Domitille Montoro

Recent Posts

5 Facts about San Francisco Pride

Posted by Domitille Montoro on Sun, Jun 30, 2013 @ 08:18 AM

Be proudThis year is the 43rd annual San Francisco Pride Parade and we have uncovered a few facts you might not know:

1. The first Gay Pride parades were held the weekend of June 27 and 28, 1970 in Chicago, New York, Los Angeles and San Francisco. They were organized to commemorate the first anniversary of the Stonewall Riots. The first San Francisco parade was held in 1970— it was a small gathering in Golden Gate Park. Since 1972, the event has been held each year and the name of the festival has changed over the years. The event organizers each year select a theme for the event, which is reflected in the logo and the event’s publicity. 

2. The rainbow flag was created by Gilbert Baker, one of Harvey milk’s good friends. It made its debut as a gay pride symbol at the San Francisco Pride Parade in 1978. Baker was asked to design a unifying symbol for the gay community and the rainbow flag was the result.

 3. Originally thre were eight colors on the rainbow flag includeing hot pink and turquoise, symbolizing sexuality and art. As a result of the  increasing demand for the flag, Baker approached Paramount Flag Company for mass production. At the time hot pink fabric was unavailable, so Baker dropped the hot pink stripe from the design. To keep an even number of stripes, turquoise was also dropped, resulting in the six-stripe flag that is widely used today.

4. The first mayor to take part in a Pride Parade was San Francisco’s George Moscone in 1978.

5. The parade which started as a small gathering of 30 “hair fairies” in 1970 has grown up over the years to reach 1.2 million people in 2008.

Enjoy the festivities this week-end. and show some pride!

Congratulations San Francisco ane the LGBT community. 

Tags: San Francisco Pride

10 Fun Things to do with your Kids in SF

Posted by Domitille Montoro on Thu, Jun 20, 2013 @ 02:57 PM


Here comes the week-end again and you have no idea what to do with your kids? We have put togehter a list of some obvious kid friendly "to-dos" and some more uniuqe experiences in San Francisco. Get ready to share some love and some fun with your little ones.

California Academy of Science

Considered the greenest museum on the planet, with a 2 ½ acre Living Roof, an expansive solar canopy, an extensive water reclamation system, and walls insulated with recycled blue jeans, the California Academy of Science brings the whole universe under one roof - an aquarium, a planetarium, a natural history museum and more! If you go there you should definitely check the Earthquake exhibit, where you can see, hear and feel two earthquakes.This is the number one museum for kids in San Francisco.

Personality Hotels has teamed up with Cal Academy to offer a fantastic package that includes tickets, discounts to the Moss Room and the gift shops inside the musuem. Check out the package here: GO GREEN


In case you dont know, The Exploratorium has moved and is now Pier 15 in a brand new building. It has moved but the fun is still the same. Kids will love discovering there exhibits in particular the South Gallery where you have to "think with your hands", or they will enjoy watching a movie on the terrace at Cinema Arts Outdoor Screening.


San Francisco Zoo

Who doesn’t like going to the Zoo? You get to see cute birds, impressive felines and funny monkeys.A few months ago The San Francisco Zoo was very lucky as a baby Sumatran Tiger cub was born on January 10th.  Jillian is still not an adult but it won’t last very long, hurry to the SF Zoo to see this beautiful creature an many more.


Cable car  

You probably see it every day, but how often do you take the Cable Car? Hop on with your little ones for a city roller-coaster ride. It’s a little crowded but it’s worth the wait. Upon arrival on the Pier you can go say hi to the Sea Lions on Pier 33 or have a delicious ice cream at Ghiradhelli square. 


Cable car Museum

Of course using the Cable Car will raise some questions in your kids’ minds. How does it work? When was it built? Who invented it? No worries. During your ride stop at the Cable Car Museum. It’s free at will get all questions answered. Maybe even yours.

Aquarium of the Bay

Your kids love fishes but you can’t take them to Monterey every other day, why not visit the Aquarium of the Bay instead. Located on Pier 33, the Aquarium of the Bay gives you a good representation of the flora and fauna and the amazing creatures of the sea, that live around the bay. There is also a "petting pool" where little hands can touch the fishes while admiring the great sharks and pretty moon jellies. 


