Share Your Memories of the Sir Francis Drake
Living History Contest to Celebrate Hotel's 75th Anniversary

What are your fondest memories of the Sir Francis Drake Hotel in San Francisco? In honor of the hotel's 75th anniversary next year, the hotel is looking for guests to share their favorite moments.

To commemorate this important milestone the Sir Francis Drake is compiling a living history of one San Francisco's most cherished and historically significant hotels. Since opening its doors in 1928, the hotel has welcomed thousands of guests. The Living History Contest invites guests to share their special memories of the hotel.

The Living History Contest is open to past guests, former employees or anyone who may have attended an event at the hotel in years past. Please, no entries from current employees of the Sir Francis Drake Hotel, its management company or their family members. Entries will be accepted on an ongoing basis until September 1, 2003. Entries can be either be dropped off at the hotel, mailed to Sir Francis Drake Hotel, c/o General Manager, 450 Powell Street, San Francisco, Calif., 94102 or emailed to Contest entries must include contestant's name, address, phone number and a description of the contestant's special memory. A winner will be selected at a random drawing and will be announced in September 2003. The winner need not be present at the drawing to win.

The winner of the Living History Contest will receive:

  • Transportation to and from San Francisco within the 48 contiguous states
  • A two-night stay in one of the Sir Francis Drake Hotel's luxurious suites
  • An invitation to the Sir Francis Drake Hotel's "75th Anniversary Celebration"
  • Champagne at Harry Denton's Starlight Room located atop the hotel
  • Dinner at Scala's Bistro located adjacent to the hotel
  • Morning coffee and pastry at Caffé Espresso located adjacent to the hotel
The Sir Francis Drake Hotel is named for the English explorer who, in 1579, narrowly missed discovering San Francisco Bay and instead sailed the Golden Hind into Drake's Bay 28 miles north. Built in 1928 for the then princely sum of $5 million by Midwestern hotel developers Leon W. Huckins and John A. Newcomb, the Sir Francis Drake Hotel was designed by San Francisco architects Weeks and Day to reflect the European Renaissance of Drake's era, adorning it with a grand marble staircase, vaulted gold leafed embossed ceilings and bas-relief detail. The Sir Francis Drake Hotel was a state-of-the-art marvel reflecting the dynamic spirit of a new city that had grown up out of the devastating earthquake and fire two decades before. The hotel impressed everyone with innovations such as an indoor golf-course, ice water on tap and radios in every guestroom.

A multi-million dollar renovation of the Sir Francis Drake Hotel's 417 guestrooms, meeting and public spaces was completed in 1999. Recently a four-million dollar exterior restoration of the hotel was also completed. The decorative terra cotta applications on the building were replaced and restored, structural reinforcements and brick replacements were made and many of the original windows were replaced.

For more information and to make reservations, contact the Sir Francis Drake Hotel, 450 Powell Street, San Francisco, Calif., 94102; call (415) 392-7755 locally and (800) 227-4580 in the U.S., or visit


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