94103 Travel Guide - Page 2
Though Michelin decided to skip rating Los Angeles restaurants this year, we caught word of their just-released 2010 San Francisco rankings and noticed that Luce at the Intercontinental San Francisco just got its first star under the direction of recent Iron Chef competitor, Dominique Crenn.
After our meal there this past weekend, we totally understand why.
The meal begins with an unassuming amuse bouche of panna cotta-textured celery root mousse with citrus foam to get your palate ready for the unexpected flavor combinations still to come. Appetizers on the menu, which is small but still impressive and diverse, run the gamut from a warm and hearty autumn vegetable medley, to a streamlined Kona kampachi tartare served with pickled apples and shaved cauliflower with bright green celery sorbet, to a combination of both styles in the modern dressing up of an erstwhile working-class comfort food: roasted bone marrow (served in-bone lest you have any doubts) with garlic confit, fried capers gremolata and grilled bread.
Smear it all together and you’re transported back to a 19th century farmer’s table.
Anti-View / Convention Center Hotels / InterContinental Hotels / San Franciso Hotels / Business Traveler Hotels / → All Tags
You know the scene. You open the door to your brand new hotel room, run over to the window, open the blinds and bam, you are hit with the anti-view. Maybe you are looking down a dirty alley, witnessing a drug deal, staring at an air shaft in the face, or seeing a brick wall. Whatever you are viewing it is not extremely pleasurable. Help out your fellow hotel mavens by uploading your anti-views to the HotelChatter/Flickr photo pool, or by sending the photo along to us. Remember to tell us the name of the hotel and the room number with the not-so-easy-on-the-eyes view.
This morning we let you know that the chef at the Intercontinental San Francisco would be leaving the property to fight it out on "The Next Iron Chef" and as we were browsing for photos of the hotel, we came across this anti-view. Eee.
Then again, this hotel is adjacent to the Moscone Convention Center, making it the best choice for folks who plan on spending most of their days in the convention hall. But as large as the hotel looks, there are only 550 rooms in the hotel--22 per floor and as you know, InterContinental is a chi-chi business traveler brand.
So hopefully, the amenities in-room--like flat-screen TVs, iPod docks, bathrobes and especially, the private in-room bars--make up for some not-so-chi-chi convention center views.
Dine at the InterContinental San Francisco's Luce restaurant and you just might get a glimpse of the next Iron Chef. Luce's Chef de cuisine Dominique Crenn will battle for the title in the Food Network's second season of The Next Iron Chef, which will debut Oct. 4.
Crenn and nine other contestants seek join the ranks of Iron Chefs such as Cat Cora, Mario Batali, Bobby Flay, Masaharu Morimoto and first-season winner Michael Symon. Just being on the show can greatly help the French-Moroccan chef's career, as past alumni have gone on to become Food Network stars.
We’re not much of a fashionista (unless the GO designer lines at Target count), but several label-conscious ladies in our lives faithfully follow Project Runway. And we'll admit, supermodel Heidi Klum is one foxy mama (emphasis on the mama bit as she's prego with her fourth kid!)
Not one to miss out on anything involving the words "fashion" or "stylish", is a W Hotel who regularly puts together hotel packages for NYC's Fashion Week and has even once partnered up with dress designer Diane Von Furstenberg. So it's no surprise to hear that W San Francisco is serving as a screening venue for the Season 6 premiere episode of Project Runway.
We've drooled over the iMacs in the business center at the The Good Hotel before but peeking into the hotel over the weekend, we got giddy when we noticed a photo booth in the lobby (You can see it on the left.)
While Mama Shelter's photo booth was connected to an iMac, the Good Hotel's photo booth is more like the old school ones that you used to see at carnivals and fairs, except it's, thankfully, a little more modern. From the hotel's rep:
It is a newer digital version in which you can change your background, have fake hair, or just have the original color or black & white option. At the moment the price for the photobooth is $5.00 and you get two prints. One you can take home with you and another to put on our ever-changing corkboard wall by the lobby elevator.
Indeed, there are rows and rows of these pictures on the wall in the lobby which makes this place a very fun hotel to hang out at. Not to mention all the good you can do while staying here. Also good? The low room rates which start at $89 a night during the week.
Wine Bars / Wine-Tasting Hotels / Four Seasons Hotels / Hotel Bars / San Francisco Hotels / → All Tags
Bringing the taste of Napa Valley to the heart of San Francisco, the long-awaited subterranean wine bar, The Press Club at the Four Seasons is open for business and getting some attention. The bar should have opened last summer but hey, when it comes to wine, sometimes a little extra aging is a good thing.