Golden Gate Bridge

I know you have been over that bridge several times, but haw many times have you actually parked and walked on the bridge? Try it with your kids and see how much fun they have running on the bridge and looking at the beautiful view of the bay and the ocean. Dont forget to stop at the Park Conservancy and take a fun photo of you or your family climbing the cables. (*Ask your concierge about discounts for the virtual reality photos)



This infamous prison is on every single tourist’s to do list in San Francisco and there is a good reason for that, it is a must see. From being a fort, to being transformed into a prison and then occupied by the Olohone tribe this island has been through a lot. Taking your kids to Alcatraz is a real historical adventure. You get to take the boat, visit the prison, the audio guide is great and very descriptive and see one of the most theatrical views of San Francisco all in one.


Pirate Store

Aye Aye Maty! You have some little pirates at home and you don’t know how to quench their thirst for treasure hunting? We have the solution for you. The Pirate Store on Valencia St. This is THE PLACE, to find the best Pirate supplies. The Pirate Shop also offers a range of programs to students aged 6 to 18, to improve their writing skills.  


Concrete Slides

The best thing in a playground are usually the slides but most of the time they are small, metal and you have to climb a ladder to access them. The real fun are the built-in concrete slides that you can sometimes find in parks. In San Francisco they can be found in two places. Number one is the Children's Playground at Golden Gate Park located near the carousel, on Bowling Green Drive near Martin Luther King Jr. Drive. This playground has double shallow chutes with low rails and one curve over a rounded mountain. It is generally crowded, so you usually have to wait in line, especially in summer. But there is always plenty of cardboard strewn around.Number 2 is The Seward Street Slides and Mini ParkSeward Street at Douglas Street, in Noe Valley, between 19th and 20th streets: Tucked next to houses on a steep, shaded hill are twin gray chutes that are narrow with high walls. Remember to bring some cardboard


 We hope you enjoyed our list of kid friendly attractions. Now go have fun!

Tags: #SF, kids, fun, cable car, concrete slides

Beautiful San Francisco weather calls for picnics.

Posted by Domitille Montoro on Wed, Jun 05, 2013 @ 01:53 PM

 Dolores Park

Lately we have been enjoying incredile weather in San Francisco and with it comes the need to get out and of course have picnics. Get your chips and your egg salad ready, here is a list of some of the best picnic spots in San Francisco, it’s up to you to choose the one you prefer.


1. Dolores Park

Enclosed by Church, Dolores, 18th, and 20th streets this is probably one of the most beloved park of San Francisco.
With its' grassy, hilly setting; often toasty microclimate; and lovely views of the bay, the city, and the East Bay hills, Dolores Park is a perfect place for a picnic. This isn't your typical urban parkland, though. Tennis courts, impromptu concerts, street theater, anything can happen in Dolores Park. If you have forgotten your sandwich, don’t worry there are a lot of options nearby. Go early, it can get very crowded.


2. Crissy Field

Runs along Mason; parking at Mason at Javowitz
Crissy Field's 100 or so acres of reclaimed marshes and meadows are a pristine setting for a sunny, breezy picnic, breathtaking views of Alcatraz, the Golden Gate Bridge and the bay right there at your elbow. If you're in the mood for a beach picnic, Crissy's sand dunes are right there no need to go all the way to Ocean Beach.


3. Corona Heights

Entrance at the end of Deforest Way (between Beaver and Flint)
Just 10 minutes from Castro and Market is this wild, secluded getaway of steep cliffs, mountain meadows, strange rock formations, and dazzling 360-degree urban panoramas. Conquering 510-foot Corona Heights via its mountain-goat trails and climbable outcroppings of prehistoric chert is something of a workout, but you'll be rewarded with intimate vistas of Diamond Heights, Mission Dolores, Buena Vista Park, and the skyscrapers of downtown S.F.


4. Golden Gate Park

Designed and executed by William Hammond Hall and John McLaren, Golden Gate Park is more than 1,000 acres of public land. The park offers a wide variety of activities, you can eat by Stow Lake and then rent a rowboat or pedal boat from the boathouse. Take a stroll in the Japanese Tea Garden, visit the the Academy of Science, the De Young Museum or just lay in the grass. 


5. Alamo Square

Bordered by Fell Street to the south, Fulton Street to the north, Scott Street to the west, and Webster Street to the east, this is a small park surrounded by Victorian Houses with picturesque views on the Painted ladies and downtown. As you settle you will realise how familiar this park is as it appeared in may TV Shows and Movies.

