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“a great small hotel in the heart of San Francisco”
Review of Hotel Union Square

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Hotel Union Square
Ranked #100 of 229 Hotels in San Francisco
Hanalei, Hawaii
Level 1 Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“a great small hotel in the heart of San Francisco”
Reviewed December 13, 2012

To break the long flight from Toronto to Kauai I stayed at this hotel right on Powell Street for a few days. Since I was last there four years ago it has been renovated and I found it to be even nicer than before. You can't beat the central location and almost more important is the warm, friendly helpful staff. They really do an outstanding job in helping their visitors. The usual concierge Tom Steele was away but Rubin did a wonderful job. On his recommendation I did a hop-on-hop-off bus trip. $35 for a 24 hour ticket. Managed to do it two days and saw a lot. The manager was also very friendly and helpful.

It is not a spacious hotel, but I am not in SFO to sleep -it had a kingsize bed and nice bathroom and
was very clean. They serve wine between 5-6 p.m. and have a guitar player in the lobby. A nice way to meet other travellers and also coffee in the morning. You are close to lots of good restaurants around the area and it feels safe. It is also reasonably priced.

Room Tip: I think the upper inner courtyard rooms are the quietest.
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  • Stayed November 2012, traveled solo
    • Value
    • Location
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Helpful?
1 Thank dianeatthewater
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tony A, Manager at Hotel Union Square, responded to this review, December 17, 2012
I was very thrilled to read your compliments about my staff and me during your stay here at Hotel Union Square, I will definitely share your compliments with the staff and I am glad that you enjoyed our coffee bar, wine hour and guitar player. I really appreciate the fact that you took your valuable time to write these kind comments and we all look forward to your return.

Thank you and happy holidays,

Tony Abboud
Hotel Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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california
Level 4 Contributor
31 reviews
19 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
Reviewed December 12, 2012

Great location to holiday shopping in Union Square . The room had 2 double beds , has been updated, a little small but only there to sleep . Clean and quiet . A wine reception with a guitar player singing was a bonus and morning coffee in the lobby . The parking the hotel uses is on site very convenient although no in/out privileges but great because it is secure with valet and you can put bags in your car . The staff were very friendly . The manager greeted us at the wine reception . Yes we will return to this hotel .
Skip the Cheesecake Factory the service is progressively getting worse and not worth the 45min to 1.5 hr wait !

Room Tip: The room with a single double/queen bed is small , at least the one we saw on the third floor was...
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
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Helpful?
Thank lvacationlover
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tony A, Manager at Hotel Union Square, responded to this review, December 17, 2012
I am honored that you have chosen Hotel Union Square as your hotel of choice in San Francisco. It is through comments and recommendations, such as yours, that future guests rely on when choosing a hotel in the area. Thank you for your wonderful review and I truly look forward to your return visit.

Best wishes
Tony Abboud
Hotel Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 3 Contributor
20 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed December 10, 2012

This is the third time I have stayed at Hotel Union Square. It is a boutique hotel in the best location. It is on Powell Street, right around the corner from Market Street. My Birthday is in December and it is so fun to head to San Francisco for the weekend. I love this time of year in the city. The weather is usually wonderful.
The regular rooms are not huge, but have high ceilings and the hotel is tastefully decorated. Also an important factor to me is the hotel is clean. The staff and manager are so friendly and accommodating. They are always quick to assist and they are sincere. If you arrive early, they will hold your luggage until your room is ready.
Last year I was there for a special Birthday and they upgraded my room.
Yes, the hotel is old, but that is part of the charm. It is upgraded where it should be yet still has the charm. For those who love the boutique hotels, this is wonderful. The location is perfect. Shopping is great and only a few blocks from Union Square. Lots of great restaurants close by, too. I will definitely be back. I love Hotel Union Square.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with friends
    • Value
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Helpful?
2 Thank 2-2-italy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tony A, Manager at Hotel Union Square, responded to this review, December 17, 2012
Thank you so much for your nice comments about our hotel and staff. I am glad that you enjoyed all of our amenities and the excellent service you received from our staff. I am pleased to know that we were successful in making your birthday celebration here memorable.

I would like you to know how good it makes feel to make your stay with us so pleasurable that you not only return, but you also recommend our hotel to others.


Thank you for the wonderful review!

Best wishes,
Tony Abboud
Hotel Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kerman, California
Level 4 Contributor
41 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
Reviewed November 22, 2012

This is a lovely old hotel in a big city feeling. It wasn't an "old" hotel but remodelled to have a nice clean feeling. We origionally had the king executive room and we were upgraded to a suite for our anniversary. We were running late when we checked in and they upgraded us to a "kid compatible suite, we though,t hey this would just have another bed for children. No problem. when we got into the room, it was a huge room, huge bathroom. Half of the room was a great suite,.... the other half had a small twin and was loaded with kids toys. Glowing clowns head, globe, and board games. I was a little bit takne back, they knew it was our anniversary and we got a room with KIDS STUFF. Oh my. We were in a hurry to get see Lion King, so we just left it. My wife thought it was fun, so it was a funny moment on our weekend. We loved the location, and it was close to alot of fun things around union square. We walked to all the big stores to shop and walked to the museum of modern art.
I would highly reccomend this hotel for a great weekend adventure. We felt safe walking around from place to place and from the Orpheum theater.
It was very clean, and the front office was helpful and helped us with taxi's and places to grab a bite to eat. They had coffee and water durring certin times of the day.

