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V from Miami asked

A good romantic hotel and Top 10 Romantic Things To Do

What to see/do in San Francisco in late October with a very special girl. Top 10. Thank you!

San Francisco (California)

3 Answers
top answer by
Theresa from Hollywood

Well, for accommodation I'm a diehard Airbnb fan, especially in this city. A completely unromantic, basic motel can run you over $100 per night, so you can imagine how pricey one would be in a great location in the city. Look for an apartment in Haight Ashbury, near Alamo Square, the Mission, or Hayes Valley.

Sutro Baths is stunning and fun to explore. You'll be right by Cliff House which is a nice brunch spot with stellar ocean views.

Shakespeare Garden is a beautiful little spot in Golden Gate Park. I can't even tell you how gorgeous it is in person -- just see it for yourself. :)

For a lovely city view, I recommend Corona Heights Park or Twin Peaks Blvd (only attempt the latter with a car or if you're in seriously good shape!). These are great by day and also perfection at night! Corona Heights is far less populated at night, so it's much more romantic, but you can't drive to the top. The hike up is incredibly easy, but make sure you have a flashlight for easy trekking!

If you want to do something silly, go to the Seward Street Slides. There will be leftover cardboard there, so grab a piece and slide down and feel like a 5 year-old on a playground.

Musée Mécanique is an amazing museum of coin-operated machines. You'll find things that date back decades to Cruisin' USA. It's fun! Also, there's a great photobooth there, too.

Hayes Valley is an adorable little neighborhood -- lots of little shops and tiny places to get food! Two Sisters Bar and Books is a cozy place with delicious wine and stellar food. Chantal Guillon Macarons is there, too, so you can get a few tasty sweets. There's some cute little boutiques as well.

The Fizzary is a soda shop that has literally every kind of soda you could imagine. I recommend going here and grabbing a few drinks to take to the top of Bernal Heights, where you can catch another amazing view (you can drive most of the way up this peak). You'll see Sutro Tower and, depending on the time of day, you might even see Karl the Fog roll in.

For food, dinner at Radish is amazing. The food is fresh and delicious, there are lots of options, beer and wine choices, the lighting is nice, and it's intimate.

Have fun!

Comments (4)

Theresa, followed your advice and found a nice apartment in the Mission District in Dolores Street - close to Dolores Park - is it a nice area for a first visit? I'm concerned we'll be far away from the Union Square - where all the major hotels are, but I do like the Mission District with all the cafes, restaurants and things to see. What's your opinion? Thanks!

Oh you are going to LOVE that area. Union Square is not one of my favorite places of all time…it's kind of like Times Square for New Yorkers. There are just SO many tourists and the primary attraction is shopping. So, consider yourself getting a more authentic SF experience!! In the near vicinity, you'll have Dolores Park, Valencia Street, my favorite burrito place called El Toro, Radish, The Fizzary, Bernal Heights, the Castro, Corona Heights, Southern Pacific Brewing Company…so much! And getting to Union Square is easy, just hop on BART heading inbound. Glad you're going to be in such a cool neighborhood! :)

Oh! And if you're wanting to get around DO NOT rely on cabs. They're the worst here. Instead, download Sidecar, Lyft, and/or Uber to your phone (I have all 3 so I have options). The cost is less than a cab anyway, and it's way safer and easier.

Ok, looks like we will have to stay in a hotel first two days... Which would you recommend: Intercontinental Mark Hopkins (has that bar at the top with mixed reviews), Hotel Clift (has a night club/lounge and looks cool), Hotel Nikko (has a swimming pool and is in Union Square) or Fairmont (kind of classy, but old). Any feedback on each of them? Which one is more romantic? Since it's only 2 nights they will all be similar price-wise. Another one is Argonaut but it's closer to the Golden Gate Bridge and I have mixed feelings about it. So if price is not a factor, what's best and why? Thanks again!!

