Posts Tagged ‘San Francisco’

San Francisco’s Arts & Culture Scene is Bustling

April 16, 2015
The Palace of Fine Arts is one of the unexpected cultural treasures of San Francisco © 2015 Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com

The Palace of Fine Arts is one of the unexpected cultural treasures of San Francisco © 2015 Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com

Creative people have always been attracted to San Francisco, from the inventor of Levi’s blue jeans to the wizards of the latest tech startups to the creators of Burning Man.  Artists find the city’s atmosphere of innovation and freedom of expression irresistible, resulting in a diverse collection of remarkable museums, exhibitions and events that are equally irresistible to those who love the arts.

Here are some recent and upcoming developments in San Francisco’s arts and culture scene.

@Large: Ai Weiwei on Alcatraz

Art lovers (anyone interested in human rights) have only seven weeks left to see the works of world renowned artist Ai Weiwei at Alcatraz, the notorious prison turned national park in San Francisco Bay. @Large: Ai Weiwei on  Alcatraz, a site-specific exhibition of works, is on view through April 26, 2015.

The Chinese artist is internationally recognized both as a maker of potent and provocative art and as a passionate advocate for human rights and freedom of expression. His art and ideas find a compelling new context in this exhibition of large-scale sculpture, sound and mixed media created specifically for Alcatraz.

Ai’s sculpture, sound and mixed-media works occupy four locations in the former prison: the New Industries Building, A Block, the Hospital and the Dining Hall. With the exception of the Dining Hall, these spaces are usually off limits to the public, but all will be open throughout the run of this unprecedented exhibition.

The exhibition is included in the regular Alcatraz ticket prices.  Special guided @Large Night Tours will be offered on Thursday through Monday nights.  Tickets can be purchased at http://www.alcatrazcruises.com/website/ai-weiwei.aspx. In anticipation of high demand for @Large: Ai Weiwei on Alcatraz tickets, a limited number of seats on the Early Bird boat (departing Pier 33 at 8:45 a.m. seven days a week) will be set aside each day to accommodate exhibition visitors. These Early Bird tickets and tours may be reserved by contacting the Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy at 415-561-3021 or aiweiweialcatraz@parksconservancy.org,

For more information on ticket options, see http://www.parksconservancy.org/events/park-interp/ai-weiwei-alcatraz.html.

@Large: Ai Weiwei on Alcatraz is organized by the FOR-SITE Foundation in partnership with the National Park Service and the Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy.

Art Along the Waterfront

San Francisco has long been a city committed to accessible art.  After experiencing Ai Weiwei’s work on Alcatraz, people will be ready to discover more public art and they will be in exactly the right place.  The Embarcadero is home to more than a dozen public art installations.  It’s hard to miss Cupid’s Span, the gigantic bow and arrow by Claes Oldenburg and Coosje van Bruggen in Rincon Park.

On the south side of the Bay Bridge, on the Embarcadero at Second and Townsend streets, is Mark DiSuvero’s Sea Change.   Seventy feet tall and weighing 10 tons, this elegant and kinetic sculpture serves as a gateway to the newly refurbished South Waterfront.

Some installations blend history and culture.  Between Piers 35 and 39, Roger Barr’s Skygate, a 26-foot-high mirror-polished stainless steel sculpture, is dedicated to the memory of Eric Hoffer (1903-1983), a longshoreman, poet and philosopher.

Many of the public art installations along the waterfront and throughout the city are part of the city’s civic art collection.  For a map of public art, visit www.sfartscommission.org/pubartcollection/pubart-projects/2008/10/21/public-art-projects-map.

San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA) More Than Doubling in Size

A major expansion is underway at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA), which has embodied bold vision and innovation from its founding in 1935 to the 1995 opening of its Mario Botta-designed building.

With more than 30,000 works, SFMOMA has built definitive collections in painting and  sculpture, photography, architecture and design, and media arts, including significant examples of the art of the Bay Area and California. The SFMOMA collection is internationally recognized and continues to grow.

In 2016, SFMOMA will reinvent itself yet again by more than doubling its current capacity for the presentation of art, providing almost six times as much public space as the current building.

