By Mark Chesnut
With a slew of hotel renovations, upgrades and expansions, business travelers headed to San Francisco—as well as anyone looking for an upscale California vacation—will find an impressive array of accommodations that can suit just about any taste, from funky to fancy.
Among the recently renovated hotels is the Hilton San Francisco Union Square, which completed a $53 million upgrade this year; improvements include guest rooms with soundproofing and new furniture, as well as expanded and updated meeting space. Also finished this year is a multimillion-dollar transformation of the Hotel Adagio, which now has refurbished guest rooms, expanded meeting space, a revamped restaurant and a new bar.
In May 2012, the Mandarin Oriental San Francisco unveiled luxurious new interiors to celebrate the hotel’s 25th anniversary. Located on the top 11 floors of the city’s third-tallest building, the hotel has been graced with contemporary and elegant decor, with a brand-new Italian travertine marble lobby, redecorated guest rooms and a new signature restaurant, Brasserie S & P.
Guests at the hip Hotel Diva, part of Kimpton Hotels, are benefiting from that property’s $2 million facelift, with even cooler design elements. Also part of the Kimpton group is the 144-room Hotel Triton, which this year enjoyed an imaginative makeover that has resulted in decor like quotes from Beat-era writers such as Jack Kerouac and Allen Ginsberg; you can also choose to stay in celebrity suites designed by the likes of comedian Kathy Griffin; another suite is dedicated to the Grateful Dead.
Business travelers looking for meeting space will find additional noteworthy options. Moscone Center, the city’s largest convention center, recently completed a two-year, $56 million renovation, while renovated facilities at the Hyatt at Fisherman’s Wharf now sport colors and images that tie in with the vibe of San Francisco Bay—and additional power outlets will surely be appreciated by well-connected travelers.
Mark Chesnut is a travel writer, editor and publisher of LatinFlyer.com, which focuses on travel to Latin America. He recently enjoyed a fun stay at the Hotel Diva.