The Best Hotel for a San Francisco Tourist

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Back when The Weekend Fox was just an idea floating around in my head, I started taking a lot of written and mental notes during our travels, and our trip to California was my first! It was, by far, one of the best vacations I’ve ever been on and I got to share it with my husband and parents. We spent two nights in San Francisco and five nights in wine country. As the planner in the family, I was given the assignment of picking out the hotel for each location. When selecting a place to stay, I always try to find a place that satisfies our:

  • location preference (always #1)
  • budget (yessss, gotta include that part)
  • and comfort (amenities & cleanliness)


Fisherman’s Wharf + Argonaut Hotel

After hours of research, I decided that for our first stay in San Francisco we should be in the heart of the tourism excitement, Fisherman’s Wharf. We wanted to be able to hit all of the highlights of the city in a limited amount of time so Fisherman’s Wharf provided us with easy access to all of that. Cute restaurants, small shops, and entertainment line the streets of this waterfront neighborhood. After narrowing down the location, picking the Argonaut Hotel was a no-brainer. This charming boutique hotel is in a prime location for any San Francisco tourist.

The nautical décor greets you at the door and continues throughout the style of the hotel and rooms. If you arrive early in the day, like we did, the bellman takes care of the luggage and will deliver it to your room when it’s ready. The front desk employees were kind and filled with great suggestions for local restaurants. From the hotel, you’re a short walk to Ghirardelli Square, Pier 39, Aquatic Park, cable car stops, and more.

Literally, everything on our list was either a short walk or had easy access. A car isn’t necessary for this location, which was a great perk for us. We took a cable car to other areas of San Francisco and rented bikes that we rode all the way to Sausalito before taking the ferry back (yes, my momma rode an electric bike across the Golden Gate Bridge, so you can too!).


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King Suite at Argonaut Hotel

Because it was only a two-night stay, we were able to stretch the budget a little and I surprised my husband with a King Suite. I was blown away by the size of our room and the comfort it offered. I’m pretty sure it was bigger than my entire college apartment and there was just so much s p a c e. We felt like laidback, mermaid royalty. The suite featured a large living room with plenty of seating, a ton of natural light, and beautiful brick walls. Double doors led us into the corner-bedroom with multiple lounge chairs, oversized mirrors, and luxurious bathrobes. The oversized bathroom was decorated with fun octopus wallpaper and had a deep jetted bathtub (my husband’s favorite part of any hotel). This particular suite could also be joined with a 2 queen room, providing the perfect option for families.

Related: Where to Stay in Scottsdale: Andaz Resort & Spa

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From our suite, we could see Ghirardelli Square and from my parent’s room, we could see the Golden Gate Bridge. Does it get much better than that?! For two nights, we felt completely spoiled in the king suite without it feeling “stuffy”. It was like we were relaxing in a luxurious and cozy apartment. And I have to admit that one night when my husband and Dad chose to head to the bar, I was relaxing in a bubble bath.  While the hotel offered a complimentary “happy hour” in the lobby each afternoon, we would pop open our own bottle of wine in the room for our own happy hour, with my parents, before heading to dinner.


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Blue Mermaid Restaurant

Attached to the Argonaut Hotel is the Blue Mermaid Restaurant. The ambiance is rich with ocean vibes and casual comfort. We rendezvoused here both mornings for breakfast (get the french toast, it’s vacation) and for an afternoon snack. We couldn’t get away without trying all of their famous chowders while sipping on some local beers. I always find it to be a major plus when a hotel has a restaurant that is this good.

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San Francisco Love

The cherry on top to this hotel is that they pride themselves in being eco-friendly. Argonaut Hotel’s efforts begin with LED light bulbs and continue all the way through their kitchen where they recycle grease into biofuel and compost. You won’t find small bottles of shampoo and conditioner in the bathrooms because they’ve eliminated that single-use plastic and provide large, in-shower pumps. They are also conscious of water consumption, use Green Seal certified cleaning products, and provide bicycles to their guests. As an ocean lover, I could feel really good about staying in an eco-friendly hotel.

Related: 11 Ways You Can Help Our Oceans Today

A hotel room can truly make or break a vacation. I’ve, personally, come home early from a vacation before just because I wasn’t happy with the accommodations. 😳 But I would stay at the Argonaut Hotel again and again. Our experience there was nothing short of excellent and I highly recommend splurging on a suite if it’s your first time to San Francisco. But don’t worry, the standard rooms still come with plenty of amenities and space! If you’re eager to hit up the local sites that San Francisco is known and loved for, then look no further.

