Nearby points of interest
Nearby points of interest
About The Garden Court
Featuring innovative intercontinental cuisine, the famed Garden Court offers a superb dining experience in a glorious setting. This historic landmark serves breakfast and lunch daily and an enchanting brunch and afternoon tea on weekends. The Garden Court features a stained glass dome, Italian marble columns, Austrian crystal chandeliers and is noted on San Francisco’s Historic Register as Landmark #18. Our Executive Chef invites you to try our signature crab salad lightly dressed in our own Green Goddess Dressing, a true Palace original created in 1923.
Please note we are currently full and NOT accepting any reservations for Saturday Signature Tea from November 4th through December 30th. We have availability for Holiday Tea still on these dates below: November 25, 30, December 7, 8, 11, 12, 13, 15, 18, 19, 20, 21, 24. with Thursdays and Christmas Eve featuring the Holiday Santa Tea.
San Francisco, CA 94105
Hours of Operation:
Mon–Sat 6:30 am–10:30 am
Sun 7:00 am–10:30 am
Mon–Fri 11:30 am–1:30 pm
Sat 12:00 pm–1:30 pm
Sun 12:00 pm–2:00 pm
Sat 2:00 pm–4:30 pm
$50 and over
AMEX, Carte Blanche, Diners Club, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
Bar/Lounge, Beer, BYO Wine, Corkage Fee, Entertainment, Full Bar, High Tea, Non-Smoking, Weekend Brunch, Wheelchair Access, Wine
The Garden Court Ratings and Reviews
It's a beautiful space, and that's what you're paying for. But I must say, the other aspects of the experience really don't live up. Our waiter basically told us (barely indirectly) that he didn't want to bother with the a la carte menu, and that we should just get the buffet. He made the (accurate) point that the price would come out the same, and that the buffet had many of the items on the menu. The buffet (which we did get) was fine, but nothing very special—certainly not worth the whopping $38 price per person. I'm quite willing to pay a premium for lovely ambiance, but that's a bit steep. Still, if you go in with your eyes open, it might be worth it for some.
The breakfast buffet was well presented with several options that were regularly monitored to insure adequate quantity and crumb-free table cloths. The cooked food, cheese, breads and spreads were frequently refreshed. Excellent service and pleasant, professional wait staff. The Palace Hotel's parking garage attendant was friendly and greeted us as if we were dining in his home! Bring a sweater because the room is a tad cool.
Go for the ambience, not the service or food. Upon arrive we were seated at a lovely table. Server seemed a little scattered. Took our drink order, we were a party of six, three ordered drinks. Mine was a latte, the barista argued with me that the waiter told him a cappuccino. I told him not what I ordered, he was annoyed. The food was o.k. The mushroom soup, was delicious but, served look warm. The waiter was mumbling he made a mistake, wasn't sure what it was, I think he thought he got the orders incorrect but, wasn't handling it well. The short rib looked delicious, I had the mushroom ravioli, good flavor, not cooked all the way. Dessert options minimal but, o.k. The bill for six was over 650.00. Not worth it. Have a drink in the bar, the room is unbelievably gorgeous. We valeted the car, waited over a half hour to have it delivered. When they called for it the first time (took 3 tries). They forgot to stamp validation and we had to go back in after the wait to avoid a 60.00 valet instead of a 30.00. On top, valet was rude. We went to the Brunch, we were entertaining a 75 year old friend from New York and wanted to treat her to a special lunch. She couldn't stand waiting for the car any more and sat on the steps of the hotel. Was approached by a door man asking if she was o.k., which was nice but, he certainly could have followed up on our car as that was about 15 minutes into the wait as others were coming and going. Overall, I was disappointed and expected more. At minimum, they could have comped the valet.
The Garden Court is a wonderful restaurant for any special event. The regular menu is innovative. The 2 or 3 course holiday luncheon is wonderful. The kids menu has a wide variety of options. Our server, Robert, was attentive but not hovering. He was super with the 9 year old in our group, trying hard to meet her finicky eating demands. The 3 adults had delicious meals, served promptly. It is a breath taking environment in which to eat.
Disappointed not to have the old Sunday brunch when it was buffet style and the food was incredible. Now the sit-down set menu is boring by comparison. Also there were hardly any people there. The live music was only fair too. The bathroom smelled nearly nasty.
Reservations for Garden Court Tea, but got reserved for lunch only. Waited an hour to attend tea, no table. Went for lunch in Pied Piper, waited 45 minutes to get a glass of champagne, waited over an hour for lunch, didn’t put order in. Took 2 ½ hours to get lunch at the Palace Hotel.
