Historical Traveller Reviews of Best Western The Hotel California
Quaint! Newly renovated with old world feel.
from A TripAdvisor Member
Clean historic hotel that can fit most budgets. A big plus: our queen size bed had soft, egyptian cotton sheets, and fluffy pillows. Tasty vegetarian restaurant attached to hotel. I also enjoyed their daily wine and cheese hour. The minuses: Offers only valet parking, which is expensive and requires lots of tipping. No high-speed internet in rooms yet.
Stayed at the Savoy Hotel February 2005. We got a great deal through a travel web-site buying the airfare and room together. The hotel is in a good location but a couple of blocks over you're in The Tenderloin, one of San Francisco's more unsavory neighborhoods. If you are walking to the Muni Metro/Bart station, I'd walk down to Union Square and forget walking down Jones. The room was small but the bed was comfortable. There was still a little bit of trash in the wastebasket in the bathroom when we arrived, also there was a bottle of Neutrogena Facial Soap on the sink that said $10.00 and it had already been opened - we advised the desk clerk and we weren't charged for it. The shower head was too low so you had to dunk down to get the shampoo out of your hair, and the hot/cold was touchy. They advertise that you get a tequila shot when you arrive but we didn't see any. Have cheese and cheap wine set out for "happy hour". We found a few pieces of fruit in our room one night with a thank you note for being their guest. The hotel can be noisy at night with all the commotion on Geary. Still, would stay there again. It was charming.
Loved the location and the BED!!
My husband and I flew into SFO and stayed here at the Savoy for 2 days before we drove down the California coast to LAX and Vegas. The start of our trip was great. The front desk staff were very helpful and the room was clean but small. We asked if they had a corner room liike in their ad and we were lucky-there was. The bed was absolutely awesome. This hotel is an older hotel and it reflected in the bathroom, but it was very clean and beautiful. The only downside was the day we arrived, we were in our 1st room for about 15minutes were my husband changed his shoes and put them under the bed. When we changed rooms, he forgot his shoes and about 30 minutes later, he went back to get them in the original room and lo and behold they were gone. The desk staff said no one seen them, but I suppose it was our mistake in the first place. Not going to cry over spilled milk, although if they were my shoes, I would be REALLY upset. Needless to say, we did not want to let it spoil our vacation. The location is great. We walked everywhere. The front desk staff recommended Cafe Espresso for breakfast or lunch and let me tell you...it was fantastic. I would go back just for that. So all in all, I would recommend this hotel for location, cleanliness, helpful staff and most of all the BED!!!
Love the Savoy -- again!
from A TripAdvisor Member
Spent New Year's in San Francisco at the Savoy for a second year in a row. The standard room I had requested wasn't available upon check-in, so I received a very nice upgrade to a two-bedroom suite on the second floor. The high ceilings and square footage of the rooms made it a little difficult to keep them properly heated, but otherwise everything was very pleasant: the feather bed was so comfortable, it really made it difficult not to want to sleep in very late. The double-paned windows kept out most of the traffic noises from Geary Street -- you'd only really need earplugs if you were hyper-sensitive to noise or just fresh off a farm. The bath robes are a fun perk, and I had no problem with water pressure. It took about thirty-seconds to get the hot water going, but once it got hot, it stayed hot. The breakfast in the Millennium restaurant space is a better value than it was: the price is now $5 (I think it was $8 on my last visit) for selections of cereals, juices, yogurt, and muffins/croissants. And, of course, the wine and cheese reception is a really nice touch.
Savoy greatly improved
We stayed at the Savoy Dec. 10-12 2004, we were leary having read the negative reviews, but found there had been many changes. Our room was freshly painted, with new sofa and chair in our junior suite. The feather bed was wonderful, like sleeping in a cloud. New double paned windows greatly reduced any street noise. The staff was wonderful and quick to fill any requests. We enjoyed the complimentary wine and cheese in the afternoon. We thoroughly enjoyed our stay in downtown San Francisco amid the hustle and bustle of the Christmas season. Before I forget, for a full American breakfast you can't go wrong with the Olympic Cafe across the street, they serve amazing omlettes.
good location, not so good for the senses
from A TripAdvisor Member
Spent two nights here in a suite over the weekend. The location is great and the staff seemed very agreeable, but the accommodations were so-so. The place shows its age; floors creak, ceilings feature interesting stains, and the shower ran alternately hot and cold. A little harder to bear were the off-putting smells (there seemed to be a sewage problem somewhere in the vicinity) and high noise level from the street at night. Plan to bring earplugs if you go.
