Hotel Stratford, Steps From San Francisco’s Union Square

It would be easy to walk by Hotel Stratford in San Francisco and not realize it’s a hotel. Located steps from Union Square, along the Powell Street Cable Car line, the hotel entrance and lobby almost look more like an apartment building than a hotel. There’s minimal signage and no traditional front desk; self-check-in kiosks line one of the walls in the small lobby.

Hotel Stratford Stratford Hotel lobby

Built in 1910, the eight-story hotel underwent an extensive multimillion renovation in 2021 to update its 95 rooms. I stayed in a Queen Stratford Deluxe room overlooking the cable car line.

Hotel Stratford Queen Stratford Deluxe room

The room was compact, but a smart use of space prevented it from feeling cramped. Furniture was limited to the bed, a chair, and a bench; bedside tables were essentially floating shelves and used to hold the phone, electric kettle, coffee and tea supplies. There was a trio of hooks instead of a closet, and the safe was located under the bed. A small refrigerator sat on the floor.

Hotel Stratford Queen Stratford Deluxe room bathroom

The bathroom featured a single sink with a vanity that provided ample room for two people, a walk-in shower, and toilet.

Hotel Stratford features a variety of room choices. Along with expected king and queen bed options, the property offers rooms with twin beds – a rare but appreciated choice for solo travelers.

Light-sleepers may want to consider requesting a room located away from the street. Though the view of the hustle and bustle of the City by the Bay can be fun, it can be noisy, even in the wee hours of the morning.

Located a block away from Hotel Stratford, sister property Bartlett Hall is a casual microbrewery and eatery. Dinner options include burgers, flatbreads, chicken wings, and salads. Hotel Stratford guests can dine in or order to-go room service offerings via a QR code online ordering system. A number of other popular San Francisco restaurants are also within walking distance of the property.

Hotel Stratford Queen Stratford Deluxe room Bartlett Hall

The Union Square area is a favorite with visitors to San Francisco because of its long list of shopping opportunities. Chinatown is also within walking distance and the hotel’s location on the Powell Street Cable Car, makes exploring the city on public transportation relatively simple.

Expect about a half-hour drive to reach San Francisco International and Oakland International airports.

If you are traveling with a car, it is important to know that Hotel Stratford does not offer parking. They do have nearby garages they can recommend, but otherwise there is no assistance. Stopping to unload luggage can also be tricky for someone not familiar with San Francisco because of the hotel’s location near Union Square. (Street parking is not an advisable option in the area.)

Rates for a Queen Stratford Deluxe start at $249. Book directly at the hotel website or go through an online booking site such as or Expedia. There is no daily resort fee, but there is a $25 per day, housekeeping/cleaning fee. Daily housekeeping is optional. Dog-friendly rooms are available. The front desk is not staffed 24/7, so plan accordingly if you anticipate any after hour needs or assistance.

Review and photos by San Francisco Bay Area travel writer and television correspondent Dana Rebmann. Her stay was organized by Hotel Stratford, but as always her thoughts and opinions are her own.

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