A proposed "upscale hostel" at 7th and Market with a restaurant, basement nightclub, and two large rooftop terraces was approved by the Planning Commission last week, and once completed in 2012 it will nearly double the number of hostel beds in San Francisco from 620 to 1,106. The Grant Building at 1095 Market was originally built for office uses in 1904, and currently still has a few office and non-profit tenants who will have to vacate. The street-level facade of the building, long since altered from the original, will be restored. "This is an excellent example of adaptive re-use," said Commissioner Christina Olague. "It's always nice to see a building preserved."
The $16 million project is being brought by Australian entrepreneur Simon Johnson, and will include 486 beds spread over nine stories and 94 rooms. Some rooms will be nicer and more expensive, offering private bathrooms. There will be a women-only floor, as well as an internet cafe, restaurant, 3,500-square-foot nightclub, and 8,500 square feet of terraces on the roof. He tells the Examiner that he wanted to create "something different" for young tourists, and provide the only hostel that's a mere 35 feet from a BART station.