San Francisco

Top Spot
U.S. News & World Report named San Francisco #1 for both Best U.S. Vacations and Best Summer Vacations. Read the articles here:

Local Update
The Grand Hyatt San Francisco will complete a renovation next month of all 685 guest rooms, adding flat-screen televisions, high-speed Internet access and works by Bay Area artists. Also being revamped is the 35th-floor fitness center.

Kimpton's Sir Francis Drake Hotel is in the process of remodeling its 417 guest rooms and public spaces, including Harry Denton's Starlight Room, the 1930s-style nightclub on the property's 21st floor. Guest rooms will receive new bedding, carpet, furnishings and artwork. The renovations are expected to be complete in August.

The 400-room Hilton San Francisco Airport Bayfront completed a renovation of its entire 11,500 square feet of event space in February. Function rooms are now outfitted with new A/V technology, including retractable screens and ceiling-mounted LCD projectors, and meeting rooms come equipped with wireless Internet capabilities.

The San Francisco Marriott Marquis will complete a renovation of all 1,500 rooms and guest-room corridors in July 2012. By next May, all rooms will feature high-speed wireless Internet.

San Francisco International Air­port completed its $383 million renovation of Terminal 2 in April. The 640,000-square-foot facility is the new home for American Airlines and Virgin America, and the first U.S. terminal to achieve LEED Gold certification. New features include skylights for more natural lighting, an innovative ventilation system that uses 20 percent less energy, a car-free connection via the Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) system and local organic food vendors.

The 1.2 million-square-foot Moscone Center is in the midst of a $56 million renovation. The most noticeable change will be new architectural and design enhancements that will reflect the character of San Francisco, including images of the city and the use of colors indicative of the iconic Golden Gate Bridge. Other improvements include a revamped lobby, new digital displays and telecommunication upgrades. The project, which began in October 2010, is aiming for LEED Gold certification and slated to be completed by July 2012.

San Francisco Electric Tour Co. now offers Segway tours in San Francisco's Golden Gate Park. The eight-mile route is fully narrated.

Bay Brews
Beer art
Bay Area Brewery Tours, a new sightseeing company (motto: "Transportation for Beer Education"), offers a six-hour excursion that includes visits to three breweries, tastings, lunch and a souvenir glass. (415) 999-4989

Meeting Hotels
Properties in the Union Square area include the 1,908-room Hilton San Francisco, 1,496-room San Francisco Marriott, 1,195-room Westin St. Francis, 1,010-room Parc 55 Wyndham San Francisco-Union Square, 685-room Grand Hyatt San Francisco, 552-room Palace Hotel, 550-room InterContinental San Francisco and 533-room Hotel Nikko San Francisco.

Other city hotels include the 802-room Hyatt Regency San Francisco, 591-room Fairmont San Francisco, 549-room Hilton San Francisco Financial District and 529-room Sheraton at Fisher­man's Wharf. For a more complete list of properties, visit

Convention Centers

Moscone Center; exhibit space, 442,000 square feet in Moscone North/South combined; number of meeting rooms, 68. Moscone West; exhibit space, 3,000 square feet; number of meeting rooms, 38. (415) 974-4000

Fort Mason Center; exhibit space, approximately 130,000 square feet; number of meeting rooms, 11. (415) 441-3400

Concourse Exhibition Center at the San Fran­cisco Design Center;
 exhibit space, 125,000 square feet; number of meeting rooms, none. (415) 490-5800

South San Francisco Conference Center; exhibit space, 20,500 square feet; number of meeting rooms, 12. (650) 877-8787

Group Venue
Let attendees indulge in a night of world-famous chocolate at Ghirardelli Square near Fisherman's Wharf. Diners can enjoy a bay breeze under the chocolatier's iconic illuminated sign in Ghirardelli Square Plaza, which can accommodate up to 2,500. Indoors, massive chocolate machines churn liquid fudge, while a small gift shop allows guests to take something sweet to go. Don't leave without trying one of the hot fudge sundaes. (412) 775-5500

Dining Out
Set on San Francisco's historic Embar­cadero waterfront, the Teatro Zinzanni offers guests dinner in a circus-theater setting, combining European cabaret, music and acrobatics under a red canvas tent festooned with elegant chandeliers. Magicians and entertainers visit tables between acts throughout a five-course meal. Groups of 20 or more should book through the group sales manager; private performances can be arranged and include an extended cocktail reception, customized décor and passed hors d'oeuvres. The thea­ter also can accommodate groups of up to 350 for a reception. (415) 568-3588

Just south of San Francisco at the base of the Santa Cruz Mountains, the recently remodeled Manresa serves contemporary French cuisine with modern Spanish flair. The recipient of two Michelin stars and helmed by James Beard Award-winning chef David Kinch, the eatery completed an extensive revamp in May. Among highlights are a new entrance, dining areas and a bar/lounge space, in addition to new carpeting, lighting and tables. The dining area can seat up to 70 people. (208) 354-4330

San Francisco Travel Association, (415) 974-6900