San Francisco Journals

Two Days in San Francisco

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A December 2011 trip to San Francisco by sararevell

Chinatown Photo, San Francisco, California More Photos
Quote: Two days is definitely not enough time to cover much of what this wonderful city has to offer. But if it’s all you have, walking through Chinatown, along The Embarcadero and exploring a corner or two of Golden Gate Park makes a fleeting visit quite memorable.

Petite Auberge

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Hotel | "A Sweet City Sanctuary"

Petite Auberge Photo, San Francisco, California
Quote:
We arrived at the Petite Auberge in the evening after a long flight from London. We took the BART train from the airport to Powell Street station and made the short walk to the Petit Auberge, although be warned, the last part is up one of San Francisco’s famously steep hills and if you’re hauling large suitcases, a taxi might be the easier option. Tired and feeling not exactly at our best, we were grateful for a quick and easy check in. We had decided to treat ourselves to one of their Deluxe Queen rooms for our two nights in San Francisco and we were not disappointed. Our first floor room was accessible via a short, carpeted staircase as well as a quaint, metal-gated elevator. ...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on February 4, 2012

Petite Auberge
863 BUSH STREET
San Francisco, California 94108
415-928-6000

Chinatown Photo, San Francisco, California
Quote:
We left our hotel on Bush Street and headed east towards the financial district. It was a crisp clear December morning and to our surprise, few people were out on the streets. We felt lucky to have the place to ourselves. We continued as far as Grant Avenue, where the three banks of floating green tile roofs indicate the entrance to San Francisco’s Chinatown. It was a funny experience to walk through the area in such a quiet state. It is the largest Chinatown in North America and is usually teeming with tourists and local merchants. One of the few signs of normal life was a modestly sized walking tour group. They rounded a corner across the road from us and their leader announced matter of...Read More

De Young Museum

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Attraction | "Art of the Arctic, Americas and Africa"

De Young Museum Photo, San Francisco, California
Quote:
The De Young Museum is a copper brown hulk rising from the mown grass of Golden Gate Park. Originally opened in 1895, the museum had to be rebuilt in 1929 and again in 2005, both times due to damage sustained in earthquakes. Its present incarnation includes a lookout tower and engineering that will help withstand future earthquakes. We bought a general admission ticket, normally $10 but if you show a valid public transport ticket on the day of your visit, it is reduced to $8. Special exhibitions command an additional ticket so we decided to forego the Masters of Venice exhibition from Vienna and headed to the other galleries. The first few rooms we walked through were dedicated...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on February 4, 2012

De Young Museum
50 Hagiwara Tea Garden Drive, Golden Gate Park.
San Francisco, California 94102
(415) 750-3600

Boudin at Fisherman's Wharf

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Restaurant | "A Big Bread Bowl at Boudin"

Boudin at Fisherman's Wharf Photo, San Francisco, California
Quote:
Yes the Boudin may be full of hungry tourists but for any seafood-loving soul, it’s a San Francisco right of passage. The place is something of a mini theme park. In the shop window, bakers mould ropes of squidgy dough into plump sourdough rolls and spectators can admire a ‘here’s one I made earlier’ bread rendering of a crocodile. In the foyer, kids were being thrust upon an anemic-looking Santa Claus. On one side there was a metal staircase winding up to what I guess is the main restaurant and on the other, a large, busy self-service cafe and gift shop. A conveyor of baskets ferried metal baskets of decorative sourdough overhead but down on ground level, we wasted little time ordering up...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on February 4, 2012

Boudin at Fisherman's Wharf
160 Jefferson Street
San Francisco, California 94133
(415) 928-1849

Don Pisto's

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Restaurant | "A Chili Kick at Don Pisto"

Don Pisto's Photo, San Francisco, California
Quote:
Behind a wealth of Italian eateries is a modern, brash Mexican cantina that seems like it’s doing brisk business. We arrived late on a Friday night and were told that we would have about a half hour wait for a table. The long room has a tiny bar on one side and a long open plan restaurant on the other. Exposed brick walls and steel beams amplify the already noisy and chilly atmosphere and while it has an air of being too cool, the food brings it back down to earth. The open kitchen is shrouded in a smoky veil of chipotle and chili. Animated chefs turn out fresh tortilla chips into a pan the size of a giant paella dish, waiting to be distributed among the hungry crowds. We ordered a bowl of...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on February 4, 2012

Don Pisto's
510 Union Street
San Francisco, California 94133
(415) 395-0939

Top of the Mark

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Restaurant | "Top of the Mark misses the Mark"

Top of the Mark Photo, San Francisco, California
Quote:
A steep uphill walk from our hotel is the Intercontinental Hotel. Perched on the corner of California and Mason Street, the Intercontinental towers above the city. The hotel’s grand lobby immediately impresses but it is the Top of the Mark bar and restaurant on the 19th floor that draws visitors year round. We arrived early in the evening on a Friday to find that the place was already busy. All window-side seats were occupied so we had to satisfy ourselves with a table in the inner circle of the floor. Asides from the panoramic views, the Top of the Mark touts itself as the place to come if you want to try a Martini, as they claim to serve 100 different varieties of the cocktail. They have...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on February 4, 2012

Top of the Mark
999 California St.
San Francisco, California 94108
(415) 616-6916