The centerpiece of SFMOMA’s expansion is the remarkable building design developed in collaboration with the architectural firm Snøhetta. The approximately 235,000-square-foot expansion will seamlessly join the existing building.

One of the catalysts for the expansion is the addition of the Doris and Donald Fisher Collection, one of the greatest private collections of contemporary art in the world.  Learn more at www.sfmoma.org.

Museum of the African Diaspora Reopens after $1.3 Million Renovation

The Museum of the African Diaspora (MoAD) is one of the few museums in the world focused on African Diaspora culture and on presenting the rich cultural art works of the people of Africa and of African descendant cultures around the world.  The Museum is currently featuring “The Art of Elizabeth Catlett” through April 5, 2015.

MoAD reopened in December, 2014, after a $1.3 million renovation with added gallery space, a more open layout for the ground floor and lobby, a redesigned Museum store, and an upgrade to all of its technology including interactive iPad kiosks in the lobby and a new website.

MoAD recently was chosen as a Smithsonian Affiliate and now has access to the Smithsonian Institution’s collection of 136 million artifacts for research, exhibits and programming.

Situated in the heart of the Yerba Buena Arts District, home of the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, MoAD is actively engaged in building a community that inspires, educates and connects people of all ages and backgrounds. MoAD seeks to build a deeper understanding of the African Diaspora through art, programs and events that cultivate wonder and excitement about the ways in which personal histories are connected. As a nonprofit organization, the museum’s operations and programs are supported by grants and contributions from public and private sources.  To learn more, visit www.moadsf.org.

SFMOMA Partners with MoAD and the Oakland Museum of California

As part of SFMOMA’s On the Go series showcasing the museum’s collection at other cultural venues in the region, the Oakland Museum of California features “Fertile Ground: Art and Community in California” through April 12, 2015 and MoAD presents Portraits and Other Likenesses from SFMOMA, opening May 8.

Organized in partnership with the Museum of the African Diaspora, “Portraits and Other Likenesses from SFMOMA” considers how artists from the early 20th century to the present have negotiated a vast array of European, African and American visual-cultural forms to redefine what it means to make a portrait. Together, the works suggest that as people move between geographies, meanings drift, too.

“Fertile Ground” illuminates local histories and social forces that changed the face of art in — and beyond — the Golden State. Weaving together art and ephemera from the collections of the Oakland Museum of California and SFMOMA, the exhibition tells the stories of four creative communities at decisive moments in the history of California art: the circle of artists and influences from Diego Rivera and Frida Kahlo in San Francisco in the 1930s to the streetwise, uncompromisingly idealistic artists at the center of a vibrant new Mission scene that took root in the 1990s through the present.

For more information, visit http://www.sfmoma.org/exhib_events

The Bay Lights to Become Permanent in Time for Super Bowl 50 in 2016

San Francisco has become a national leader in light art.  No recent development underscores this more strongly than the news that The Bay Lights, the world’s largest LED light sculpture, will become a permanent icon on the city’s landscape.   Illuminate the Arts has successfully raised $4 million in private funds to pay for new equipment and re-installation.

Since its debut on March 5, 2013, the vertical cables of the Bay Bridge’s western span (also known as the Willie L. Brown Jr. Bridge) have come to life nightly with 25,000 LED lights “performing” in patterns created by light artist Leo Villareal.

The originally planned two-year installation of The Bay Lights by artist Leo Villareal will end on March 6, 2015 and the sculpture will be removed to allow Caltrans to perform maintenance on the bridge cables.

The Bay Lights will be re-installed in time to shine for Super Bowl 50 in February 2016.   Learn more at http://thebaylights.org/about/.

San Francisco Illuminated by Light Art

Two other temporary light art installations are drawing crowds:

Soma by the Flaming Lotus Girls at Pier 14 on the Embarcadero debuted at Burning Man in 2009 and has been organized by the Black Rock Arts Foundation.   It will be illuminated at 10 minutes after sunset until 2 a.m. nightly through July 2015.

