Some vaccinated Americans, though, have already been told to mask up again.
Amid a rise in COVID-19 cases fueled by the Delta variant, at least six cities have issued new mask guidance in the last few weeks. Los Angeles and St. Louis have instated official mask mandates for all residents, while New Orleans, Philadelphia, San Francisco, and Seattle have recommended masks.
Some cities have also reissued mask mandates for specific indoor settings. Clark County, Nevada – which includes Las Vegas – began requiring masks in court facilities last week. Public schools in Atlanta, Chicago, and New York City will require students and staff to wear masks this school year, regardless of their vaccination status. And in Hawaii, the government is waiting until more residents are vaccinated before lifting its indoor mask mandate.
Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, told Fox News that these local mask requirements are “quite understandable” given Delta’s prevalence in the US.
CDC Director Rochelle Walensky said on Tuesday that vaccinated people infected with Delta may be contagious and spread the virus to others. Data on previous variants indicated that vaccinated people were less likely to transmit the virus than unvaccinated people.
At least 6 cities have issued new mask guidance
The San Francisco Bay Area was among the first places to buck the no-mask trend in July. Several Bay Area counties, including San Francisco County, began recommending masks for all people – vaccinated or not – in indoor spaces like theaters, grocery stores, and retail stores starting July 16. In nearby San Mateo County, masks are now required, even for fully vaccinated people, inside county offices, clinics, and public facilities.
Los Angeles County also reinstated its indoor mask mandate on July 18 following a sharp uptick in cases. Average daily cases more than doubled there in the first two weeks of July, then tripled by the third week.
In New Orleans, health officials issued a “mask advisory” instead of a mandate. The city’s “inadequate vaccination rate” was part of the reason for that rule, they said. New Orleans has the second-highest vaccination rate in Louisiana – around 57% of residents have received at least one dose – but cases have still increased 10-fold there since the start of July.
On Thursday, Philadelphia also “strongly recommended” that all residents wear masks inside public places. James Garrow, a spokesperson for the city’s health department, told The Philadelphia Inquirer that officials were concerned about an uptick in COVID-19 hospitalizations among the city’s unvaccinated children.
King County, Washington, which includes Seattle, followed suit with a similar recommendation on Friday. Health officials now advise that all residents ages 5 and up wear masks in indoor public settings – despite the fact that King County is one of the most vaccinated counties in the US. (Around 72% of residents have received at least one dose.)
“This extra layer of protection will help us all stay safer, including those who are unvaccinated, such as the 300,000 children in King County who aren’t able to get vaccinated yet, and the many thousands of people who have immune systems that are weakened or suppressed,” the county said in a statement.
St. Louis County, Missouri, took a firmer stance on Monday by requiring vaccinated people ages 5 and older wear masks on public transportation and in all indoor public spaces. The mandate doesn’t apply to people eating or drinking in restaurants or bars, though.
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San Francisco is an expensive city – but it has a surprisingly wide range of affordable hotels.
The city’s budget-friendly hotels have central locations, desirable amenities, and rates under $200.
We found the best places you can stay when budget is your most important factor.
Table of Contents: Masthead Sticky
San Francisco is home to a world-famous skyline, the Golden Gate Bridge, stunning parks, an exciting food and arts scene, and is a major seat of tech. It also happens to be one of the most expensive cities in America.
As such, San Francisco is also, unsurprisingly, home to many expensive hotels. Though don’t let that deter you from visiting. There is an enticing array of cheap properties too. You just need to know where to look.
Some of our top hotel picks in the city effortlessly merge convenience with comfort, clever design details, high-tech touches, and affordable prices.
Browse all the best cheap hotels below, or jump directly to a specific area here:
Yotel has 203 rooms known as “cabins” with a substantial range of options to suit various budgets. Located on Market Street, the location is fantastic to explore the city.
Located within San Francisco’s famous Grant Building (which survived both the 1906 and 1989 earthquakes), the hotel design takes its cues from air travel, with the idea to keep everything close and convenient, such as airline-style self-service check-in kiosks. All cabins (the guest rooms) have smart TVs so you can connect your own devices and stream content, plus there is ample place for charging devices. We like the ability to customize rooms as guests can create their personal vibe through tailored mood lighting and adjustable memory foam beds. The rainfall showers are also a luxe touch.
The hotel is also home to Yotel’s signature Komyuniti Lounge concept, designed with spaces to co-work and socialize.
Cow Hollow Inn and Suites is a centrally located hotel near San Francisco’s quaint Cow Hollow district, which is just over a mile to Fisherman’s Wharf and only slightly farther to Pier 39.
