San Francisco is the usual starting point on our popular California Road Trip for families, and we get excited every time a new family-friendly boutique hotel with a new personality opens in the city, as a big part of the fun in town is the massive visual and cultural diversity within a small geographic footprint. Hotel Zeppelin is part of Viceroy Hotel Group, a fast-growing luxury travel brand with a unique array of both urban hotels and resorts in North America and beyond. We had a chance to give Hotel Zeppelin a test drive this winter and we give it two thumbs up for families who want something with charisma and pizzazz in the heart of the city.
Here’s what we like about Hotel Zeppelin San Francisco for families:
The minute you walk into Hotel Zeppelin’s eclectic lobby, you know you are in a hip spot. Teenagers in particular will be instantly captivated. Bold, modern design sets the tone. Exposed brick with black finishes makes the ambiance edgy and industrial. Hotel Zeppelin is trendy, but not so much that it’s not kid-friendly.
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There’s a open lounge and bar right in the lobby, and a big staircase leads to the main attraction for families: The Den. A giant open space with games galore, The Den is a clever hangout with basketball, several large TV screens, a pool table, a shuffleboard table and more. This game room is great for sightseeing and pre-dinner breaks alike. It’s fantastic to have an appealing place besides the guestrooms for families to be together inside a city hotel.
The Rambler occupies what used to be Postrio, a longtime San Francisco culinary icon conceived by celebrity chef Wolfgang Puck in 1989. This buzzy bar and restaurant serves locally sourced fare. The menu is creative but not fussy. From bacon-wrapped roast chicken to pork belly with French lentils, sugar snap peas and radish, dinner offerings are substantive and flavorful.
We had a really great meal at Rambler and loved accessing a high-quality San Francisco restaurant experience right in our hotel — no Uber or logistics required. Kid-friendly lunch options include burgers and grilled cheese. Breakfast is a la carte and a bit more limited, but it still has all families need, including seasonal fruit, pancakes and a few different egg dishes from which to choose.
There’s a dedicated family room category called a Family Suite, comprised of a room with two queen-sized beds and a second living room for lounging — vintage record player included. Hotel Zeppelin guestrooms aren’t luxurious in a traditional sense, but they are fun, functional and comfortable. Connecting configurations are also available for families who want more separation or have three or more children.
The heart-of-San-Francisco location is unbeatable. Families are walk-out to Union Square, cable cars, Market Street and San Francisco’s SOMA museums, and Nob Hill. It’s a quick Uber ride to the Marina District for shopping, the Ferry Building and waterfront promenade, the Golden Gate Bridge and Golden Gate Park. Read 72 Hours in San Francisco with kids for tips on what to see and do with children of all ages.
Editor’s Note: Ciao Bambino received a media rate to cover Hotel Zeppelin for families. As always, our opinions are our own. Photos by Amie O’Shaughnessy, Hotel Zeppelin and Rambler San Francisco.
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