The Garden Court - Luxury Collection
It is simple the grandest dining room west of Chicago's Palmer House. Family and I have been going there since WWII. I was sorry to see the very elegant room has been furnished with contemporary furniture. It is a somewhat jarring clash given the grandeur to se conference room chairs, rbales, adn sofas. But it is the Garden Court and it always wins. Service is impeccable from wiatpersons who have been there for sometime and those in training very attentive. Food remains high quality and not "refrigerator magnet" portions as so many restaurants do.
My husband and I went for breakfast when we were in town for a trip. The hotel is amazing. I think it’s a must just for the atmosphere. We had the buffet and it was great! nothing over the top food wise but everything you’d want!
Underwhelming, wish they still had the buffet
SKIP THIS PLACE. If you want English tea charm, go to Lovejoys over on Church (less costly and very English). If you want elegance, go to the Ritz. The Palace afternoon tea is classic superficial glitz that is not worth $68 plus a huge tax. Scratch the surface and see their tarnish. We had a very unaccommodating waiter. Our tea water was replenished only when we flagged another waiter to assist. The sandwiches were clearly made awhile back and allowed to sit and dry out in the refrigerator. Very uninspired food and drink and very poor service, which together destroyed the otherwise lovely setting. Life is short. Choose wisely.
Went to high tea with 8 friends for my birthday. I went a few years ago and I feel like there is less food now. They used to serve larger scones and pastries before the sandwiches, now it’s smaller scones served after with the desserts. Also the service was poor - we never got iced water and never had our tea refilled (even after asking multiple times). One friend arrived 10 minutes late and was never brought any food or tea for 30 minutes; we had to keep asking. The issue is there are no waiters assigned to your table - so you have to flag someone down. Which is very annoying, especially given the expensive price. I will say they sang happy birthday to me while the harpist played, and gave me a crown which was special. I still think it’s a gorgeous place for a special occasion but they need to up the service.
We were celebrating our 50th anniversary. The experience at the Garden Court was wonderful. Our waitress asked if we were there for a special occasion when we informed her of our anniversary she congratulated us and unexpectedly brought a special dessert compliments of the house.
We had a leisurely Sunday brunch there with exquisite ambiance and excellent service. Food was wonderful.
There are a fair number of negative reviews about brunch at the Garden Court. People complain the food is subpar and the service slow or worse.
That was not our experience.
The food is fine. Not the best in the city but everything we ordered—the burger, French toast, crab toasts, chopped salad, was better than average. The omelette was especially good.
We are San Franciscans so really critical. They’ve got food game.
It’s too bad they did away with the buffet. It was legendary. But times change.
The service also was fine. Two waiters took care of us and did a fine job. They were responsive. It was obvious they were trying hard. And it was successful.
But let’s be real —you lunch at the Garden Court because the space is incredible. It’s a treasure and there’s nothing else like it. So you’ll spend a few dollars more for the food here, but the ambience and setting are more than worth it.
I’m looking forward to my next visit.
It was a bit pricey for $68, but you do get fed more than enough to be full. You get 2 rounds of 5 tea sandwiches and 6 mini desserts per person. But you really can't beat the setting of the tea service. The glass, mirrors, gold, marble, and chandeliers all serve to make the tea service feel super special. I was there at 3:30pm in late May and the light fluctuated nicely in the room as the clouds passed over the sun outside. The glass ceiling is not clear, so you're never blinded by the sun at all. It's just a nice glow on the ceiling. There was also a harpist that added to the ambiance. The only thing I could knock was the party behind us who complained loudly about "terrible" service and were very very EXTRA (I swear, the only thing that would have made her happy was a service bell so that she could be tended to IMMEDIATELY)....... but you know, sometimes you gotta put your blinders on so other people don't ruin your good time.
Server was excellent and very informative. Harp was awesome.
My feedback is based on having afternoon tea on a Saturday afternoon. The Garden Court is stunning and the ambiance is perfect for experiencing high tea. Service is impeccable.