I would not recommend this restaurant ever. The food was horrible, we saw our waiter rarely and he had difficulty understanding our orders. There was no flexibility whatsoever within the menu, it was not clear when making the reservations that we were having a prix fixe menu (I was using the web page, trying to get a sitting for tea, because there were no available seats before one pm, I was somehow redirected to the prix fixe lunch). Then to finish it off, the coffee was undrinkable and the bathrooms were closed for cleaning. To have a lunch for 7 costing $651 (!!!), none of us will return and we will quickly and often spread the word about how impressively horrible this was - NO ONE should go here. We wondered why there were so many open tables, but quickly learned.
I was really looking forward to experiencing lunch and tea at the Palace, but was disappointed when we arrived for our reservation the day after Thanksgiving and there was a set menu that no one told us about, service was very slow, and when we asked whether we could order from the a la carte team menu at 2:00, one waiter said 'there is no tea service today', while another let us know that there is tea service, but we would have to move to the lounge area (which we were fine with), and he would get us a table. He never came back and we ended up sitting at our table waiting for quite a while before we just walked over and seated ourselves. We finally ordered tea, since there was only one waitress on duty it was very slow, and they were out of petite fours (which we were really looking forward to). Unfortunately, our experience was disappointing.
I chose this location because the Palace Hotel and Garden Court is where the epic final scene of the movie "The Game" with Michael Douglas takes place, and my former business partner and I love that movie. I was treating him to a belated Veterans Day brunch and the restaurant was the perfect setting. We weren't that impressed with the service, which was slow despite there being a number of open tables. But we enjoyed an absolutely delicious brunch and really enjoyed the nice piano music. I would definitely come again for other nice occasions and I'm curious to try the Afternoon Tea service!
My water and coffee was never refilled, and many servers walked past our table several times. The lack of attentiveness was a bit disappointing. The food was just ok. The nice venue and live music compensated for service/food quality deficit. I wouldn't recommend this place for brunch, maybe for coffee (expecting no refills) and a dessert. The ambiance was nice though.
A bit on the expensive side for what you get. Given the amount we paid, we were disappointed with the ho-hum sandwiches. The bread was quite dry. Other than that, the rest of the food was decent (the best was the curried egg croissant) and beautifully presented. I also do wish that the scone and crumpet were bigger. The tea was delicious and excellent quality— and we definitely enjoyed the selection. In terms of atmosphere, the Garden Court just can’t be beat—so truly lovely! And we absolutely enjoyed having the harpist near us as well. That was a lovely touch!
The host at the front desk of the Garden Court was cold and unwelcoming; it took 15 minutes for a server to come to our table, and only after I flagged someone down to ask about it. This made for a bad first impression because I expected a certain level of customer service from a hotel of this caliber and price point.
The Garden Court is excellent to drink in the views, but not the tea. The earl grey was weak, and the sandwiches and sweets that came with the tea service were underwhelming and flavorless. Nothing really packed a punch and it was a disappointing experience overall. This place is really only for the ambiance, and even then the windowed ceiling doesn't really justify the cost.
- Venue was gorgeous of course
- With reservations it didn't take too long to get seated
- Food and drinks were delicious (Bloody Mary, Crab Benedict, Lemon Poppy Seed Waffles)
- Food came within the timeframe the server had warned us about
- Our server took forever to get to us and when he did it was only to let us know that the kitchen was behind and suggested ordering the buffet option and then he walked away when we had already decided what to order.
- A different server set a a pitcher of OJ on our table and walked away without explaining that if you pour you pay. It was nice to have but I also had a bloody mary and water, didn't really need OJ.
- We had to flag down our server to get our orders in if it was going to take a while and once he showed up he only reminded us that we'll be waiting a long time. He could've just asked us what we wanted to order.
- Prices for the entrees were pretty steep for what you get but expected for the location. If they even loaded my plate with a little more potatoes than I would maybe say it was a good value.
I enjoyed brunching here with a group of friends. We were able to sit, relax, and hear each other talk. Beverages were good and came at on time. Once our food came we were happy campers because everything was delicious and our server became much more charming once the food came out (probably stressed out in the beginning by the kitchen ). I think though for an establishment like that, it'd be classier to offer some complimentary toast and jam or muffins if the kitchen is 25 min behind (that's not our fault).
The historic Palace Hotel is indeed a gem from the ashes of San Francisco quake days. The leaded glass atrium dining area was worth the time just to sit and enjoy. My wife and I were on a San Francisco weekend date for a wedding event and decided to add this as a breakfast stop.