Don’t forget your sunscreen and your jacket, it’s San Francisco, and have a good day. 




Tags: san francisco, parks, picnics

Gracie's 10 tips to enjoy hotel stay with your dog.

Posted by Domitille Montoro on Wed, May 29, 2013 @ 11:50 AM

Gracie sleeping

Hi, my name is Gracie and I am the Canine Representative at Personality Hotels. Among other tasks, I keep an eye on what's going on, try new treats, wag my tail, and allow people to pet me… it makes them so happy.

As I have spent a good deal of my life in hotels they feel like a second home to me. I love traveling and going on vacation with my family but this is not the case for all my fellow 4 legged friends. Sometimes traveling doesn't reveal the best aspects of their personalities, so I am going to help you remedy that.

Here are 10 tips to have a good stay with your pup at a hotel: 

  • When making your reservation at a hotel check that dogs are welcome. Ask about the pet policy in detail. What is the fee? Is there a weight limit? Is the number of pets limited? Addressing these questions before your arrival will make things much easier.
  • Upon check in ask for a room on a lower floor, it will save you some elevator waiting time, or for a quiet room if your dog is sensitive to noise.
  • Traveling can be a stressful time for some dogs, bringing the food your dog is used to and a favorite toy will help him quiet down. If you have the space, bringing along his bed would be even better. If your pet is used to laying on your bed at home or climbing on the furniture, bring a blanket or a sheet to cover the furniture in your hotel room.
  • If you plan on leaving your dog alone in your room, make sure he is up to it. There are a lot of other guests nearby and they probably won’t be happy if they hear barking all day long. Another way your dog might express his stress is by chewing on furniture or by marking his territory all around the room. If you are not sure of his behavior, put your dog in his crate while you are away. If he is used to it, it will feel much safer to him. The sound of the TV might also help him to calm down. 
  • If you decide to leave your dog roaming around the room remember to put the “Do Not Disturb” sign on the door to avoid anyone from entering while you are away, you never know how your dog might react to a stranger entering the room.
  • If you haven’t checked before, ask the Concierge or the Front Desk agent where is the closest patch of grass for your dog to enjoy himself and get his potty-break. With the voyage your dog might need to relieve himself more often then usual. Remember to pack enough potty bags to clean up after your dog.
  • Pack an extra leash and collar just in case the one you have breaks or you misplace them. Before traveling make sure that the information on your dog’s tag is accurate, especially your phone number.
  • A hotel bathroom is no place for grooming your pet. If something happens and you really have to give your dog a bath, make sure not to leave hair and mud in the bathroom. 
  • If your dog causes any damage in the room, address the matter right away with a manager, don’t wait until check out, it will make things much easier.
  • Of course if you brought your dog along, spend some time with him. Ask the hotel staff if there are some special events or parks you can go to together to have fun. 

Enjoy traveling with your pet and making great memories. Maybe I will have the chance to meet you the next time you stay at one of our properties!



           Graciedog paw print black resized 600 Personality Pup





Tags: pet policies, dog in hotel, 10 tips, potty bags

Lounge Confessions: Jonathan Rachman

Posted by Domitille Montoro on Thu, May 16, 2013 @ 10:13 AM




Personality Hotels are well known for their original design and their partnerships with various very talented interior designers. Today we would like you to get to know Jonathan Rachman a little more.  Proud owner of Jonathan Rachman Designs, Jonathan has traveled the world before settling in San Francisco for our greatest joy.

He was born and raised in Sumatra, studied in Switzerland and lived in Paris. Being rich of all those influences allows him to create very rich décors in which he is not afraid to mix Louis XVI furniture with random Indonesian artifacts. We are very happy as Jonathan will be designing Hotel Union Square’s new lobby, which will be absolutely stunning when he is done working his magic. It’s time for Jonathan Rachman’s Lounge Confessions:

Inspired by the Proust Questionnaire, here is a set of 10 questions that we like to ask Personalities to get to know them a little better.   
PH: What is your favorite food and drink in San Francisco?

JR: Drink- anything made by Absinthe's bartender on Hayes Street. Food- After all these years, I am still in love with the classic Zuni's Roasted Chicken, B Star Bar's Lotus Chips, and Gary Danko's Horseradish Crusted Salmon Medallion with Dilled Cucumbers and Mustard Sauce.