Comfortable and clean, rooms have a well-lit seating and work area with free internet, both wired and wireless. Covered parking is also complimentary, which is a rarity for this city and packs significant added value.
Travelers love the well-maintained and noticeably large (even surprisingly so) rooms here, with coffee and tea-making facilities and large TVs. The location is also a prime one. Walk to the Palace of Fine Arts in 15 minutes, and easily reach many bars, restaurants, and other tourist-friendly attractions in a short walk.
This boutique hotel is located in the heart of Union Square, situated perfectly for sightseeing and business travel alike, with a highly walkable location. All stays are contactless, with a virtual check-in process and a keyless entry system.
The Inn at Union Square San Francisco has 30 hotel rooms and suites, all with high-quality bedding, comfortable pillow-top mattresses, and dark wood furnishings. The decor is sophisticated, with framed wall hangings and elegantly striped wallpaper. Here, you’ll also get high-speed wireless internet, flat screen TVs, and spa-like robes.
Hotel Zeppelin is a Union Square property that serves as a nod to the city’s spirit of rebellion and counterculture and the whole place embraces an avant-garde look and feel.
Starting at about 200 square feet, standard guest rooms have sleek black headboards, John Boos 36-inch work desks, blackout shades, luxurious bath amenities from ROIL, and complimentary high-speed Wi-Fi. Suites include vinyl on vintage turntables for an atmospheric touch.
Dining and drinking options include Rambler restaurant, offering California fare made with locally sourced ingredients, which is located in the space formerly occupied by Wolfgang Puck’s city institution, Postrio. The Mantel Bar is an intimate lounge near the lobby’s fireplace, just right for gathering with groups or a date. An array of formal meeting spaces are also available, ranging up to 4,000 square feet.
Hotel Del Sol is a member of Joie de Vivre, the boutique line from World of Hyatt. It’s a charming, well-appointed stay from a trusted brand with the chance to earn loyalty points, too, and an easy walk to the buzzy bars, shops, and restaurants of the tourist-friendly Marina District.
Once a midcentury modern motor lodge, this hotel has been transformed to offer boutique amenities and service. Guest rooms are spacious, bright, and airy with orange-painted walls that feel like a California beach house, plush beds, and cheerful decor.
Indeed, we’re a fan of the bright and whimsical, modern concept decor such as palm trees, hammocks, and the colorful lounge furnishings that dot the pool area in the courtyard. The affordable price point also includes Wi-Fi, daily breakfast, and fun guest perks such as milk and cookies that are served each afternoon in the lobby.
The 400-room Stanford Court hotel is meant to meet the needs of the digital-age traveler in a city known for tech innovation. A recent multi-million dollar renovation revamped the lobby, cafe, bar, porte-cochere, and fitness center. Look for a new modern color scheme and cool graphics, with design nods to the building’s history.
There’s a high-tech fitness center with Peloton bikes, Hydrow rowing machines, virtual personal training, and floor-to-ceiling windows overlooking the only intersection of San Francisco’s famous cable car lines.
Other amenities include a tech loaner program, digital art installations featuring artwork by local artists, a Nod Hill sleep menu, a lobby lending library stocked with books on California and San Francisco, and a music room with vinyl from local bands and artists.
Entry-level rooms begin at 220 square feet and have 49-inch HD televisions with HDMI and USB Ports, USB outlets, and a mini-fridge.
The Orchard Garden Hotel is an eco-friendly hotel with LEED and Green Seal certifications for environmentally conscious — and budget-minded — travelers.
Located near the Financial District, Union Square shops, and many museums and attractions, Orchard Garden is well-loved for its central location and reasonable pricing that includes breakfast with all room rates. Service feels personalized, offering friendly details such as flexible check-in times, pending availability. Standard rooms start around 230 square feet, and junior suites have about 374 square feet with a separate sofa.
Roots Restaurant is open for breakfast daily, and also hosts meetings and events. Or hit the hotel’s rooftop terrace for views of the famed San Francisco skyline.
Located in the Tenderloin District, the Phoenix is known for being a fun, lively destination especially popular among creatives. It’s a 10 minutes walk from the Bill Graham Civic Auditorium and caters to a musical crowd with a distinctly rock-n-roll atmosphere.
There are only 44 rooms so there is also a strong boutique feel with rooms exuding vintage details like retro phones, midcentury modern furniture, and vibrant graphic artworks. Updated modern conveniences also include 42-inch flat-screen TVs with DirecTV and film channels.
Mostly, Phoenix Hotel is known for its pool scene (when San Francisco’s notoriously chilly weather permits), which I’ve frequented many times with friends. There’s even a mural from a local artist in the pool.
