San Francisco Hotel G

A comfy room at the Hotel G, in the heart of San Francisco. Max Hartshorne photos.
A comfy room at the Hotel G, in the heart of San Francisco. Max Hartshorne photos.

Hotel G in San FranciscoThe Hotel G is right in the heart of San Francisco.

A boutique hotel right in the city’s heart

By Max Hartshorne

We needed a centrally located hotel with some style–and the Hotel G fit the bill in all ways. We had driven up the scenic Historic Route 1, through the priceless vistas of Big Sur and the sexy elephant seals of San Simeon. After a week in the California countryside, it was time for some city fun.

Hotel G is located in the heart of San Francisco in Union Square, and is a great home base for exploring this exciting and cosmopolitan city. We stayed a few nights here during a February vacation break from the snow-covered Northeast United States. The G has 151 guest rooms on 12 floors. It’s on the corner of Geary and Mason Streets, near Union Square, The Moscone Center, Chinatown and ATT Park.

Besides the central location a few blocks from the iconic Powell and Hyde Street streetcar lines, and Chinatown, what we liked about the ‘G was the attitude of the staff. Everyone we came in touch with was friendly, helpful, and none were wearing suits. It’s not that kind of place.

The hotel's comfortable lobby.The hotel’s comfortable lobby.Kelly Chamberlin does the PR for the hotel, which is based in Asia. This is their only United States property, she said.

The place went through a top-to-bottom refurb just a few years ago, which explains some of the interesting ‘dated’ aspects of the lobby and hallways which are actually intentional.


Long ago laid subway tiles, for example, recede in the lobby under newer tile. The building was built in 1908, and renovated top to bottom in 2014. It opened up as the Hotel G in May 2014.

Vacant for Two Years

After many different ownerships and hotel marquees, the building was vacant from 2012-2014. The furniture is a nod to the American midcentury, mixing both vintage and contemporary pieces and the rooms have all a guest needs to feel at home, such


Bathroom in a typical Hotel G room.
Bathroom in a typical Hotel G room.

*42″ flat screen internet-enabled TVs
*Complimentary Wi-Fi
*Nespresso coffee machines
*Mascioni and Mateo linens
*Tivoli clock radios

The room types are a Good King with one king bed and 260 square feet, to a Good Queen with a queen bed and 245 square feet.

The Great King room at 360 square feet can accommodate a rollaway bed (available for $30 per night). The Greatest King is a massive 420 square feet and can fit the king bed and both the rollaway and a crib. The parlor room is smaller, sleeping three with one king bed.

The hotel has three eateries, including the just-renovated Three 9 Eight restaurant and Bar. This restaurant with its high ceilings and corner location, is a cool place for a cocktail and the bartender knows his stuff! The upscale restaurant is open for breakfast at 7 am, lunch from 11:30-4 pm and for dinner 5-10 pm, weekends til 11 pm.

A Greater King room at the Hotel G, San Francisco.
A Greater King room at the Hotel G, San Francisco.

The compact but efficient fitness center at the Hotel G.The compact but efficient fitness center at the Hotel G.

The Klyde Cafe and Wine Bar is a casual place on the other side of the hotel’s entrance. It’s an American Bistro that serves from 4 pm til 11 weekdays and 4- midnight Friday and Saturdays.

There is also the Benjamin Cooper, a cocktail and oyster bar which is staffed by more talented barkeeps who know a daiquiri from a gimlet! The emphasis here is on craft spirits and seasonal ingredients, the bar is open from 5 pm til 2 am, Saturdays from 6-2.

Visit the Hotel G website. 386 Geary St. San Francisco CA 415-986-2000.

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Max Hartshorne
Max Hartshorne has been the editor and publisher of GoNOMAD Travel in South Deerfield Mass since 2002. He worked for newspapers and other sales positions for 23 years until he finally got what he wanted, and became the editor at GoNOMAD. He travels regularly, enjoys publishing new writers, and watching his grandchildren grow up.