The Best Hotels in the Embarcadero

The Embarcadero stretches along San Francisco Bay, putting you comfortably close to SF’s best-loved attractions
The Embarcadero stretches along San Francisco Bay, putting you comfortably close to SF’s best-loved attractions | © Jared Erondu / Unsplash
Photo of Nick Dauk
11 December 2020

Is there any better place to be in Cali than on San Francisco Bay? The Embarcadero is a bayside retreat that has you comfortably close to SF’s best-loved attractions. From suites perched up on Fisherman’s Wharf to a lovely sprinkling of downtown digs, we’ve listed the best hotels around the Embarcadero that’ll shore up your vacation. Read on – and you’ll be California dreaming.

Hyatt Place San Francisco Downtown

Chain Hotel, Hotel
Hyatt Place San Francisco Downtown
Courtesy of Hyatt Place San Francisco Downtown / Expedia

Even if you’ve seen the Golden Gate Bridge a million times, no trip to the Bay area is truly experienced until you stay in downtown San Francisco. Tick this off your bucket list with a stay in one of the high-floor king suites at Hyatt Place, in the heart of Mission Bay. Right round the corner from you are Yerba Buena Gardens and Oracle Park, as well as a selection of art museums. Start your day with a cup of joe at their Espresso Bar and grab an avocado toast kit to go so you can sightsee – or selfie. Let’s face it, you’ll return with one taken by the Golden Gate Bridge.

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Hotel VIA

Boutique Hotel
Courtesy of Hotel VIA / Expedia

There are boutique hotels, and then there are beyond boutique hotels – key among them Hotel VIA. Standing proud in the South Beach neighborhood across from Oracle Park, it treats you to the life of a San Franciscan. Take in panoramic city and Bay views from your corner suite or go for 360-degree panoramas with a martini with nibbles at the Rooftop at VIA bar. Sound a little dizzying? You can always grab a beer at Bar VIA downstairs – before the Giants throw out the first pitch across the street.

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Hotel Griffon – A Greystone Hotel

Hotel, Boutique Hotel
Map View
Hotel Griffon
Courtesy of Hotel Griffon / Expedia

The griffin may be a mythical creature, but for luxury-lovers Hotel Griffon is the real McCoy, with a prime position along the Embarcadero waterfront. Suites are uniformly suave, in shades of coffee and chocolate. So, simply choose your view: it’ll be of the Financial District if you take one of the City King Suites; it’ll be of the Bay and Pier 14 if you choose a View Suite. It’s so handy for the ferry – just outside the hotel lobby – that you can afford to sleep in and still catch it. And should you wish to explore the area non-aquatically, the BART station is right around the corner.

Harbour Court Hotel

Boutique Hotel
Each room at the Harbor Court Hotel is equipped with a yoga mat
Courtesy of Harbor Court Hotel / Hotels.com

At Harbor Court Hotel, one thing’s for sure: your room will be hipper and more high-tech than your phone. With designer blackout roller shades and a Soundfreaq Bluetooth radio alarm system, you’ll be able to snooze soundly and get a wake-up call. Sweet-smelling Malin + Goetz bath products and a lighted makeup mirror will have you ready for your close-up with the city. Even their upscale restaurant Ozumo is as innovative and daring as any piece of tech in your pocket. And it’s got one of the largest sake lists on the continent. We’ll drink to that.

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Hotel Vitale

Boutique Hotel
Hotel Vitale, San Francisco
Courtesy of Hotel Vitale / Expedia

At Hotel Vitale, a luxury boutique hotel, the only way is up. First, at the front desk, ask for your bags to be sent upstairs. Next grab a bite at Americano Restaurant. Familiarize yourself with the open work space in the Lobby Living Room, then hop in the elevator to make the most of your suite’s lavish limestone bathroom. Pop by the terraces on the fifth, seventh and eighth floors then head to penthouse spa for a soak in one of their rooftop tubs. This is high living indeed.

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Hyatt Regency San Francisco

Hotel
The Hyatt Regency San Francisco frequently hosts large events
Courtesy of Hyatt Regency / Hotels.com

The Hyatt Regency San Francisco, at the Embarcadero, is a true home away from home: a perfect place to work or learn remotely, in rooms that are crisp, clean and design-wise, lean. Your suite has a comfortable workspace, voice-activated controls and views with an “Oooh!” factor. Take a break from work or studies to grab some munchies at the Market. And be sure to ask the chef at Eclipse Kitchen and Bar to cook you up some brain food if you need to pull an all-nighter.

