The Prescott Hotel
Neither minimalist nor 19th century, as many of the other luxury hotels in San Francisco are, the Prescott eschews fashion trends in favor of enduring contemporary style. Think white wainscoting against mustard walls, cherry wood furniture, fine linens, and subdued stripes, plaids, and florals. The location is tough to beat, just a block off Union Square, and the lobby makes a nice splash. It’s like stepping into an Erté poster, but in a good way. If you get the urge to descend the stairs doing your best Liza Minnelli, Marlene Dietrich, or even Gene Kelly impression, you are to be forgiven. The Prescott is a Kimpton Hotel (like the more whimsical Hotel Monaco and the more luxurious Hotel Palomar), which means it offers plenty of fun little extras, such as free coffee in the living room in the morning, free newspapers, and a complimentary sedan service weekdays to the downtown area. If you want the free cocktail service and breakfast from Postrio, pay $30 to $50 more for a room in the more quiet Club Level.