San Francisco’s hotel scene has always been a bit of a puzzle. This is one of America’s most popular destinations, and it’s a city with a visual identity all its own. Too often, though, its hotels miss the mark — there’s a conservatism to the local design sensibility that’s entirely at odds with the city’s forward-thinking reputation. San Francisco Proper Hotel, however, suffers from no such deficit.
Here, in what’s often described as America’s most European city, designer Kelly Wearstler has drawn inspiration from a number of European design movements, combining the expected Victorian and Art Deco currents with Cubism to Bauhaus and beyond, paying special attention to the graphic arts, with bold patterns and vibrant illustrations adorning the walls.
The Proper Hotels have plenty of personality, as well as a professional sheen that’s expressed in particularly fine details, like handmade Aireloom mattresses and Danish-designed Vifa sound systems. It’s a luxurious experience, but not an opulent one, and the difference can often be razor-thin — what makes the Proper a proper hotel, rather than a pretender, is its impeccable taste.
On the ground floor you’ll find Villon, a restaurant and lounge, and La Bande, a more casual café and market, both overseen by the Michelin-starred chef Jason Fox. And on the roof of this classic flatiron building you’ll find Charmaine’s, a rooftop bar and lounge with an extraordinary panoramic view of the city, making the most of the hotel’s extremely central Mid-Market location.