On Treasure Island, Bliss Dance by Marco Cochrane (2011) is on display on the Avenue of the Palms at the Great Lawn.  Though no end date has been announced, the installation is considered “temporary, until further notice.”  The 40-foot-tall sculpture’s lighting effects are on from 8:30 p.m. to 1 a.m. nightly.

Permanent light art pieces within the city’s 49 square miles include:

  •  Three Gems, by James Turrell (2005), de Young Museum, Osher Sculpture Garden, Golden Gate Park
  •  Skygarden, by James Turrell (2007), San Francisco Federal Building, 90 Seventh St. at Mission Street
  •  Ocean Mirror with Fragments, by Jim Campbell (2007), Saunders Court, University of California, San Francisco, Koret Way
  •  Constellation, by Nayland W. Blake (1996), San Francisco Main Library, 100 Larkin St., Civic Center
  •  Firefly, by Ned Kahn (2012), 525 Golden Gate Ave. at Polk Street, Civic Center
  •  Language of the Birds, by Brian Goggin and Dorka Keehn (2008), Intersection of Broadway and Columbus Avenues, North Beach
  •  …and my room still rocks like a boat on the sea…(Caruso’s Dream), by Brian Gogginwith Dorka Keehn  (2014), 55 Ninth St., south of Market Street
  •  Bayview Rise, by Haddad-Drugan (2014), Pier 92, Bayview near Third Street and Cargo Way

At San Francisco International Airport, permanent light art installations include:

  •  Wind Portal, by Ned Kahn (2000), International Terminal between BART Station and AirTrain
  •  Four Sculptural Light Reflectors, by James Carpenter (2000), International Terminal, Main Hall, Level 3, Pre-Security
  •  Spirogyrate, by Eric Staller (2014), Terminal 3, Boarding Area E, Level 2, Post-Security
  •  Sky, by Merge Conceptual Design (2014), Terminal 3, Boarding Area E, Level 2, Post-Security
  •  Light Beams for the Sky of a Transfer Corridor, by Vito Acconci (2000), International Terminal, A-G, Level 2, Pre-Security
  •  Ceiling Flood, by Keith Sonnier (1999), International Terminal, Boarding Area G, Level 2, Post-Security

Light-centric events and tours are currently being scheduled around the summer solstice, on June 21, 2015.  San Francisco Travel,  the city’s tourism marketing organization, is also planning the third annual IlluminateSF festival to celebrate these eclectic, electric installations in December 2015 and January 2016.

For more information on the light art installations and related events, visit www.illuminatesf.com

San Francisco International Airport (SFO) offers non-stop flights to more than 34 international cities on 29 international carriers. The Bay Area’s largest airport connects non-stop with 78 cities in the U.S. on 15 domestic airlines. SFO offers upgraded free Wi-Fi with no advertising. For up-to-the-minute departure and arrival information, airport maps and details on shopping, dining, cultural exhibitions, ground transportation and more, visit www.flysfo.com. Follow on www.twitter.com/flysfo and  www.facebook.com/flysfo.

The San Francisco Travel Association is the official tourism marketing organization for the City and County of San Francisco. For information on reservations, activities and more, visit www.sanfrancisco.travel or call 415-391-2000.  The Visitor Information Center is located at 900 Market St. in Hallidie Plaza, lower level, near the Powell Street cable car turnaround. 

 

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Hyatt Regency San Francisco Invites Guests to Extend the Weekend, Explore City

August 23, 2014
The Hyatt Regency San Francisco is offering its popular Explore Package in conjunction with a series of free walking tours, especially designed for those who want to take a long weekend getaway to discover San Francisco’s many outdoor attractions like the Golden Gate Bridge.

The Hyatt Regency San Francisco is offering its popular Explore Package in conjunction with a series of free walking tours, especially designed for those who want to take a long weekend getaway to discover San Francisco’s many outdoor attractions like the Golden Gate Bridge.

The Hyatt Regency San Francisco, a luxury property on the city’s waterfront, is offering its popular Explore Package in conjunction with a series of free walking tours, especially designed for those who want to take a long weekend getaway to discover San Francisco’s many outdoor assets. 

