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Best Bed & Breakfast 

Chateau Tivoli

Bed & breakfasts don't come any more opulent or attractive than this fairy-tale French Renaissance town house in the heart of the city's Alamo Square district. Commissioned by an Oregon shipping magnate in 1892, the Tivoli has an eclectic history since World War I that includes stints as a home for single Jewish girls, a rooming house, and, at the height of the New Age era, the headquarters for sexual healer Jack C. Painter. (The New Age paper Common Ground was started at the site.) Painstakingly restored to its Victorian heyday, it began its life as a B&B in 1989 just days before the Loma Prieta earthquake (and, its owners were pleased to report, sustained no damage). The eight guest units are adorned with museum-quality furniture pieces from the estates of Cornelius Vanderbilt and Charles de Gaulle, among others. Rooms range from $99 to $265 per night, double occupancy.

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