Built in 1883, the Parsonage is a Victorian time capsule and historic landmark in the Lower Haight. Owners Joan Hull and John Phillips lived in the mansion for 32 years before converting it to a bed and breakfast more than a decade ago. The self-described “neurotically hospitable” couple takes a hands-on approach to running the inn. From checking in guests to preparing breakfast, they take care of nearly everything.
Sticking with the historical theme, the five guestrooms are named after such famous female San Franciscans as Lily Coit and Alma Spreckles. All accommodations feature a private bathroom with a marble shower and a handcrafted made-in-San-Francisco mattress. Hull and Phillips carefully curated the European and American antiques that decorate the residence’s two parlors and library, which retain their original 19th-century fireplaces. Thoughtful touches like fresh flowers, goose-down comforters, and locally sourced breakfast ingredients make the Parsonage feel more like a cozy home than an inn.
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The Parsonage sits amid some of San Francisco’s hottest dining neighborhoods. Stop for a slice of thick toast at The Mill or a bite at Nopa and then walk to Alamo Square, where you can see the famous Painted Ladies in all their glory. Hayes Valley is home to trendy boutiques and the widely adored Smitten Ice Cream. Nearby you can find inexpensive produce at the Heart of the City Farmers' Market in front of City Hall on Sundays and Wednesdays. During a break from your food tour, catch a performance at Davies Symphony Hall or the War Memorial Opera House.
Need to Know
Rooms: 5 rooms. From $240 (two-night minimum stay). Check-in: 2 p.m.; check-out: noon. (Times are flexible.) Dining options:The Parsonage serves breakfast, included in the daily rate, each morning in the dining room. A generous spread of fresh fruit, juice, yogurt, granola, locally roasted coffee, and tea is paired with a hot entrée like sourdough waffles, quiche, or chèvre soufflé. There’s even bread from San Francisco’s lauded Tartine Bakery. As you eat and sip, admire the frescoes of Northern Italy that decorate the walls. Spa and gym details:The inn doesn’t have a spa or gym.
Who's it for: History buffs and foodie couples seeking a romantic getaway with Victorian charm. Our favorite rooms: The largest, most glamorous room, Alma Spreckles is the only one with a four-poster bed and a claw-foot tub. It also boasts a working fireplace and a sky-lit shower. At the back of the house, the Julia Morgan and the Alice Lagan rooms look out to City Hall and get plenty of natural light. Browse with a nightcap: You’ll always find chocolate, brandy, port, and sherry in the parlor. Pour a glass of your favorite spirit and curl up with something from the inn’s extensive library. You’ll find San Francisco guides as well as history, poetry, art, and biographical books.