The historic Payne Mansion, a circa-1881 Victorian in Western Addition, is a bit of an odd quail: Built by Theodore Payne and designed by Irish architect William F. Curlett (Phelan Building, the Crocker Mansion), the home, located on a heavily-trafficked block, features a mix of Eastlake, Stick, and Queen Anne styles.
It’s a prime example of pre-quake Victorian architecture extravagance in San Francisco.
“The Payne House is one of the few examples of virtually unchanged pre-fire homes of San Francisco’s wealthier class,” notes Noe Hill. “It is a reminder of an adolescent city built of wood by California gold and Comstock silver.”
Since the Payne family left for the Peninsula following the quake, the 13-bedroom building has been a myriad of businesses: a restaurant, a hotel, offices, a YMCA, and—most recently—the most expensive Airbnb listing in the city, commanding a cool $10,000 per night.
Southern California hotelier/restaurateur Bernard Rosenson purchased the home earlier this year, gently refurbishing the digs into a new hotel, christened the Mansion on Sutter, and a pricey 90-seat restaurant named 1881.
“The new restaurant, which is now serving dinner nightly, is named for the year the mansion was built,” notes Eater SF. “Designer Timothy Quillen decorated the 90-seat dining room, and the space also features a bar and outdoor patio.”
Since the property is on the National Register of Historic Places in San Francisco, the interiors haven’t been altered too much, especially in the hotel section. Which should prompt a sigh of relief for Victoriana fans.
The detailed lobby and guest suites still bear the marking of its Victorian past, with crown moldings, wood detailing, and era-appropriate wallpaper. (The Noir Room’s copious amount of toile wallpaper, portraying French pastoral moments, is particularly head turning.)
Rooms range from $349 and up per night.