Review: The Westin San Francisco Airport, United States of America
Our layover at the San Francisco International Airport had us requiring a night of accommodation in order to get from Canada to Mexico. Being regular consumers of the Marriott brand, we ended up with a choice between the Westin San Francisco International Airport and the aLoft San Francisco Airport. Thanks to a nearly equal rate, we ended up at the Westin San Francisco. Despite it being an older hotel, we were pretty satisfied with our experience and would return again if we found ourselves back in San Francisco near the airport.
This post is one chapter on our trip to Mexico City, Mexico and Easter Island, Chile. This trip was enhanced through Alaska Mileage Plan and through Marriott Bonvoy Elite Status. For more information on how this trip was booked, please see our trip introduction here. For other parts of the trip, please see this index.
Read More from This Trip
- Trip Introduction: Easter Island, Chile via LATAM Business Class and Alaska Airlines First Class
- Alaska Airlines Premium Class: Seattle – San Francisco
- The Westin San Francisco Airport, San Francisco, USA
- Alaska Airlines First Class: San Francisco – Mexico City
- The W Mexico City, Mexico
- Pujol Restaurant, Mexico City
- Quintonil Restaurant, Mexico City
- Hop On Hop Off Sightseeing in Mexico City
- Iberia One World Business Lounge, Mexico City
- LATAM Business Class: Mexico City – Santiago
- LATAM Business Class: Santiago – Easter Island
- The Taura’a Hotel, Hanga Roa, Easter Island, Chile
- The Coastline of Hanga Roa, Easter Island, Chile
- Driving to Ahu Tonjariki, Anakena, Easter Island, Chile
- The Megaliths of the South Coast of Easter Island, Chile
- Under the Giants at the Rano Raraku Quarry, Easter Island, Chile
- A Journey of Legends at Orongo Crater, Anakena and Puna Pau, Easter Island, Chile
- LATAM Business Class: Easter Island – Santiago
- LATAM VIP One World Business Class Lounge: Santiago International
- LATAM Business Class: Santiago – Mexico City
- Alaska Airlines First Class: Mexico City – San Francisco
- Virgin America: San Francisco – Seattle
Review: The Westin San Francisco Airport, California, United States of America
Booking the Westin San Francisco Airport:
We were originally booked in at the Aloft San Francisco Airport right next door. Shortly before our stay, we changed over to the Westin to get the full buffet breakfast typically offered for Marriott Bonvoy (at the time – Starwood Preferred Guest) Platinums. We booked at the time on SPG Hot Escapes on a fully pre-paid rate at $135 USD at about the 5 week mark.
Marriott Bonvoy Redemption Opportunties:
The hotel is currently in the Marriott Bonvoy loyalty program as a Category 6 hotel. I personally find this a bit steep of a category for a standard airport hotel but it is commiserate with the Aloft San Francisco next door which, as a more basic hotel, is a Category 5.
At the Westin San Francisco, rooms are available for between a low of 40,000 to a high of 60,000 points per night with a standard rate of 50,000 points per night. I find this to be a little steep for what you get at this particular property, even though it is a full service hotel.
If you value Marriott Bonvoy points at $0.005 a point like I do, you’d be better off redeeming points if your paid rate was more expensive than $250 USD.
I had a bunch of expiring Marriott Bonvoy Suite Night Awards so I applied one and it cleared at the 5 day mark into an Executive Suite non smoking. It was not the best use of a Suite Night Award but it was better than letting it expire unused outright.
Getting to the Westin San Francisco:
We took the bus over to the hotel. The hotel is located in the first bank of hotel along a light industrial area adjacent to the San Francisco International Airport. The hotel doesn’t offer the convenience of being immediately attached to the airport, but it was otherwise pretty close to it.
It was a quick 15 minute ride on an “on demand” bus that we called for a pick up. It was also shared with the aLoft San Francisco next door.
It was a pleasant hotel lobby in terms of an airport hotel. Typically, airport hotels are filled with people coming and going at all hours in cramped lobbies and compact spaces. On our visit, it was not too busy and still had a sense of ambiance as a result of it’s quieter nature and larger roomy lobby areas.
There were communal work spaces available, which are always appreciated when working on the road.
The Room: An Executive Suite, 1 King, Sofa Bed
There was no line at hotel check in and we were assigned to room #641. As a result of using a Marriott Bonvoy Suite Night Award courtesy of Marriott Bonvoy Platinum status, we ended up with an Executive Suite. The Executive Suite is the highest available room configuration at this particular property.
The Executive Suite was tastefully furnished with two separate living and sleeping areas. Starting off with the sleeping area, it was spacious and in the usual Westin greys and neutral browns.
MrsWT73 (in the mirror) still has a sense of humor after two flights and it being past midnight with an early wake up the next day.
We had a bit of a bad draw with the room assignment; probably thanks to our midnight arrival. It seems the Executive Suites are in the middle of the hotel. We are the green dot in the middle with half the room facing another room without windows. As we discovered, the living space area contained no windows and was a dark enclosed room attired in greys.
The Living Room:
In terms of the living area of the Executive Suite, there was a sectional couch which offered ample space to relax or rest. The only oddity was with the two occasional styled coffee tables. While they were fashionable, they weren’t all too functional.
The room had a small dining area for two. The dining area was tucked away in a bit of a dark corner and without an overhead light, it was a bit of a dark experience.
A Room with a view? Not so much. We didn’t complain thanks to the short stay. We’d save the effort for stays that really matter. At least there were bright light into this bedroom space.
The shower was the typical Westin Rain Shower variety. The bathroom was nicely equipped and can be expected for a Westin bathroom.
Food and Beverage:
Grill and Vine Restaurant
The full service hotel offers the Grill and Vine Restaurant immediately on site. This is a good thing as there isn’t much directly around the hotel in terms of independent eating choices.
On the next morning, we opted for the included Marriott Bonvoy Platinum breakfast benefit. During the time of our visit under the Starwood Preferred Guest program, it was a full buffet breakfast at the Grill and Vine restaurant. It was reasonable and included the usual shooter style Westin fruit smoothies. There was a reasonable selection of full buffet items on grill valued at $29 USD. There was no egg station but scrambled eggs were available, which were more than satisfactory.
The Indoor Pool:
There was a hotel pool in a reasonably nice atrium which we did not get the chance to use.
It also seemed like there was a running trial outside of the property (across the roadway) that fronted the water. This would be a great choice for those that were hoping for a little outdoor exercise.
We hopped the free shuttle back to the airport after breakfast.
I am happy to report that everything with our stay worked as promised and it was a hassle free experience.
The Bottom Line: The Westin San Francisco Airport
All in all, the Westin San Francisco Airport was a reasonable night’s stay for a short layover. It was reasonably priced and at the rate we paid, we couldn’t really go wrong. Given the high category rate, I would probably look for a cash rate here as opposed to redeeming points. I don’t think I would stay here as an alternative to staying in San Francisco proper for a longer leisure or business stay, but it was handy and convenient to the airport which was all we needed for the night. The free shuttle helped as well.