Strategy for Vacationing in San Francisco

Discussion in 'After Hours Lounge (Off Topic)' started by Chris Souders, Jul 7, 2003.

  1. Chris Souders

    Chris Souders Stunt Coordinator

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    Imagine my surprise when search turned up no threads on san francisco. So here we go.

    My b-friend and I (b- too) are visiting for the first time. Couldn't pass up a 450 per person for airfare and lodgking at the clift for 4 days this coming weekend. I've searched the internet and downloaded a guide but basically there's too much to do in our 4 days. So, some questions...
    1) Is anything related to wine tasting out of the question? How would I get there (Rather not rent a car). what about this winetrain thing? Any suggestions or perhaps there are tours, though I'd hate sticking to a schedule...

    2) Any must-see's? PRetty sure we'll check out chinatown and likely pay hommage to the castro district. Possibly alcatraz and golden gate park.. others thoughts?

    3) We love to eat out. We have made no reservations. We like good food and good wine. Money is less of a concern.
    Hopefully our concierge will help us out, but any thoughts here?

    4) Nightlife...gay or nongay. Hotel bars or others? Generally, we prefer a more contemporary yuppie type place. I love to watch kareoke (I don't know why). Like good martini's. Piano/jazz kinda lounge-ish place would be cool too. He likes to dance, high energy house stuff. What's the gay bars that might be potentials?

    5) He found and wants to go on this hornblower cruise for dinner or brunch. Comments?

    Antyhing else going on from 10th to 14th we should know about?

    Thanks for any suggestions,
    Chris
     
  2. Grant B

    Grant B Producer

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    Hey Chris
    I will try and answer what I can
    1. You might find some wine tours for tourists at the hotel, but driving is the only good way. You might look into a limo for the day if you can find others that want to go. Golden Gate Transit (Bus) goes up there but they dont do a wine tour.
    2.alcatraz -you can buy tickets online, it's hard generally to walk up and get them.
    What other kinds of things do you like, art, theater shopping.
    My neighborhood, the haight -know for the haight ashbury summer of love - is pretty close to the castro and has some interesting things.
    Take one of the restored street cars (F line on Market) if you are staying downtown and want to get to the castro
    3.Dont eat at touristy places, other than that ...
    Mecca on Market street might be fun
    Pick up the Guardian or SF Weekly and check the listings, always something going on
    4 Sounds fun, not the greatest food but cant beat the view
    If you want; email me and I will give you my number in case you have questions or get lost.
    AND DONT FORGET A COAT and HEAVY CLOTHES!
    Just because it's summer in the rest of the world doesnt mean it will be hot here.
    About 6ish the wind and fog comes in and will freeze you...I live here so it doesnt real get me that cold
    Hope to hear from you
    Grant
     
  3. Chris Baucom

    Chris Baucom Stunt Coordinator

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    Chris,

    Check out Chinatown. When my wife and I go, we start down by the pier area, ride a trolley down to the downtown area and then spend the rest of the day walking back to the pier area for some good seafood by dinner. We usually time it so that we can have lunch in Chinatown, which is fun to look around in.

    If you are technically inclined or into history, look up the cable car museum. If you like to shop, hit the downtown shopping district.

    It is a purely touristy thing to do, but if you have never driven over the Golden Gate, it is worth it. A neat thing to do is to go over to the observation area on the other side of the bridge and look back into SF. Great photo op and it is beautiful after dark. Or you can take a walk onto the bridge for a little bit. If can get really windy up on the bridge.

    Hope you have fun!
     
  4. Dave Morton

    Dave Morton Supporting Actor

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    The wine train is around napa valley. See http://www.winetrain.com

    I was in San Fran a few years ago and here are some of my comments.

