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Three San Francisco Hotels for under $300/night

Updated: Jul 15, 2019



During a recent trip to San Francisco, I had the opportunity to tour five moderately priced hotels in the city. All of the properties are centrally located near Union Square and close to both the BART and the Powell Street Cable Car line. With over 100 choices in less than a mile radius, how do you choose? Well, for starters, I filtered my search on 3-5 star hotels. Next, I selected hotels with a guest rating of 4.5-5. Finally, I looked at hotels with an average nightly rate of less than $300.


Of the five I visited, three earn my recommendation. Keep in mind that room rates do not include breakfast, parking or other fees. Daily valet parking ranges from $55-$58/night, so save your money and take public transportation, Uber/Lyft or better yet, use one of the hotel’s complementary bicycles.


CLIFT – 495 Geary St.  This hotel has 372 rooms ranging from a standard king or two doubles to a three bedroom private apartment. Eclectic, swanky and modern, are three words that come to mind when describing the lobby and public areas of this hotel. The Redwood Room is a bar serving cocktails and gourmet bites in the evening. The Living Room is the hotel’s public relaxing and gathering space with coffee and tea service in the morning and spa water service in the afternoon. The guest rooms are a departure from the dimly lit, wood paneled first floor. They are light, airy and spacious.  The decor is well thought out with great attention to detail. These rooms won’t disappoint in space or comfort.


Who should stay here?  Singles, couples and families.  The multiple connecting room and suite combinations make this a great hotel for larger families or people traveling together.


Hotel Zeppelin – 545 Post Street

Hotel Zeppelin – 545 Post Street.  I had the pleasure of staying at this hotel. As the name might imply, this hotel is fun, hip and edgy.  It is conveniently located in the Theater District. Upon entering the lobby, I was impressed by the friendly staff and stylish furnishings. Attached to the lobby are both The Mantel Bar and Rambler restaurant making a morning coffee, bite to eat or evening nightcap extremely convenient. The 196 guest rooms are well appointed, clean and contemporary with shades of black, grey and white with a splash of purple.  Each room includes a Nespresso machine, robes, slippers, umbrella and a nice high-top work area. The service at this hotel was top notch.


Who should stay here?  Singles, couples and adults traveling together.  It would appeal to both the business and leisure traveler.


The Park Central – 50 Third Street.  Unlike the boutique recommendations above, this hotel is a

The Park Central - 50 Third Street

former Westin and still part of the Starwood portfolio so it is much more predictable. It has the large lobby complete with a bar and restaurant, two floors of meeting space, a well-equipped fitness center and 659 guest rooms. Guests might be disappointed in the absence of room service, but business travelers will appreciate the hotel’s “grab & go” breakfast and lunch offering.  The guest rooms are spacious and offer amazing views of the city with floor to ceiling windows. This hotel is in the SoMA neighborhood close to the Museum of Modern Art and the Jewish Heritage Museum.


Who should stay here?  Anyone wanting a predictable experience especially travelers with Marriott or Starwood loyalty programs. This hotel often has rates around $200/night offering an incredible value.


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