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Joie de Vivre Hotels’ The Marker in San Francisco has completed a multimillion-dollar renovation. The sophisticated redesign of the lobby, meeting and event spaces and living room draws inspiration from the Beaux-Arts period by mixing unexpected scale and theatrical elements of its Union Square neighborhood while reflecting the city’s expressive culture through memorable and bold art.

Housed in a historic 1910 building originally opened as the opulent Hotel Bellevue, the newly renovated Marker pays homage to its location while delighting guests with playful spaces, bold expressions of color and a design full of personality. The sophisticated yet playful design was created by Perkins+Will. The architectural details of the hotel feature a simplified color scheme of soft whites and pale grays to create a canvas for colorful furniture, layered patterns and dramatically placed art and lighting.

“It’s always fun to work on a project with a strong sense of place and that’s definitely the case with The Marker,” said Jacqueline McGee, project lead formerly with Perkins+Will and now with Ealain Studio. “We strove to enhance the guest experience by highlighting design features and adding playful elements reminiscent of the Beaux-Arts period and famed novel The Maltese Falcon set in the neighborhood. From the dramatic grand staircase to the literary narrative in the Living Room and the larger than life birdcage and 12-ft. lavender glass chandelier in the lobby, guests enjoy bold design features that connect them to the destination.”


Hanging over the entry, Murano-inspired chandeliers each span more than 7-ft. in diameter. Also greeting guests at the entry is a theatrical bird cage, reaching 12-ft. high, created by Shawn Man Roland and inspired by The Maltese Falcon. The central historic fireplace is highlighted by new bookshelves adorned with a colorful collection, including The Maltese Falcon. The grand staircase is now in a bold blue, and at the bottom, an expansive tufted turquoise banquette made by local furniture maker Composition. The new floor is a patterned black and white tile that complements the original historic stone flooring.

“The purpose of The Marker’s new design decor is to highlight some of its iconic features, including the two timeless fireplaces and the grand staircase, neither of which have changed since the hotel originally opened in 1910,” said Benjamin Duverge, general manager of The Marker. “The use of a simplified color scheme of soft white and pale gray creates a canvas for the colorful furniture, layered patterns, locally curated art and the dramatic lavender chandeliers, reflective of the playfulness for which Joie de Vivre hotels are famous. The fresh design, along with ample, flexible meeting space, provides a unique and ideal setting for urban weddings and corporate meetings alike.”

Living Room

Directly off the lobby, is the new living room, which offers lively urban street views. The literary narrative, inspired by The Maltese Falcon, continues in this space with metallic wall coverings of printed books created by Aztek. New wood floors, custom patterned rugs from Surya and custom furniture throughout reflect the bold design narrative.

Artists Gallery

An expressive collection of rotating artwork from local artists sets the scene for the Union Square neighborhood and showcases the area’s rich history. The current collection was curated by Jacqueline McGee along with SFMOMA Artists Gallery, which represents and supports Northern California artists at all stages of their careers.

Meeting and Event Spaces

The Marker offers more than 12,000 sq. ft. of meeting spaces and ballrooms across 18 rooms with elegant charm; a clean, sophisticated atmosphere and historic detailing. Spaces can welcome as many as 300 guests for larger celebrations or 12 or fewer for intimate gatherings.

The private dining room at Tratto Restaurant & Bar, the stand-alone bar-driven restaurant at the hotel that also manages all of its catering.