    1. Alcatraz is great.
    2. Check out Fisherman's wharf, it's fun. The whole waterfront down there is fun. There's a great brewpub down there too
    3. Go to Golden Gate National Park. It's probably 15 degrees warmer there.
    4. See the Golden Gate Bridge. It's about 15 degrees colder there.
    5. Chinatown is fun.
    6. Ride the trolley car ( you can take this down to the wharf). It lets you off by trafalger's square. Definitely go to the ice cream store. It's heavenly.
     
  5. Jose C

    Jose C Extra

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    I just got back from SF and I can definitely attest to it being chilly - so do bring a light coat or pullover. We went to Golden Gate Park and visited the buffalo paddock - it's on the more quiet side of the park down near 40th street close to North Beach and the "Windmill" in the park. Lots of people don't know that there's real bison in the park.

    For nightlife, there's 3 cool clubs/lounges that we like. 1015 Folsom at 6th is a big high energy dance club that plays trance - they've got an awesome light set-up and have guest DJs from around the world practically every week. For a more loungey atmosphere or if you prefer house music, check out Ruby Sky (more upscale) or DNA Lounge (more casual.)
     
  6. ChristopherD

    ChristopherD Stunt Coordinator

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    The Wine Train is basically a meal and wine in a moving vehicle, albeit a very good meal. They don't stop so you can taste.
     
  7. Dave E H

    Dave E H Supporting Actor

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    FWIW:

    Wine train isn't worth it. I do live here, but it's not the way to go. Ideally, you could find some wine tasting trip thing, but I don't know of one off hand. The best thing to do - unless you find a bus trip of some sort - is to take a car. Buses also tend to take you to the bigger wineries and the smaller ones are more fun anyway.

    Anyway, if you need dinner reservations, look here: www.opentable.com Several hundred of the best restaurants in the Bay area - you can just make your reservation online. several outstanding places; Masa's, jardiniere, and the Slanted door are a few of my favorites. Bacar has a great wine list. You can also make your reservation for Hornblower on this website.

    I second the recommendation on dressing warmer than you think. It will be warm this weekend, but it's still chilyl at night. Also, wine country is usualyl 12-20 degrees warmer than the city.
     
  8. Dennis Nicholls

    Dennis Nicholls Lead Actor

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    There's no public transport to see Napa valley - get a car. Consider booking a reservation at the Culinary Institute of America's restauraunt in the Greystone building (formerly Christian Bros. winery bldg.) www.ciachef.edu/greystone/index.html
     
  9. Scott_lb

    Scott_lb Supporting Actor

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    Regarding Alcatraz, if you intend to actually go on to the island itself and take a tour you will likely need to purchase your tickets a few days ahead of time. There is only one "boat company" that is allowed to go to the island, so there is usually a small delay between buying your tickets and actually being able to go.

    However, if you just want to cruise around it in the bay, you should easily be able to find some guys with their personal boats willing to take you around the bay for about ten bucks a head. You can therefore go near Alcatraz, but not up to it (or in it for that matter).

    I also recommend Chinatown. I thought is was different from Chinatown in L.A. and New York and liked it the best (of the three listed cities).

    You will likely find San Francisco very beautiful with lots to do, however expensive. Take lots of pictures and enjoy the time you are there!

    Have fun!
     
  10. Scott_lb

    Scott_lb Supporting Actor

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    Regarding Alcatraz, if you intend to actually go on to the island itself and take a tour you will likely need to purchase your tickets a few days ahead of time. There is only one "boat company" that is allowed to go to the island, so there is usually a small delay between buying your tickets and actually being able to go.

    However, if you just want to cruise around it in the bay, you should easily be able to find some guys with their personal boats willing to take you around the bay for about ten bucks a head. You can therefore go near Alcatraz, but not up to it (or in it for that matter).

    I also recommend Chinatown. I thought is was different from Chinatown in L.A. and New York and liked it the best (of the three listed cities).

    You will likely find San Francisco very beautiful with lots to do, however expensive. Take lots of pictures and enjoy the time you are there!

    Have fun!
     

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