the charges they tack on to the room service.

  • Stayed January 2005
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 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 The Westin St. Francis San Francisco on Union Square

Property: The Westin St. Francis San Francisco on Union Square
Address: 335 Powell Street, Union Square, San Francisco, CA 94102-1804
Phone Number:
Location: United States > California > San Francisco > Union Square
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#43 Luxury Hotel in San Francisco
#53 Family Hotel in San Francisco
#58 Green Hotel in San Francisco
#60 Business Hotel in San Francisco
#73 Romantic Hotel in San Francisco
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4 star — The Westin St. Francis San Francisco on Union Square 4*
Number of rooms: 1195
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
More than just a hotel, The Westin St. Francis is a destination where you can unwind and be pampered by attentive, world-class service. As the only hotel located on Union Square, we are celebrated for our historic Magneta Grandfather Clock, a popular gathering place for generations of travelers, as well as our commitment to guest renewal and relaxation. Explore this legendary landmark, which has drawn locals and visitors for more than a century with our distinguished service and through the timeless refrain "Meet me under the clock!" Inside our warm and welcoming San Francisco luxury hotel, marble columns, ornate balconies, and intricate woodwork transport guests back to the elegance of yesteryear. Yet these magnificent appointments are balanced by modern, groundbreaking amenities including the revolutionary Heavenly Bed, our Starwood Preferred Guest rewards program, and employees dedicated to making you feel at home. Book one of our downtown San Francisco hotel rooms and discover the allure of the city's most charismatic and vital setting. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Westin St. Francis Hotel San Francisco
Westin St Francis
Westin San Francisco
Westin Hotel San Francisco
San Francisco Westin

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