Taking full advantage of the current housing and hotel crunch in San Francisco, the third floor of the parking garage at 819 Ellis Street has been converted into the “American International Hostel,” the operators of which have been advertising beds for rent on a nightly basis on VRBO.
Unfortunately for the operators, and perhaps some tenants, a tourist hotel, which San Francisco’s Planning Code still defines as accommodations for less than 32 consecutive days, isn’t permitted at the location without prior authorization and permitting.
And while the operators have filed an application to legalize the “hotel,” in the words of San Francisco’s Planning Department, “the plans submitted as part of the building permit application are incomplete, and fail to demonstrate how the third floor of an automobile parking garage can be converted into a tourist hotel that meets all applicable city codes and regulations.”
Ordered to immediately cease operations in October, the order was appealed, the hostel continues to operate, and San Francisco’s Board of Appeals is slated to issue a ruling this week.
As an aside, the parking garage is currently on the market for $7,950,000, having been reduced from $8,499,000, and the Polk Gulch parcel at 819 Ellis is zoned for development up to 130-feet in height.