In the competitive world of San Francisco hotels, style is not enough. Tech-friendliness isn’t, either. You need both, and a great location, too, if you want to be a player in this game. Axiom Hotel has all three. The hotel isn’t new, exactly, it’s just been under different ownership for a century. Perhaps you’ve seen the place from the outside: previously called the Powell Hotel, it’s located just across from the cable-car turnaround on Powell Street, just a couple of blocks off Union Square. It’s an elegant building, constructed in the wake of the great earthquake of 1906, with high ceilings, wrought-iron railings and romantic staircases, white marble and moulded walls.
The new owners have preserved much of that original charm. Needless to say, they’ve changed plenty of things, too. Despite the old-fashioned framework, the aesthetic is modern, heavy on modular furniture, leather sofas, and industrial details — some of the old wooden beams have been painted black, lending the place an edgy rock-and-roll feel that stands in marked contrast to the hotel’s turn-of-the-century glamour. New York design team Stonehill & Taylor is responsible for the eye-catching details, including the futuristic glass wall at the hotel’s entrance and the striking chandeliers in the lobby.
Renovated guest rooms are characterized by clean lines and contemporary decor, too, though the aesthetic is though a bit tamer upstairs – more earth tones and Egyptian cotton, and less black leather, in other words. Axiom Hotel has 152 guest rooms and suites spread across six floors. They’re all lined with hardwood floors and smartly soundproofed, with marble bathrooms, walk-in showers, and all-natural bath products by Lather.
And what about the tech capabilities? We’re glad you asked. You can check in online, if you’d rather skip the line at reception. The (free) wi-fi is fiber optic (read: lightning-fast) and there’s a wi-fi router in every room — novel, if you ask us — plus a 48-inch Samsung LED Smart TV, a Bluetooth-enabled clock radio, and plentiful USB outlets right where you need them. Old-world architecture and a futuristic infrastructure at an enviably central address? Three for three: looks like the Axiom Hotel came to play.