Breathtaking nature, vibrant culture, proximity to Silicon Valley and some of the nation's freshest food help make the City by the Bay one of the most popular areas in which to live, work and play. Several major hotel rebranding projects are keeping the destination fresh for groups.
• Avaya Stadium, home to Major League Soccer's San Jose Earthquakes, opened in November 2014 and can accommodate 18,000 people. Patio suites are available for groups of up to 100.
• The Andaz Napa has resumed full operation after temporarily closing to repair damage sustained during an earthquake last August. The property's 141 guest rooms, restaurants and meeting spaces have been completely renovated.
The Ritz-Carlton, Half Moon Bay, just 30 minutes south of downtown San Francisco, recently refurbished its 261 guest rooms. The hotel offers more than 17,000 square feet of indoor function space.
The 260-room St. Regis San Francisco recently launched a new spa menu for groups on the go. The program offers a menu of 25-minute sessions that range from massages to facials to reflexology.
• Meeting Professionals International will hold its annual World Education Congress Aug. 1-4 at Moscone Center, with networking events taking place throughout the city. An estimated 2,000 members are expected to attend the event. The opening-night celebration will be held at Pier 48, a new bayfront event space that can accommodate up to 7,000 people.
• The Parc 55 Wyndham San Francisco-Union Square was acquired by Hilton Worldwide this past February and renamed the Parc 55 San Francisco, a Hilton Hotel. The property features 1,024 guest rooms, more than 30,000 square feet of function space, several dining options and a fitness center. When combined with the nearby Hilton San Francisco Union Square, the two hotels offer nearly 3,000 guest rooms and approximately 165,000 square feet of function space.
• The Park Central Hotel San Francisco debuted at the former Westin Market Street location in February as an independent property. Just off Market Street and near the colorful SoMa (for South of Market) culture and arts district, the 36-story hotel offers 681 guest rooms with impressive views of San Francisco's bustling downtown. Amenities include a fitness center and an on-site restaurant. For meetings, the property features some 23,000 square feet of function space spread across 17 rooms, the largest of which is the 9,042-square-foot Metropolitan Ballroom with a capacity of 1,200 people.
• Newly formed Proper Hospitality, led by the creator and former CEO of the Viceroy Hotel Group, Brad Korzen, will launch Proper Hotels in San Francisco late this year with the debut of the 135-room boutique San Francisco Proper. The hotel, in a renovated landmark building in the booming Mid-Market neighborhood, will offer three chef-driven restaurants and a rooftop bar.
• Host Hotels & Resorts and Kokua Hospitality are transforming the Powell Hotel into the high-tech, upscale Axiom Hotel. The 152-room downtown property will open this fall, just three blocks from Moscone Center.
• Earlier this year, Loews Hotels & Resorts purchased the 158-room Mandarin Oriental San Francisco Hotel, which has more than 5,000 square feet of function space and a new 8,000-square-foot spa and fitness center. Plans for rebranding the property are in the works.
The iconic Bernardus Lodge and Spa
in Carmel, about two hours south of San Francisco, will unveil its multimillion-dollar renovation this month. Among highlights are new restaurant concept as well as upgrades to the property's 4,300 square feet of meeting space and 5,000 square feet of outdoor event venues.
Meeting Hotels: Properties in and around Union Square include the 1,915-room Hilton San Francisco Union Square; 1,500-room Marriott Marquis San Francisco; 1,195-room Westin St. Francis; 1,024-room Parc 55 San Francisco, a Hilton Hotel; and 532-room Hotel Nikko San Francisco.
To find and compare hotels, and send RFPs, go to mcvenues.com
Convention Centers: Moscone Center; exhibit space, 442,000 square feet in Moscone North and South; number of meeting rooms, 58. Moscone West; exhibit space, 300,000 square feet; number of meeting rooms, 38. (415) 974-4000
Fort Mason Center; exhibit space, 130,000 square feet; number of meeting rooms, 17. (415) 345-7500
Airport Transit: San Francisco International Airport, approximately 13 miles south of San Francisco's downtown district. Transfer cost by taxi, $45 to downtown
Taxes: Room tax, 14%; Tourism Improvements District Assessment, .75% or 1%; Moscone Expansion District, .3125% or 1.25%; total tax on hotel rooms, 15.0625% or 16.25%
Group Venue: The Bently Reserve Conference Center, which began its existence in 1924 as the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, has nine meeting rooms that combine for more than 6,400 square feet of space, with high-tech offerings such as on-demand video capture, high-definition audio and digital videoconferencing services. The rooms currently feature rotating artwork on loan from the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art. For receptions, the center's 8,045-square-foot Banking Hall is currently under r can accommodate up to 650 guests. (415) 294-2226
Contact: San Francisco Travel Association, (415) 974-6900