The Garden Court - Luxury Collection

4.3
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1896 Reviews
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$50 and over
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Californian

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Afternoon Tea
Featuring innovative intercontinental cuisine, the famed Garden Court offers a superb dining experience in a glorious setting. This historic landmark serves breakfast and lunch daily and an enchanting brunch and afternoon tea on weekends. The Garden Court features a stained glass dome, Italian marble columns, Austrian crystal chandeliers and is noted on San Francisco’s Historic Register as Landmark #18. Our Executive Chef invites you to try our signature crab salad lightly dressed in our own Green Goddess Dressing, a true Palace original created in 1923.
What 1896 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.3based on recent ratings
4.1
food
4.2
service
4.8
ambience
3.6
value
Noise · Quiet
84% of people would recommend it to a friend
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OT
1 review
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

good
the server was very kind

NM
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on October 5, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 5

The ambiance and experience of high tea at The Garden Court is unmatched in San Francisco. The quality and selection of teas are outstanding and the assortment of savory sandwiches and pastries are well-proportioned and provide a variety of flavors. The kitchen was also able to accommodate vegetarian diet needs for the sandwiches. Perhaps it was an off day when I went, but there seemed to be little communication between the concierge and wait staff as our diet requests (which we made at the time of the reservation) and cocktail orders weren't communicated well between the two.

OT
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on October 5, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 4

Service was mediocre. Sandwiches were a bit dried out. Scones and desserts were great. Beautiful setting.

TV
Seattle
1 review
Dined on October 5, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 3ambience 5

Overall it was a beautiful setting. We did have a glitch in our order, but I think that was because they restaurant with short on staffing.

JC
1 review
Dined on October 5, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Thank you for helping me make my mom's 70th birthday surprise lunch a wonderful and fun experience. Our server, Robert, was awesome and handled our table brilliantly, especially has most were arriving from various areas around the Bay Area (not too mention flying in from Atlanta!). Thank you again, it was a fantastic day!

JW
San Francisco
3 reviews
Dined on September 30, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Highly enjoyable atmosphere with great light and acoustics. 5 star service.
Would revisit in a heartbeat.

OT
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on September 29, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

Service very good

S
San Francisco
9 reviews
Dined on September 28, 2019
Overall 3food 5service 4ambience 4

We had a nice afternoon tea experience however my friend debit card was overcharged and after a week and a half and 3 telephone calls we are still calling and asking for a refund and WHY her debit card was overcharged more than double. very upsetting !

OT
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on September 23, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 4

Anniversary

OT
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on September 22, 2019
Overall 4food 2service 5ambience 5

Service was amazing! Some of the best service I've experienced. Coffee and juice were never empty. I had the wagyu burger and my wife had the omelette. Both were not good at all. My burger was cold and dry. Fries were warm, though. Bloody Mary was one of the best I've had.

GS
Cincinnati
2 reviews
Dined on September 22, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Beautiful place, and the food was outstanding!!

JM
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on September 22, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 2ambience 5

We had a lovely time once again. Our only complaint would be our waiter. He paid little attention to us, never coming back to see if we needed a coffee refill or anything else. He was a disappoint, but after 45 years of receiving wonderful service here one one poor waiter did not spoil our celebration.

N
San Francisco
126 reviews
Dined on September 18, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

A beautiful experience, although certainly expensive. We always have the Sunday brunch at Christmas time, and it was a pleasure to have much less crowds. The scallops were among the best I have ever had.

D
Chicago
10 reviews
Dined on September 17, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 5

It’s better to order breakfast from the breakfast bar versus ordering à la cart. It took too long to be served à la cart. I was hosting 10 people for breakfast. Half the table went with the breakfast bar and finished their meal 30 minutes before the other half got their À la cart meal

N
1 review
Dined on September 14, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Tea time at the Palace in the beautiful Garden Court was wonderfully whimsical!

CG
Orange County
1 review
Dined on September 7, 2019
Overall 3food 1service 5ambience 5

for $68 a person, the food was not worth more then $5

d
San Francisco
14 reviews
Dined on September 7, 2019
Overall 3food 5service 3ambience 5

I have chosen the tea service to celebrate a special occasion many times and have always been thrilled with the experience. This time however, I was a little disappointed in the service. This was the first time I ever brought my mother in law and wanted to treat her to something special because she has been going through severe health problems. While the food was good the service was very rushed. Plates and drinks were whisked our table with no pacing whatsoever. Our waiter did not check on us and I had to ask a bus person to ask for more champagne. I had called ahead to indicate I needed a gluten free menu and the waiter brought the GF tea sandwiches but not the scones etc. when I asked for that as well he hurriedly brought me an alternative scone plate but that’s it. I had to ask about the other desserts to know what I needed to avoid and he didn’t really have an answer for me. I paid full price but really was only able to eat half of the selections even though I called ahead. This has never been a problem before and I think it was because everyone was rushing our meal. There was no reason to rush so much, it was not packed. Our waiter was nice, just not as attentive as all my previous experiences. I had also indicated this was a special occasion and no one , except the host, mentioned anything about it. Also something that has never happened before. I was disappointed because I wanted to show mom a really lovely time and make this a recurring visit. I will be back but I hope I’m not rushed and not checked on again.

