San Francisco never seems to have enough hotel rooms.
Especially when a giant conference rolls into town like the Salesforce Dreamforce event, which last year attracted more than 60,000 out-of-towners and will likely attract even more this year.
Instead of moving the giant confab away from its hometown to more spacious quarters, Salesforce has come up with a novel solution: It has chartered a giant Celebrity cruise ship (The Infinity, occupancy 2,170) to handle the overflow.
The Dream Boat website says: “Many of the spacious rooms feature views of the bay or the city skyline. Be among the first to experience it. With multiple dining options, lounges, nightly entertainment, and different activities on every deck, the Dream Boat is the innovative new way to stay at Dreamforce.”
But Salesforce is not able to do much about room rates, which are already sky high when the event rolls into town September 15-18. (TIP: If you have plans to be in San Francisco around this time, and you are NOT going to Dreamforce, make your reservations now, or postpone your plans.)
According to the Dream Boat website, inside windowless berths on the ship will run about $320 per night including tax and gratuity. Want a berth with a window? That will run about $400 per night. Splurge on a room with a veranda overlooking the San Francisco waterfront at Pier 27 and you’ll pay $460 per night. And there’s a four-night minimum on those reservations.
The website also states that, “In addition to wireless service, the Dream Boat offers a brand new iLounge with Internet access available 24 hours a day. The iLounge is equipped with 20 Apple computers and one printer. Specifics about these offerings, including rates, will be available as we get closer to Dreamforce.” It’s not clear if guests will have wi-fi in their rooms or how much they might be charged for it.
And you know what? Those cruise berths are a deal compared to what’s on offer in downtown San Francisco that week. A quick scan online found that the Marriott, (even the Courtyard, above), Omni, Ritz-Carlton, InterContinental and many others are all in the (gulp) $700-$900 per night range. Even the Holiday Inn Express out by San Francisco International is going for $279!
My question to TravelSkills readers: What would you think about staying on a cruise ship instead of a hotel when at a giant conference?
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