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Review of the Golden Gate Hotel in San Francisco, A Family Bed And Breakfast: 2010
Our family of four, including an 11 year old and a 15 year old, spent the night of December 22 in San Francisco at the Golden Gate Hotel, a wonderful experience all around. It was a classic Bed & Breakfast with fun and quirky details, and a great launching pad for 30 hours in a great city.
What you get for how much
I’m always looking for a bargain for family travel, but I like a nice experience. We stayed in the two below lobby level rooms – priced at $105 per room with two people in each room. They are the only downstairs rooms, and share a bathroom which is down the hall. The bath has a shower, but no tub. The rooms are quite nice. I didn’t see the upstairs rooms, but they go up in price, and are most likely even nicer.
It’s all about the food
To sum up: simple good quality. We arrived in time for 4 o’clock tea, which was tea and cookies. The cookies were oatmeal raisin, hearty and not too sweet. My husband is a coffee person, but even he commented on the quality of the tea.
Breakfast was fresh squeezed orange juice, tea, and assorted baked goods, which arrived to the table warm. I don’t know if these were made in the hotel kitchen or brought from a nearby bakery, but they were freshly baked and very good. The basket included a hearty whole grain muffin, a plain croissant & a chocolate filled croissant, so every level of health consciousness was addressed. When one of the innkeepers saw that my daughter wasn’t excited about a cup of tea, he quietly offered to make her a hot chocolate, a thoughtful gesture that won him a big 11 year old smile.
Architecture and atmosphere
The Golden Gate Hotel is a tall, thin yellow building on Nob Hill. Inside a set of double doors is a parlor where breakfast and tea are served, and which can be used as a sitting room the rest of the time. Quality antique sofa and sideboard, gas fireplace, and window treatments in a fabric printed with colorful hot air balloons make an attractive interior. The resident cat and dog, a Manx and a Golden Retriever, are friendly but not intrusive. The hotel has an antique elevator for bringing suitcases to your floor, and winding staircases if you don’t want to wait for the elevator.
The hotel feels like a family run operation, and it is. One of the innkeepers mentioned that she & her husband had recently sold the business to their daughter. I had been asking her about some of the paintings (the walls are thick with them, many of San Francisco), and she explained that since her daughter bought the place many of the paintings were new. I don’t know how long this innkeeper had owned the hotel, but from her conversation of the neighborhood, people who frequented the area and regular guests, I got the impression she had been there a long time.
Almost directly across the street is a parking garage, and with a stamp from the Golden Gate Hotel 24 hours parking will cost you $25.
Getting around the city
The parking garage doesn’t offer in and out privileges, so once you have taken the 24 hour deal, your options are the trolley and walking. You can catch the trolley within a block. We prefer walking, and trouped down to Ghirardelli Square for dinner and dessert, about a 45 minute walk. The area is hilly, like most of the city. Grace Cathedral is only a few blocks away, and my son & I walked there the next morning.
I highly recommend the Golden Gate Hotel, for family travel and as a couple’s getaway.
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