Wednesday, August 17, 2011

San Francisco 49er Football Season is Just Around the Corner!

The Chancellor Hotel on Union Square has the BEST 49er Package!

It is hard to believe that this Saturday is the first pre-season home game and the regular season home opener is on September 11th - less than a month away now. Go Niners! I hope we don't have to go to Santa Clara to see them some day. See them while you can in San Francisco!

The best news is that we have the best 49er football package going. We have great seats for our football package right down by the field almost on the 50 yard line about 15 rows from the field. The seats are Lower Box 16, Row O, Seats 23 & 24. Check it out:

Packages are still available. If you want to see football the way it was meant to be seen, check out our package:


Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Union Square Park Public Right of Way Improvements Project

I wanted to pass on this information from the Union Square Business Improvement District with some of my pictures and other bits of information:

Beginning Monday, August 15, 2011 the Department of Public Works (DPW) and the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency (SFMTA) will be making improvements to Union Square Park to provide accessible routes on the sidewalks and street crossings to transit stops that serve Union Square Park. Among the improvements planned are:

· Removal of the corner pedestrian islands which are not large enough for safe pedestrian refuge and cannot be enlarged due to traffic lanes

· Construction of sidewalk bulb-outs at each corner to shorten pedestrian crossings

· Removal of right-turn-only lanes; right turns will be allowed from the adjacent lane

· Construction of 2 curb ramps at each corner

· Relocation of the traffic signal poles from the pedestrian islands to the sidewalk bulb-outs

· Widening of the transit islands to 8 feet and construction of proper access ramps

· Realignment of crosswalks for new corner configurations with “Scramble” pedestrian signals; all vehicles stop to allow multi-directional pedestrian crossings

· Installation of appropriate signage and crosswalk painting

It also looks like they will be relocating the Cable Car pick up from the island on Powell at Post Street. I noticed the line was much longer at Powell and Sutter Streets now.

This project will be constructed in several phases as follows:

· Phase 1 will begin at the Post and Powell corner of Union Square Park. It will last 10 weeks. The work hours will be:

- Monday – Friday, 8:30 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. and night hours of 6:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m.

- During this phase of construction the MUNI bus stop at Post and Powell will be temporarily relocated further eastward to Post near Stockton
- During construction hours, northbound traffic on Powell between Geary and Post will be restricted to one track-lane for all vehicles. The right-turn lane at Powell and Post will be closed entirely. Right turns will be permitted from the left cable-car track lane
- Motorists are urged to use alternative routes to avoid delays

Wednesday, August 10, 2011 is a joke - Bed Bug Reports are very Inaccurate

We just had a guest call us about information they read on Please, please, please, do not believe everything you read on the internet! Especially when you only get half of the information. Any respectable review site, such as TripAdvisor, will have a mechanism for posting a response to reviews. The proper way the system works is that people can post whatever they want and hotels can post a response. That is how one makes an informed decision - getting both sides of the story., on the other hand, has "spiders" that pull information from other sites and regurgitates it on their own site. They have no original content, qualification method or system to provide both sides.

For example...
When you look at the Chancellor Hotel listing on, a big warning header in bold red type shows up that says:
WARNING: Bed Bugs Reported
1 unconfirmed report in the last 12 months. Before booking, call the hotel and inquire about this incident.

When you click through, it indicates two reports, but they are from the same guest review copied off of TripAdvisor.

Regardless, the whole thing is not true! It was one posting by a guest that was trying to extort us for a free stay. They demanded a free stay or else they would post bed bug reports about us on the internet. As you will read in their execution of their threat, we tore the room apart in front of them and NOTHING WAS FOUND. Here is what they posted:

Reviewed February 17, 2011
So we gave this hotel every chance to redeem themselves. When we approached the front desk about bed bug bites that appeared after a single night's stay it was clear that it was not the first time they had dealt with this problem. They turned the room upside down, and gave us another room for the evening....we had no choice but to stay there. When we looked at the bed bug website - the financial district in San Fran basically had one big red blotch over it and seemingly every hotel had dealt with it. As for this place the higher level front desk person had close to zero customer service skills, and the manager never came to speak with us. I would absolutely tell anyone looking for a hotel in San Francisco to carefully research the area and the specific hotel. We had to dry clean or wash everything in hot water when we got home - vacuum all bags and put as much as possible in a hot was a nightmare. Plus bites took a couple of weeks to heal. We choose this hotel for the location and price...but got what we paid for....especially bad service.