PH: What is the place you always go to?

JR: From the Feryy building to the "fairies"-the F line route. I love strolling down the Castro and always think about the history of the place, what it means to Gay rights movement. My favorite building in the neighborhood is the Castro Theatre, one of the few still standing: Old School!


PH: What is your favorite street?

JR: West Portal- I have a lot of memories with loved ones there, plus this is the one street in San Francisco which is still "trapped" in the past, it was cool long before Mad Men ever aired.


PH: What do you most appreciate in SF?

JR: How it has become a home to so many wayfarers and how cosmopolitan yet so itimate it is. On a personal level, this town holds so many memories for me. 


PH: What is your favorite occupation in SF?

JR: Being a doorman in a classic San Francisco establishment, especially those who've held the position for decades...imagine the books they could write if they wanted to.


PH: What is your idea of happiness?

JR: Being with my partner and my "tribe" at he same time in the same place, which happened for one of my birthdays in Bali. There were 60 poeple from 14 countries gathered for a week of love. They are my biological family and my "gathered and hoarded" over the years family.

But sharing meals with my partner everyday is just another perfect idea of happiness.


PH: If not yourself, who would you be?            

JR: No one.


PH: What is the natural talent you would like  to be gifted with?

JR: Playing the piano or the violin.


PH: What is your present state of mind?

JR: Insanely grateful.


PH: What is your favorite Motto?

JR: COMPASSION AND LOVE: "There are in the end three things that last: Faith, Hope and Love and the greatest of these is Love".

Tags: interior design san francisco, Jonathan Rachman

Bay to Breakers, a San Francisco Original

Posted by Domitille Montoro on Fri, May 10, 2013 @ 09:20 AM

collage btb resized 600

There are a lot of different races all over the world, but none that show as much PERSONALITY as San Francisco's Bay to Breakers. Of course there are some serious people running for the challenge but most of the people who enter in this race are here for the fun and the chance to dress in crazy costumes

If you enter the race or dress up for the event, post your picture on Instagram #personalityhotels, get a chance to win the package of your choice. (50 Shades of Women not included) 

The first race was held in 1912 as “The Cross City Race” and won by Robert J. Vlught, a student at St. Mary's College. The race starts at the Embarcadero and finishes at Ocean Beach, therefore the name was changed in 1965 to Bay to Breakers by an Examiner sports journalist. This whole thing started as a way to lift the spirits of San Franciscans after the terrible 1906 earthquake. This race is one of the most popular, it even broke a Guiness Book of World record in 1986 as the world's largest footrace with 110,000 participants. 

Last year's 12 miles race was finished in 34:41mn by the winner, while the majority of people opted to walk the race behind the runnersm wearing the funniest outfits or nothing at all. FYI, nudity has been banned from the streets of San Francisco but Bay to Breakers is one exception where you can still come in your skivvies. It's time to break out last years Halloween costume and get ready for a hilarious time.

Crazies aside, Bay to Breakers is also known for the large number of unregistered runners, or "bandits", who participate in the race. Ross Mirkarimi, a member of the San Francisco Board of Supervisors, reported that over half of the 60,000 participants in the 2010 Bay to Breakers were unregistered. San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom was among the runners in 2010 who did not pay the registration fee to obtain a race number...some people just like to crash the party.

*Please note that large bags or containers are prohibited from the race.

 If you are interested in participating into the race you can register here > Bay to Breakers and if you just want to enjoy the show and wear something outrageous for the occasion here is the map of the race so you know were to go.

BayToBreakers map 2012 resized 600 

Drinking is prohibited at the race but there is a lot of bar crawling involved and other fun things to do on the sides, hey it’s San Francisco and hydration is a must!

If you enter the race or dress up for the event, post your picture on Instagram #personalityhotels, get a chance to win the package of your choice. (This contest is for a package only and does not include a room night. 50 Shades of Women not included) 

Tags: Bay to Breakers, Race, San Francisco Original

How do you Cinco de Mayo San Francisco?

Posted by Domitille Montoro on Wed, May 01, 2013 @ 09:05 AM

Cinco de Mayo in San Francisco

Can you believe it? The month of May is already here and what better way to start the month with a big party and all sorts of celebrations. This week-end San Francisco is going to proudly celebrate Cinco de Mayo. There will be dancing, singing and drinking!

