Meeting Planners

You are here

#MeetInSF: Your Guide to SoMa/Yerba Buena

Planning an event in San Francisco? We'll show you why the SoMa/Yerba Buena neighborhood is the perfect place for it.

SPONSOR AD

With its incredible concentration of world-class hotels, renowned museums, outstanding dining options and chic nightlife, San Francisco’s exciting South of Market (SoMa for short)/Yerba Buena neighborhood is an optimal locale for meeting attendees to stay, work, rest and explore. The city’s premier convention facility, The Moscone Center, sits in the heart of SoMa, with many more event venues radiating into the surrounding area. No matter what kind of event you’re planning, SoMa/Yerba Buena offers an amazing array of possibilities and a distinctive sense of place. 

Hotels

SoMa’s wide variety of hotel options means that it’s easy to find a space that works for events of any type or size. Attendees will love the stylish, sophisticated vibe at  W San Francisco (181 Third St.) an urban retreat offering gorgeous panoramic views and 14,000 feet of flexible meeting space. This LEED Silver-certified hotel is committed to sustainable hospitality, allowing you to plan a truly eco-friendly event. Through the W Meeting Set-Up program, expert event specialists can assist you with every detail, all the way down to the perfect mood music and signature scent to energize and engage your guests.

Towering 32 stories above SoMa, the beautiful InterContinental San Francisco (888 Howard St.) has 43,000 square feet of meeting and function space, including 21 meeting rooms and two spectacular ballrooms designed to accommodate the most exclusive business, cultural and political events in the city. The well-appointed guest rooms boast contemporary décor, the latest high-tech amenities and floor-to-ceiling windows. Culinary wonder awaits at the hotel’s lauded New American restaurant LUCE, awarded a Michelin star 10 years consecutively. 

An artful blend of modern design and exceptional service, Park Central Hotel San Francisco (50 Third St.) ensures your event runs smoothly and flawlessly, whether you need an elegant ballroom for 1,200 guests or an intimate meeting space for 10 people. The hotel features 659 guest rooms, 23,000 square feet of newly renovated meeting space, superb flow between rooms, stunning views and ample natural light.

Have something a bit quirky in mind? The fun and fashionable Virgin Hotels San Francisco (250 Fourth St.) brings fresh ideas to the table so you can, too. Whatever you dream up (ping-pong meeting tables, fitness video games, hallway mini golf or life-sized Jenga), their event team has you covered. The hotel’s common lounge areas, personalized catering and eight dynamic meeting spaces can be customized to fit any occasion. Attendees will be extra comfortable in the groundbreaking, two-in-one room and suite design that includes both a Dressing Room and Sleeping Lounge.

EXPLORE MORE SAN FRANCISCO HOTELS AND ACCOMMODATIONS

Venues

The Moscone Center (747 Howard St.) is located right in the center of SoMa, covering more than 20 acres on three adjacent blocks. The facility has hosted some of the most important conventions and product announcements in recent memory, providing the space and amenities for businesses and organizations from the U.S. and beyond to celebrate their achievements and anticipate the future. After a landmark renovation, the state-of-the-art Moscone Center is bigger, greener and more innovative than ever. Find out more about planning your event in our helpful Guide to The Moscone Center.

A quick walk from The Moscone Center is 111 Minna Gallery (111 Minna St.). High ceilings, plenty of wall space and two full bars make this bustling art gallery jut right for a creative reception with an industrial feel. The 4,200-square-foot space accommodates up to 500 people or can be sub-divided for smaller affairs. They also offer catering, audiovisual, décor, photography and more to help simplify your workload.

Oracle Park (24 Willie Mays Plaza) is located on the eastern edge of the neighborhood. Just because you don’t need seating for 41,503 people doesn’t mean there aren’t plenty of opportunities to host an event there. When the San Francisco Giants aren’t using it, the stadium can accommodate an intimate board meeting, a sit-down dinner for several hundred and everything in between. Giants Enterprises also offers an array of other event services, including customized 5K run/walks and memorable on-the-water experiences aboard their seafaring venues

There’s something inherently glamorous about a rooftop event space, and City View at Metreon (135 Fourth St.) is a perfect example. It includes both indoor and outdoor areas with stunning views of the city skyline, the Bay Bridge and Yerba Buena Gardens. With a customizable menu of available in-house services and the staff’s extensive knowledge of local vendors, City View makes event planning efficient and easy.

Seamlessly mix business with pleasure at Roe (651 Howard St.), a three-level nightclub that makes an ideal setting for a reception or product launch. Capable of accommodating 400-700 guests, the versatile space blends the sleek aesthetics of a club with cozier spaces for smaller events. The venue also includes a broad range of services, including catering (contemporary American cuisine with an Asian flair), custom décor, valet services, in-house audiovisual, custom lighting and more.

SEARCH FOR VENUES THROUGHOUT THE CITY

Dining

SoMa is packed with excellent dining choices within just a few blocks of The Moscone Center and the neighborhood’s many convention hotels. Whether you’re planning a formal sit-down dinner or just need a spot for spontaneous after-hours cocktails, these bars and restaurants are ready to serve you.

