Clift Hotel

Clift Hotel

The Clift is a bit of a mixed bag. It has a lobby that looks like a museum with a coffee table designed by Salvador Dali, a 35 foot fireplace with a bronze chimney sculpture and décor colors that have been described as resembling a foggy sunset: grays and lavenders with tangerine accents. It exudes a celebrity chic, more trendy LA than cultured San Francisco. The problem is that the Clift seems to venerate itself and its cool designer reputation. You’ll have a much better stay if you don’t take the Clift’s surreal artsy hipness too seriously.

The sixteen floor hotel and its 372 rooms are undeniably chic and minimalist but comfortable. Guestrooms feature mirrored walls, sleigh beds, 400 thread count Egyptian cotton linens and Venetian glass lamps. The bathrooms are very clean but on the small side which is no surprise in an older San Francisco building. Leave the kids at home. This place is definitely not kid-friendly.

The Clift has a big plus: the1933 landmark Redwood Room. The art deco-inspired bar with Klimt reproduction paintings and a 75 foot redwood bar hewn from a single redwood has a reputation for elegance and for being a place to see and be seen. It’s worth a stop for a designer martini cocktail before dinner. The bistro next to the Redwood Room is the Asia de Cuba Restaurant featuring Asian-Cuban fusion cuisine.

Rooms start at $285/night. Valet parking is $50/day and SUVs are $65.

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