The food was very good, especially the scrambled eggs. Simple dish with a different cooking process. The service seemed a bit rushed, but cordial and accommodating. $14.00 mimosas are a bit of a reach to add to basically a $25.00 breakfast. Old downtown hotels still make coin on the liquor tab. A breakfast buffet is also a meal option. Not a huge crowd so we could hang around a bit. We were wearing suit, tie, and cocktail wear for the wedding so we rocked the place among the oversized basketball shorts, tank tops, and yoga tights. "Come on folks"!
I love photography and this is one of those 100 shots on a SD card places, just in the Garden Court alone. Time well spent. By the way, BART access is right around the corner, but we had the "Caddy" that weekend. P.S. Hopefully the "Palace" fires up that grand piano in the Court for breakfast. I'm sure they could get one of the wonderful musicians in the BART station to paly a couple of tabs.
KC of Pleasanton
We came for the Saturday Afternoon tea service and unfortunately it left a lot to be desired. The venue is gorgeous and quite unlike anything else I've seen in San Francisco, however the service ruined our afternoon.
The wait staff didn't appear to be busy as there were only 4 other people when we arrived (2 tables), yet they seemed rushed the entire time and never stopped to speak to us or welcome us or explain any part of the tea service to us. Even when we asked what we were being served, our waiter rushed through and we had to ask him to repeat until we realized he just didn't want to explain anything to us.
We had to flag down one of the ushers to ask for water and when our waiter finally dumped our tea kettles onto our table, it spilled everywhere. He didn't bother to wipe it up.
The food was ok. Nothing like the pictures shown on the website so that was disappointing. Also during a tea, usually the waiter tells you what each item is and answers any questions. To just plop a stand of sweets or sandwiches down on the table doesn't lend to a nice tea experience.
Also - tea drinkers will cringe - our kettles were constantly being refilled with hot water - which meant our 2nd cups tasted completely watered down. I had to ask the staff to stop filling ours kettles up as we were hoping to have a stronger cup of tea. We hoped to ask the waiter to refill the kettle with more tea leaves but he never came back, except with the bill.
Considering the price we paid of $70 per person, I was expecting above par service but would have settled for mediocre. The party at the table next to us came halfway through our tea and we noticed that they too were struggling to get any info or time with the waiter.
I was really hoping this would be our new spot to come to for birthdays and special occasions. Unfortunately I will be looking elsewhere and do not plan on going back.
Really surprised and disappointed they are no longer using tablecloths! Table edge was beginning to splinter. Place mats just don't cut it.
On the "wonderful" side, our server was absolutely spectacular, personable and attentive. Also the amount of light and the glorious cut glass ceiling and chandeliers make up for a lot.
Food was good. My choice was Chicken Ceasar Salad. At the price, was a bit miffed that the chicken had bones in it.
I took my mother to the Palace Hotel for her eightieth birthday. We had a variety events, and the end one was a meal at the renowned "The Garden Court."
I've been to many hotel brunches all over the world, and this one was pretty bad. Nothing was really very tasty, the wait staff (aside from one young woman--not my server--who got me some more coffee) busy, stressed, and cursory. But the eggs were runny and cold, the pastries leaden, the coffee cold. My poor mother has been talking about this place for years, and that's why I picked the spot for her birthday weekend. This meal, ironically, was the only disappointment. Go look at the room. Then eat elsewhere.
Very disappointed with the food and the service. Both entrees were served lukewarm, the bread was stale and not heated. Our server was inattentive and disappeared after he brought our lunch. The bus person, Jorge, was excellent!
Gone is the beauty of the past Garden Court. As a client over over thirty (30) years, I will bring my business clients elsewhere from now on.
I do NOT recommend The Garden Court for a business lunch.
I made a reservation via Open Table and requested a high chair. Despite my request, I had to ask 3 different waiters for the high chair before it was brought. The food was very good, although the eggs benedict kept running out. Choices were excellent, but for the price, would have liked to have a hot bar with a chef...cutting some ham or preparing omelettes. Also, the coffee could have had more choices, such as cappuccino or latte. You definitely pay for the environment which is beautiful, but service was not up to the standard of the hotel quality. I would be open to trying afternoon tea, but probably not for breakfast again.
The food was good although a bit pricy. It was our first time and we asked for guidance on how it works. Our waiter was not helpful at all aside from being rude. I didn’t want to ruin the bday celebration of my friend who came all the way from New York, otherwise we would have walked away and find another place. He is in the wrong job. 👎
I fell in love with their tea room at first glance. I returned and had their tea service for four people. Fantastic service and there was a harpist, who played beautifully. The food was exquisitely presented. A bit pricey but no regrets! I felt quite the guest. Very friendly wait staff. The best scones ever! Their signature blend tea was fragrant and the vanilla and rose notes were the perfect combination. The tea sandwiches were delicious and beautifully displayed. It was quite the spread. Very happy.
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