The Hyatt Regency San Francisco’s Explore Package includes overnight accommodations in newly renovated guestrooms, 15% off food and beverage at Eclipse Restaurant located in the Guinness Book of World Records largest atrium lobby and two San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency (SFMTA) passes, which provide unlimited daily use on the iconic cable cars, historic street cars, busses and trolleys.  Rates start at $229 with further discounts available for those that extend their weekend into Sunday and Monday nights.

And, for those who want to extend their stay in San Francisco through Sunday and Monday nights, there are many diversions, including free concerts at Sigmund Stern Grove, better ticket availability for such popular attractions as Beach Blanket Babylon, better chance of snagging last-minute passes for the Alcatrz Cruises’ prison tour, fewer crowds at some of the city’s most popular attractions, like for such museums/attractions as Academy of Sciences; ExplOratorium; Hyde Street Pier; PIER 39; Cable Cars; walking or biking across the Golden Gate Bridge; Japanese Tea Garden; and greater access to some of the most celebrated restaurants, such as restaurants, including:  Boulevard, La Mar, Water Bar, Plouf, Butterfly, Chaya Brasserie, Piperade and Slanted Door.

Walking San Francisco’s Most Beloved Destinations

The Hyatt Regency San Francisco is ideally situated to explore the City-by-the-Bay. with free, self-guided walking tours:

Lands End: Sometimes considered the wildest, rockiest corner of San Francisco, Land’s End is a historical hike that begins at Point Lobos and is an ideal location to watch the spectacular sea lions bark on the rocks below.  This is a nice retreat from the busy city life where outdoor enthusiast can get lost in the dramatic cliffs, open terrain and 30-mile, panoramic views of the California coast. While here, hikers can also visit the ruins of Sutro Baths, a large public bathhouse that was constructed in 1896. There is also a Labyrinth, shipwreck remains and the Palace of the Legion of Honor to round out the adventure. This relatively easy hike is roughly 3.4 miles long and normally takes 1-3 hours. For more information, check out http://www.everytrail.com/guide/lands-end-san-francisco.

Golden Gate Bridge Walk: The Golden Gate Bridge is the icon of San Francisco and is considered to be one of the most beautiful bridges in the world. Luckily, visitors have the opportunity to walk across the 1.7 miles span of this bridge, which opened to the public on May 28, 1937 at a cost $35 million dollars. For those that want a longer walk, there is a trail up to Hendrik Point, which features a phenomenal view of the bridge and the San Francisco skyline. For more information, check out http://www.everytrail.com/guide/walking-the-golden-gate-bridge.

One Perfect Day in San Francisco: San Francisco may be as diverse a city as they come. The city boasts vast culture, art and history. For one perfect day, enjoy this 7.1 mile tour that will highlight  the locals’ favorite diversions. It begins at Tartine Bakery, which is one of the best bakeries-cafés in town. Next, Stow Lake, where adventurers can rent rowboats and paddle boats. For lunch, walk a short few blocks to check out the vicinity surrounding UCSF at Irving Street & 9th Ave where there’s a diverse group of several ethnic restaurants. Then, return to Golden Gate Park for a visit to The Academy of Sciences Museum, a world-class science museum that has visitors lost for hours. Finally, finish at Haight-Ashbury, which takes visitors back in time to the hippie culture of the 60s. For more information, check out http://www.everytrail.com/guide/one-perfect-day-in-san-francisco.

Downtown Architecture Walk: For those interested in a walking tour through the heart of downtown San Francisco, check out Crocker Galleria, Hallidi Building on 150 Sutter St, Wells Fargo Banking Hall, 111 Sutter St, City Group Center Greenhouse, The Crown Zellerbach Paper Co. Building and Shell Building. These buildings offer unique architecture that are not found anywhere else, and are considered to be some of the most important buildings in the world. Even though it’s only a half a mile walk, architecture buffs can get lost here for hours just admiring the beauty this historic area. For more information, check out http://www.everytrail.com/guide/san-francisco-downtown-architecture-walk.

