The Buchanan - A Kimpton Hotel
How has this hotel rated in the past?
- Shuttle bus service
- Free High-Speed Internet
- Breakfast Available
- Refrigerator in room
- Multilingual staff
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Historical Traveler Reviews The Buchanan - A Kimpton Hotel San Francisco
Enoyed the tomo
Statyed at the Hotel Tomo 17-20 Aug 2007. Hotel was exactly as described on it's web site. Room and bathroom was spotless! King size bed comfortable and flat screen tv was a nice touch. Location in Japantown was quiet and with a bus stop right across the street everything was readily accessible. Only problem was on the second night there was no hot water, we notified the front desk and it was fixed by the next morning. Would defintely stay again and would recommend this to others.
Loved the Tomo
I don't usually take the time to write hotel reviews, but I wanted to share my recent experience at the Hotel Tomo. My wife, myself and our 2 year old daughter stayed at the Tomo for 2 nights in August, and we thought the service was very thoughtful and that our entire hotel experience was extremely fun and different from other hotels. The staff went out of their way to make us feel like welcome, including giving us a variety of helpful restaurant recommendations. Also, the rooms were cool, funky, and fun. I would recommend this hotel highly.
Where's the manager?
I am easygoing and helpful by nature and was happy until the second day when the shortcomings began to wear on me. Thus this list: What I would do if I managed the Hotel Tomo?
1. Train the front desk staff on hospitality. Hire someone who has an ear for foreign speakers and has personality to greet and address problems immediately. So when a man from India asks the staff from Japan if buses are reliable, he doesn't stare back in a stupor and I have to step off the elevator to translate and explain that buses in San Francisco are not like buses in India, that they are reliable, and which ones go downtown. That tour group spent more time waiting for taxis...when buses could have got them to town easily..And don't the rest of us clientele know it! from their entourages crowding into the lobby and being very vocal about their unhappiness.
Put a direct line in lobby to taxi company accessible to people with bus directions and suggestions map to the side so staff doesn't have to deal with impatient clientele?
2. Make the internet access free and have a printer there so boarding passes can be printed for flights. Two days in a row the internet 20 minute cards were unavailable just 16 dollar one hour passes. So I finally buy one and find there is no printer. Not until I get directions to Kinkos does the man at the front desk ask if I need to print something. I step back off the elevator, irritated at paying 16 dollars for something useless, and reply "my boarding passes" Then he says non chalantly, well I can do that for you. Thanks for finally putting out some "you paid a lot to stay here so we''ll take care of your needs." hospitality. Yes, I could have asked directly but why do I have to? Front desk should smile, be helpful, ask questions as to needs, and be overstaffed for any problems or needs that arise. I should have not been charged for the internet card which was obviously useless to me.
Earlier, I overheard one staff member say she couldn't get sugar up to a room after a second request as she was the only staff at desk. Why?
3 Recommend to clientele that the restaurant staff next door at MUMs for the breakfasts are rude, overwhelmed, and incompetent. I left 2 dollars for the coffee after fifteen minutes of being ignored. I asked someone how the dinner was that night and he said average food but fun atmosphere for dinner. Have coupons to the wonderful Japantown bakery in the mall across the street for a continental breakfast.
4. Place cards for the maids that the clientele can state whether they want the sheets changed like they do in Victoria, Canada. The hotel should be more environmentally helpful. We were there for two nights, a waste of water to change sheets. Maids look overwhelmed. Maids should reflect calm and rest.
5. Have two thick pillows, and two thinner pillows on beds. Less neck ache. Pretty up the front entrance with vibrant exotic flower pots. If you are a theme hotel, follow through on it. Not plastic chairs and cigarette ashtrays. Provide a courtyard in back for smoking guests if that is your courtyard. Have front desk be hip urban edgy Japanese young men and women with spiked hair, blue and orange dyes, and leather coats and concierges be men and women with kimonos. I mean, why not play up the theme and make it more fun?
6. Hotel handyman should not dis Indian clientele to me. I know they were loud, animated, and demanding. But extra staff should have been brought on to accommodate the tough crowd they proved to be. They irritated the heck out of me also but two concierges, rather than the front desk could have been assigned to them and run ragged while the rest of the staff catered to everyone else.
7 Make clear on hotel website that only special rooms have WII.
8. Have parking attendant at entrance of garage at all times addressing upset clientele regarding lack of parking with suggestions, directions, and perhaps valet services. Who wants to travel 8 hours and have to deal with yet another complication just as one arrives. I parked my car early and left it there, busing and walking everywhere. But anyone who came late and had not researched the hotel were very testy indeed.
9. It was the weekend going into the Japanese events across the street. It's a Japanese theme hotel. Promote it! I could have seen the live stage from my room had I stayed the weekend. Get the dates on the website and I would have booked into the weekend.
