San Francisco Favorites!

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San Francisco Favorites

Following a festive, family filled holiday, Scott and I stole away to San Francisco for a leisurely five days. The city was still decked out in holiday finery, and it was the perfect place to celebrate the new year together. I don’t know about you, but I’ll take San Francisco any time of year. On this trip we visited some old favorites and made a point of discovering some new ones.

Club DonatelloWe usually visit San Francisco for a weekend, or just an overnight, so having 5 days felt more leisurely and relaxed. We booked this stay through our Vacation Club Membership, and when they called to say Club Donatello, at the Donatello Hotel, was available we jumped at the chance. Our suite was on the top floor, just below the penthouse club, terrace and viewing deck.

Our city view in San Francisco

We arrived in the evening and walked into this lovely city view from our suite.

Club Donatello

We appreciated the luxurious amenities at the Club Donatello. The comfy bed, with 600 thread count sheets, fluffy robes, mini refrigerator, coffee maker and microwave, were welcome additions. The mirrored dressing room, with ample storage space, made the suite even more spacious. The hotel, located on Post, is just a block off Union Square and in an excellent location. The hotel is elegantly decorated with original Italian art, Venetian glass, European antiques and Italian marble. I stayed here many years ago, and it remains a classic, luxurious hotel today.

Maiden Lane

Scott and I returned to some favorite old haunts, like strolling Maiden Lane near Union Square.

Union Square San Francisco

We took photos near the Christmas Tree in Union Square, re-creating one of our first dates back in the late 1990’s.

San Francisco Bay Views

We love to walk the neighborhoods wherever we travel. It’s the best way to capture the essence of the place.

San Francisco Bay View

Isn’t this a beautiful view of the bay from this stately ‘grand dame’ of a place?

San Francisco Style Homes

San Francisco boasts iconic architecture, and we never tire of imagining what life would be like in one of these beauties that have gracefully stood the test of time. Pacific Heights is a wonderful place to stroll and view the architecture and expansive glimpses of the bay. Lose yourself somewhere on the crest of Divisadero, Jackson, Pacific and Broadway neighborhoods.

Spruce San FranciscoAll that walking revs up the appetite. I have always wanted to try Spruce Restaurant, on Sacramento Street, in Presidio Heights. It’s had rave reviews over the years, and we ended up going for a brunch. The food was delicious, and the service friendly, in this elegant place. I would highly recommend it for a less expensive daytime meal or romantic dinner out.

Cafe de la Presse

A long time favorite for me is Cafe`de la Presse. A classic french bistro with all the latest press–magazines and newspapers–from around the world. I’ve always enjoyed the way the French create salads and the fresh salade de poulet grillé, with goat cheese medallion, is crave-worthy.

Gitane SF

A new favorite for us this trip is Gitane. The Spanish vibe reminded us of our summer travels to Portugal and Spain. Tapas, small plates, are a fun way to eat and allow diners to experience a number of different flavors in their meal. The staff was super friendly and we spent parts of two evenings at Gitane. The bar is lively and hip, and the dining area upstairs has a romantic vibe.


Another new find for dining is the Asian inspired E&O Kitchen and Bar just off Union Square. It’s a fresh, modern take on Asian Fare. The sleek dining room, with lofty ceilings, is gorgeous. We stopped in for a late lunch and ended up lingering for a while over spring rolls and a glass of sauvignon blanc.

My first blow out at Blo Dry Bar

I had my first official blow out at The Dry Bar, just up the street. I strategically scheduled it so that my style would last through New Year’s Eve in the city. This is the ‘before’ shot of my hair. I’ll be doing an upcoming post on the sleek results.

Sacramento Street in SF

Window shopping on Sacramento Street…

Le Labo

 and selecting my signature scents at Le Labo on Fillmore.

My favorite individual notes are neroli, vetiver, jasmin, bergamot, tubereuse and fleuer d’oranger.

San Francisco at night

The city is so pretty at night. Scott, checking out the window dressing (she’s not real, dear!;)

Happy New Year! Stylemindchic Lifestyle

San Francisco is a fantastic place to celebrate New Year’s Eve!  With these beautiful views, we popped the cork in our suite as we dressed, then headed to another one of our favorite places, The Mortimer, at Hotel Adagio. We were treated like royalty, thanks to Sarah and Tony.  At midnight, the San Francisco sky lights up with the brilliant fireworks show at the Embarcadero.



in San Francisco dreams do come true!

Isn’t she sweet?