Touring Chinatown: Tourists and locals alike are drawn to the irresistible charm that Chinatown has to offer. The entryway to this historic neighborhood features a green-tiled gate at the intersection of Grant and Bush streets at which point visitors are drawn into one of North America’s most populated Asian communities with the authentic ambiance of shops, restaurants, grocery stores, delis, bakeries, fortune cookie factory, tea and herbal shops, galleries, souvenir haunts and more. At 1.2 miles long, it’s the largest Chinatown outside of Asia. For more information, check out http://www.everytrail.com/guide/chinatown-san-francisco-walk.

Union Square and SoMa: Built in 1850, with a history from the Union troops of the Civil War, Union Square is the place to gravitate to for shopaholics, theater enthusiasts and people watching addicts. Some of the most reputable retailers include Macy’s, Saks Fifth Avenue, Tiffany’s, Williams-Sonoma, Nike and Neiman Marcus. Or, for those that enjoy the more exclusive boutiques, head to Maiden Lane for the more intimate, chic boutiques and cafes. Before or after shopping, take the cable car or head to south of Market Street (SOMA) to enjoy museums, park life, a great variety of food and drinks and several family-friends sites. To properly prepare for this outing, prepare for a half-day with a 1.6 mile long journey. For more information, check out http://www.everytrail.com/guide/san-francisco-s-union-square-amp-soma.

The Explore Package is available through December 30, 2014 (with the exception of blackout dates) and is based on availability.  Rates vary according to dates of reservations (best rates available on Sunday and Monday nights). For reservations and additional information, visit www.sanfranciscoregency.hyatt.com or call (800) 233-1234.

About Hyatt Regency San Francisco

Situated on the Embarcadero Waterfront, across from the iconic Ferry Building Marketplace, with ferries to Sausalito, Tiburon and Alameda, Hyatt Regency San Francisco is the city’s most accessible hotel.  The hotel is at the beginning of the California Street Cable Car line and is also in close proximity to the Embarcadero Center’s shops and restaurants, Financial District, Downtown, Chinatown, North Beach, Union Square, South of Market, AT&T Park (home of the SF Giants) and Embarcadero’s waterfront walking and jogging trail.

The city’s largest luxury waterfront hotel, the Hyatt Regency San Francisco boasts 804 newly refreshed rooms and suites. Guest services and amenities include Wi-Fi service throughout the hotel, 24-hour automated business center and 24-hour StayFit @ Hyatt Fitness Center. Situated in the soaring atrium lobby of the hotel, amidst magnificent trees and trellises that create a serene and relaxing environment, Eclipse Restaurant and Lounge serves breakfast, lunch and dinner featuring classic interpretations of local cuisine. In addition to the physical attributes of the hotel, Hyatt Regency San Francisco has also been distinguished as one of The Best Places to Work in the Bay Area, according to the San Francisco Business Times.

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Haiyi Hotels Offers Family-Friendly “San Fam-cisco” Package at 5 Hotels in San Francisco

August 23, 2014
All five Haiyi Hotels in San Francisco are offering a family-friendly getaway “San Fam-cisco” Package,” through May.

All five Haiyi Hotels in San Francisco are offering a family-friendly getaway “San Fam-cisco” Package,” through May.

All five Haiyi Hotels in San Francisco are offering a family-friendly getaway. aptly named “San Fam-cisco” Package.” Available through May 31, 2015,, with rates starting at $349 per night, the package includes:

Accommodations for two adults & two children

Tickets for two adults & two children to the brand new San Francisco Dungeon OR Madame Tussauds

Four one-way passes on a world famous San Francisco Cable Car

Complimentary Overnight Parking

Haiyi Hotels’ Souvenir Tote Bag

Ghirardelli Chocolate Sampler

Souvenir “San Francisco-opoly” Board Game

The five Haiyi Hotels – Americania Hotel, Carriage Inn, The Good Hotel, Hotel Metropolis and Hotel Vertigo – are all ideally located just steps away from the city’s attractions, restaurants and theaters.

Children must be 12 years old or younger. Advance reservations are required. For reservations, call 800.736.3766 or visit www.haiyi-hotels.com.