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MORE HOTELS: A Weekend at Disney’s Wilderness Lodge

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I'm Katherine. A weekend lover & world traveler. My adventures have taken me around the globe, but I call Florida & Bulgaria "home". My life has had twists & turns that I never expected, but it's made me believe in endless amounts of self-love & a lot less settling.

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  1. 2.1.18

    San Fransisco looks so beautiful, definitelyy on my bucket list and the hotel is soooo cute, I love stars XD

  2. 2.1.18

    Thanks for the suggestion. My hubby and I have been wanting to visit San Fransisco. Will definitely keep this one in mind.

  3. 2.1.18

    This is so cute – love the nautical theme! Such a fun spin. My husband and I want to get out to CA and visit the San Fran area really bad!

    • 2.5.18

      I love northern California (and try to get to wine country, too!!) – you’ll love it all and there’s sooo many Instaworthy spots!

  4. 2.1.18

    This looks straight outta Instagram! SO stinkin’ cute!!! Now I’m craving a Cali trip…

  5. 2.1.18
    Stephanie Wheeler Mechtel said:

    Makes me want to go back to San Francisco! I don’t know why we didn’t stay here the last time?!

  6. 2.1.18
    Chel said:

    this is so nautical and cute! I haven’t been to SFyet but its on my list

  7. 2.1.18

    I’ve only been to LA, but I’d really like to make a trip to San Fran at some point. That hotel room looks awesome! It definitely seems like it has a very SF feel.

  8. 2.1.18

    This hotel is adorable!! I have yet to see San Francisco, but I’m hoping to make a trip up there (from San Diego) this spring before my husband and I move back to the east coast. Maybe we’ll have to check out this hotel!

    • 2.5.18

      How fun!!! We’re considering a drive from San Francisco to San Diego. We’ve never been to San Diego and I think we would love it!

  9. 2.1.18

    ohhh i loveee SF! It’s one of my favorite cities to visit! I feel like you always find the cutest cozy hidden gems!

  10. 2.1.18
    Ashley Stephenson said:

    I have been to California 4 times and San Francisco is a place I have been dying to go to!

  11. 2.1.18
    Kristen Jones said:

    I’ve been dying to travel to the west coast! This hotel is SO cute and of course you HAVE to get french toast on vacay!

  12. 2.1.18

    I would love to be able to visit the west coast one day – especially San Fran! I’ve never been but that hotel looks so cute! I love nautical-themed decor! Thank you for sharing!

  13. 2.1.18
    Leslie said:

    I’ve always wanted to go to Fisherman’s Wharf. Everything I have seen says it is the place to start! Oh course, it has nothing to do with my foodie obsession! 😉

  14. 2.1.18

    I know it can be expensive, so I appreciate the friendly review. Thank you!

    • 2.5.18

      Definitely a pricey little town, but I was blown away with how much we got for our money at the Argonaut Hotel. 🙂

  15. 2.1.18

    My fiancé and I have been talking about going to San Fran. Thanks for this post because this will be helpful. Already pinned. The hotel looks so pretty.

  16. 2.1.18
    Adriana said:

    Such a gorgeous spot! San Fran is the best, such a fun spot to getaway to!

  17. 2.2.18

    That nautical hotel is gorgeous. Your trip and San Fran looks like a fun place to visit!!!

  18. 2.2.18
    Jeff & Crystal Bryant said:

    We have discussed visiting San Francisco, and the Argonaut looks like a perfect spot for a base camp. Loved the vibrant photos, and great descriptions. Thanks for sharing.

    • 2.5.18

      Thank you! It’s definitely the perfect spot for first-timers to San Francisco. 🙂 Hope you get to make a trip there soon!

  19. 2.2.18
    Kallie said:

    Love a visit to SF! And I’ve actually heard about this hotel before! So pretty!

  20. 2.2.18
    Tanvi said:

    Such a great resource. Will pin it for future reference. Thanks for the info 🙂


  21. 2.2.18

    So far all I’ve had is a layover in an Francisco but I definitely want to have the chance to experience it a bit more and now I know exactly where to stay when I do!

  22. 2.11.18
    Thena Reading-Franssen said:

    This hotel looks awesome, and I’ve never been to SF! I’ll have to check it out!