San Francisco Proper
San Francisco, California
Trendy, $$$ (from $400)
The boutique hotel scene in San Francisco has a bleak history, but there's good news: San Francisco Proper recently opened in an historic flatiron building in the emerging Mid-Market neighborhood. It's the flagship of Proper Hotels, a new collection from The Kor Group and developer Brad Korzen. Not surprisingly, his wife, superstar designer Kelley Wearstler, of Avalon and Viceroy hotels fame, is the creative force behind Proper, which will launch Austin, Santa Monica, and Downtown LA outposts soon. What can we expect from the hotels? "Each Proper reflects the vibrant community surrounding it, an authentic infusion of each city’s charm and unique qualities,” Wearstler told us. ”The city is our constant muse.”
AT A GLANCE
Vibe: Local, paying careful attention to the building’s history. Residential, with a lobby designed for lingering. Artisanal, in the collaborations. Essentially, Proper hits all the contemporary boutique trends. Which is no bad thing.
Standout Detail: The overall visuals, which are dazzling but not off-putting. What was Wearstler going for, we asked? “Influenced by a range of early pre-modernist European styles, the deep colors, rich textures, and natural materials complement the patina of the original building, while adding a modern twist."
This Place Is Perfect For: The many aesthetically-minded travelers who for years have wondered why the hell San Francisco doesn’t have a cool, interesting, stylish boutique hotel offering worthy of this great town.
Rooms: All 131 rooms are decorated in signature Wearstler style, with bold, harmoniously contrasting floral and geometric patters on the wallpapers, curtains, bedding, and carpets. The six categories range from the compact Bunk Rooms (whose private TVs have headphones) to the Premier Suite (which, at 550 square feet, is ready for guests to bring guests). The bathrooms have rainshowers and full-size bottles of Aesop products.
On Site: In addition the expansive lobby, there's a private dining room for up to 14 and meeting spaces for groups of 50-75. For exercise, guests can hit the full gym or take one of the complimentary Shinola bikes for a spin.
Food + Drink: Villon is the all-day restaurant with a contemporary American menu by chef Jason Franey, a Food & Wine Best New Chef known for his work at Canlis in Seattle and Eleven Madison Park in NYC. Coming soon are Charmaine’s, the rooftop bar and lounge that will draw a crowd for stunning views and killer cocktails, and La Bande the casual morning-to-night cafe and market.
WHAT TO DO NEARBY
The “mid” in Mid-Market means you’re in the center of town, ten minutes by foot from SoMa, Union Square, and Hayes Valley. The Asian Art Museum and SHN Orpheum Theatre are around the block; take a ten-minute ride on the Market Street Railway to hit SFMoMA and the Museum of the African Diaspora. It's San Francisco, so good eating is easy: contemporary Sri Lankan at 1601 Bar & Kitchen, small-batch wine varietals at Tank 18, super sustainable/local/seasonal everything at The Perennial, and quick and tasty (or "fine and fast") modern Greek at Souvla.