Straddling the line between trendy SoMa and the Union Square shopping district, the consciously hip Hotel Zetta San Francisco is pure City by the Bay. With all the latest tech gadgets and works by local artists in rooms, plus a lively lobby café-bar filled with repurposed vintage décor and one of the city’s hottest restaurants, this urban bolthole has finally put the Bay Area spin on boutique luxury.
Lively lobby scene
A bottle of Napa Valley red wine
In the know
Also need to know:
The hotel does not have a spa, but they do have an arrangement for guests at the neighbouring Burke Williams spa, and can provide in-room spa treatments.
Your iPad, Kindle, smartphone, laptop… Indeed, all of your electronics, which connect to the G-Link dock and smart TV in each room, so you can have all the entertainment you’d have at home, for free.
T-shirt and jeans – sustainably and responsibly made by a trendy local brand like Everlane, and paired with either a tailored blazer or designer heels for a tech-giant-next-door look.
Mr and Mrs Smith reviews
Every hotel featured is visited personally by members of our team, given the Smith seal of approval, and then anonymously reviewed. As soon as our reviewers have returned from this trendy boutique hotel in San Francisco and unpacked their iPads and artisanal coffee, a full account of their Bay Area luxury break will be with you. In the meantime, to whet your wanderlust, here's a quick postcard from the Hotel Zetta San Francisco in downtown San Francisco…
If you’re going to San Francisco, be sure to…bring your smartphone and iPad – and come hungry. You can wear flowers in your hair if you want to, but, frankly, we doubt anyone will care these days. At the Hotel Zetta San Francisco, where creative types and unassuming tech giants congregate in the lobby over laptops and craft cocktails, you’re more likely to fit in if you’re sporting skinny jeans, debating the merits of Google Glass and showing off Instagrams of last night’s meal at the hotel’s highly acclaimed Cavalier restaurant.
Upstairs, in the stylish rooms overlooking the city, it’s more of the same – in a low-key and unpretentious way. Walls are adorned with works by local artists, minibars are stocked with artisanal snacks and every room is outfitted with the absolute cutting-edge in technology, such as a smart TV that connects to your electronics via Bluetooth and acts like a computer. The only bad thing? The fact that you’re going to go home wishing you had all of this at your place.
55 5th Street, San Francisco, California 94103, United States
0.9 mi / 1.4 km from city centre
- Valet parking
- Aerobics instruction
- Exercise gym
- Internet services
- Complimentary in-room coffee or tea
- Room service
- Onsite laundry
The third venture from the team behind two of San Francisco’s most acclaimed restaurants (Marlowe and Park Tavern), the trendy and lively Cavalier puts on old-world spin on one of the city’s most contemporary neighbourhoods. Anglo-inspired dishes like Welsh rarebit soufflé and steak and oyster pie are served between four elegant and atmospheric rooms – with names like the ‘Rail Car’ and ‘Wine Stables’ – and paired with classic British club cocktails and an extensive wine list. Additionally, the lobby’s S&R Lounge (which stands for ‘salvage and rescue’) serves basic breakfasts, Stumptown coffee and small plates and sandwiches every evening.
The Cavalier has a room for every mood. We’re partial to the people-watching in the Blue Bar, the liveliest room, but, when it comes to romance, we’d go for the red-leather banquettes and Orient-Express-inspired train carriage accents in the Rail Car.
In the Cavalier, breakfast is served from 7 to 10:3am; lunch from 11:30am to 2pm; and dinner from 5:30 to 10pm on weekdays, 11pm Thursday to Saturday. In the S&R Lounge, breakfast is from 7 to 10:30am; it operates as a bar nightly from 4pm to 11pm.
The full restaurant breakfast menu is available in your room from 6 to 10:30am; the restaurant dinner menu can be ordered to your room from 5 to 11pm.
In addition to the Cavalier’s room-length bar where well-mixed gin, whiskey and rum cocktails are the order of the day, the lobby S&R Lounge and its attached mezzanine Playroom are a popular watering hole for the trendy after-work crowd, as well as an all-day work spot for techies and freelancers. Pick your poison from a range of inventive cocktails, West Coast wines and craft beers, then nab a spot on a sofa or in the hanging chair. If you’re feeling social, challenge a new friend to a game of shuffleboard, pool, Connect Four – or any of the over 50 Nintendo WiiU games. Behind Cavalier's lies Marianne's, a hush-hush, living-room-style drinking den where San Francisco's elite come to unwind; however, you'll need to use all your powers of persuasion to get in – its private entrance usually only opens for the lucky (very) few with a door code and friends of the owners…