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San Francisco’s Palace Hotel—awarded “Best Historic Hotel in America”

The "new" Palace Hotel in downtown San Francisco (circa-1910)
Palace Hotel
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When the Palace Hotel first opened its doors in 1875 it was proclaimed the largest hotel in the world and San Francisco’s first luxury hotel. Destroyed in the 1906 earthquake, the hotel was rebuilt in 1909 and the grand dame of San Francisco lives on as the city’s most historic hotel and the place to see and be seen. Join Renee Roberts as she shares the hotel’s century long history that includes hosting luminaries from kings and queens, to Nikita Khruschev and the incubation of the United Nations.

San Francisco's historic Palace Hotel advertisement from the 1920s
Credit Palace Hotel
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San Francisco's historic Palace Hotel advertisement from the 1920s

A Palace Suite Living Room
Credit Palace Hotel
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A Palace Suite Living Room

The Palace Hotel was awarded the 2016  “Best Historic Hotel in America” in the 400+ room category by the National Trust for Historic Preservation. The hotel’s architecture showcases Austrian crystal chandeliers, Italian marble and intricately worked stained glass.

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Credit Palace Hotel
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The original Palace Hotel (destroyed in the 1906 earthquake) where horse drawn carriages delivered guests inside the hotel.

A program of the non-profit National Trust for Historic Preservation, Historic Hotels of America only accepts hotels that have been designated by the US Secretary of the Interior as a National Historic Landmark or that are listed in or eligible for listing in the National Register of Historic Places. Additionally, the hotels have to be recognized as having historic significance and be at least 50 years old.

The Garden Court today at the historic Palace Hotel
Credit Thomas Wilmer
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The Garden Court today at the historic Palace Hotel

The original San Francisco Palace Hotel in 1887
Credit Palace Hotel
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The original San Francisco Palace Hotel in 1887
The original Palace Hotel survived the 1906 earthquake but was consumed by fire
Credit Palace Hotel
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The original Palace Hotel survived the 1906 earthquake but was consumed by fire
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Credit Palace Hotel
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Journeys of Discovery with Tom Wilmer 2016 Lowell Thomas Award
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Journeys of Discovery with Tom Wilmer 2016 Lowell Thomas Award

Tom Wilmer produces on-air content for Issues & Ideas airing over KCBX and is producer and host of the six-time Lowell Thomas award-winning NPR podcast Journeys of Discovery with Tom Wilmer. Recorded live on-location across America and around the world, the podcasts feature the arts, culture, music, nature, history, science, wine & spirits, brewpubs, and the culinary arts--everything from baseball to exploring South Pacific atolls to interviewing the real Santa Claus in the Arctic.
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