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Sutro Baths (attraction)
  2. Cliff House (attraction)
  3. Shakespeare Garden (attraction)
  4. Corona Heights Park (attraction)
  5. Twin Peaks Blvd (attraction)
  6. Seward Street Slides (attraction)
  7. Musée Mécanique (attraction)
  8. Hayes Valley (neighborhood)
  9. Two Sisters Bar and Books (restaurant)
  10. Chantal Guillon Macarons (restaurant)
  11. The Fizzary (restaurant)
  12. Bernal Heights (neighborhood)
  13. Radish (restaurant)
comments (4)
likes (4) thanks
answered first by
John from Carlsbad (California)

Hotel rates in San Francisco vary greatly (as much as $200 per night) from week to week for the same hotel, so the dates are important.  The first week of October seems to be the best and the second seems to be the worst, so if you are flexible, pick the first week.  Assuming you can pick that week, there are a number of fine hotels available.  One possibility would be to book a view room at the Intercontinental Mark Hopkins.  I would check the hotel website for a price and then call the hotel directly and try to book it through the front desk.  Tell them what you are looking for and see if you can get the same price by doing it that way.  If you smooze them, you can probably make sure that you will have one of the better rooms.  The package they have that includes parking and internet will save some money if you have a car.  The hotel has complimentary town car service so ask about that.  Romantic things at the hotel include having breakfast sent up to enjoy the view and drinks at the Top of the Mark.  I think the corner of the Top where the bar is is the most romantic area.  Also check out the Tonga Room & Hurricane Bar across the street at the The Fairmont San Francisco, which is a beautiful old hotel. 

A romantic evening could start with before-dinner cocktails at the bar of The Big 4 at the The Scarlet Huntington.  Walk over there and sit near the piano in the front of the bar.  I haven't been there since the remodel, but I understand they didn't change it.  Hopefully, they have the same piano player.  From there, take a taxi to Acquerellofor dinner.  It's expensive, but very romantic, having been a small chapel in its past life.  They serve some of the best innovative Italian food you will find along with an extraordinary wine list and very knowledgeable sommeliers who can help decipher it.  First class service as well.  After dinner, walk down Polk Street to California and take the cable car up to the hotel and have a nightcap at the Top of the Mark.

Other romantic restaurants include Boulevard ( fine food and beautiful surroundings), Bix (ask for a mezzanine table), Kokkari Estiatorio fantastic Greek food,

Romantic sights: Golden Gate Bridge- Walk across it, drive across it, or boat near it.  Great view from Battery Spencer on the other side.

The Embarcadero area around The Ferry Buildingis great since the freeway was taken down.  The Ferry Plaza Farmers Market is a foodie paradise.  Take the Ferry to Sausalito or take a cruise around the Bay.

Comments (0)


Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Intercontinental Mark Hopkins (hotel)
  2. Top of the Mark (hotel)
  3. Tonga Room & Hurricane Bar (restaurant)
  4. The Fairmont San Francisco (hotel)
  5. The Big 4 (restaurant)
  6. The Scarlet Huntington (restaurant)
  7. Acquerello (restaurant)
  8. Boulevard (restaurant)
  9. Bix (restaurant)
  10. Kokkari Estiatorio (restaurant)
  11. Golden Gate Bridge (attraction)
  12. Battery Spencer (attraction)
  13. Ferry Building (attraction)
  14. Ferry Plaza Farmers Market (attraction)
  15. Sausalito (city)
likes (4) thanks
answered by
Andy from San Francisco

Here are a few of the romantic things I enjoy doing in San Francisco. 

1. Enjoy a picnic at sunset on Ocean Beach. There is a safeway a few blocks from the beach where you can pick up anything you need. Make sure to bundle up though cause it could get chilly around sunset. 2. Good Vibrations Valencia is an adult boutique that has lots of interesting products for you to try out after your day's adventures. The associates working there are friendly and knowledgeable and will help you enjoy a very romantic evening. 

3. Another downtown bar with an amazing view is appropriately called The View. It's much bigger than Top of the Mark and you'll have a easier time getting a table. 

4. One of my favorite spots in the city is Samovar Tea Lounge at Yerba Buena Gardens. It is one of the most relaxing spots in the city, and you might catch some live music while you're sipping your tea. 5. One of my favorite things to do is to be on a boat in the Bay. You can check out Blue & Gold Fleet or RED AND WHITE FLEET to see what boat tours they have available. You can also look for private boat owners who take guests out to the bay. Many of the trips include some wine or champagne. Also make sure to bundle up if the tour is around evening time. 

Those are some of my favorite romantic things to do in SF. The suggestions by the authors above are also pretty spot on. Hope you have a great trip!

Comments (2)

Amazing! Thank you so much :) Good Vibrations!

Haha, do check it out. It's a fun store.

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Ocean Beach (attraction)
  2. Good Vibrations Valencia (attraction)
  3. The View (attraction)
  4. Top of the Mark (hotel)
  5. Samovar Tea Lounge (attraction)
  6. Yerba Buena Gardens (attraction)
  7. Blue & Gold Fleet (attraction)
  8. RED AND WHITE FLEET (attraction)
comments (2)
likes (1) thanks

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