10. Put something to slow down the room doors so they don't slam! Yikes! Very disconcerting. Leave Tamoe Ame in each room to pick up guests blood sugar upon arrival and make them feel special.
11. Lower room rates until Hotel is running smoothly. I of course didn't get the ten per cent off as promised on the website. So here, this is another 2 cents from me.
12. Promote the nice ladies at Trio nails across the street for manicures and massgaes. They do a good job for a great price and it is clean. Kabuki spa? No explanation as to rates. Provide a detailed list with prices and services and how close exactly is it? I would have gone for a massage but lack of description made me wary that it was a tourist trap.
Once these issues are addressed, then the art, the hipness, the location, the cleanliness, the price will be all palatable. Until then, I'll go back to the comforting Hotel Drisco. Better to be staid and well taken care of than hip and neglected.
Good luck Hotel Tomo. I liked you but the price was too high for the services. It wasn't a nightmare; but it was stressful to observe. I wish you well.
Hotel Tomo was a good value
Stayed at the hotel for 4 nights. Rooms were newly renovated, clean, and nice size. Hotel staff was very helpful. Parking was not the most convenient as the garage is small and does not have enough spaces...you have to park as a satellite lot a few blocks away....just park there early. The Mums restaurant in the hotel has good Shabu Shabu, but don't bother going there for breakfast
Ok hotel but bad parking
We just returned from a 2 night stay at this hotel. I chose this hotel for it's location and parking. We, two sisters, were attending a concert both nights and would be returning late in the evening. In all the ads for the hotel it says on site parking. When we arrived we were able to park in the underground lot, no problem. But, upon our return that evening the parking lot was blocked. I had to double park, run inside and ask what was up, they said the on site parking was very small so you had to go to another lot 2 blocks away! And I must add, the desk clerk was very rude about the whole thing. We did not appreciate having to walk through unfamiliar territory at 11 pm at night! It was not a comfortable situation. They have very lax security.
My complaints fell upon deaf ears, they did not care. I will not stay at this hotel again. The hotel itself was just okay, we did not like the decor, felt like you were in a child's room with silly drawings on the wall and painted furniture. Bedding was okay, room was pretty clean. They did have computers in the lobby and wifi which I couldn't get to work in the rooms, probably my fault. TV didn't have many channels, just basics. Toilet didn't want to work right, needed a light touch. Shower was okay. Had breakfast the last day in the restaurant and it was fine, nothing special. If you didn't care about the parking it would be an okay place.
A Fantastic Discovery
We just spent 5 days in San Francisco, at the Best Western Hotel Tomo, and were extremely pleased with all aspects of our stay. Situated right at the edge of Japantown, which afforded an abundance of dining and shopping opportunities.
Although it is a bit out of the way, still it is convenient, because you could very easily catch one of 3 local buses, which take you right to Union Square, where you can catch the famed cable cars to wherever you want to go.
The staff were all very friendly, helpful and accomodating. There was a slight mixup on our reservation, but Gill and Lindsay were right on top of things, and got it straightened out immediately ! The rooms are roomy and very nicely decorated in J-Pop style...not really our thing, but not overpowering at all. We would recommend this hotel very highly to anyone wishing to be in a quiet neighborhood, away from all the rat-race, but yet close enough to all the attractions that SF has to offer.
Really cool hotel
We stayed one night in this hotel because of its location near UCSF. We were happily surprised by the size of the room, by the friendliness of the staff, by everything! It was great. It's located right near Japantown - you might need a car or take public transportation to go places. Buses run great in SF. I would highly recommend this hotel! I would recommend this hotel to friends/family who need to stay in the city. Great find! Great deal!
J-pop gem in lower pacific heights/ japantown.
whatever you thought you knew about this hotel has all changed within the last few weeks. previously known as the miyako inn the hotel tomo is about as hip & cool a hotel you'll find in san francisco. first of all the neighborhood is clean & safe, void of all the panhandlers that seems permiate union square & the tourist trappings of fisherman's wharf. the restaurants in the area are great, r e a l japanese food in japantown & many other fine places to dine & shop at on fillmore street. now the transformation of the hotel is the true highlight. japanese pop-culture is the theme and it is tastefully stated in both the lobby and hotel rooms. the furniture is fun, funky & cheerful but the anime type wallpaper is quite the focal point (WOW). flat screen tv, ipod stereo, wi-fi are also a nice touches and most of all the price is about a third of what you'd pay for downtown. after enjoying a wonderful & very quiet stay here in may 2007 ( while repairs were made in my apartment ) i don't mind spreading the good word to tourists and the like. i might not have a need to stay at a hotel in san francisco anytime soon but i finally found somewhere for my friends & family to stay at when visiting me. i know they'll be more than comfortable at the hotel tomo.
TripAdvisor Reviews The Buchanan - A Kimpton Hotel San Francisco
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