My only disappointment is the quality of the food – finger sandwiches. We were served a variety of savory sandwiches, all of which were mediocre at best... especially for a 5 star establishment such as the Palace Hotel. It seemed like they batch make the sandwiches and either let them stand or refrigerate them, which led to stale bread. The bread on the sandwiches we had were so dry, and that it seemed like they toasted the bread – the bread slices curled outward. The squash and brussel sprout sandwiches were bland.
The sweets were satisfactory, nothing that blew my mind. Wasn’t sure if the pastries were made in house.
Unfortunately, I do not plan on returning for high tea. There’s opportunity to enhance the food experience so that it aligns with the Palace standards.
We love the ambiance of this restaurant with the grand atrium, historical period ambiance, and natural sunlight. The staff was warm and accommodating for our daughter's 20th birthday celebration, from the front lobby to the waitstaff. She has to adhere to a gluten-free diet, and they took great care to make sure her needs were taken care of.
The meal started with a nice selection of rolls and scones, and gluten-free toast for our daughter. We ordered the ahi tuna tartare with avocado and taro chips, which was extremely fresh and yummy. Two people in our party ordered the wagyu skirt steak with sauteed spinach and delicately shaved potato strings, which were very large servings and to die for. My husband and I split the wagyu truffle burger and the Dungeness crab salad. The burger was top-notch and the salad had a large portion of very fresh crab meat with a zesty green goddess dressing. Overall, we were pleased with the generous portions, and our daughter took home leftovers which she ate over the next two days, so we definitely got a good value for the money.
Our waitress chose a complimentary dessert for the birthday girl, and even found gluten free crackers for garnish. The strawberry and mango sorbets were a real treat, and we could tell by the taste they were house-made.
Lastly, the harpist who plays during their popular afternoon tea service setup while were finishing our meal, and we got to enjoy the relaxing music to complete the old world setting. We had opted not to go for afternoon tea since we didn't think our daughter would be able to enjoy much of what was served because of her food allergies. We were happy to have enjoyed a knockout, satisfying meal while enjoying the same ambiance of their afternoon tea.
We had a great breakfast at the Garden Court. It was the end of a mother/son overnight trip to the city. They have buffet and ala carte. Lunch and high tea. If you’ve never been you have to do it just once. We did have strange experience though. Just after we were seated a black couple were seated next to us. He looked over and said “it’s nice to see a friendly face, if you know what I mean”. Then he told us that they had been originally sat in a corner behind a pole. They had terrible customer service and at first we thought they had a different waitress because none came to there table. Turns out we had the same waitress. They were from Oakland and in the city because he is a delegate at the Democratic National Convention in SF at the Moscone center. They got the buffet we ordered from the menu. We were greeted by the waitress brought water and freshly squeezed OJ. The other couple were not. We were brought an assortment of jams and ketchup, they were not. We got our bill they did not! We left and they were still there. They finally asked for water and juice when she was bringing our refills. The only difference between us was: 1. She had braids (beautifully done into a French twist) my complexion (light complexion)2. He was dark (the complexion of my dad) and my son is very light complexion That’s it. Not only was it horrible service for them it was blatant colorism and bias. It was very upsetting for my son and I to watch.
Our buffet was free with my Marriott Titanium Elite status.
The setting couldn't be better. The food leaves something to be desired. It's just sloppy hotel food made with little care or concern for quality ingredients. The prices are about 40% higher than they should be for the food. But you're paying for the setting.
It never seems busy when I'm there. If they had good food, that place would be hopping, and a $39 Nicoise salad would be worth it.
Food was just so so, lobster roll had to be sent back because it was so dry. The hash brown potatoes also lacked flavor and were dry. The crab toast, again dry. The service was horrendous. Over all a beautiful spot but wold NOT recommend it due to poor food and horrible service.
Beautiful dining room. We had a reservation, but getting seated was hectic. Staff seemed overwhelmed and we waited in line for twenty minutes before we could even talk to the hostess. Luckily once we got to her we were seated quickly. It was a holiday weekend so perhaps chaos isn’t the norm. Continental buffet was good. Smoked salmon was tasty. Coffee was okay. We did not do the hot food so cannot comment on that. Prices are high. It’s really only worth it because of the amazing space you get to sit in with the glass ceiling and ornate decor.