The bar is the joint venture of eight wineries including Fritz, Hanna, Landmark Vineyards, Miner Family, Mount Eden (actually from Santa Cruz), Pahlmeyer, Saintsbury, and one of our personal favorites (and a Napa legend), Chateau Montelena.
Fashion Hotels / Mother's Day Hotels / Hotel Packages / San Francisco Hotels / St. Regis Hotels / → All Tags
Don't know what to get your mom for Mother's Day? How about a long weekend at the St. Regis San Francisco and a personal shopping appointment with fashion designer Julie Chaiken through their Aficionado program? Only available on May 8 and 9, which is perfect timing for compiling a summer wardrobe, guests will attend an evening cocktail reception before awakening to breakfast with Chaiken's team on Saturday at her design studio.
If you book by tomorrow April 10, you can get a room for $167 a night for this weekend or next. And what we really like about this deal is that it comes right from the hotels website Of course, it's fully prepaid, non-refundable and non-changeable but we found a room for next weekend with two beds on a high floor. Plus, these rooms were also recently renovated. Sounds good to us!
[Photo: Michael S. Dacko]
The Four Seasons Hotel San Francisco is apparently trying to live up to its super-spendy rates. Later this month, the hotel promises to be done with a $7 million renovation of its 277 guest rooms and suites.
Led by the hotel’s original interior designer, Frank Nicholson, the revamp includes a contemporary new color scheme (rich mochas, softer teals, with accents of pewter, silver, and gold) and still has those floor-to-ceiling windows in the rooms that overlook the San Fran cityscape. Plus: granite-topped TV credenzas and end tables, black lacquer (with “crackle glass inlay”) coffee tables, floating fabric headboards and wall coverings, custom sofas and chairs, armless Herman Miller Eames desk chairs, 42-inch LCD TVs, and more.
The Mosser Hotel in San Francisco put itself on the map because it's the only hotel in the The City by the Bay with its very own recording studio. Studio Paradiso is perfect for musicians to roll through and lay down a couple tracks (and it has open studio happy hours with free drinks, so maybe we'd even record something), but the somewhat teensy rooms aren't suited for rockstars or divas.
But you're not a rockstar and you're probably pretty stingy with the ol' pursestrings right now, so take another look at this spot. We were cruising Flickr and found this snapshot and a mini-review from super-satisfied guest caribb:
Perfect for me who would be sleeping getting up going out for the day and coming back only to just sleep the night through again. It was clean, quiet, simple in style with all the necessary hotel amenities plus the best location I could have asked for. The downtown Mariott was across the street at probably 3 times the price. Hotel staff were very friendly and helpful too... so anyone going to San Francisco and wanting to stay downtown without paying a fortune try this place at 54-4th Street.
Rooms with a single bed and a shared bath start at only $55.00, and a deluxe queen (private bathroom and a queen bed) will run you an easy $89.00.
Hotels with iMacs / Hotel Business Centers / JDV Hotels / San Francisco Hotels / Geek Hotels / Hotel Technology / → All Tags
Yesterday we told you about the Good Hotel from JDV Hospitality which strives to give back to the local community by allowing guests to volunteer during their stay. The hotel also has a program in place that gives employees time during the day to volunteer for an organization of their choice.
Well, today we have another reason to love the Good Hotel--brand-new iMacs in the business center. Check 'em out. Technically, these "business stations" are part of the lobby but it's still cooler-looking than the business center of the 1990s. And just like internet access in the guestrooms, the use of these bad boys is free.
More on The Good Hotel after the jump.
JDV Hospitality and their California-only hotels have always been in our eyes a good hotel brand. For starters, they have free WiFi in all their hotels. They also have great rates and are in touch with today's modern traveler (free yoga classes anyone?) Plus, they have an eclectic collection of htoels so that any guests--budget, business, high-end- can find a hotel that suits them the most.
With their latest property, JDV is doing something a little bit different that is sure to please the charitable nature in you. It's The Good Hotel near the city's new green Federal Building.
The Good Hotel is a hip 117-room property that practices philanthropy and believes in ‘doing good' in every facet of the business. Not to be confused with 'green' or 'sustainable,' elements of this SOMA property will support environmental sustenance, but will go to an even deeper level by re-using items for everyday products and incorporating reclaimed materials for its construction.
The hotel’s décor features eco-friendly materials such as beds made from reclaimed wood and lamps made of recycled Voss water bottles and there is even a lobby vending machine that is stocked with items from ReadyMade Magazine (reused materials).