Tales of San Francisco: Quick Trips & Flipping Through San Francisco
This series of posts about my trip to San Francisco is a bit delayed but then again, I think I was waiting on really nice weather down here to match what we had in April in San Francisco. Not to be said that San Francisco weather is predictable– it’s not. August tends to be the coldest month of the summer and some say of the year — except they had a lot of gray gloomy days this year.
We took off from a smaller airport– all the better to avoid LAX traffic and mess. Not sure that was the smartest idea. I had booked us into a great Travelzoo email deal for the Hotel Griffin which is off Market near the Ferry Building- near the Financial District. Having read the reviews, I knew it was small room but then we weren’t there to stay in the room. They do request information about your preferences: how high do you want to be (high, please); what noise level (quiet, please); what kind of pillow (foam,please). We held our breath and figured how bad could it be for just over $100 bucks a night for 2 nights.
Hotel Griffin Front Desk
The flight was seriously packed and we left early too. Got into SFO in a great amount of time on United– using frequent flyer miles. Did you know that if you book a last minute trip using FF miles that you get dinged $75 per person? We could have flown for less via Jet Blue, saved on parking and paid less overall than that flight cost us. C’est la guerre!
There’s a relatively fast and easy way to get into the city and that’s taking BART trains directly into the city and hopipng a cab from there which is what we did. There is a bit of a learning curve but it was a snap on the return leg so we felt it was worth the experience. Part train, part subway and part monorail in feel, this was a fun way to get into San Francisco without worrying about anyone or traffic.
Getting off at Market, we hiked down towards the Embarcadero and could clearly see the Ferry Building. We needed lunch desperately but had to check off our bags. Luckily the room was ready but it had “NONE” of the amenities I had requested. The 2 windows looked out on the air conditioner generator. The high floor was traded for the second floor. The quiet room was across from the elevator. The foam pillows were not there.
The rooms are extremely tiny. While being green in concept, they must recognize that women need light to put make-up on. I was eventually reduced to jumping on the counter to apply it and then hoped for the best. The lamps were dim, the overhead lighting was dim, even the bathroom was dim. Add to that the darkness from no light from the windows and write this fashionista as light impaired and deficient.
We were meeting friends (Tami who you have heard me blog about) and her boyfriend (is that the right word? I was thinking more like significant other but then again, I don’t want to mis-speak). for dinner so we walked around for a bit.
Wound up at the Royal Exchange for brews (for him), iced tea for me and a couple of sandwiches which were quite good. The brews were better according to the Significant Other and my sandwich was more than sufficient to hold me till dinner.
This is the Royal Exchange. We sat 2 windows up on the right.
It’s located at 301 Sacramento Street, San Francisco: open M-F only! So be there on Friday or forget it.
After lunch we decided to take a walk up Market Street. I was jonesing for a Sephora run and we wound up with quite a walk.
Walking up Market Street in the beautiful sunshine.
Flower stall on Market Street.
The city has a distinctly urban feel– huge duh.. it is urban. Lots of different areas that change within a couple of blocks quite quickly. Lots of public transport. Lots of people walking.
A great statue on Market Street. Don’t know where. This was just pretty– and it seemed to symbolize the way people felt in the sunshine– free!
Just loved this building. The zig-zag of the fire escape stairs really appealed to me.
More flowers from the flower stall on Market Street.
Wound up getting a touch lost looking for Sephora and finally found it. (Post & Market toward Union Square). Went in there with a discount card and dropped some change on a foundation I had to try out : MakeUp ForEver.
We walked through Union Square and back down to Market. More to come– dinner with Tami, the craft fair and more!