This is a celebration of Mexican culture and heritage. Cinco de Mayo started to be celebrated in California around 1860s and really crossed over in the United States in the 1950’s and 1960’s. But why on that date? What we are actually celebrating is the Mexican army's unlikely victory over French forces at the Battle of Puebla on May 5, 1862. This battle which the Mexican army won against all odds, fighting a French army which was considered the best at the time, was not only very important for Mexico’s independence but it also stopped the French to help to the South in the U.S. Civil War. If this battle had been lost by the Mexican army the United States' destiny could have been very different. 

This year San Francisco’s celebrations will be held on Saturday, May 4th in Dolores Park. The weather should be around 73 degrees (hot for SF standards), so prepare a picnic and pack some sunscreen for a whole day of entertainment from 10am to 5pm

Here is the schedule:

  • 10am – Zumba-thon Exercise Class ($10 donation)

  • 11:30am – Welcome by Mission Neighborhood Centers Board President, Executive Director, Consul General of Mexico, Supervisor Campos and Joaquin Torres, Mayor’s Office of Neighborhood Services.

  • 12:00pm – Mission Neighborhood Centers, Senior Chorus, “Coro Solera”

  • 12:15pmMission District Young Musicians
    Directed by Martha Rodriguez-Salazar, this ensemble of 26 middle and high school youth from the Mission District plays música bailable including favorites from Mexico, Colombia and Cuba.

  • 1:15pmMs. Berta Olivia, a gifted ranchera vocalist accompanied by talented a Mariachi group.

  • 2:15pm – American Red Cross

  • 2:20pm – Buyepongo is a classic story of friends coming together out of their passion for creating, learning, and playing music.

  • 3pmConjunto Picante is bringing back the chart busting sound of the “Fania All Stars” hard Salsa Music of the 1970s. Founder and Composer Tony Rodriguez’s 12-piece orchestra cultivates a full and vibrant sound, portraying the sounds that are reminiscent of the Salsa era that brought Fania Recording artists to the forefront of Latin music.

  • 4pmEdgardo & Candela are an intense and high energy Bay Area salsa band.

  • 5pmEnsambles Ballet Folklórico de San Francisco, preserving the tradition of Mexican folk dance with quality, authenticity and colorful costumes. There will be several 15 minute presentations and each will showcase a different region in Mexico. 

If you are more of a tequila drinker than a mariachi, a big Pub Crawl is also organized this week-end. Buy your tickets from just a few drinks to the 2 days all access pass.

Colibri Restaurant

And on the more intimaye side, you can also pay your respects to the Mexican culture and heritage by having a fresh Margarita and a delicious meal at Colibri, the Mexican bistro next to Hotel Diva.

The choices are yours; the only important thing is to have a good time!

Tags: cinco de mayo san francisco, mexican culture and heritage, Dolores Park, battle of Puebla

How the Panama Canal brought us Hotel Union Square.

Posted by Domitille Montoro on Thu, Apr 25, 2013 @ 02:13 PM

collage pan pacific resized 600After the big 1906 earthquake and the fire that followed, San Francicso became a pile of rubble. It needed to get back up quickly to show the whole world that the City was still alive. What better way than an International Exhibition to do so. World Fairs were extremely popular at the time and attracted visitors from around the world. A few years later began the development of many hotels and the various Palaces of the Pan Pacific International Exhibition, located on the newly land filled, Marina District.

Today the idea of having this kind of event seems a bit preposterous, but at the time it was a great way for people to gather from all over the world and showcase their scientific discoveries. The San Francisco 1915 Fair was homage to the construction of the Panama Canal, which was a monumental success of its own.

Among other historic technical achievements, the fair visitors were presented with the wonders of the time including, transportation, machinery and the latest developments in electrical devices. The first transcontinental phone call was done during the fair, it was the end of horse carriages and the real beginning of automobiles.    

