Places to stay near San Francisco
March 30, 2011 9:03 AM   Subscribe

I am attending this conference in May in Japan Town in San Francisco. I’m looking for a better option than the $150/night rooms at the hotel that is hosting the conference, but I’m not familiar with the area…

I live in the LA area and plan on driving up so I’ll have a car with me. I’m looking into other hotels so that it doesn’t cost a small fortune to attend. I’m not at all familiar with the Bay Area and I want to make sure that wherever I stay is in a relatively safe area as I’m a lady traveling alone. I don’t know what traffic patterns look like up there so I don’t want to stay someplace that will make it horribly inconvenient to get to the conference.

I’d love some recommendations for either specific hotels, neighborhoods in the city, or neighboring communities in which I could stay. Anything you have to offer about traffic during the week would be helpful too. I’m there Wed-Sat and the conference starts at 8am. I don’t mind driving into the conference each day, but I’d like to keep it to under an hour drive. I’m also open to using the local public transportation to get to the conference and keeping my car at the hotel where I end up staying or a park and ride lot. I don’t need anything fancy, but I’m not interested in a hostel.

Thanks!
posted by Palmcorder Yajna to Travel & Transportation around San Francisco, CA (7 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
 
One thing I would suggest is looking at joining Couchsurfing.org.

I got to conferences for work a few times a year and I've saved hundreds of dollars by staying with people. Also, it's nice to meet people who live where you're staying since they know about things like where to eat, etc.

I dislike hostels as well. Couch surfing has always been a much more relaxed experience than hosteling since typically you're the only guest staying at any given time.
posted by elder18 at 9:29 AM on March 30, 2011


I've heard good things about the Opal. It looks like a Weds-Sat stay would be about $70/night; I did not investigate their parking costs. They're right on the 38 Geary bus line, which is a straight shot (less than 10 minutes, probably) to Japantown. They are on the edge of the Tenderloin, which can be sketchy but is not all that unsafe if you keep your eyes in your head and your alcohol level low. The TL has some outstanding and inexpensive eateries and bars. (Expensive ones too, if that's how you want to roll.)
posted by rtha at 10:11 AM on March 30, 2011


Hotel Kabuki is $120/night and actually in Japan town. I've not stayed there, but I stayed in a different hotel owned by the same people and it was great.

Japantown isn't sketchy. As rtha mentions, the Tenderloin is convenient but is one of the more unsafe parts of the city.

I think your real problem is that you'll have a car - you'll have to park really out of the way to find street parking that isn't limited to 1 or 2 hours at a time, and hotel valet or lot parking can be expensive - I've paid $20 to park overnight in the Tenderloin, and I doubt Japantown is any cheaper.
posted by asphericalcow at 10:27 AM on March 30, 2011


AirBnB works well in SF.
posted by rajbot at 10:59 AM on March 30, 2011 [1 favorite]


Seconding airbnb. The community here is huge and a lot of places are lovely. Couchsurfing is different- there is a social aspect kind of expected, and a lot of the folks do just offer a couch- but then the price is totally right, and you can have a great time.
posted by rockindata at 12:34 PM on March 30, 2011


AirBnb Rocks. Found it here, and have been using it almost exclusively for my business travel since. I am on the road two weeks out of the month. This has completely changed the experience for the better.
posted by PareidoliaticBoy at 6:46 PM on March 30, 2011


I'd recommend airbnb, with one proviso : remember to ask if they've ever had bedbugs in the apartment. They're not as big a problem here as they are in NYC, but it is something you need to keep in mind. You can also check bedbbugregistry.

(although, to be fair, you probably have a greater chance of finding bedugs at a hotel then a private residence)
posted by Afroblanco at 11:06 PM on March 30, 2011


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