Harry Denton's Starlight Room

Address: 450 Powell Street, San Francisco , 94102, United States
Style: Cocktail bar

The Drake Hotel and its Starlight Room closed in early 2020 due to the Covid-19 pandemic. The hotel reopened as the Beacon Grand in 2024, and the Starlight Room was reimagined and rebranded as Starlite.

Starlight Room review from 2011.


Harry Denton's Starlight Room has a reputation for hiring bartenders who go on to great things: Tony Abou-Ganim, Marcovaldo Dionysos, and Jacques Bezuidenhout have all worked here at one point or another. The top-floor hotel lounge has helped launch the careers of many mixologists, but it hasn't been known for its own cocktails in quite a few years. This fall the Starlight Room had a million-dollar makeover, with new plush red furniture with gold accents, an expanded bar, and other cosmetic changes. They also brought on Joel Teitelbaum (recently of Zero Zero) to develop and manage the cocktail program.

The drinks on the menu are arranged chronologically from punches through present-day cocktails, even including a few drinks from the 1980s. Teitelbaum is not a stickler for historical accuracy: there is a Pisco Crusta from the Jerry Thomas era that includes red lychee tea, for example. The cocktails call upon exotic ingredients but aren't designed to suit the palates of cocktail snobs only, rife with mezcal and bitter amaros: Teitelbaum has made approachable cocktails with these ingredients. The 21st floor lounge has amazing views of the city but with a history of both a tourist destination and a hip-hop nightclub with an entry fee on the weekends, it remains to be seen if this bar will attract the cocktail-hopping crowd it was rebuilt to cater to.