With Embarcadero’s crowded one-way streets, Hotel Vitale gives you options. Choose between a water view or a city view of San Francisco’s most iconic vistas—the Bay Bridge, now with permanent lights, or tourist-packed Mission street. Better yet, take in the full panoramic view from the rooftop soaking tub. Keep the calm with the soothing smell of lavender sprigs in the hall, or jaunt downstairs to Americano Restaurant & Bar for a handmade espresso. $$$$; 8 Mission St.; hotelvitale.com.
Near San Francisco’s bay sits kitschy Hotel Zephyr. The recent addition to Fisherman’s Wharf plays up the nautical vibe with porthole windows in every room and retrofitted shipping container décor. The interactive yard with nearly 10,000 square feet of outdoor space boasts a giant Jenga set, while the nearby lounge has comfy beanbags to fold into. $$$; 250 Beach St.; hotelzephyrsf.com.
Silicon Valley, home to tycoons Google and Facebook, is known as the tech hub. At Avatar Hotel, you and your four-legged buddy can sleep like locals. Pet-friendly suites bring geek-chic with techie accouterments like interactive lounges and robot figurines. When you’re ready to put down the iPad, embrace nature with a creekside stroll over to Levi Stadium, only a mile away. $$$$; 4200 Great America Pkwy; avatarhotel.com.
A lavish property located in San Jose’s posh Santana Row, the 215-room Hotel Valencia dots its facilities with Old World accents ranging from in-room monogrammed lace pillows and weathered oak headboards, to the outdoor courtyard framed by bougainvillea-tinged balconies. The Spanish-style tiles tie and flowing fountain tie it all together. $$$$; 355 Santana Row; hotelvalencia-santanarow.com.
Down the coast, the retro Santa Cruz Dream Inn beckons beach-goers and window-shoppers alike with its relaxed '70’s décor and ocean-front vistas. Make sure to bring the pigskin for a little beach-time toss before heading back to watch the sunset over the ocean from your room’s balcony. $$$; 175 W Cliff Dr.; dreaminnsantacruz.com.
Pebble Beach, famed for world-renowned links and heart-pounding surf, is also the perfect spot for an Italian-inspired getaway. With wood-burning fireplaces, flowers delivered daily, lush tiled courtyards, and tranquil tiered fountains, Casa Palmero at Pebble Beach’s 24 Mediterranean-style private villas are your little slice of la madrepatria. $$$$; 1518 Cypress Dr.; pebblebeach.com/accommodations/casa-palmero.
Living in a tree is no longer a dream of elementary school past. In Burlingame, along the Peninsula, your adult self can live out all your childhood fantasies in a 150-year-old oak tree. The adult-only Treehouse fits two in its cozy quarters. Spy wildlife from the pillow-topped seats on the balcony or just read a book in the loft, with nature as your soundtrack. From: $275; airbnb.com/rooms/86456.