Founded in 2010, Haiyi Hotel (pronounced “hi-YEE”) is a collection of distinctive accommodations for travelers seeking a conscious departure from the predictable and ordinary. The portfolio consists of five boutique hotels all centrally located in San Francisco, adjacent to local attractions, corporations, major retail, arts and renowned dining, including Americania Hotel, Carriage Inn, The Good Hotel, Hotel Metropolis and Hotel Vertigo. The name “Haiyi” comes from a combination of the Chinese words “HAI” for ocean, and “YI” for leisure, meaning “an ocean of leisure and relaxation.” The idea behind the name is for each guest to have such a seamless experience, that his or her stay is akin to floating upon a vast, warm, and calm sea.

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Hotel G Opens in Heart of San Francisco’s Union Square Captures City Vibe

May 7, 2014
Hotel G, San Francisco

Hotel G, San Francisco

The Hotel G is opening after an extensive two-year renovation of an early 20th century building, bringing a fresh, reimagined perspective to the innovative spirit of San Francisco. This “ideal lifestyle” hotel combines residential sophistication with a laid back, authentic local vibe complemented by tailor-made services.

Boasting a great location in the center of San Francisco’s fashionable Union Square, the energy of the city is just outside the door. From first-class shopping and world-renowned dining to award-winning theater, a bustling arts district and even a ride on a historic cable car, the options for guests to experience the city are endless.

“San Francisco is an intellectual city with history and modern-day style and our end goal is for Hotel G to channel each of those qualities,” said General Manager Steve Rizzo. “The guest experience will emphasize a comfortable lifestyle with a design that is simple yet functional and complements the building’s unique architectural elements.”

With 153 guestrooms on 13 floors, Hotel G provides a natural home base for downtime between work and play, welcoming leisure and business travelers with a natural aesthetic, calming design and relaxing accommodations.

 

Originally built in 1908 as The Fielding Hotel, much of the emphasis of the hotel transformation was about staying true to the historic design of the building. Many of the original features were carefully restored, including wood and concrete flooring in the guestrooms and hallways, and the building’s original façade.

Redesigned by New York-based Hun Aw Studio to bring a visually stimulating fusion of contemporary and classic, the hotel features fog-colored walls, wood finishes and earthy fabrics and textiles juxtaposed with clean lines, pops of color and fair-trade accents and art. Furnishings are crisp, simple and functional, providing a natural, almost frontier aesthetic that pays homage to the hotel’s past. Pieces include Victorian settees, vintage schoolhouse chairs, banker’s lamps and mid-century writing desks.

Also, Hotel G has partnered with San Francisco-based Creativity Explored, a nonprofit arts center for developmentally disabled adults, to curate, showcase and sell artwork. A diverse mix of abstract paintings, intricately detailed pen and ink drawings, colorful ceramics, folk textiles, digital prints, collages, and mixed-media sculpture will adorn guestrooms. All of the artwork is available for sale with proceeds going directly to the artist.

Amenities honor today’s modern necessities with flat-screen SMART TVs, docking stations, Nespresso coffee makers and complimentary WiFi. Additional conveniences include a meeting room for casual get-togethers or formal board meetings and a Technogym opening this summer.

Upon arriving in the sleek entryway, guests will be welcomed by “G-Hosts,” who will deliver an unparalleled personal experience. Two minimalistic brass-wrapped reception desks are complemented by a vintage courthouse bench, while plush, colorful armchairs provide nooks that invite visitors to congregate or relax.

For more information about Hotel G, call 877-828-4478, visit www.hotelgsanfrancisco.com or follow the hotel on Facebook at www.facebook.com/HotelGSanFrancisco.

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Westin St. Francis Celebrates 110th Anniversary Throughout 2014 With Special Packages

February 27, 2014
The iconic Westin St. Francis in San Francisco is offering special packages throughout 2014 to  celebrate its 110th anniversary.

The iconic Westin St. Francis in San Francisco is offering special packages throughout 2014 to celebrate its 110th anniversary.