The service and location are amazing. Besides waiting in a line to talk to the hostess, we went right into our table at our reserved time. All of our party got the buffet, and most said later that they would have rathered on of the ala' carte items. (which are cheaper but take 20-30 minutes to come out)
All in all for a beautiful brunch in a room that looks to be in Paris, it is a great place to go!
My 10 year old grand daughter was drinking her orange juice and the glass broke in her mouth. It ruined the breakfast but luckily she didn’t cut herself.
We were there for Sunday brunch - food on the buffet was not warm, service was slow. We expected much more from such a wonderful place.
We went to the Garden Court to celebrate two birthdays. I'm not sure if the GC was understaffed on this particular day - but service was slow and we were not checked on. It was disappointing because everyone in are party was looking forward to high tea at GC. It didn't meet our expectations - and we won't return in the future.
Outstanding service, excellent food and ambiance beyond expectations
I got complimentary continental breakfast as Marriott Lifetime Titanium Elite member. $7 upcharge for full buffet. It i has a very nice historic atrium ceiling.
Beautiful yet expensive setting perfect for business meetings, Mother's Day, and other special occasions when the ambience is most important
Walter our waiter recommended the salmon plate also the kobe burger. Both were fantastic and cooked to perfection.
Beautiful place. Easy check-in. Waited a couple of minutes for the table to be ready. Warm crab toast for brunch was excellent, with 3 pieces topped with crab and a tasty sauce.
Only downside is that from my reservation start time of 1:30pm to ordering food took 30 minutes. After the order was placed though, the food came out in about 10 minutes.
Just book it already.
Mediocre food,not hot and not special The ambience deserves better.
As usual abeautiful setting. Breakfast was ordinary fare but well prepared. A bit pricey for 2 people...ovver $100 without drinks.
The Garden Court was a beautiful and comfortable place to dine. The food was the usually buffet style food... the eggs Benedict was not warm... cold actually which did not taste good. Otherwise everything was nice.
delicioso! Bonito lugar, todo perfecto
I indicated yes, i would recommend this place, but only for the esthetic experience and historical significance, not the food, which is truly overpriced for the quality. (We often eat at many of San Francisco's excellent restaurants.) For example, the so-called "signature" crab salad is just a disk of plain crab meat with some mixed greens next to it and a little dish of bland green goddess dressing. The service is far better than the food, attentive and friendly. And the kitchen did send out a special dessert of chocolate cake with "happy birthday" written on the plate for our guest of honor. We won't go back there to eat.
The Garden Court at the Palace is a consistent class act. Great food, service, and ambiance. If you enjoy
fine dining and a chance to savor your surroundings, this is your place. Great for conversation, i. e., no EDM/techno sound track to overwhelm your conversation! Highly recommended!
The best thing is the beautiful environment and great service.
The food is just mediocre , and the prices are exorbitant.
Waiter was very inattentive. The eggs were cooked very soft and we had to wait as the buffet let food run out as people stood around and waited.
Hostess "canceled" my reservation after I checked in on time. Had to contact OpenTable's CS to get my points. Service was unfriendly and scarce. Food was good. Ambiance is beautiful .
The ambiance and service make dining here an “experience” highly recommend GC
The setting is lovely for an afternoon tea. The sandwiches were bland and the service on delivering ordered items was quick but it was hard to get a water refill or catch the waiter if you needed something. Would not plan to go back as there are other options.
A fun luxurious experience in the styled opulence of the days that built San Francisco. The food is excelent and service phenomenal.
Excellent breakfast buffet with plenty of choices for everyone. It is pricey, but good for special occasions. The room is beautiful and the staff is professional and unobtrusive. One of my go to spots in FiDi.
We went for the tea service. Not impressed with the tea service but the building is beautiful. For the $76 per person I was expecting great flavors and that was not the case...bland sandwiches. If you have ever had tea service in Europe this is a big let down. The lady playing the harp was great!!!