The heart of the Bay area, San Francisco serves as a cultural touchstone brimming with iconic architecture, fine art, and a wide range of cuisine.
The heart of the Bay area, San Francisco serves as a cultural touchstone brimming with iconic architecture, fine art, and a wide range of cuisine. San Francisco is crucial to the Californian experience and comprised of many smaller neighborhoods, such as:
Originally called “Nanny Goat Hill,” Bernal Heights has been going through a recent boom in popularity, especially with young families with children, due to its sunny microclimate, good access to freeways, and open space. It's primarily made up of small Victorian and Edwardian single-family homes and 2-3 unit flats.
The Central Waterfront/Dogpatch was a gritty industrial working-class neighborhood and one of the few to survive the 1906 earthquake and fire unscathed. Recently, this neighborhood has been in a state of transition as warehouses have been converted into restaurants, bars, condos, and live/work studios.
Originally used for cow grazing, as the name would imply, Cow Hollow remains one of San Francisco's most popular neighborhoods with bustling Union Street, home to designer shops, fine dining, and drinking establishments. Waterfront access and a mix of small condo buildings, multi-family and single-family homes can all be found in Cow Hollow.
At the heart of San Francisco is its Downtown neighborhood. Prepare to part with a good chunk of cash if you decide to indulge in the shopping of Union Square. Although it can be touristy, the convenience and access of downtown is tough to beat.
Financial District/Barbary Coast:
Most recognizable for the Transamerica Pyramid, the Financial District is primarily a commercial neighborhood with a smattering of residential high-rise condos and apartments. While this neighborhood is quiet after work and weekends, it bustles during the week.
Hayes Valley is one of San Francisco's most eclectic neighborhoods with some of the city's best boutique shopping, fine dining, cultural venues. It's close to tech shuttles and public transit and brimming with world-class culture.
Wedged between Mission Dolores and Potrero Hill, this sunny mixed residential and commercial neighborhood is where tech companies, artists, hipsters, and immigrants all peacefully coexist.
Lower Pacific Heights:
More affordable than its ritzy neighbor, Pacific Heights, this neighborhood still has many of the same charms: plentiful access to retail, residential housing, and public transportation.
With its bayfront location and unobstructed views of Golden Gate Bridge, this happening neighborhood is known as home to the young, beautiful people of San Francisco. Tons of bars, restaurants, and stores are here and locals often work out along the Marina Green.
A gorgeous little neighborhood just south of Stern Grove, Merced Manor is peaceful and residential but close to Stonestown, the San Francisco Zoo, and the Ocean Avenue commercial corridor.
Formerly a salt marsh and lagoon, this redeveloped neighborhood has blossomed into a lively mixed commercial neighborhood filled with bio-tech companies, hospitals, and high-rise luxury condominiums. With good access to public transportation and entertainment, this neighborhood appeals to both singles and empty-nesters.
Truly a melting pot and constantly changing, Mission Dolores is currently one of San Francisco's hottest neighborhoods. Here you can find large Latinx, hipster, foodie, and artist populations--and correspondingly some of the best taquerias, bars, fine dining options, and galleries in the city.
One of San Francisco’s signaure neighborhoods, Nob Hill was one of the original “Seven Hills” of San Francisco. Known in earlier years for its affluence, views, and gothic high-rise buildings, it still retains its original glamour but is now also home to many young urban professionals. The hill is settled with vintage barber shops, old corner coffee shops and cocktail lounges from bygone era. In addition to its swanky character, the locality is impressed by the varied personalities of the downtown neighborhoods that surround it, making it an fascinating place to live.
Once a working-class neighborhood for families, Noe Valley has gone through several waves of gentrification and is now considered a very upscale neighborhood for professionals with families. It is primarily made up of single-family houses and a few multi-family buildings.
In addition to many Italian restaurants--both great and not so great--North Beach was home to the beatnik subculture of the 1950s and 60s. This mixed residential and commerical neighborhood offers neighborhood dining, great people watching, lively bars, shopping, and green space like Washington Square Park.
San Francisco's ritziest address, known for its elegant mansions with panoramic views, this old-school neighborhood is home to many of San Francisco's well-known millionaires and billionaires.
Known for its good weather, hills, and stunning views, this longstanding residential neighborhood is as popular now as it was 50 years ago. A unique enclave of Victorians mixed with new development lofts and condominiums, Potrero Hill defies San Francisco stereotypes.
Incredibly diverse and active, the Richmond is ideal for anyone who craves an authentic neighborhood away from downtown. The massive range of dining and shopping options and the proximity to both the Presidio and Golden Gate Park are two of this neighborhood's most attractive features.
This was one of San Francisco's most desirable neighborhoods during the Gold Rush. Recently it's become home to several of the city's tallest luxury condo buildings, re-establishing it again as one of San Francisco's most prestigious neighborhoods, with easy access to the Financial District and breathtaking views. [added to South Beach]
The highly coveted Russian Hill is known for beautiful historic homes and condo buildings, exquisite restaurants and boutiques, and breathtaking views. Pending on location, the views can be extended from the Bay Bridge to the Golden Gate Bride and even to the Marin County. Russian Hill is within comfortable walking distance to the great restaurant & sight seeing neighborhoods of North Beach, Fisherman’s Wharf, Cow Hollow, Union Street, the Marina, and Chestnut Street. This neighborhood is San Francisco at its best.
Formerly called "South of the Slot" in reference to the cable cars that ran up and down Market Street, South of Market is a patchwork of warehouses, nightlife, art spaces, high-rise condo and apartment buildings, and technology companies.
Once filled with warehouses, South Beach has been transformed over the last decade into a primarily residential neighborhood with modern apartments and luxury condos. It's known for water views and convenience to the Financial District and SOMA neighborhoods as well as being the home of AT&T Park.
Much like it's counterpart in the Richmond, the Sunset has a large range of establishments, restaurants, bars and stores. Hugging the south side of Golden Gate Park, this neighborhood is close to the De Young Museum, the Academy of Sciences and the Botanical Garden.
Van Ness/Civic Center:
Culture vultures love this neighborhood as home to the Opera, Ballet, and Asian Art Museum. While it can be a bit seedy with an above-average homeless population, close proximity to Muni and Hayes Valley make this an up-and-coming mixed commercial and residential neighborhood.
Nestled between South Beach and SOMA in San Francisco's south Financial District, Yerba Buena is home to art galleries, shopping centers, and the Moscone conference center, as well as the beautiful Yerba Buena Gardens. It has some of the best access to public transit in the city, and is rapidly developing into one of San Francisco's most popular neighborhoods.
A Bay Area native, Christine has extensive knowledge of the different cities and neighborhoods across the South Bay and up the Peninsula.