"Feel Like A King"
I was treated like royalty and literally felt like a king when I arrived at the Mandarin Oriental in San Francisco--and I hadn't even emerged from my rental car! How a doorman can make you feel so special during a 30 foot walk from your car to the front door of a hotel is mystifying, but that's exactly how I felt. I was "handed over" to our Bellman, Michael, who, after check-in, escorted me up the elevator for a brief tour of the Mandarin Oriental's "viewing bridge," perched near the top of the hotel, overlooking pretty much everything you'd want to see in San Francisco (the bay, bridges, Alcatraz, the city, and more). It was a super nice touch prior to being "introduced" to my room on the 39th floor.
Overlooking the city (as opposed to the bay), my room included a king bed, couch, refrigerator and bar, flat screen TV, large desk and chair, and ample closet space. The bathroom featured marble floors, a large sink area, a separate toilet area, a full size bath tub, and a shower stall. The bed and bedding were extremely comfortable, often making it difficult to rise in the morning because it was so cozy. Because cleanliness is something I look for and believe all travelers truly desire, I actually went searching throughout my room for dust and dirt with my Windex cloth in hand, but alas, I was unsuccessful, as my room was spotless.
Though the hotel is nestled on the top floors of an office building at 222 Sansome Street, it maintains its own entrance and set of elevators. I never had to wait more than 3 minutes for an elevator and the express run down 40 flights to the hotel's lobby seemed to take 20 seconds or less.
I was pleasantly surprised to learn that the hotel offered complimentary car service to nearby locales in a new Mercedes S550. Not only was the driver extremely polite and nice, he was very knowledgeable of the city. It was another nice touch.
The concierge staff was extremely helpful, pointing us in the right direction regarding restaurants, attractions, and transportation, and they were easy to reach by phone or in person--being located within feet of the hotel's front doors.
Though the hotel's restaurant was located in the main lobby, there were no issues with mood, environment, or noise. Despite somewhat spotty waiter service, the food was excellent and elegantly served.
I really liked the location of the Mandarin Oriental--situated in the Financial District about a half mile from Union Square. It wasn't crowded and it wasn't dull. It seemed just right and within walking, trolley, or cab distance from everything worth doing or seeing in The City by the Bay.
Whenever I arrived back at the hotel, I was warmly greeted by my surname followed by a smile. Yet another nice touch that made me feel welcomed and thanked for my patronage.
Over all, I was very impressed with the hotel. If you're looking for an elegant property with great ambiance, first class service, and first class amenities, you just found it in the Mandarin Oriental in San Francisco.