OT
1 review
Dined on September 7, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The service, ambience and food was fantastic. What a beautiful setting. Server Robert was exceptional, with fantastic manners. Will come back for Tea Service next time.

P
San Francisco
6 reviews
Dined on September 7, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Everything was great! Thanks!

LO
San Francisco
7 reviews
Dined on September 2, 2019
Overall 4food 3service 4ambience 5

The Garden Court is a special place for a special occasion. And you go for the room. Not the food. They tried really hard, had many attending servers, but it fell short on food and service. The setting is unparalleled for a true old San Francisco experience. Thats why I would go back for Tea. And if I went again for lunch, I would alter my expectations.

We had a party of five, ordered two salads, that were very good. They were out of the Crab salad. Pea soup was good, bread was warm. Two of us ordered the Artichoke with cauliflower and a bbq type sauce with other vegetables. It came without the artichoke, veggies were al dente, undercooked, warm not hot and it really seemed like the bbq sauce was off the shelf. Big miss. And I never got an answer on the missing artichoke that was in the title of the dish!

I sent mine back and got the Monte Christo. Not as bad as the missing artichoke, but could have been so much better. The egg bread was moist, with slices of ham, however no other flavors. Mustard, chutney, cheese. A pickle! Could have balanced the weight of the ham sandwich. In all fairness the waiter tried talking me out of the Monte Christo, and suggested the burger. But I didn't want something so heavy, so maybe I would have been better off.

On table snooping other diners, the Crab salad looked excellent. The fried Calamari looked great, and the burger look good. So there you have it. Stick with the basics and enjoy the room.

GS
San Francisco
5 reviews
Dined on September 1, 2019
Overall 1food 1service 1ambience 1

Just don’t come here. Horrible service and a bland mediocre menu. They just want to get you in and out. I thought for the price you would get more but I’ve gotten better service at a chain restaurant on the side of a highway.

SF
San Francisco
161 reviews
Dined on August 29, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 5

The Garden of Good & Bad - (1) the appetizer was large enough for two people. The calamari batter was almost perfect - not many restaurants can produce a good batter (2) the main course was very large scallops with bacon bits, & that is where I had a problem with the food. The bacon was so smoky that it overwhelmed the delicate flavor of the scallops. It was so strong I could not eat all of the entre. I felt like I was in a forest fire with smoke. ( 3) The squash blossoms were the best I have ever had & the largest, nicely battered.

The Monte Cristo sandwich was on the menu. I inquired about it. Be aware that It is NOT the version that is completely battered & deep fried or pan fried. It is rare to find that version on a menu.

For the price charged there should not have been any problem with any of the food

We were presented with the wrong bill which was significantly more than what we had ordered. The waiter realized the error & returned to the table with the correct one. Always check the bill. This was the 3rd time this year that has happened in a restaurant in San Francisco.

R
San Francisco
11 reviews
Dined on August 28, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Service is outstanding with very thoughtful staff. We went for 2 breakfasts. A great way to start the day. For our anniversary they brought out a special presentation of cheesecake.

IF
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on August 25, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

Gorgeous ambiance, good food, excellent service. You can't go wrong for a special occasion.

PL
Chicago
1 review
Dined on August 23, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The setting is absolutely beautiful and the food was delicious--very fresh.

DS
1 review
Dined on August 18, 2019
Overall 2food 3service 2ambience 4

Large portions for triple the price. Omlet was 3x larger than need be and about 3x as expensive as it should be

K
Sacramento
24 reviews
Dined on August 18, 2019
Overall 5food 3service 2ambience 5

The Garden Court at the Palace Hotel is absolutely stunning. The only problem was the very lackluster service. Our waiter forgot spoons for our coffee, water for the table, butter for my toast, etc. It’s little things but they all added up to a less than enjoyable experience. I would say go for the atmosphere. The food
was very average. Did not try the buffet. It looked pretty good. I hear brunch is very special.

c
San Francisco
120 reviews
Dined on August 13, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

great place for lunch. Excellent crab salad and oysters.
fabulous ambiance and wonderful experience
expensive but worth it for a nice quiet lunch

OT
1 review
Dined on August 11, 2019
Overall 2food 3service 1ambience 4

Beautiful hotel! It was talk walking back in time.

