San Francisco is home to some of the most iconic attractions in the USA. From the Golden Gate Bridge, to Fisherman’s Wharf to the historic Alcatraz Island, this city by the bay has a tremendous amount to offer.
Our favourite San Franciscan, Brian Chan a.k.a @bchanism, has lent us his insider secrets to the best places to eat, sleep and drink in his beautiful hometown. Whether you are heading to San Francisco, looking for travel inspiration or just day dreaming about your next holiday you will be sure to find some incredible spots on this list.
This beautiful hotel is located near the Embarcadeo waterfront and the historic Ferry Building. Don’t miss out on the penthouse level spa with rooftop soaking tubs.
Taking design notes from a classic 1950s beach motel, the Phoenix Hotel’s main attraction is the courtyard, which features an azure-blue-tiled pool & sculpture garden. This more laid-back style accomodation is perfect for those wanting to unwind.
Located just minutes from Union Square, this grand hotel boasts amazing views of the city and the bay. Don’t forget to check out the Tonga Room & Hurricane Bar to grab a cocktail and some Polynesian grub. Anthony Bourdain has once called it “…the greatest place in the history of the world”.
This Hawaiian joint features dishes with Chinese & Indian twists, courtesy of Hawaiian-born head chef Ravi Kapur. Reservations are near impossible to get, but once you get lucky, the wait is definitely worth it. Each dish is a standout on its own, from the starters all the way to dessert
Zazie is Brian’s go-to French-inspired brunch spot. They offer exceptional pancakes, French toast, and eggs benedicts. The “La Mer” benedict (California Dungeness crab) and the Miracle Pancakes are not to be missed.
If you need your caffeine fix, Andytown is must visit. Not only do they roast their own beans, but they are known for their Snowy Plover (Pellegrino, espresso, and brown sugar syrup topped with their homemade whipped cream). To compliment their coffee selection, they also provide their own baked goods and soda breads.
This bar, located in the bustling Mission district, boasts a healthy 16-drink menu all organized by spirit. Brian’s recommendation is the Whiskey in Church that features smoky scotch, olorose sherry, maple & smoked pear bitters. With a drink menu that extensive, you are bound to find one that matches your choice of poison.
This bar is not only one bar, but actually FIVE different hidden bars inside. Each has a different method of getting in, with most involving some form of a password. What is cooler than being able to get a drink of an incredibly secret bar?
Located in the basement of the storied Hearst building, this bar is in the space that once held the printing presses for the Examiner. With drink names all inspired by the newspaper business of the 50s & 60s and the accompanying the décor of red booths and sconce-enclosed lights, you will feel like you have time traveled to another era while sipping on your cocktail.
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