The Fairmont San Francisco is a landmark hotel and has been in service since 1906! It's the hotel of choice for presidents for decades now if they come to San Francisco. President Obama was just here but President Bush famously never made it out to San Francisco.
This was also my first Fairmont stay ever. I have the Chase Fairmont card for some time now and was looking forward to try some of the benefits it provides.
It's a great, old building and sits atop a hill with views toward the Bay Bridge and the Marina. The location is just 5 minutes walking to Union Square and North Beach.
The lobby is magnificent and while old, the hotel does not give away a musty charm (as so many other old hotels). When I checked in at 6.30 PM there was no front desk agent around for about 5 minutes. There were 6 or 7 check-in positions but really nobody, odd.
Once checked in I was on my way to my room on the 3rd floor.
The room was spacious and nicely appointed. Again it did not feel 'old' as I feared. The bedding was high quality and the beds neither too soft nor hard.
I did try the breakfast and just had muesli and a strawberry shake, coffee & OJ. It set me back $35 but I could use one of my bf certificate vouchers.
I was using my Chase Visa certificate for a free night. Best Rates on fairmont.com were starting at $359 and Expedia had a $199 non-refundable for the Fairmont. Besides 2 free nights at (almost) any Fairmont the Chase Visa also makes you a Fairmont's President Club Premier Member which gives you quite a set of benefits:
– 2 free breakfast certificates ($25)
– 2 free food vouchers ($25)
– free Internet
– two room upgrade vouchers
– two suite upgrade vouchers
– free access to gym & spa
Amazingly you can use the suite upgrades on award stays as well. No suite was available for my stay but the room upgrade voucher got me a room with a better view.
You can even use the upgrade certificates when booking through 3rd parties such as Expedia! Other benefits of your Premier Membership are also honored every time you check irrespective of how you booked.
I think the Fairmont is a really classy choice in a great neighborhood. If you can get it at the discounted rates like $199 it's a fantastic option especially if you have teh Chase Visa card.