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Practical Info for Attendees: Transportation and More
8.8.11
 

Some useful facts about transportation to the Summit, San Francisco, and recommended dress, from Whitney Haggins of JPL.

Hotel Basics
San Francisco Marriott Marquis (Summit site)
415-896-1600
55 Fourth Street
San Francisco, California 94103
Map and Directions

Item #1:  So what’s the best way to get to the Marriott Marquis from SFO?
You have several options when landing at SFO. I tried each of these in my recent trips to San Francisco for meetings so I could pass along to you. The Marriott Marquis does not have a hotel courtesy shuttle, so you will need to decide how you plan to get there. Your choices include the public transportation option (BART Rapid Rail), shared ride vans, and taxis. 

Public Transportation
If you choose to take the Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) Rapid Rail, it is easily accessed from any terminal by riding SFO's AirTrain to the Garage G/BART Station stop. There is no charge to board AirTrain. At the Garage G/BART station, you will purchase your ticket (to get to downtown San Francisco it’s $8.10) and wait for the train.  Take BART to the Powell Street Station.  At the Station, you’ll walk about a block and a half until you reach the Marriott Marquis. It’s a good walk and not too far.

Shared Ride Vans
Van service is available on a walk-up basis.  Follow the signs to Ground Transportation on the Departures/Ticketing level and walk out to the shared ride zones on the roadway center islands.  Just remember that shared ride vans can make a few stops before reaching your destination.  The fare is around $17.  I spoke with the concierge desk at the Marquis about shared ride vans and they suggested using the walk-up service rather than pre-arranged vans to the hotel – a delayed flight can have you waiting for a particular van while others are going by. There are usually a lot of vans and it doesn’t take long.  Please note — if you are arriving after 11 p.m. and choose to use a shared ride van, then you should definitely make a reservation. I’ve included a link to a map with the locations for roadway center islands at SFO.

I was told that SuperShuttle runs from the Marriott Marquis to SFO about every 15 minutes.  Check with the concierge desk if you are leaving at a very early or very late time.

Taxis
Like the Van service, proceed down to Ground Transportation on the Departures/Ticketing level and walk out to the designated taxi stops on the roadway center islands.  I found a long line of taxis when I arrived and was quickly installed in a taxi and on my way.  The fare ran about $42.  Since the Giants will be on the road during the Summit, we won’t have to worry about increased traffic (and a higher fare) as you pass by AT&T Park.

 

Item #2:  Tell me a little about San Francisco
What can I say about the city by the bay?  For one thing, it’s probably cooler than where you are!  Average temperatures in August run about 67 degrees for the high and in the mid-fifties overnight.  When I was in the city last month it reached a high of 76, so we are in for mild temperatures.  It’s probably best to wear layers should you venture out and about.  You often see a lot of people out by Fisherman’s Wharf or close to the water wearing San Francisco sweatshirts – vendors make some pretty good money selling them to visitors who find themselves without outerwear as the sun goes down. If you plan to venture out after sessions, you probably want to bring along a light jacket.

If you have a chance, I highly recommend going up to the top of the hotel to The View Lounge to see a truly spectacular view of San Francisco.  It’s even better as day turns to night and the fog is rolling in – beautiful.

Being situated in downtown San Francisco has its advantages – close to the Yerba Buena Gardens, Union Square shopping, and Chinatown is not far away.  There is a food court at the shopping center half a block away that has a very extensive assortment of options to accommodate most palates, and there’s even a Bristol Farms. 

There’s so much to see and do in San Francisco – go out and discover (just do so outside of the Summit sessions)!

Item 3#:  Dress code for the Summit
The dress recommendation for the Summit is business casual for the sessions and business attire for the Monday night reception. I would recommend wearing layers to accommodate for the air conditioning in the meeting rooms.  If you’re not one who becomes cold easily, then you should be fine.

Seriously – if you plan to walk outside in San Francisco, bring warm clothing in layers. Chances are it will be cool, foggy and damp in August.