March 21, 2014 marks the 110th anniversary of the legendary Westin St. Francis, San Francisco’s most iconic hotel. Originally opened in 1904 to international acclaim, the hotel quickly became the center of the west coast’s social, theatrical and business life. Commissioned by Charles T. Crocker and his affluent circle of friends, their vision of making San Francisco the “Paris of the West” and the St. Francis Hotel the flagship came to life after two years of construction and $2.5 million, a hefty sum for that time period. The opening of the historic St. Francis Hotel set a new echelon for innovation and opulence in San Francisco.

Throughout the entire year, The Westin St. Francis is offering two 110th Anniversary overnight packages.

  • TheCable Car Package” – with the famous San Francisco cable cars just right outside the front door, this package is a convenient way for guests to enjoy the city. The package includes overnight accommodations, two cable car tickets, two historic cocktails in Caruso’s and complimentary Internet access. Rates start at $249. Valid Jan 1-Dec 31, 2014.
  • Perfect for pet lovers, the “Francis the Dog 110th Anniversary Package” celebrates Francis, a small terrier who survived the 1906 earthquake and fire, and was found in the basement of The Westin St. Francis. Dogs and their owners will enjoy gourmet dog treats, homemade giant chocolate chip cookies and two bottles of VOSS water with a silver drinking bowl, overnight accommodations complete with a Westin Heavenly Dog Bed and a miniature duvet, and the keepsake “Francis: The Earthquake Dog” GUND plush toy as a special memento of the hotel’s history. Please note: the silver drinking bowl, Westin Heavenly Dog Bed and miniature duvet are for use during stay only. Rates start at $259. Valid Jan 1-Dec 31, 2014.

For reservations, call (888) 627-8546 or visit www.westinstfrancis.com. All packages exclude tax and are based upon availability.

Opened more than a century ago on March 21, 1904, The Westin St. Francis still today maintains its preeminence as San Francisco’s center of social, theatrical and business life. Renowned for luxury accommodations and excellent service, The Westin St. Francis continues to preserve its rich history and elegance while enhancing the guest experience with fresh, innovative concepts. The only hotel located on San Francisco’s famous Union Square, The Westin St. Francis is just steps from world class shopping, dining, theatres and art galleries. The St. Francis is part of Starwood Hotels & Resorts (www.starwoodhotels.com). For reservations and more information, call (415) 397-7000, toll free (800) 917-7458 or visit www.westinstfrancis.com.

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Win Trip to San Francisco with ‘Magic Hour’ contest for best San Francisco Holiday Memories

December 6, 2013

Holiday memories of San Francisco can not only warm the heart, they can be worth a trip to the city by the bay.

The San Francisco Travel Association invites those with holiday stories and photos of “magic hours” spent in the city to submit them on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter and tag them with #MagicHourSF.   Entries must be posted between Dec. 2, 2013 and Jan. 2, 2014.   Details are available at http://www.sanfrancisco.travel/magichoursf.

Some posts will be selected by a panel of judges to appear on San Francisco Travel’s social media pages, www.facebook.com/onlyinSF, https://twitter.com/onlyinsf and http://instagram.com/onlyinsf.

The three best posts will win San Francisco prize packages.

 

“Magic Hour” Grand Prize –

Two nights at the Hotel Diva (subject to space availability)

Two adult tickets and two youth tickets to the Exploratorium

Two tickets to the Asian Art Museum and a $50 gift card from the museum

Two tickets to the San Francisco Ballet’s performance of Giselle, Jan. 25 – Feb. 2, 2014

Two San Francisco CityPASS booklets

A $100 Levi’s gift certificate

 

“Starry Hour” First Prize

$50 gift card from the Exploratorium Store

Two tickets to the Asian Art Museum and a $30 gift card from the museum

Two tickets to the San Francisco Ballet’s performance of Giselle, Jan. 25 – Feb. 2, 2014

Two San Francisco CityPASS booklets

 

“Happy Hour” Second Prize

Two tickets to After Dark at the Exploratorium

Two tickets to the Asian Art Museum and a $20 gift card from the museum

Two tickets to the San Francisco Ballet’s performance of Giselle, Jan. 25 – Feb. 2, 2014

Two San Francisco CityPASS booklets

 

The San Francisco Travel Association is the official tourism marketing organization for the City and County of San Francisco. For information on reservations, activities and more, visit www.sanfrancisco.travel or call 415-391-2000.  The Visitor Information Center is located at 900 Market St. in Hallidie Plaza, lower level, near the Powell Street cable car turnaround.

