Benioff Foots $6.1M Bill To Turn Bristol Hotel into Subsidized Housing

Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff teased the project as a hint of what's to come once funds from Proposition C are implemented.

Once the Bristol Hotel renovations are complete by February, 58 formerly homeless people will live in permanent supportive housing. (Photo: Ida Mojadad)

Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff stepped in once again to donate $6.1 million to fund 58 permanent supportive housing units at a renovated Tenderloin hotel.

Formerly-homeless individuals will begin living at the Bristol Hotel, next to Mikkeller Bar on Mason Street, in February thanks to the donation announced on Thursday. Residents will have a personal bathroom, shared kitchen, and pay subsidized monthly rent of $500 to $650.

After years of having unstable access to restrooms or sharing it with many others, some people notified of the Bristol Hotel housing were reportedly moved to tears at the thought of getting their own bathroom. Gail Seagraves, who gives tours of the Tenderloin Museum and has lived in supportive housing for 10 years, called the units a “win-win situation.”

Tenderloin Housing Clinic is receiving the donation, which covers five years of a 20-year lease that the city will take over funding for. The 58 units are also celebrated as freeing up additional room in the supportive housing system. 

Benioff stepped in at the request of Mayor London Breed, who was notified of the property bidding by THC Executive Director Randy Shaw. 

“This doesn’t come along every single day,” Breed said. “Marc and Lynne Benioff have been absolutely extraordinary in the effort to address these issues.”

Benioff billed the project as a taste of what’s to come once the city starts collecting gross receipts taxes from Proposition C, which the Salesforce CEO campaigned hard for. Though no one has filed a lawsuit, Breed said she would clear any legal challenges before implementing the funds to fight homelessness.

Hours after the press conference, Breed announced that San Francisco will receive a one-time $415 million windfall for affordable housing and homelessness. Breed and the Board of Supervisors will decide how to spend the $181 million generated from property taxes in the coming months.

Prop. C funds or not, Benioff and Breed emphasized the need for businesses to step up to public-private partnerships. 

“It doesn’t take miracles — it takes money,” Benioff said. “This is a solvable issue.”

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