Without COVID, this time of year in San Francisco, California would typically be spent outdoors due to the sunny local weather. Despite the fact that the norm has been turned upside down this year, we want to help you find ways to have a good time and take advantage of the activities that are still available. Read on – we’ve listed the best places to stay, eat, and have fun in the Golden City.

Just a reminder that the restrictions are always changing. So keep that in mind and check before doing anything or going anywhere.

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Where to sleep

Best design: San Francisco Proper

The San Francisco Proper is located in a Flatiron building at the intersection of three busy streets. The building from 1904 was originally only two stories high. Some renovations have been carried out over the years due to fires. Today a multitude of influences converge in the San Francisco Proper. From French and European to pre-modernism and cubism, the hotel is a colorful feast for the eyes. A highlight of the 131 guest rooms are wallpapers that are inspired by European vintage graphics from different countries. The San Francisco Proper offers a rooftop terrace and breathtaking views of the city. It is conveniently located minutes from Union Square, SoMa, Hayes Valley and the Central Market-Civic Center.

  • Nearest airport: San Francisco International Airport
  • Time: 30 minutes by car
  • Distance: 13 miles

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Best location: Phoenix Hotel

This 1950s motor court hotel reflects the rock and roll spirit that took place here. It is not far from the Bill Graham Civic Auditorium and the Great American Music Hall. Its location and popularity with musicians made the Phoenix Hotel a second home for generations of traveling bands.

  • Nearest airport: San Francisco International Airport
  • Time: 22 minutes by car
  • Distance: 11 miles

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Best for families: Luxe Loft Apartment with private roof terrace

Between a roof terrace for sunny days and underfloor heating for cold days, this luxurious loft is the perfect place for any time of the year. This beautiful, light-filled three bedroom loft is located in the heart of SoMa. There’s even a parking space in the garage so you don’t have to brave the dangers of parking in the city.

  • Nearest airport: San Francisco International Airport
  • Time: 14 minutes by car
  • Distance: 9 miles

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Best for art lovers: Hotel Des Arts

This hotel features uniquely designed guest rooms by local artists, a variety of amenities and is located in the heart of San Francisco. The Hotel Des Arts is located a short distance from Union Square, Chinatown and the financial district. They also offer a free continental breakfast and a free cup of coffee 24 hours a day. If you have the time, you can also check out the artwork by local artists in the hotel’s lobby gallery. You can also surf the Internet with the free WiFi access.

  • Nearest airport: San Francisco International Airport
  • Time: 20 minutes by car
  • Distance: 14.4 miles

Best luxury: Fairmont San Francisco

Experience world-class service and celebrity treatment at Fairmont San Francisco, located on centrally located Nob Hill and featuring a full-service gym and spa. There are also three unique local dining experiences. This high-ceilinged hotel offers panoramic views of the Golden Gate Bridge, Alcatraz, Coit Tower and the financial district from its unique rooms. You can also take advantage of a variety of shops in the hotel as well as free access to equipment, saunas and exercise classes in the hotel’s gym.

  • Nearest airport: San Francisco International Airport
  • Time: 21 minutes by car
  • Distance: 15.2 miles

Where shall we eat

We can’t wait to dine at some of our favorite restaurants as outdoor dining service is back in full swing in San Francisco. Don’t worry about the weather either, as heaters and blankets are available in most locations to make the experience manageable. Here are a few places where you can enjoy popular San Francisco cuisine. Delivery and takeaway options are also still available.

Mandalay

Burmese food isn’t as well known as its neighbors China, India, and Thailand, but Mandalay has served great Burmese cuisine since 1984. San Francisco foodies want exotic, unique, and special options, and Burmese cuisine is the perfect mix. Mandalay claims that their food is a combination of Indian, Chinese and Thai flavors, but with different preparations (their own style, if you will). Guests will find a variety of flavors to pamper their palates, from savory to spicy to spicy dishes. While Burmese restaurants are rare in the rest of the country, San Francisco has adopted authentic Burmese cuisine.

  • Best for lunch and dinner
  • $$

Browse the menu

Kokkari Estiatorio

Kokkari Estiatorio is named after a small fishing village on the island of Samos in the Aegean Sea. Legend has it that Kokkari is the place where Orion (the son of the Greek god Poseidon) fell in love with the daughter of the king of Chios. For their love, Orion hunted the island for game and seafood – which is why the restaurant uses the expression “cuisine suitable for the gods”. Kokkari Estiatorio has modernized a number of Greek dishes while staying true to the typical taste of a Greek table. The menu features some of the most sought-after traditional Aegean dishes, as well as seafood and game.

  • Best for lunch and dinner
  • $$$

Browse the menu

Hinodeya Ramen Bar

Look no further for your ramen joint. Hinodeya stands out from the crowd as it uses dashi-based ramen broth, while most other ramen shops use pork-based pork broth. The soup is clear and light, with a lingering umami taste that will whet your appetite. Hinodeya has expanded to two locations in the Bay Area and one in Dallas.

  • Best for brunch, lunch and dinner
  • $$

Browse the menu

What to do

SF offers an endless list of activities and attractions. Whether you want to get out in the great outdoors, explore cultural sights, or just enjoy spectacular views, here are some options to keep you occupied and entertained during your time in San Francisco.

Attend a Mad Tea Party

If you’ve been to Merchant Roots before you will know they have amazing menus that change quarterly and the latest is a shot of a Mad Hatter tea party. The two tables in the outdoor parking lot are decorated with lanterns, upturned tea kettles and ticking clocks. When you eat, think of traditional English classics. However, this quirky experience is about so much more than just the food.

Hit the slopes in Tahoe

You probably need a break from city life in San Francisco, and what could be nicer than spending a weekend in the snow-capped mountains of Tahoe? Skiing and snowboarding definitely look very different this year as masks are required (they’ll keep you warm anyway) and only allowed to sit on chairlifts with your own party. But hey, it’s still a fun outdoor activity!

Listen to music at The Wave Organ

The wave organ is a wave-shaped and activated acoustic sculpture located on a jetty in San Francisco Bay. The concept was inspired by recordings made of sounds coming from a vent pipe that was part of a concrete floating dock in Australia. A prototype was built at this point in 1981 as part of the New Music Festival. The “instrument” met with so much enthusiasm that it was developed as a permanent piece. The footbridge itself was built from a selection of carved granite and marble that were also used to build the organ. The installation includes 25 organ pipes made of PVC and concrete at different heights. The sound is generated by the impact of waves on the pipe ends, with the water constantly moving in and out of the pipes. The wave organ sounds best at high tide.

Are you looking for a place to buy in San Francisco? Check out Nicolas Cage’s former mansion here.

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