Hotel Nikko helped make my first visit to San Francisco comfortable and memorable.
The lobby is swanky and modern. I tried for an early check in but my room wasn't available yet. The man at the front desk offered a different accommodations but said my assigned room would be "worth the wait." Be sure to ask for a corner room to get a "suite" view without paying suite prices. The San Francisco cityscape is striking, powerful, and inspiring. I don't know about you, but a good view can completely change my mood and outlook.
The hotel has reputation for being incredibly welcoming of our four-legged friends. Too bad I didn't do my research beforehand. I found myself regretting that I hadn't brought my little pupper, Crouton, to accompany me on this trip.
The hotel's theme is Asian-style hospitality, which is very fitting given that Chinatown is only six blocks north, an easy walk for a New Yorker, like me. But that isn't all that Hotel Nikko is near. The hotel is situated in a great location, where you can explore many famous sites that are either walking distance or a short uber ride.
I visited Fisherman’s Warf during my stay, a classic, but "touristy" San Fran destination and only a 10 minute uber from the hotel. I made the mistake of taking the trolly back. Ignorantly, I was under the impression that San Fran trolleys are often used by locals as common public transportation. Be warned that the trolley is more than a tourist trap and not a practical means of transportation unless you want to wait in line for a half hour.
I was in town for a conference, and there was a lot I wanted to see, so I was anxious to get to my room and unpack my bags. The room was clean and minimalistic with teal and blue accents. I was greeted by this adorable little companion upon arriving:
The hotel supports local animal shelters by raising money. Should you take your new stuffy friend home with you, you will be charged a fee that helps fund local dog rescues.
The restaurant in the hotel is called Anzu. One of the meals offered is a thinly cut wagyu steak that you can cook yourself on a hot stone. I couldn’t pass up a good wagyu and a fun experience, so I naturally ordered that culinary adventure. It's exactly as fun as it looks (see the video). I want to give a special thanks to the waitstaff at the hotel restaurant who gave me the recommendation for this fantastic wine that I had, the Paul Hobbs 2005 Cabernet (splurge!) If you want to try something outside of the hotel, Akiko's Sushi Bar is a small, intimate restaurant that is quite nearby.
As someone who lived in LA for six years, sushi and sushi quality are high on my priority list.
I'm a room service junkie, so I ordered breakfast in bed each day. The chicken sausage is notably tasty, they can poach an egg, and the food is fresh and hot.
Overall, my stay was overwhelmingly positive and I plan to return in the future. I would also suggest that anyone who plans to stay here should remember to bring their pet. If you don't have a doggo, the hotel will actually bring their dog, Buster, to meet you. It's certainly a unique room service, but like most things about this hotel, it's very charming and fun.