Treat your guests to a night of private dining at Alexander's Steakhouse (448 Brannan St.), which offers two private dining rooms and one semi-private space. The cuisine has a strong Japanese influence, featuring ingredients like Hokkaido scallops and maitake mushrooms, and their Japanese Wagyu A5 grade beef is sourced from almost 10 different places. Their prime rib and deep wine cellar are also sure to impress. 

For a casual happy hour or dinner, the East Coast-style seafood spot Anchor & Hope (83 Minna St.) specializes in lobster rolls, chowder and shrimp cocktails, plus seasonal specialties like soft-shell crab, Dungeness crab soup and oysters on the half shell. Main dishes include all kinds of fish, from branzino to fisherman’s stew to fish and chips.

Another great watering hole, Dirty Habit (12 Fourth St.) features some of the city’s most delicious bar snacks, from their incomparable wings to steamed buns with lamb belly, plus luxe dishes like foie gras and Robuchon potatoes with caviar. Private dining room names are inspired by the workers involved in the process of making whiskey, including Cooper, Blender and Mashman, and can accommodate up to 150 guests for seated dinners and 500 guests for a cocktail reception. 

Plan a meal at 54 Mint Ristorante (16 Mint Pl.) and enjoy some of the city’s best Roman pastas, including classics like pasta all’amatriciana, carbonara and cacio e pepe. The outdoor patio is perfect for an aperitivo and antipasti on a warm night and the wine list features some hard-to-find Italian selections. The room has a welcoming style; ditto the friendly staff. For intimate events, the gorgeous wine cellar can accommodate 38 people seated or 50 standing.

In one of the world’s most forward-thinking cities, your guests can get a literal taste of the future by trying the first hamburger completely composed by robots at Creator restaurant (680 Folsom St.). This bright and sleekly designed space is the newest division of the robotics company Creator Inc., where robots slice, cook, and package each burger right before your eyes. 

Also located on Folsom St. is the innovative Palette (816 Folsom St.), a fine-dining and art destination that playfully explores the relationship between food, art and community. Chef Peter J. Hemsley offers a seasonal menu, as well as an extensive wine and champagne selection. The adjoining Palette Gallery hosts quarterly art exhibitions and the retail shop features an in-house ceramic studio with wares created in collaboration with Bay Area artisans.

If you’ve got an active group to entertain, they can engage in a little friendly competition along with dinner at the ping-pong social club and restaurant SPiN (690 Folsom St.). For more fun and games, host a party at Lucky Strike (200 King St.), an entertainment bar and restaurant that provides bowling lanes in a raucous atmosphere of art, music and an energetic crowd.

DISCOVER MORE DINING OPTIONS

Entertainment

There’s more for your guests to see and do in SoMa than in some major cities. The San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (151 Third St.)— or SFMOMA for short — features more than 30,000 pieces of modern artwork, thanks to a recent expansion. The ticket prices are reasonable, but this museum also outdoes itself by offering 45,000 square feet of public spaces filled with art that's free to see—making it great for attendees to check out between meetings.

In Yerba Buena Gardens (Mission St. and Howard St. between Third and Fourth streets), guests can take advantage of San Francisco's fantastic weather by spending an afternoon at local attractions. Not only is there lush green grass at Yerba Buena Gardens, but there are also several other attractions in this area, including the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, the Contemporary Jewish Museum, an ice skating rink, a bowling alley and more.

At the new Salesforce Park atop the Salesforce Transit Center (425 Mission St.), attendees can take some time to stroll along a 5.4-acre elevated park four stories above the streets. The park also features a daily schedule of free events, public art and seating areas to enjoy the viewpoints.

BROWSE MORE ENTERTAINMENT OFFERINGS

Shopping

Sometimes shopping is the perfect way to end a busy convention day, and SoMa has lots of great places to find unique gifts and souvenirs. Shoppers can get some of California’s best adult beverages from Flatiron Wines and Spirits, perfect for gifting or celebrating. The Alexander Book Company offers three floors of literary distractions for bookworms. The 303 Second Street Plaza also offers excellent shopping alongside a collection of public art. Nearby South Park features a dense collection of chic boutiques.

Target Open House (115 Fourth St.) is an immersive experience that showcases and sells smart products in a must-see, interactive way. Attendees can stop in, experience and purchase the latest smart products and even get a sneak peek of prototype products before they are available to buy.

CHECK OUT MORE SHOPPING IDEAS, DISTRICTS AND DESTINATIONS

Events

There’s always something fun happening in SoMa, including many only-in-San Francisco festivals and events. During the summer months of May-October, the Yerba Buena Gardens Festival presents more than 75 admission-free programs to the public. Performances include music, theater, circus, dance, poetry and more, and feature artists from around the Bay Area and the world. 

Anything goes in San Francisco, and nowhere is that more apparent than the annual Folsom Street Fair in SoMa, the world's largest leather event that takes place on the last weekend of September. Curious onlookers and a long-term participants alike have a great time at this fair (admission is a suggested $10 donation).

At the annual How Weird Street Faire in May, visitors can join thousands of people in colorful costumes for a celebration of peace, creativity and weirdness. How Weird features music and art, a marketplace, food and drinks, many interesting performances and plenty of excitement.

Find out what's happening during your visit on our Events Page.

EXPLORE OUR MEETING PLANNERS GUIDE