With the long-term lease for the iconic Phoenix Hotel slated to expire in September of next year, the 44-room hotel at 601 Eddy Street, “a favorite of the rock and roll set for decades,” is now on the market with a $15 million price tag.

While $341k per room might seem high for a 1950’s property “in one of [San Francisco’s] most dynamic neighborhoods,” the two-story hotel sits on a nearly 38,000-square-foot site that is zoned for development up to 80 feet in height and nearly 380 units, “or up to 450 units with the State Density Bonus.”

17 thoughts on “Iconic Phoenix Hotel in Play, Positioned for Redevelopment”
  1. That sounds like an understatement of the current effect of state density bonus laws. AB 1287 (enacted 2023) gives prospective developers the possibility of up to 100% bonus over the base zoning. However it’s not clear that the base zoning allows for the claimed 380 units … the RC-4 code seems to allow “up to one unit per 200 square feet of lot area” which would be 190, and the “North of Market Residential Special Use District Subarea No. 1″—and let’s just pause right here to appreciate that SF’s zoning code is completely out of control—allows 1 per 125, giving 304. On the other hand the group housing use allowed in RC-4 yields 543 base units, and AB 682 makes state density bonus applicable to group housing projects.

    1. Any comment on valuation for asking price $15M? Pre-pandemic would that have been rough back of the envelope estimate for unapproved site, approx $100k per unit per lot value? For RC-4 zoning approx. $19M, or Special Use District approx. $30M.

      1. I have no clue there. Would love to read anyone else break it down for us though, under 2024 circumstances.

  2. Need to find a way to save this. Take the parking lot, maybe demolish the restaurant/bar building and re-build on the bottom floor of the new structure, but please save the pool area and hotel rooms. Chambers/Phoenix Hotel hosts so many great events and it’s such a unique venue in SF.

    1. B…bu…but don’t you realize we’re in a housing crisis ??? (And please don’t let the tens of thousands of empty units right now confuse you, or serve as a strawman). That every square foot of developable space must be given over to building dwellings, so the percentage of the world’s 8 billion people who want to move to the SF can rise from .001% to .0012%? Here the enlightened state government has given the tools to overule the people actually elected to make decisions and do just that and you want to ignore them ??
      How DARE you!!!


      1. I’m in favor of replacing single story commercial buildings with housing about 99% of the time, but this is the exception. I was fine with Lucky 13 going (Upper Market) because it’s truly a horrible use of land, and there are other bars with a similar aesthetic out there. The Phoenix / Chambers is different, it’s one of one.

        The Tenderloin in particular needs more residents, more foot traffic, more security, more landscaping, more concerned citizens. Keep the hotel and pool area, build on the parking lot and the Chambers building.

  3. Why would someone pay $15 million for this site. Has anyone walked or driven by this site recently. Only option would be an affordable site, market rate deal would never work.

  4. I, for one, would like to see the leader board that S.F. real estate agents are using to rank San Francisco’s neighborhoods, and an explanation of what metric they are using to quantify “dynamism” on it. That would make for interesting reading.
    Would a reader that is a member of SFAR let us know if that’s available at all?

  5. Yes, let’s put piles of affordable housing in this failed neighborhood. That way families with children who can’t afford elsewhere can live the full brunt of it. Btw, the TL has the highest density of children of anywhere in SF – kids who can’t safely hangout outside of their cramped apartments. This area was doomed with Newsom’s Care-Not-Cash giveaway to his downtown-owning cronies – a policy to forever anchor the TL in misery and drag it down to lower and lower depths.

    Btw, if you want to see it, spend 1 hour standing street-side and you will experience the dirtiest, rottenest, most drug-infused time of your world travels.

    1. I can’t really tell if the first sentence is sarcasm or not.

      The tenderloin has “the highest density of children of anywhere in SF” because members of the precariat and working classes who live elsewhere in San Francisco can scarcely afford to form families, largely because they are transmitting a larger share of their earnings to the landlord class or are otherwise overpaying for housing. When they have children, they tend to move out of The City.

      The folks who tell us ad nauseam that they believe housing in San Francisco is subject to the basic economic principle[s] of supply and demand would probably say that building more affordable housing in this neighborhood would tend to lower the price level of housing in general, because single people and childless couples who can tolerate the urban grit and challenging street conditions would choose to live here and leave more child-friendly environs available to those who can best utilize them, leaving both sets of housing consumers better off.

      I think that even if a developer purchases this site, they will likely sit on the entitlement and avoid breaking ground until rents and condo selling prices turn up, so the loss of the venue will be pointless (unless the population of S.F. shrinks meaningfully).

      The operators of the Phoenix should have negotiated an option for this property years ago, or otherwise positioned themselves to acquire it well before their lease was up.

  6. The brunch at the hotel restaurant was surprisingly good. But starting around 2018–2019, the street scene on that corner got so bad I refused to go there anymore. At one point you literally could not walk on one side of Eddy due to all the tents, and the other side was a minefield of human waste.

  7. Dynamic – Love the Loin but this is where I bumped into someone by accident at a corner, and had to run and then sprint for my life.
    20+ years later, its even more dynamic.

  8. The zoning in that area should [convey] special development rights for anyone who is willing go near it with capital.

  9. Sigh. The former location of Backflip. What a spot back in the day. Neighborhood was beaten down even then, but there were no zombies and the bar/lounge was packed Thurs-Sunday. Great memories. A redevlopment play won’t work until the zombie movie ends.

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