The Palace of Fine Arts is one of the few remaining buildings from the exhibition and the only one still standing at its original place. It was saved from demolition by the perseverance of Phoebe Apperson Hearst and the Palace Preservation League she created at the time. This building, like the others was not supposed to last, so the entire Palace was rebuilt in 1965 with more durable materials. In 1969 it became the home of the Exploratorium. The new Exploratorium opened on April 17th on Pier 15 but San Franciscan’s dear Palace of Fine Art is still in place and will soon be home to something else. 

 collage hus mosaic resized 600

We are proud to say that the first Personality Hotel, Hotel Union Square was built in 1913 for the 1915 Exhibition. Known as the Golden West Hotel when it opened, the Hotel changed names several times over the years but its spirit remains intact. As soon as you walk into the lobby you are welcomed by the two Egyptian inspired mosaics that have been keeping an eye on the hotel guests for 100 years and the art deco feel is still very present.The hotel is a visually stimulating fusion of contemporary and classic San Francisco - beautiful brick walls, signature staircases, and opulent moldings are complemented by a rich color palate. Next time you come to San Francisco, make sure you take a look at Hotel Union Square.



Tags: hotel union square, Palace of Fine Arts, Exploratorium, 1915 Pan Pacific International Exhibition

Lounge Confessions: The Sauce Boys

Posted by Domitille Montoro on Thu, Apr 18, 2013 @ 01:16 PM

Sauce Boys

San Francisco is well known for it’s cuisine scene and all the great restaurants you can find in the city, this week we wanted to introduce you to one of our Union Square neighbors, Sauce Belden Lane. Today we go behind the scenes and talk to the three brothers that own Sauce,  Nathan, Matt and Trip Hosley.

The “Sauce Boys” opened their first venue, in 2004 in Hayes Valley, and a year later they opened a bar “Shine” at 1337 Mission. Following the success of their restaurant in Hayes Valley, they decided to open a second "Sauce” restaurant on Belden Alley in 2012. The drinks are delicious, the food is pure comfort and they are even open until 1AM. Finally a place open late night! 

Inspired by the Proust Questionnaire, here is a set of 10 questions that we like to ask local Personalities, to get to know them a little better.   

PH: What is your favorite food and drink in San Francisco?

Trip: I am addicted to our sausage cheese bread, it’s one of my favorite things, otherwise it would be Tony’s Pizza in North Beach and a Trumer Pilsner.

Nathan: If we stay inside of Sauce my favorite is Carpaccio and right now outside would be the Chicken Wings at Kezar Pub, it changes a lot... my favorite drink would be any Whiskey.

Matt: For me inside of Sauce I would have to go with the Burger, I just love the Burger and outside I would go for Peppered Steak and a Manhattan at the Brazen Head.

PH: What is the place you always go to in SF?

Trip: I love Dolores Park.

Nathan: The Academy of Sciences, because my kids love it and I love it, it’s fun.

Matt: One of my favorite spots in town is AT&T Park, love the baseball park, love to catch a day game and I love the surroundings.

Think of the story
PH: What is your favorite street?

Hosley Brothers: GOUGH STREET! Hayes Valley. That’s our neighborhood. We have been there 10 years. 

PH: What do you most appreciate in SF?

Trip: I like the diversity, there is always crazy things going on, People watching is always interesting in SF.

Nathan: I love the weather here, I lived in many different places and I love that here its mild, it’s not going to be 114 when I wake up in the morning!

Matt: The availability of good food and good wine, everybody takes it for granted here. The majority of the places you go to always serve high quality product and everything is always fresh, whether you get a sandwich or steak.  When you do get out of San Francisco, it becomes evident that you really live in the middle of a culture that really takes food and wine seriously.

PH: What is your favorite occupation in SF?

Trip: My favorite occupation has always been bar tending.

Nathan: If not running my own restaurant, I would be running somebody else’s.

Matt: I’m trying to think, race car driver or boat captain maybe?

PH: What is your idea of happiness?

Matt: Having enough money to be comfortable and having the people I love around me to enjoy.

Trip: Cool glass of wine with my wife and my family.

Nathan: Anytime I am spending with my family. 

PH: If not yourself, who would you be?

Nathan: I would be a philanthropist, giving money out all day long, doing fun and cool projects all the time.

Matt: I think I’d be a helicopter pilot, a ski helicopter pilot so I could just hit the best trails all day long.

Trip: I’ll be the first California Powerball winner and then I’d do both of those things!

PH: What is the natural talent you would like to be gifted with?

Trip: The ability to play an instrument.

Nathan: If I could teleport that would be pretty awesome!

Matt: I would like to remember names better.

PH: What is your present state of mind?

Nathan: Eager

Matt: Happy, content.