Great location and good value
from A TripAdvisor Member
We stayed in the Savoy for four nights in September 2004 during our two week holiday in California. I had a good rate of $99 for a delux room, and it was well worth it. The hotel is not a chain, so you always expect some degree of quirkiness - but the bed was very comfortable, and the room perfectly adequate from a size point of view (when you are on holiday how much time do you spend in your room anyway?!!). Its in a great location - I can totally recommend the Olympic Cafe across the road for breakfast - fantastic omlettes! We also walked to Fisherman's Wharf from there - takes about 25 minutes but perfectly do-able. I would agree with the point made about the lift being incredibly slow (not helped by people on the 2nd and 3rd floors catching it - WALK! its better for you and the environment!!) - we were on the 7th floor and only used it when we had our luggage.
I would recommend this both on price and not being a chain hotel!!
ve ever been in!
from A TripAdvisor Member
This is one of the worst hotels I've ever been in! We booked through Orbitz and apparently it is their policy that if you book through any of the online booking agents other than The Savoy itself they give you the worst room they can find. The desk clerk actually admitted this to us! We were given a room with a hole in the ceiling caused by water damage. The bathroom had urine on the seat, hair on the sink and windowsill, and some sort of dirt on the bottom of the shower. There was a very unusual lump in the middle of the bed and the bedding had definitely seen better days. Not to mention the smell in this place was horrific! It smelled like a nursing home mixed with a men's urinal. ICK! There were stains all over the carpet and the walls were paper thin. We could hear the people next to us having a conversation in normal tones. It wasn't even like they were yelling. The room was the equivalent of a closet. We had a bigger room aboard a cruise ship and that's not saying much. The doors do not have proper locking systems and our door didn't even fit properly into the frame so all the light from the hall spilled in around the door frame. There are no chains or deadbolts on the door even though the entrance into the alleyway was left unsecured. I don't know how this hotel got a 3 star rating. It was absolutely filthy and disgusting. Everything in it was old, worn out, and improperly installed. We ended up leaving after a few hours there and letting them keep our one night deposit. The staff was less than helpful. The front desk saw no problem with giving a customer a room with urine all over the bathroom and a hole in the ceiling. From the sound of the couple next door's discussion, they were disgusted too. Everyone in my party ended up checking out of their rooms too since none of the rooms were any cleaner or safer. We ended up getting a cheaper room at the Courtyard hotel. They gave us a better rate, the staff was friendly, and the room was easily three times the size of the Savoy rooms. Plus we didn't have to endure any urine, hair, or holes in the ceiling.
The only thing wrong with this place is that it's on a very noisy street. We stayed on a Saturday night, so it may have been a bit noisier than other nights. I would recommend requesting a room facing away from the street - probably a good idea with any hotel, or take ear-plugs if you sleep lightly.
The staff were great though, and the free wine and cheese in the early evening was a nice touch. The room was really nicely decorated, and have no other complaints except for the noise.
Breakfast was croissants, juice and cereal. Recommended.
Friday-Saturday, August 27-28, 2004
Standard room = $99/night, Deluxe corner room = $114.
I upgraded to the deluxe without seeing the standard, just based on reviews I had read about it being bigger, etc.
The location is very convenient to public transportation and Union Square. I even walked down to the Embarcadero/Pier 7 from the hotel - not close but do-able. It's within blocks of the Tenderloin but if you avoid anything west of Leavenworth St. at night, it's a fine part of town. Geary St. has several hotels, restaurants, etc. and takes you right to Union Square/Powell St. (5 min. walk). If you do take BART into the city, walk straight up Powell or Stockton and turn left on Geary to avoid the sketchier streets southwest of the hotel.
The feather bed was very comfortable, the room was well-furnished, the bathroom was spotless and our towels and soaps were replaced (not sure why the other reviewer had a problem).
Anything beyond network television comes for a charge. 2 year old cable shows will cost you! Alot! The music and music video feature on the TV is also VERY expensive. Luckily I wasn't in S.F. to watch TV and the deluxe room comes with a CD player.
Overall, I was very happy with my room, the hotel, and the neighborhood. This is a great deal and very convenient for travelling in the city and taking BART to the East Bay.
I would definitely recommend this hotel and at this great rate will stay here again.
Top Local Tips for San Francisco
BART/MUNI are great. Use the BART trip planner from home your home computer and get all your destinations mapped out with prices and train selections/ times listed.
Be sure not to miss when in San Francisco!
Take the night excursion to Alcatraz Island -- provides the right atmosphere for this chilling and moody destination; you won't be disappointed!
Great Vegetarian Food
Terrific gourmet vegetarian food at the co-located Millennium restaurant. An especially good place for anyone new to really good vegetarian meals.