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The Event Planner's Guide to San Francisco Venues

Amanda Pinzon |

San Francisco California skyline buildingsDon’t be fooled by this city’s modest size, San Francisco is full of amazing options for planners and visitors alike. Here you’ll find convenience, unique culture and an exciting, forward-thinking spirit. There are great venues all over the city, whether you’re looking for a space with great view, historic elegance or modern charisma. There is no shortage of dining and entertainment options, all of which are easily accessible thanks to the city’s metro and bus system. With Silicon Valley just a train ride away, the Bay Area brings together the best of the California’s charm and innovative energy. Check out the top venues for your next event, as well as our top things to do in The City by the Bay.

The Top 10 San Francisco Venues Planners Should Consider

1. The Moscone Center

This architectural marvel boasts over 900,000 sq. ft. of meeting and exhibit space right in the heart of the city. Nearby you’ll find some of San Francisco’s top hotels, restaurants and shopping areas. Thanks to a recent expansion, this convention center is more committed than ever to sustainability, convenience and world-class service.

The Moscone Center Venue - San Francisco, California Photo Credit: The Moscone Center

2. Grand Hyatt San Francisco

There is no shortage of hotels around Union Square, but the Grand Hyatt offers a great variety of event spaces along with over 600 guest rooms. Here you’ll find well-appointed conference rooms and a customizable ballroom capable of seating 1,000 guests. Be sure to consider the additional spaces on the 36th floor, all featuring spectacular panoramic views.

Grand Hyatt Venue - San Francisco, California Photo Credit: Grand Hyatt San Francisco

3. The San Francisco Mint 

Known locally as “The Granite Lady,” this iconic building was built in 1874 and is a designated National Historic Landmark. The Old Mint has over 50,000 sq. ft. of event space, including multiple ballrooms. Conveniently situated near the Moscone Center, this venue will instantly transport your guests to San Francisco’s golden past.

The Mint Venue - San Francisco, California Photo Credit: The San Francisco Mint

4. Hotel Vitale

Located right on the waterfront, this boutique hotel offers unparalleled views of Oakland Bay and the Bay Bridge. Impress attendees with a variety of elegant indoor and outdoor event spaces alongside luxurious amenities. With an onsite restaurant, penthouse spa, and 200 plush guest rooms, a business trip can become an impromptu vacation.

Hotel Vitale Venue - San Francisco, California Photo Credit: Hotel Vitale

5. The Masonic

A Nob Hill icon with spectacular city views, the Masonic offers a variety of exciting venues for engagements big and small. The recently renovated auditorium is over 40,000 sq. ft. of highly versatile event space. Thanks to its world-class light and sound, customizable menus and full-service event production, it’s no wonder the Masonic hosts some of the most exciting events in town.

The Masonic Venue - San Francisco, California Photo Credit: The Masonic 

6. Cavallo Point

This former U.S. Army post now boasts an expansive resort with a unique blend of historical charm and modern convenience along with fabulous amenities. This venue features a variety of flexible indoor and outdoor event spaces as well as elegantly appointed rooms. Although it is located just across the Golden Gate Bridge, guests will feel worlds away from the hustle and bustle of the San Francisco.

Cavallo Point Venue - San Francisco, California Photo Credit: Cavallo Point

7. 111 Minna Gallery

Located just a few blocks from the Moscone Center, this art gallery is the definition of “industrial chic.” The dynamic venue features 4,700 sq. ft of open space, floor to ceiling windows and original hardwood floors. Capable of hosting live music, film screenings and featuring a rotating art exhibit, this gallery is full of possibility.

111 Minna Gallery Venue - San Francisco, California Photo Credit: 111 Minna Gallery

8. Pier 48

This vintage waterfront warehouse boasts 120,000 sq. ft. of flexible indoor and outdoor space, and great views of the Bay Bridge. Whether you’re interested in hosting a formal dinner, casual reception or expansive convention, this venue can handle it. Thanks to the management of Giants Enterprises, you’ll be working alongside an award-winning organization to bring your event to life.

Pier 48 Venue - San Francisco, California Photo Credit: Pier 48

9. The Regency Center

Originally built in 1909, this recently restored building is an architectural masterpiece. This San Francisco landmark is capable of hosting up to 2,000 guests throughout its three floors of unique event space. The Regency also provides a comprehensive list of preferred vendors and hotel partners to make your event a great experience from beginning to end.

The Regency Center Venue - San Francisco, California Photo Credit: the Regency Center

10. Fort Mason Center for the Arts Culture

This 13-acre former Army base features 12 event spaces full of historic charm and modern amenities. From theaters to open galleries to ballrooms, planners have plenty of options no matter the event. Located on the waterfront, Fort Mason boasts spectacular views of the Golden Gate Bridge and is just a short walk away from iconic Fisherman’s Wharf.

 

Fort Mason Center for Arts & Culture Venue - San Francisco, California Photo Credit: Fort Mason Center for Arts & Culture

Top Things to Do in The City by the Bay

1. Uniquely San Francisco

Part architectural gem, part artisan food court, the Ferry Building Marketplace is the best place to get a taste of the Bay Area’s fabulous cuisine. Looking for great cultural institutions? Check out SFMOMA, the Museum of the African Diaspora or the Contemporary Jewish Museum. From nearby Union Square, you can head towards the city’s iconic Chinatown. Don’t forget to take a ride on one of San Francisco’s famous cable cars!

SFMOMAPhoto Credit: SFMOMA

2. Golden Gate Park

This enormous park is home to many unique sites including Dutch windmills, a log cabin and the Japanese Tea Garden. The park is also home to institutions like the California Academy of Science, where visitors can check out an indoor rainforest, an aquarium and a planetarium all under one roof. For those looking to see artistic wonders, head to the de Young Museum. Here you’ll find amazing collections of American, African and Oceanic art as well as a variety of special exhibitions.

Golden Gate ParkPhoto Credit: Golden Gate Park

3. Beyond the City

Some of California’s most iconic destinations are within two hours of downtown San Francisco. Consider sending guests on day trip to Napa Valley to sample the region's famous wines. Or take guests for a scenic ride down the coast to Monterey where they’ll find an aquarium and great shopping and dining options along historic Cannery Row. Last but not least, Alcatraz is a must-see for any visitor. Guests are sure to enjoy the boat ride to the island and learning about this infamous San Francisco icon.

Napa ValleyPhoto Credit: Napa Valley 

 

The Top 100 Meeting and Event Venues in the United States

This Post was Written by Amanda Pinzon

Amanda is a Aventri summer intern.

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