Guests also receive complimentary passes to the Kabuki Springs & Spa on weekdays, which is a San Francisco institution and offers an additional boon in value on top of the already cheap price.
Yes, the state of California fully reopened on June 15, 2021.
Where should I stay when visiting San Francisco?
San Francisco is a seven-by-seven-mile region, so you’ll never be too far from any attraction as the crow flies. Sightseers might want to stay around the Embarcadero, Union Square, or along Market Street, highly walkable locations where public transportation is also abundant and frequent.
Areas like Hayes Valley and North Beach are popular for shops and dining. The Castro is especially desirable for LBGTQ travelers, with a historic, trend-setting, and lively gay community and event calendar.
What should I avoid in San Francisco?
San Francisco has a substantial homelessness problem; there are currently about 8,000 unhoused people living in the small geographic area. Some of the associated issues — drug addiction, and yes excrement on the streets — are well known to locals, but may surprise visitors to a city with so much wealth.
Traffic is also a major problem throughout the San Francisco Bay Area and locals take pains to avoid rush-hour traffic patterns and event traffic such as related to ballgames and parades.
How much does it cost to stay at a hotel in San Francisco?
As the seat of much of the country’s tech money, the San Francisco Bay Area and its environs are notoriously expensive across the board, from the cost of living to hotel stays. While there are many pricey hotels in the city — ranging upwards of $1,000 and more — there are plenty of appealing, budget-friendly options on our list in the range of $200 and under.
When’s the best time to visit San Francisco?
Maybe you’ve heard the quote attributed to Mark Twain: “The coldest winter I ever spent was a summer in San Francisco.” That is to say, it’s often cool and breezy in San Francisco at any time of year. Be prepared and always bring layers. It may surprise some visitors that the fall months offer some of the warmest temperatures in the city, and crowds are thinner, too.
A woman is facing a long prison sentence after being convicted of stealing multiple products from a Walgreens store while pretending to be sick with COVID-19 and coughing on staff.
According to the Department of Justice, Carmelita Barela, 36, and an unnamed accomplice walked into a branch near San Francisco’s Civic Center and coughed over staff as the pair stuffed products into their bags.
Barela’s accomplice had been told by staff to leave if she was sick. Instead, the two began to cough even louder, grabbing goods and stuffing them into their bags, the DOJ said in a press release. Once they were ordered to leave, they told the manager that they had COVID-19, the release said.
Barela continued to cough and left the store without paying for the merchandise in her bag, according to the press release.
The manager and a security guard on duty were reluctant to approach the women, who reportedly fled with $90 worth of items, reported SFGate.
In the press release, acting US attorney Stephanie M. Hinds, said: “The spread of COVID-19 has forced almost all of us to make sacrifices and to rely on each other to maintain our safety and good health. Unfortunately, some people have tried to use the crisis to intimidate essential workers and to commit crimes.”
She added: “This conviction demonstrates that those who seek to exploit the pandemic and commit crimes for their own personal gain will be held accountable.”
Barela was convicted on Thursday of robbery affecting interstate commerce (Hobbs Act Robbery), in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1951. She faces a maximum sentence of 20 years of prison and a $250,000 fine.
Any sentence would be imposed by the court after consideration of the US sentencing guidelines, however, according to the press release.
Back in June, a man who allegedly appeared in a viral video showing him clearing shelves at a San Francisco Walgreens was detained by police. The suspect allegedly tried to steal from a different store a few blocks away.
Uber and Lyft could face nearly 1,000 individual lawsuits claiming that drivers sexually assaulted and harassed passengers, lawyers at firm Levin Simes Abrams told KPIX Wednesday.
The San Francisco-based law firm recently filed 85 lawsuits against Uber, mostly in San Francisco County Superior Court, with 321 cases pending, and filed more than 20 lawsuits against Lyft, with 517 cases pending, lawyers told KPIX.
About one third of those cases represented California residents, firm partners Rachel Abrams and Laurel Simes also told KRON in a separate interview on Wednesday.
Abrams and Simes told KRON that the 85 cases filed against Uber would not be joined together in a class-action lawsuit, because the details and severity of each case varied significantly.
The lawyers told KRON that hundreds of women came forward with claims of sexual assault and harassment after the firm took on its first case against Uber in 2019. In some cases, the women claimed drivers assaulted them when they were asleep or intoxicated, the lawyers said.
Firm attorney Meghan McCormick told KPIX in an interview that some drivers stand accused of ending rides early on the app “so it looks to anybody watching, or to Uber, as if they did exactly what they’re supposed to do.” They then drive the passenger “to a deserted place,” she said.
