InterContinental San Francisco
What We Love
- The incredible city views from the 32nd floor
- Pushing the electronic button to indicate “do not disturb” and “make up room” – no messing around with door hangers
- The heated lap pool in the well-equipped gym
- Chef Daniel Corey’s New American creations at the Michelin-starred Luce restaurant
What To Know
- WiFi is free only for IHG members, though it’s free to join
- Ask for a room on a high floor facing the bay for the best views
- Onsite parking is pricey; there are cheaper garages nearby
- Parking On Site
With 550 rooms, the InterContinental should feel cold and impersonal, but no floor has more than 22 apiece, so the atmosphere is more intimate than you’d expect. All have floor-to-ceiling windows with views of either the city or the bay and plenty of natural light to illuminate the wood and marble fixtures. Desks are big enough to actually accomplish work, if you’re so inclined, and the LCD televisions are enormous, starting at 60 inches. The well-run spa on the sixth floor, along with the spacious 24-hour gym, lap pool, and Jacuzzi, offers the usual range of facials and massages, including a “Traveler’s Tonic”—designed to treat fatigue. Our favorite hangout, though, might be the sleek Bar 888, adjacent to the lobby, which is focused on wine and has an unusual twist: it stocks over 100 different kinds of grappa.
In the Area
Conventioneers will appreciate that the InterContinental is a block from the Moscone Convention Center, but it’s also close to some of the city’s best museums and restaurants, thanks to its prime location in the South of Market (SoMa) neighborhood. Shoppers will love that it’s just a few blocks from the enormous Westfield mall, and half a mile from the Union Square shopping district. San Francisco’s famous Blue Bottle café is just across the street, and you can catch a late breakfast, lunch, or dinner at nearby Farmer Brown, a chic soul food restaurant with modern versions of grits, catfish sandwiches, and candied yams. A walk through the Yerba Buena gardens hits St. Patrick’s Church, the Museum of Modern Art, and the Museum of the African Diaspora, all San Francisco must-sees, within half a mile. Public transportation access is nearby, including the Powell Street cable car (about a six-minute walk) and a BART station for making trips across the bay to Oakland and Berkeley.
How to Get There
This is a modern hotel in the middle of downtown. If you are attending a conference at the Moscone as I was, it is just up the street. There are plenty of restaurant choices within walking distance.We did not try the restaurant or bar in the hotel so I cannot comment on that. Get a room on the highest floor that you can and get a corner room. Our room had windows from the floor to ceiling. There is a working desk in the room if you are business traveler and the free Internet is very reliable and fast. The bathroom is large with a tub/shower combo. The only negative was that there are no towel racks and the temperature of the water in the morning could be a little hotter. Another negative was the small refrigerator was mostly stocked with expensive drinks and there was very little room to put your own drinks in a very small area in the corner. The tv iin the room is 52 inches. The highlight of the room is the bed is the best I have ever had in a hotel and I have stayed in high end HIltons and Sheratons. You will get a good night's sleep. The hotel has an indoor pool and spa which we did not try but did visit. The exercise room has all the latest exercise equipment. I highly recommend them and plan to stay there again on my next visit to SF.
Intercontinental in Soma is a great hotel with great staff, service and especially for the location. You can walk everywhere. Recently refurbished interior is inviting. Breakfast was superb. Excellent stay from the beginning to the end.
As I was traveling for business, someone at my agency made the reservation. A few days before I was to arrive, I called InterContinental and asked them to add my IHG rewards number to my reservation. No problem. I also asked for a room on the upper floor in a quiet area. When I arrived, I was told I was being upgraded to a corner room on the 24th floor. Best news of the trip! I thought the property, room, staff, and everything to do with the trip was great. Would love to stay there again.
We've stayed here several times over the past 10 years because if its great proximity to shopping (the Emporium and Union Sqaure) and museums and their welcoming staff. We've also stayed nearby at the St. Regis and the W but because of disappointments with the St. Regis (thanks for letting us know in advance about the housekeeping strike, NOT) and the overall wear and tear of the nearby W, we prefer the Intercontinental. The public spaces of the Intercontinental appear to be maintained very well. The rooms are large for SF, laid out well and are always a peaceful sanctuary after a day of sightseeing or shopping when you just want to order room service and watch TV. We've never run into loud, staggering groups of weekenders in our hallway like other hotels.
The employees must be happy since we've seen the same faces over the past 10 years. The door men, the front desk staff and concierge are impeccable, especially J.D. whose knowledge of the city is invaluable and he always remembers us even when it's been a gap of a few years. Basically, this will continue to be our "go to" hotel for San Francisco because they always deliver a quality experience.
I was here for a convention and didn't get the opportunity to check out all the amenities at this hotel. However, the restaurant was surprisingly good and the lobby bar rocks until the wee hours. Friendly staff too!