San Francisco goodbye collage

For more on San Francisco:

Getaway Guide to San Francisco

Anniversary Getaway to San Francisco

A Jewel of a Spot

Stylemindchic Lifestyle Logo


Heather Orr Lindstrom Signature

Our thanks to Club Donatello for the upgraded suite. All opinions are my own.

Find today’s hotel deals in San Francisco on TripAdvisor!

Collections for your lifestyle here

Heather Lindstrom

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Heather I love SF!! Hotel looks lovely. I have to check it out next time! I love your photos so much! Especially the little girl. You have an eye Heather! Love Maiden Lane and Cafe de la Presse! Great post I am going to pin this for my Northern Cal board. xo Kim


Heather, San Francisco is such a fun place to visit. Jess took that same picture of The Emporeum when she visited. Browsing through the streets and shops is a delight. Cafe de la Presse looks charming. The houses are lovely, but the streets are a bit too steep for me, and it makes me nervous driving on them. I love the picture of the little girl looking through the window and…….dreaming. Thanks for taking me along with you to San Francisco. It’s been awhile since I’ve been there.

love, ~Sheri


Isn’t it so beautiful, Sheri? I know we both love our Northern California highlights, which SF is definitely a treasured one. That little girl just captured my eye. So darling! Perhaps a little city getaway is in order for you?? ;)
Happy Friday my dear,


Oh Heather this makes me miss San Francisco! You have such a gift for snapping photos that capture the essence of a place and I loved sightseeing along with you. I’ve had some wonderful times there. You guys looks so happy, five days is a nice amount of time to feel replenished by new surroundings.


This post is like eye candy to me! You take such beautiful pictures of “our” city:). It’s so fun being a tourist in our own area. I haven’t strolled Maiden Lane in years!! I simo my must make more effort to get into the city. You look gorgeous and so, so happy!!


Thank you, Jen! We had a blast, as you can tell. ;) Grab that hubby of yours and make it a date! I used to live only 30 minutes from the city, now I’m 3+ hours. Always worth the trip for sure. Happy weekend dear Jen!


Pretty. I love San Francisco. Sounds like a great hotel!


It was really perfect for our stay this time. We often stay in boutique hotels, but for a longer stay, the spacious suite, the club and rooftop terrace lounges were wonderful.
xx, Heather


It was just perfect for our lengthier stay. The suites were so spacious and the club was perfect. I always love a city view. Do you ever get to SF, Jen?


Heather, I am so sorry I have not been by in a while…life is so busy living with a pregnant daughter and her toddler son! You look lovely here and you just helped me realize how much I would love to see San Francisco. I am moving on to read your other posts!


I can only imagine how busy life is right now, dear Pam. It’s always nice to have you stop by! You will love San Francisco!


This looks like a wonderful way to welcome the New Year and at the same time enjoy a relaxing break. San Francisco is a city I would lke to visit some time and I shall certainly make a note of all your recommendations. The architecture is just fabulous and two restaurants in particular really appeal to me, Café de la Presse and Gitane. Great post and so informative!


Oh yes, Miss B, we love our travels, luxury hotels and fine dining-just like you do! ;) Thank you for the kind words and I think you would definitely enjoy both of those dining experiences.
Bon Voyage!
xx, Heather


What wonderful pictures! Really brings out how European the City can be. And I used to enjoy almost all the spots you mentioned, and look forward to trying the ones that weren’t there when we lived in SF. LOVE that darling photo of the little girl leaning into the window.


Isn’t she adorable? I’m glad you liked the photos of one of your favorite cities, Anne. I LOVE it when you stop by! ;)


Good morning beautiful! My colleague just spent the long weekend in SF and I can’t wait to talk to him today about it! OH I can’t wait to get to Carmel in June! FINALLY!

Like always, you and Scott look fantastic together, because LOVE just oozes right out of you. I hope you are well! Anita


GREAT post! I am bookmarking it for my upcoming trip to San Francisco (before Napa). Thanks, Heather!! xoxo


I loved hearing about your upcoming trip to Napa Valley, Sandy. How fun! You have some fantastic places in mind and I can hardly wait to see the photos! xx


San Fran is such a great city.

Looks like you had a blast!



I agree, Suzanne! I’ve always felt fortunate to live within a few hours drive to San Francisco. Yep-a total blast! ;)


I love this post. I love San Francisco, near and dear to my heart. Thanks for the new options on our next getaway down there. You two look smashing of course :-)


I know you are a big fan of San Francisco, just like I am, Mel. Remember our girls’ getaway there years ago? We had soooo much fun! We did find some new favorites so you might want to bookmark this. Happy long weekend, girlfriend!


I love the pier of San Francisco! Such an amazing atmosphere!

Love to hear from you!