Abrams told KPIX that 99% of assaults “would be prevented if there was a camera.”
In 2019, Uber released its first safety report, which said there had been 3,045 sexual assault reports on its US platform, out of 2.3 billion trips, between 2017 and 2018.
Uber said in a statement to KRON: “We remain steadfast in our commitment to support victims and help stop sexual violence by collaborating with experts, pioneering safety tech solutions, and setting the standard on transparency and accountability.”
Uber, Lyft, and Levin Simes Abrams did not immediately respond to Insider’s request for comment.
So said tech entrepreneur and venture capitalist Marc Andreessen in a recent blog post, in which he said he believed remote work was “a permanent civilizational shift.” Its impact could be even greater than that of the internet itself, he added.
“It is perhaps the most important thing that’s happened in my lifetime, a consequence of the internet that’s maybe even more important than the internet,” he wrote. “Permanently divorcing physical location from economic opportunity gives us a real shot at radically expanding the number of good jobs in the world while also dramatically improving quality of life for millions, or billions, of people.”
He continued: “We may, at long last, shatter the geographic lottery, opening up opportunity to countless people who weren’t lucky enough to be born in the right place. And people are leaping at the opportunities this shift is already creating, moving both homes and jobs at furious rates.”
Already, remote work has freed up many more possibilities for knowledge workers, unshackling them from the office desk and freeing them to move to more affordable areas during the pandemic. It spurred what seemed to be a mass migration from superstar cities like San Francisco and New York to more mid-tier cities like Austin and Miami, as these workers fanned out around the country.
While recent US Census data shows that the pandemic didn’t really change population growth, the rise of remote work helped accelerate existing migration patterns of those moving from the cities to the suburbs. Such movement fueled a housing crisis marked by a historic shortage, as everyone suddenly became an aspiring homebuyer. But the upside of the migration is that it could help create a new era of more broadly shared prosperity.
Andreessen is alone in highlighting the significance of this shift. “I have long said that we will see the rise of the rest, given the incredible expensiveness and affordability of existing superstar cities,” Richard Florida, urban studies theorist and economics professor at the University of Toronto, previously told Insider. “But it’s not going to be the rise of everywhere. It’s going to be the rise of a dozen or two dozen places.”
These places will consequently attract new talent, Florida said, changing economic development, but he doesn’t see bigger cities going away, predicting a resurgence upon widespread vaccination, even if remote work is likely here to stay. He did predict that post-pandemic cities will be reshaped and revived by a newfound focus on interpersonal interaction that facilitates creativity and spontaneity.
“Even as offices decline, the community or the neighborhood or the city itself will take on more of the functions of an office,” he said. “People will gravitate to places where they can meet and interact with others outside of the home and outside of the office.”
The impact of remote work has already trickled into other facets of life outside of geography. Consider the restaurant industry, which has already been reshaped by remote work.
Many restaurants had to adopt technology for the at-home worker to keep afloat during the pandemic, and many now expect more than half of their total revenue to come from online ordering. In dining rooms, some higher-end restaurants have ditched jacket requirements as part of the pandemic’s sartorial shift to more casual wear.
Many global companies are prepping for a hybrid work model post-pandemic, implicitly agreeing with Andreessen. If remote work is here to stay, at least in some form, it will just continue to reshape society, with major implications for the economy and everything else.
Houses are selling quicker than ever before in the US, according to a report by real-estate site Zillow.
Newly listed homes nationwide typically took six days to go under contract in May, which was one day shorter than in April, according to the report. Homes in Cincinnati, Kansas City, and Columbus typically took just three days to be sold, the report said.
And rising home values show “virtually no signs of slowing as sky-high demand runs headlong into inadequate supply,” the report said.
But there are signs that the supply crunch could be easing. The report said that housing inventory – the number of new homes listed for sale – rose 3.9% over April, which was the first monthly rise in for-sale homes since July 2020.
The number of for-sale homes jumped 30.3% in San Jose, and 25.6% in San Francisco from a year ago, the report said. But inventory was still down 31.2% nationwide from the same period a year ago, it said.
2020 was the year urbanites took flight. But many of them didn’t go very far.
The pandemic’s great migration boom mostly consisted of urban dwellers leaving big cities for its directly outlying suburbs, according to a recent Jefferies note that analyzed the latest USPS data. “Large central metro” areas like New York City and Houston saw the biggest exodus, while “large fringe metro” areas saw the biggest influx of residents.
