San Francisco

iStock International

Sir Francis Drake

Address: 450 Powell St.

Neighborhood: Union Square

City: San Francisco

Phone: 800-795-7192; 415-392-7755


Expert Review

Located off the Powell Street cable car line, Sir Francis Drake is a Kimpton property dropped smack in the middle of San Francisco’s busiest neighborhood, Union Square. It’s been in operation since 1928, and the marble staircase, soaring gilded ceilings, and shimmering crystal chandeliers showcase the era at its finest. Rooms feature all the usual amenities like TVs with on-demand movies, hair dryers, mini-bars, and free Wi-Fi (a novelty in a city that tries to charge you for everything); plus, there’s a concierge, workout room, two restaurants, and a bar elsewhere in the hotel. Three of Sir Francis Drake’s more famous inhabitants are Scala’s Bistro, an affordable Italian joint that packs a punch with every dish; Harry Denton’s Starlight Room, open nightly for entertainment and dancing, but most known for its Sunday drag brunch; and Tom Sweeney, an amicable doorman outfitted in Beefeater duds.

Tags: moderate | historic

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