Here is my response that is posted with it:
This is an example of one of the real flaws with review sites. However, I trust that a vast majority of people that use TripAdvisor see right through this.This is absolutely untrue.These folks reported "bed bugs" the evening of their second day after coming back and being out all day. Not when they were sleeping. We immediately went to the room to check things. As they to mention, we stripped the room in front of them and FOUND NOTHING. If there was something, we would have found it. The lady has some red bumps on her. We don't know where they came from, but it wasn't from bed bugs at the Chancellor Hotel. They indicated they would be more comfortable if we moved them to another room for the night. We did. The next day we re-checked the room and found nothing. Just in the interest of goodwill, we offered one night refund. I didn't think that was fair to us, but if it would make them happy, I was willing to do it. However, when they tried to bully and threaten us demanding a full refund or they would post bad reviews all over the Internet, we said no. We will always do what is right and fair, but we will not be bullied and extorted. We have found bed bugs at the hotel. We have an extensive bed bug program and were recognized in the New York Times as a best practice business. You can Google it. If there had been bed bugs, this would not have been posted because we would have done everything possible to make the guest happy and rectify any issues. A hotel can not stop bed bugs from being introduced to their property, but they can do everything possible to deal with them and we do.
Here is a link to the New York Times Article:

Other issues that make me question the content of you are looking at a hotel listing, they attach a list below that says "better quality hotel..." If the hotels have the same star rating, how do they label it as "better" than another hotel?

They have a box on the site that says:
Increased Risk of Bed Bugs in San Francisco Hotels

What? Where did they come up with that?
They have no real evidence to make a claim like that. That is outrageous!

After looking through several listings and pages of information, I find is a waste of time and very unreliable. Good luck...its a jungle out there.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Chancellor Hotel Receives the TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence for 2011

We are very proud to have received the TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence for 2011.

As an independent, family owned and operated hotel, our representation on TripAdvisor is very important to us. We don't have brand advertising or a corporate office to help us. We compete with some big companies and large groups of hotels with a lot of resources that we don't have. Our ranking of #9 in San Francisco is quite an accomplishment.

TripAdvisor is an information resource that a huge amount of the travelling public uses to make their decisions on where to stay when visiting a particular city.

Unfortunately, there are still too many people that book first and look at TripAdvisor later. Some do it because of blind bidding sites like Priceline and others do it because they made a bad decision.
They learn about or want to just use TripAdvisor after the fact so they can exact revenge by slamming the hotel with a bad review.

There are good and bad aspects to the new world of online reviews. One of the bad things is that anyone can write whatever they want - regardless of the accuracy or truth. Most people can see right through that, but it still hurts the rating and that is unfair.

I think when people make a bad decision for their hotel stay, that is their fault, not the hotel's fault. People need to take responsibility for their decisions. As an example that hits close to home...When someone books a hotel without air conditioning or that has small rooms and then they knock the hotel for it in a review, that is unfair. That is the way the hotel is, it was that way when they booked and it was that way when they stayed. Unless there is some misrepresentation, I think it is unfair to knock the hotel for what it is. Now, if the service was bad or things are not working, that is wrong and the hotel should be held accountable.

What I just don't understand is that nearly every review of the Chancellor mentions small rooms, yet people still stay and complain about it. If someone does the slightest amount of looking online about us, they will learn about the rooms and shortcomings. If someone books on a blind bidding site, and everything works and the service is good, they have no right to score it low. They may have not liked it, but they didn't choose it - a computer did. They got the price they wanted and the best hotel that was available on that system - they should be happy or should not complain.

One of the good things about TripAdvisor is that we can post a response. Although that gets me in trouble sometimes, I think there are two sides to every story, and when people are using TripAdvisor to make their decisions on which hotel to choose, I want to make sure they have all the information. My responses are honest, direct and real. Not the typical corporate speak you will find from most of the other hotels. Part of my strategy in my responses is to add a little humor and filter out the people that are offended. If you are offended by my response, you are probably not the type of guest that will appreciate and enjoy the Chancellor Hotel. Some past guest reviews have said that people need to be easy going and not uptight to enjoy the hotel. I agree. A vast majority of people that I hear from tell me that they appreciate my responses and enjoy reading them. The people that tell me I offend them, etc., we don't really want them as guests anyways - not because they are bad people or anything, they most likely wouldn't enjoy the hotel. That is okay and completely understandable. It takes a certain type of person to appreciate and enjoy staying at a historic, boutique hotel and we are all better off when we make the right match. Hopefully, my responses help people make the right decision, so I can take the heat.