San Francisco Sights to See - Union Square
San Francisco is a
visitor's delight for those seeking a mixture of the old and the new. One of
the best examples of that contrast is Union Square. Built in 1847, the square was designated from the outset as a
public plaza. A $25 million renovation, which was completed in 2002, has
brought the area to its current high point.
The piazza retains a monument of the goddess of Victory built in
and still dominates the square from atop a 97-foot Corinthian column.
Among the sights and sounds of Union Square are dozens of shops, art
galleries, restaurants and - of course -
hordes of people.
provide a delightful way for the visitor to San Francisco to arrive or
leave the area, but
waits can be long unless you board early in the morning. Sometimes even
then there's no guarantee of a short line and a quick boarding. Both
and the Powell-Hyde
lines begin and end at
Powell and Market.
If, as with so many, shopping is what you came to San Francisco for,
you will not be
Marcus and Saks
Fifth Avenue are competing with
in this west coast hub of fashion. And Prada, Ralph
and Versace will be happy to wear out the
numbers on your plastic.
Those well known names aren't the only imports from New York City,
& Co. offer jewelry that will challenge
any budget. And
also have stores here. (Swatch may be known
for some lower-end watches, but they also happen to own Hamilton,
makers of the 1957 Hamilton Ventura
chronograph, for those seeking
something more upscale.)
Also, don't overlook Sephora
if you're interested in some genuine
French perfume. They offer over 275 brands. but who's
Despite our concentration on shopping until now, you'll find that
dining in the area takes second place to no city in the world.
Everything from Morton's
Steakhouse and Postrio to
the Daily Grill
here. Dining with a view of the square is available at The Cheesecake
Factory in Macy's
or at the Rotunda on the top floor of Neiman Marcus.
Ruby's is a dining and theatrical experience for both the food and
And don't miss a visit to the San
Francisco Soup Co. Of course, if all
you have time for is a hot dog, you can even pick up that from one of
the street carts.
The theater district is nearby and offers many Broadway
imports as well
as several home-grown plays and musicals. The renowned American
Conservatory Theater is here at the Geary Theater (405
Geary Street, Phone: 415.749.2228). The 1909 facade
a show no matter what's going on inside.
Similar to New York's TKTS, there's a TIX booth
that offers half-price
theater tickets and passes for several attractions in the San Francisco
bay area. Many of
the shows and attractions also offer tickets and passes online.
While you're in the area, check out the view from the Sir
Hotel's Starlight Room at 450 Powell. A landmark
since 1904, it's THE
place to have a drink and take in some cool jazz just the way it might
have sounded 50 years ago.
And while you're taking in the buildings, visit San Francisco's only
Lloyd Wright at 140 Maiden Lane. Built in 1949,
prior to the
it holds the same style circular interior.
Union Square is easy to find. Bounded by Stockton, Powell, Post and
streetsm several buses run to the area and it's a short walk from many
most commonly used hotels. There's also a BART
(subway) exit at Market
to learn more about San Francisco.
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