Room Tip: If your not familiar with the area, call ahead for the parking structure which is on another street...
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  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank SWMKerman
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cairns, Australia
Level 4 Contributor
32 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
Reviewed November 17, 2012

We loved the location. Had a room at the back so we were not affected by the noise that bothered other reviewers. Wine in the evening was a pleasant way to unwind. We did find that the room was a bit small for us and our two suitcases but were happy to put up with it. Overall, it ticked all our boxes - central location, comfy bed and quiet.

Room Tip: Definitely ask for room away from the street.
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  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank Meredith19
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Perth, Australia
Level 5 Contributor
50 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
Reviewed November 15, 2012

Nice place our room was huge with a big bathroom. They have re done the room with a modern twist. But you can tell it is a grand old place with the tall ceilings. And the layout of the rooms.
The concierge were more then helpful her as we're the front desk. We even had a nice chat with one of the maids.

Great location for shopping and getting to the tourist destinations.

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank Troy L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Santa Fe, New Mexico
Level 3 Contributor
17 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
Reviewed November 15, 2012

I did extensive (ok, obsessive) research on hotels in San Francisco for my upcoming vacation with my husband and finally decided on the Hotel Union Square. I am overall very pleased with my choice. Here are the pros:

- Location, location, location: We flew into OAK and took the BART (Bay Area subway) to the Powell Street stop. The hotel is literally a 2-3 minute walk (one block) from the BART station. Saved a ton on taking a cab, and we ended up venturing out to the Mission, which made being by the BART very handy. One of the main cable cars also runs on Powell St, which was great after a walk around Chinatown and dreading the walk (uphill) back. Also, the Geary/O'Farell bus is only a block away, which was invaluable for getting out the Richmond and the Golden Gate park.

If you are walking, it is a short walk to, of course, Union Square, and from there the Financial District and Chinatown. We also walked from Fisherman's Wharf, through Nob Hill and back to the hotel one night, but I would only recommend that for the young and somewhat fit. Of course, stops in Nob Hill along the way for refreshments helped.

We also got out the Filmore one night for jazz and it was a quick short cab ride. San Francisco is surprisingly small, geographically.

Oh, and if you are a cheap cute clothes shopper, Uniqlo is across the street and H&M is literally next door.

- Charm: This hotel is small and cozy - it is not for you if you are looking for a big fancy hotel with all the amenities therein - check out the Westin a few blocks up. It is perfect if you want something with personality and warmth and a wine hour with a fairly hip young crowd of fellow travelers. We did stay in an Executive King and we loved our room. My husband, a very picky artist, loved the decor of the room (and the ceiling) and the red velvet blackout curtains. The bathtub was great (I'm 5'10" and fit).

- Price: Probably the best price for this class of hotel that I found during the timeframe needed. I booked online at 20% off, and then called in to customer service for an upgrade. Worked fine and ended up paying less that $200 for our first night, and then approx $230 the rest of the time. For an Executive King. Very nice price, but beware taxes!

- Toiletries:Totally random, but they provided makeup remover wipes as part of the complimentary toiletries. What a nice touch! Enjoyed

- Misc: Housekeeping was great. Never interrupted us when we had our sign out, and then gave us a late checkout on our last night, despite having a conference checking in that day. We did have a coffeemaker in the room, single cup, but the coffee in the lobby is MUCH better.

Cons:
- The big one for me was that they wanted me to "prepay" for my full stay on my credit card upon check-in. What? I understand one night, or X amount for incidentals, but we were talking about tying up almost $800. Fortunately, after some discussion, Coffee (the check-in clerk's name) relented and let us save one night. The next day we did another night, and so on, so that it functioned like a pas-as-you-go situation. It was a little weird and I have never had this happen before. Perhaps my husband and I looked disreputable? Anyway, it made us feel a little offended and on-guard, like were were being judged, but maybe that's just the way it is these days. I havent traveled for a while.

- The bed was too soft. It just was. (No boxspring and no solid platform, but slats instead.) My husband I both thought so, and it made for poor sleep. However, YMMV.

- TAXES: This is not specific to the hotel, but the San Francisco in general. Beware the massive sales taxes and health taxes and taxes taxes taxes on everything. It usually added about 20% to whatever bill you are paying, be it hotel or restaurant, etc. Just be aware and factor that in.

And that's about it. Overall, we liked it and it fit our needs for a getaway, as it was cozy and romantic. We may try another hotel next time, just to shake it up, but I would not have a problem recommending this hotel to friends, especially young couples.

Room Tip: We booked an Executive King (room 503) facing Powell Street- noise didn't bother us at all. The...
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  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank waterdaughter71
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hotel Union Square

Property: Hotel Union Square
Address: 114 Powell Street, San Francisco, CA 94102-2204
Phone Number:
Location: United States > California > San Francisco > Union Square
Amenities:
Business Center with Internet Access Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Room Service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#43 Family Hotel in San Francisco
#72 Business Hotel in San Francisco
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Hotel Union Square 3.5*
Number of rooms: 131
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
•Complimentary morning coffee & tea in the lobby•Complimentary evening wine reception ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Union Square San Francisco
Union Square Hotel

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