Trip: I am a little overwhelmed these days.

PH: What is your favorite Motto?

Trip: Mine is “think of the story”, whenever you are facing an opportunity in life think what choice will make a better story later.

Matt: I would say “When you wake up, get up and when you get up, do something”.

Nathan: “Whatever you do, take care of your shoes.”  

Tags: Union Square, restaurant, sauce sf, belden place, portobello mushroom fries, sauce drink eat

Adventure: Follow the Barbary Coast Trail

Posted by Domitille Montoro on Thu, Apr 11, 2013 @ 10:44 AM

Barbary Collage resized 600

Is it your first time in San Francisco or you have been here several times and you want to do something different? Are you a history aficionado and really want to know San Francisco's past? Personality Hotels has the solution for you, follow the Barbary Coast Trail and learn more about what and who made this vibrant and iconic city .

The Gold Rush is what changed San Francisco’s destiny. In 1846 a small village of 400 hundered pioneers settled in Yerba Buena, which had just become part of the United States. Eventually word got out that Gold was being found and just 3 short years later in 1849, 700 ships sailed around Cape Horn and over 200,000 people rushed in from all over the world. This is what started the city's transformation. San Francisco became a place full of hopes, dreams, violence, betrayals and bigger than life characters. By the end of 1849 San Francisco’s population had risen to 25,000 and the city would soon become an iconic destination.

Today San Francisco is mostly known for its Victorian Houses, its Crookedest Street and the beautiful Golden Gate Bridge, but if you pay attention and look carefully, you can still find traces of early San Francisco. The traces that depict a city made of treasure hunters, fortune makers and real adventurers. If you want to follow their footsteps, you must take the Barbary Coast Trail.

In 1998 historian Daniel Bacon in collaboration with the San Francisco Museum and Historical Society founded the Barbary Coast Trail. Like being on a treasure hunt, follow the 180 bronze medallions embedded in the pavement along this 3.8miles trail (some of them are right next our dear Hotel Union Square). For those who start thinking that this might be a little to much walking, half of it can be done on a Cable car and most of the trail’s path is flat.

No more excuses, let's discover San Francisco!


Where is the Trail going to take you?

Start by the Old Mint on 5th street, a national historic landmark; walk through Union Square and Maiden Lane; in Chinatown take a look at Old St. Mary's, the first Catholic cathedral West of the Rockies and T'ien Hou temple, the first Asian temple in North America; then in the Financial District visit the Wells Fargo History Museum and pass by the Pony Express Headquarters site. In the Jackson Square Historical District you can see the last lot of Gold Rush and Barbary Coast-era buildings in San Francisco: as the Old Ship Saloon, once a shanghaiing den.

Further on the trail go up Coit Tower and finally take a nice stroll on Fisherman’s Wharf all the way to SF Maritime National Historical Park which maintains a large collection of historic ships and last but not least, Ghirardelli Square for a well deserved ice cream or hot chocolate!

To go back to your starting point take the Hyde-Powell Cable Car line which is the only moving historical landmark in the world. 

Now that you are excited to go on this adventure; what are your options?

If you're staying with Personality Hotels, make sure to talk to our very knowledgeable concierges, who will be more than happy to help you coordinate this adventure. 

If you are more independent, you can go to the Tourist Information Center where you can buy the trail map and do the tour on your own.

Or if you really want to get the whole story and are fond of history I would recommend organizing a tour with the Barbary Coast Trail company. They have audio guides as well as real guides who can take you on the trail and tell you everything there is to know about San Francisco’s history.

If you did not get enough of the Barbary Coast feel, finish your visit of San Francisco by the Conservatory of Flowers in Golden Gate Park to see the Boomtown Barbary Coast exhibition until April 14th. There you will learn more about the plants that used to grow at the time, in San Francicso.

Don’t forget your walking shoes and have fun.    

Tags: Barbary Coast Trail, Historical Landmarks, Historic San Francisco

Follow us on Instagram

Check us out on Instagram to see awesome pictures taken by our employees and guests. @personalityhotels #personalityhotels

In the Press

Hotel Unions Square's DUGOUT SUITE is featured in this months 805 Living Magazine

DugoutSuitePress resized 201

7x7 Magazine names Flamingo Resort & Spa one of the best places to recline in Sonoma!

FlamingoPress resized 201


Latest Posts


Follow Us