For an insider’s perspective, join the more than 540,000 people who follow San Francisco Travel on Facebook at www.facebook.com/onlyinsf and the more than 116,000 who follow “OnlyinSF” on Twitter at http://twitter.com/onlyinsf

American Express® is the official Card partner of the San Francisco Travel Association.

San Francisco International Airport (SFO) offers non-stop flights to more than 31 international points on 30 international carriers. The Bay Area’s largest airport connects non-stop with 76 cities in the U.S. on 15 domestic airlines. For up-to-the-minute departure and arrival information, airport maps and details on shopping, dining, cultural exhibitions, ground transportation and more, visit flysfo.com. Follow SFO on twitter.com/flysfo and facebook.com/flysfo.

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HotelTravel.com promotes ‘Hardly Strictly Bluegrass’ Festival in San Francisco

September 15, 2011

HotelTravel.com is promoting the popular Hardly Strictly Bluegrass Festival in San Francisco from September 30 to October 2 with tough-to-beat rates and a wider choice of hotels around the city than ever before.

HotelTravel.com Chief Marketing Officer Tom Racette said the festival has expanded to embrace a wide selection of musical genres since he last attended the event in 2004.

“That was the final year it was called ‘Strictly Bluegrass,’ now it covers a wider range of musical tastes. Not only is it free, but most visitors staying in San Francisco don’t realize they can enjoy the warmest weather of the year in late September and early October.

“And there is never a shortage of things to do between shows. San Francisco is well known for its multiple attractions, including Fisherman’s Wharf, which offers stunning views across the bay to both Alcatraz Island and the Golden Gate Bridge,” he added.

For an event overview, read through HotelTravel.com’s travel article: “Hardly Strictly Bluegrass Fest: Fusion in Frisco.” It covers the program of musical acts and offers helpful tips on how to travel to and from the city’s Golden Gate Park where the festival is held.

Kicking off the weekend after the Hardly Strictly Bluegrass Festival, is the 30th annual San Francisco Fleet Week (October 6 to 11), which coincides with the centennial anniversary of United States Naval Aviation. (See HotelTravel.com’s travel event article “Frisco’s Fleet Week Pipes the Public Aboard.”)

For discounts on accommodation in San Francisco for either of these events, check out HotelTravel.com’s San Francisco hotel promotion page featuring rates starting from as low as US$45 per night.

HotelTravel.com has set the global standard for worldwide hotel bookings since 1999, constantly updating its multi-lingual website published in eight languages: English, Chinese, Japanese, French, German, Spanish, Italian, and Korean. Its 24-hour service center is staffed by highly-trained professional native speakers in each language. HotelTravel.com is privately owned and operated, employing over 300 staff in its offices in Thailand, Malaysia, and China.

URLs:
Staying in San Francisco
www.hoteltravel.com/usa/san_francisco/hotels.htm

Hardly Strictly Bluegrass Fest: Fusion in Frisco
www.hoteltravel.com/usa/san_francisco/hardly-strictly-bluegrass-fest-fusion-in-frisco.htm

Golden Gate Park
www.hoteltravel.com/usa/san_francisco/golden-gate-park-in-san-francisco.htm

Frisco’s Fleet Week Pipes the Public Aboard
www.hoteltravel.com/usa/san_francisco/friscos-fleet-week-pipes-the-public-aboard.htm

San Francisco hotel promotion page
www.hoteltravel.com/usa/san_francisco/promotions/promotions.html

hoteltravel.com
www.hoteltravel.com

 

For more travel features, visit

www.travelwritersmagazine.com/TravelFeaturesSyndicate

www.examiner.com/eclectic-travel-in-national/karen-rubin