The trend is evidence that city dwellers sought more space during the pandemic but still wanted to remain close to cities – where employers and entertainment are – when the economy began to reopen, Jefferies states. Consider the San Franciscans who headed out to Sacramento or Oakland, or the New Yorkers who moved east to Long Island.
They’re all areas still within short traveling time to major cities, which Bloomberg has described as a reflection of an expanding regional labor market. Through spending as visitors rather than residents, it’s likely that these urban movers will help boost big cities, which stand to see an estimated 10% drop in spending due to a remote economy.
While fewer big-city residents have moved this year amid an economic reopening and rising vaccination rates, migration into the suburbs of large cities has still remained strong during the first few months of the year. It stands to reason, then, that big cities could also get a spending hit from suburbanites new to the area in addition to its former residents.
To be sure, big-city suburbs aren’t a hot spot for everyone.
Some urbanites kissed their metro areas goodbye for good, preferring a life in the countryside or a more removed suburb. And others left for a new state entirely. About 9,000 Manhattanites who moved to Florida plan to stay there permanently, per USPS data. But it’s also likely that, considering the continued strength of migration to big city suburbs while migration from big cities stabilizes, state movers are also choosing suburbs in large metro areas.
There are also the migrants who moved only temporarily, intending to return to big city life. As a Bank of America Research report from May puts it, the urban flight is “more myth than reality.” It argued that economic reopening will spark a return to big cities like New York City and San Francisco.
“Both have the potential for some recovery in the near term,” the note reads. “NYC and SF remain premier cities for young renters given their status as economic, financial, and cultural centers, and the pullback in rents over the past year helps affordability.”
In NYC, some of those who left for the suburbs are already returning. And the 10,000 other Manhattanites who moved to Florida, according to USPS data, plan to move back.
Whether urbanites moved temporarily or to the suburbs, one thing is clear: The migration of 2020 is more of an urban reshuffle than anything.
Coinbase CEO Brian Armstrong said in May 2020 the company would become “remote-first” after the pandemic. He said “the vast majority” of staff would have the option to work from home if they wanted, but they can continue to be office-based if that was preferable.
“I have come to believe that not only is remote work here to stay, but that it represents a huge opportunity and strategic advantage for us,” Armstrong wrote in a blog post at the time. This included having access to more talent.
He added that the company’s long-term vision was to have one floor of office space in ten cities, rather than ten floors of office space in one city.
During the pandemic, there have been reports of a tech “exodus” from Silicon Valley, as both workers and companies consider the benefits of remote working, which has led to a surge in migration to low-tax states like Florida and Texas. Armstrong said in February around 150 Coinbase employees, or almost 30% of its San Francisco workforce, had left the city to work remotely elsewhere since January 2020.
Former President Donald Trump may receive a multimillion payout from his minority ownership stake in a San Francisco property with Vornado Realty Trust, which on Friday sold $1.2 billion in bonds, according to Bloomberg.
The Trump Organization has about 30% ownership in office towers on both coasts through a partnership with Vornado. Together, they own 555 California Street in San Francisco and 1290 Avenue of the Americas in New York City.
As much as $800 million of Trump’s net worth is tied up in the buildings. Unlike other buildings owned outright by The Trump Organization, the ex-president doesn’t have control over the properties he owns with Vornado.
The money raised on Friday from bonds sales would be used to refinance loans and fund construction on their three-building 555 California property, according to Bloomberg.
Vornado is in the middle of a $66 million redevelopment project for both 555 California and 345 Montgomery Street, another of the buildings in the complex, according to a February filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
Salesforce has reportedly dropped plans to lease 325,000 square feet of office space in San Francisco.
The cloud computing giant, which is headquartered in the tallest tower in San Francisco and is the city’s largest employer, had previously signed a deal in 2018 for additional office space in the new Transbay Tower development, an unbuilt tower about a block away.
The company planned to house 1,500 workers at the new tower, a portion of the 10,000 employees it has spread throughout its urban campus.
The decision follows Salesforce’s announcement last month that it would adopt three new ways of working going forward. The new guidelines, which Salesforce is calling “Work From Anywhere,” offer employees options for how they’ll work in the future: flex, fully remote, and office-based.
Salesforce said most of its employees worldwide would have a flex schedule, which means they’ll report to the office between one and three days each week for tasks that are more challenging to do over video calls, such as team collaboration, customer meetings, and presentations.
The company has shared few details about what this will mean for its physical office spaces – in a blog post announcing the change, Brent Hyder, the president and chief people office of Salesforce, shared only that the offices would be redesigned as “community hubs” with collaboration and breakout spaces instead of rows of desks.