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The travel industry is good at inventing words to define different types of vacations — think terms such as “staycation” and “voluntourism.” Then there’s “bleisure,” which is used to describe a trip that mixes business and leisure travel. While it’s not one of my favorite made-up words, it does cover an important trend in travel. And for clients looking to mix business with pleasure, the InterContinental San Francisco is a great choice.
The hotel is located at Howard and 5th Street in the heart of the city’s busy SOMA (South of Market Street) neighborhood, next door to Moscone West, an addition to the Moscone Center, the city’s main convention venue, which is also just a short walk away. The hotel is near the financial district and other major business destinations, as well.
At the same time, the InterCon is a short walk from many popular tourist attractions, including Yerba Buena Gardens, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art and the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts. And it’s convenient for public transportation: On a recent visit with my two teenage kids, we enjoyed the ease of using the hotel as a central home base as we zipped around town without a car.
The InterCon recently completed a major renovation that included 43,000 square feet of meeting and event space, all 556 guestrooms and 14 suites, the lobby lounge and more. The update makes the hotel feel like a brand-new property.
The spacious guestrooms are designed to have a residential ambiance — helping guests fantasize about having their own San Francisco luxury apartment. The decor features a creative use of pinstripes in the carpet and throughout the room, and pops of International Orange, the official color of the Golden Gate Bridge. Oversized wingback chairs provide comfortable seating for taking in the city views. And, since it’s the Bay Area and one would expect to have a techy touch or two, there are very cool motorized drapes and USB plugs all over the room — a feature my constantly plugged-in teens appreciated.
Meanwhile, the bathroom was large and comfortable, and, like the rest of the room, featured views of the city.
Finally, in what the hotel says is an industry-first, the InterCon has partnered with Molekule, a leading air purifier, to include clear air systems in select suites.
The renovation can also be seen in the hotel’s modern and airy main lobby and lounge area, which was constantly buzzing with activity and networking during our visit. And, while San Francisco has no shortage of great places to eat, guests at the InterCon should be sure to have at least one meal at the Michelin-starred Luce Restaurant. This gourmet eatery specializes in artisanal, new American cuisine with global influences, and has received numerous awards including being named one of the Top 5 Power Lunch Spots by Haute Living magazine. (Note: Some parts of the hotel renovation are ongoing this summer and could affect the restaurant, so be sure to check the status before recommending it to clients.)
Other hotel amenities include an indoor swimming pool, a fitness center, on-site parking, a business center and more. There is also an extensive amount of meeting space for clients looking to work hard and play hard.
After all, that’s what bleisure — and the InterContinental San Francisco — is all about.
The DetailsIntercontinental San Franciscowww.intercontinentalsanfrancisco.com