NEW YORK (Money magazine) -
Why San Francisco? We'll leave it to Tony Bennett to explain.
| || |
|Where to stay ||Huntington Hotel |
|Where to eat ||SOMA or the Mission |
|Don't miss ||Top of the Mark |
Suffice it to say that "romantic San Francisco" is practically redundant. The cable cars; the Painted Ladies, the row of pastel-colored Victorian houses at Alamo Square; the Golden Gate Bridge - -the iconic visual cues are almost innumerable.
Ditto the itineraries. Stroll the Embarcadero, the tea shops of Chinatown or the elegant apartments of Nob Hill.
Or leave the city altogether. Cross the Golden Gate to Marin County and Muir Woods National Monument, home of giant redwoods. Cruise Highway 1, hard up against the mountains, the Pacific on your left. The wineries of Sonoma and Napa beckon. It's all good.
SUNSET SITING Sip martinis and survey the whole Bay Area from the Top of the Mark, a swank bar that crowns the InterContinental Mark Hopkins Hotel at Nob Hill, 19 floors up (415-392-3434).
SLEEP, EAT Among the Nob Hill grande dames, the Huntington Hotel -- the first brick-and-steel high-rise west of the Mississippi -- is both stately and relatively affordable. Even the least expensive rooms are spacious and have fine views (doubles from $320 a night; 800-227-4683; huntingtonhotel.com).
It's folly to highlight just one restaurant in San Francisco, of all places. Head to Union Square for formal four-star dining; to SoMa (South of Market) for sleek and stylish; or to the Mission district for affordable ethnic eating.