Argonaut Hotel to open at wharf

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SAN FRANCISCO -- Even well-established destinations need fresh product, and with the upcoming opening of the Argonaut Hotel, Fisherman's Wharf has something new to boast about.

Agents now can book their clients into the 252-room boutique property set to open in August in the San Francisco Maritime National Historical Park.

In an effort to re-create the waterfront lifestyle of the early 20th century, Kimpton Hotel and Restaurant Group took over the former Haslett Warehouse, which was built between 1907 and 1909, and transformed it into a hotel.

From the outside, "it doesn't look like a hotel," said general manager Barry Pollard. And therein lies its beauty -- and selling point.

The four-story timber and brick building has views of the Golden Gate Bridge, Alcatraz, Coit Tower and San Francisco Bay.

Designed to resemble a ship, public areas have wooden plank floors and portholes in the lobby walls.

Throughout the building, original Douglas fir beams are exposed, and some of the warehouse's steel doors were left to lend a sense of authenticity.

Guest rooms will have red brick walls, white-washed wood furniture, porthole mirrors and navy blue carpets with gold stars. Suites will feature telescopes to watch ships sail by.

Rooms average 350 square feet. Each of the 13 suites measures 900 square feet and can be configured for up to three bedrooms. Some rooms have Jacuzzi tubs, and more than half of the rooms have views (the interior rooms do not).

Guests can request "tall" rooms with extra-long beds.

The hotel's first floor will provide a gateway to exploring the city. A new San Francisco Maritime National Historical Park visitors center and 10,000 square-foot interactive museum featuring the history of the waterfront will be stationed there to assist visitors in their excursions beyond the hotel. (It's one block to Ghiradelli Square.)

The Argonaut will have a 1,500-square-foot exercise room; 7,100 square feet of meetings space; a fax, copier, DVD and CD players, 27-inch flat screen television and free high-speed Internet access in every room; and wireless access in meetings spaces.

Introductory room rates range from $149 to $359 for a deluxe guest room and $249 to $499 for a suite.

For more information, call (866) 415-0704 or visit www.argonauthotel.com.

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