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Walnut Creek Magazine

Saturday in the City

Mar 24, 2017 03:38PM ● By Fran Miller


Whether you stay for one night or the weekend, you'll find the city by the bay has it all

By Fran Miller


Tourists know it. So do travel agents and guide book editors. San Francisco has it all—major league baseball, world-class museums, restaurants galore, theater and shopping, plus magnificent views. And it’s all just a hop and a skip across the Bay. Where else can you experience so much diversity so close to home? The next time the travel bug bites, stay at one of the city’s remarkable boutique hotels, and play tourist in your own backyard.


With its great location, bold décor and thoughtful extras, Pineapple Hospitality’s Alise at 580 Geary Street may become your new favorite. Centrally located near some of the best neighborhoods the city has to offer—Union Square, Nob Hill, Fisherman’s Wharf and SOMA—sophisticated travelers have a new destination for weekend adventures.

A fine art collection, elegant scroll work and a dramatic palette of yellow, black and grey form the backdrop of an expansive lobby filled with stylish furnishings and a sleek bar. Here, guests linger over coffee or cocktails while taking in the bronze, life-size sculpture by Karen LaMonte, glass panels by David Willis and works by artists like Victor Ostrovsky, Robert Kuo and Peter Anton.

Cozy, modernized rooms at this historic property feature marble bathrooms, lacquered chests, plush robes and complimentary high speed WIFI. The hotel’s unique European Naked Experience™ provides each guest an individually folded down duvet. This special touch, combined with the crisp San Francisco air wafting in through an open window, is the recipe for a sublime sleep experience. Prefer your windows closed? All of the rooms are air conditioned and upgraded with soundproofing.


After a quick boost from a cup of in-room Keurig coffee, head out for a stroll or cruise on one of the hotel’s complimentary yellow bikes. Go on a shopping spree, explore museums, forage at the Ferry Building or get your heart pumping on a hike up one of the city’s steep hills. Plan your itinerary around a show—Hamilton, for instance, is playing nearby at the Orpheum Theater.

When it’s time to eat, head to dinner at one of our local faves, Bluestem Brasserie (1 Yerba Buena Lane). Chef John Griffiths works his magic in signature dishes like chicken liver toast: two thick pieces of toasted levain spread with chicken liver mousse pate, then topped with seasonal pickled fruit. Other menu highlights include lamb tartare, duck confit salad and the house-ground brasserie burger. Off-the-hook desserts include warm brioche bread pudding smothered in vanilla ice cream and bourbon caramel. Don’t miss a peek at the LED-lit bar, designed to mimic firefly light in a meadow.

If you still have a little energy left, end your evening with jazz and cocktails at the swanky Black Cat (400 Eddy Street). This gritty and glam hot spot within the city’s historic arts and entertainment district features two levels of seating, live music, timeless cocktails and an artisanal champagne collection. Cheers!

P.S. If you just can’t leave Fido at home, bring him along. For a small fee, The Alise provides dog beds, water bowls, and treats for its furry guests. And Dash, Pineapple Hospitality’s mascot stuffed husky, welcomes guests big and small to their rooms with a little love. The small stuffed animal is yours for $25, and proceeds benefit the Humane Society.

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