First off, multiple parties were seated before us that came in as walk-ins.

The food was over priced. Only 2 vegetarian options and one vegan (if you consider hash browns an option).

The bus boys ever very attentive and polite. The rest of the wait staff was the opposite. We had to flag down the waitress to get absolutely any kind of service. We were able to see our food when it was ready to be served but it took the waitress so long to bring it to us, my friend’s French toast was cold and so were my hash browns.

GF
1 review
Dined on August 4, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 5

This visit was to celebrate my husband's 75th birthday. The venue was stunning and the reason for the choice. The food was good and beautifully presented. We to wait a long time for a wait person to come take our order and then he was rushed and got our order wrong. He was a really nice guy and knew it was Dave's birthday and brought a beautiful dessert for the occasion. The Garden Court was so beautiful that we would love to enjoy Tea next time.

ML
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on August 4, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 2ambience 3

It’s an experience!
Over priced, slow service. Nice brunch buffet and a la crate menu

AH
Sacramento
1 review
Dined on August 4, 2019
Overall 2food 2service 2ambience 5

We were so disappointed with our breakfast at The Garden Court. We had a reservation with Open Table and the host stand was a nightmare. People were shouting, there was confusion about every reservation, but finally we were seated. The table we were taken to was a folding 6 top covered with a tablecloth and six folding chairs. It was off to the side of the main dining area and was right next to the bussing station full of dirty dishes. We expressed our displeasure and were told to wait for another table because there were no tables for four available. Right before we were seated we watched a group of four approach the host stand and demand a table due to an error in their reservation time. They were seated at a 4 top we suspect was the table we were supposed to get, so then we got the terrible makeshift table in the corner. When we finally sat down there was a dirty fork under the table. My juice glass had a huge crack and shard of glass missing. We could not believe it. We showed it to the waiter and he shrugged and took it away. No apology, he didn't seem fazed. I ordered mint tea. I was brought camomille tea and reminded him I wanted mint. I was then brought a second pot of camomille tea. I again reminded him I wanted mint. When the waiter took our order he did not write down our entrees. He had to come back to the table to ask again what we wanted. My daughter remembered the beautiful lemon waffles she had ordered there before so she ordered them again and so did my mom. When they arrived they were a soggy mess. The looked nothing like the last time she had ordered them, they were lacking garnish and the whipped ricotta topping had melted into puddles under the heat lamp. They looked pathetic. The waiter heard us complaining about the lack of garnish so he later brought the garnish in a small dish halfway through our meal. The entire experience was completely disappointing. Terrible service, lack of attention to detail and subpar food at outrageous prices.

OT
San Francisco
7 reviews
Dined on August 4, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Perfect for our Sunday morning brunch! Great selection of food and great, fresh squeezed orange juice!!!

L
San Francisco
7 reviews
Dined on August 3, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great experience for High Tea! We went to celebrate a birthday and they brought a cake and candles.

MO
New York Area
1 review
Dined on August 3, 2019
Overall 3food 2service 2ambience 5

Would recommend for its location and historic art value. But not for food or service.

JK
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on August 3, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 5

The only part of this experience I was disappoint in was that there was nothing special for our birthday celebration. A child next to us received a dessert with a little candle and I was hoping for some acknowledgment of our special birthday girl’s 16th birthday. I will most likely not bring birthday guests here in the future.

CS
1 review
Dined on August 3, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

Although the furniture (table chairs) are modern overall atmosphere maintains the SF Victorian opulence. The buffet is good quality but you are also paying from for the view. The buffet ($40) is the best value compared to ordering off the menu. Went on a Sat at 9:30 AM I had reservation for breakfast thus no wait others had a 10min wait without reservation. If you want appreciate the view and are not rating are welcome to simply visit the lounge area (other half of the room).

BA
San Francisco
6 reviews
Dined on July 30, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

The Garden Court is an amazing space to dine in. It's expensive but food choices + quality were excellent. The service was outstanding as well.

AS
Columbus
4 reviews
Dined on July 28, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great food--excellent waiter-Robert. Very pricey bu

OT
San Francisco
5 reviews
Dined on July 25, 2019
Overall 2food 2service 2ambience 4

Condescending servers, unpalatable food, nice decor

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