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Four Seasons San Francisco

Hotel

The reason we so love the Four Seasons Hotel San Francisco? We can reel off plenty. The sophisticated color palettes in the guest rooms are stunning, channeling San Francisco’s natural beauty. Their MKT Restaurant has a dynamic California-centric menu that opens your eyes and taste buds to the state’s many flavors. And, finally, the Four Seasons experiences are absolutely exhilarating: exclusive day trips to boutique wineries, a sailing trip on the Bay with a private chef and an intimate meal and movie at Francis Ford Coppola’s Cafe Zoetrope.

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Le Méridien San Francisco

Hotel
The rooms at Le Méridien San Francisco feature luxurious furnishings
Courtesy of Le Méridien San Francisco / Hotels.com

A boutique hotel in the Financial District near the Embarcadero, Le Méridien brings European-style luxury to the Bay Area. Expect lush touches: floor-to-ceiling windows, a refined granite bathroom and a fully stocked refreshment center in-suite – have a drink and admire your Bay views. If you fancy a meal from your favorite global cuisines, Park Grill will gladly cook something special to have in your room. But try to make it down to the lobby for Wine@5.

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  • Club Quarters Hotel in San Francisco

    Hotel
    Club Quarters Hotel in San Francisco
    Courtesy of Club Quarters Hotel / Expedia

    Bordered by Union Square, North Beach and Chinatown, CQ bumps up against the Embarcadero in the Financial District. So it means business – and pleasure, too. (Couples adore it for its cozy informality and its immaculate, almost monochrome rooms and suites.) You’re within easy reach of boutiques, intimate restaurants and endless amazing backdrops for loved-up photo-ops. Be back at the hotel for early-evening oysters on the half-shell at Fish & Farm restaurant: so romantic.

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    Hotel Bohème

    Hotel
    Map View
    Hotel Bohème
    Courtesy of Hotel Bohème / Expedia

    Bordering the Embarcadero is the historic North Beach neighborhood, home to Hotel Bohème. Recreating the San Fran of the ‘50s, yet modernized with contemporary creature comforts, it has 15 rooms that will delight art and literature lovers alike. Jerry Stoll photography lines the hallways, visual and literary motifs fill the common spaces, and sherry is served every afternoon as you drink in your surroundings. Hotel Bohème might not be for everyone, but it is a distinctly individual place for a special, memorable experience.

    Hyatt Centric Fisherman's Wharf San Francisco

    Hotel
    Hyatt Centric Fisherman's Wharf San Francisco 2
    Courtesy of Hyatt Centric Fisherman's Wharf San Francisco / Expedia

    Proximity to Pier 39 is only one reason to stay at Hyatt Centric Fisherman’s Wharf. It’s easy to find 38 more: pet-friendly rooms, a relaxing pool, an on-site restaurant, luxurious bathrooms and the all-too-comfortable Hyatt Grand Bed. It’s even well-located, near Lombard Street and the historic cable car network. And the other reasons? We haven’t got space enough to list them all, but check into Hyatt Centric Fisherman’s Wharf and start counting. This is a real San Francisco treat near the Embarcadero.

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    San Francisco Marriott Fisherman's Wharf

    Hotel
    The San Francisco Marriott Fisherman’s Wharf is centrally located
    Courtesy of San Francisco Marriott Fisherman’s Wharf / Hotels.com

    Right along the Bay, Marriott San Francisco Fisherman’s Wharf is so close to the Embarcadero that you’ll be there in a few steps. Their Red Fin Restaurant is convenient for lunch and dinner, but it’s likely you’ll head out to graze your way through Fisherman’s Wharf after a few cocktails. The light and airy suite dimensions throw into harrowing contrast the cells you’ll see at some stage on your tour of Alcatraz Island. On a lighter note, take the obligatory stroll a few blocks west so you can snap a few selfies of you with the Golden Gate Bridge in the background, as long as Karl the Fog – yes, the city’s fog is so notorious it has a name – isn’t blocking the view.

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    These recommendations were updated on December 11, 2020 to keep your travel plans fresh.

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