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HELP PLZ : A week In San Francisco with the GF

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Flying in Oct 31st and staying through Monday for a work trip. My work activities will be centered around the Marriott Marquis on Mission, so lodging proximity to that spot is a bonus but not required. My work activities will be mostly confined to Mornings and early afternoons.

The GF will likely explore the city a bit while I work so the immediate area surrounding the hotel being safe for her to walk to a coffee shop / breakfast place or at least grab an uber/cab is ideal as well.

EDIT: Booked the Donatello in W Union Square area 

I've heard the stories about homeless/addicts in the tenderloin. I miss aware Bayview and Hunters point are "avoid". 

Looking for some fun activities for her during the day Thursday/Friday solo, then on Wednesday/Saturday/Sunday which I mostly have free have free. Then we will have evenings free as well. She enjoys tours / historical stuff. We also enjoy dining, bars, shopping (more eclectic stuff than Nordstrom type stuff), etc. I know she will want to do the uber-touristy wharf for chowder at one point. 

EDIT: Booked the "Behind the Scenes Tour" and "Night Tour" at Alcatraz for Thursday Evening. 

We enjoy fine dining from time to time, but prefer more authentic / hole in wall / unique type experiences much of the time. Would love a few cool bars/watering holes that are affordable (for SF) and have cool vibes. I'm a bourbon guy and have looked into "bourbon and branch" and "hard water" 

I know @Eephus is the resident SF guru but would love advice from anyone familiar with the city. It's been ages since I've been (12-13 years) so I'm certain my knowledge is dated. 

Thanks in advance! 

Edited by [icon]

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1. Book Alcatraz tour tickets right now.

2. Rent a car / hire a driver to go up and do brunch in Sausolito / redwoods the other weekend day.

3. R&G Lounge on Kearny has great Chinese food.

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Check out the Men's Room in the Castro, they are known for their stiff cocktails

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8 minutes ago, Snickers said:

Check out the Men's Room in the Castro, they are known for their stiff cocktails

:lol: hasn't been THAT long since I've been 

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1 minute ago, [icon] said:

:lol: hasn't been THAT long since I've been 

Seriously though, it you are going to do Alcatraz definitely get on tickets early and pay close attention as there are a ton of resellers those market themselves in a way that you don't realize you are paying a markup on the tour.

if you like to tweak or just like watching the tweakers, The End up opens at 6am on Sunday morning and was always a good time when I lived out there ages ago. 

If I had a free day in the Bay Area these days I'm leaving SF and heading to Sonoma for the day but everyone is different.

 

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1 hour ago, elbowrm said:

1. Book Alcatraz tour tickets right now.

2. Rent a car / hire a driver to go up and do brunch in Sausolito / redwoods the other weekend day.

3. R&G Lounge on Kearny has great Chinese food.

On the tickets. Debating the "Behind the Scenes / Night tour" on a weeknight for a more intimate experience (vs the 2pm Saturday cattle herding experience). Anyone done either? Thoughts? 

Brunch in Sausalito is very temping.... guessing that's a $30-40 uber fare in weekend traffic? 

Noted. Thanks! 


Renting a car and travelling well outside the city area isn't really in the cards for this trip, for those mentioning it. 
 

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17 minutes ago, Snickers said:

Seriously though, it you are going to do Alcatraz definitely get on tickets early and pay close attention as there are a ton of resellers those market themselves in a way that you don't realize you are paying a markup on the tour.

if you like to tweak or just like watching the tweakers, The End up opens at 6am on Sunday morning and was always a good time when I lived out there ages ago. 

If I had a free day in the Bay Area these days I'm leaving SF and heading to Sonoma for the day but everyone is different.

 

Noted. Yeah I picked up on the resellers factor. Definitely will be going off the National Parks page. Thanks for the heads up. 

Not into tweaking and being a work trip there won't be much in the way of after hours clubbing on this trip. :)

Thanks! 

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The Pickwick Hotel is being suggested by my boss due to low cost and proximity to the show. It looks pretty run down and the area doesn't look great. A little nervous about the GF wandering around that area in the mornings/afternoons.

I can be a hotel snob, but given the CEO is staying in a dive (Mosser) across the street from the venue for some reason, I'm trying to avoid going crazy on accommodations. :unsure: 

Edited by [icon]

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Drive to one of the spots you can park at near the golden gate bridge. Get a pic of you two kissing with it in the background. Most girls dig stuff like that and my guess is your gf will too.

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1 minute ago, eoMMan said:

Drive to one of the spots you can park at near the golden gate bridge. Get a pic of you two kissing with it in the background. Most girls dig stuff like that and my guess is your gf will too.

Watch out for Ted Cruz. 

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The night tour of Alcatraz is pretty amazing.   My gf and I took that tour together several years ago and we still talk about how fun it was.   When the dark of the nighttime hits and the evening gets cool and foggy--it almost sets Alcatraz up as  a perfect combination of romantic and sinister.  You should definitely do this--but as another poster said--get your tickets now.   

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:lol: good suggestions here on GG photo. We actually got one 14 years ago when we were first starting to date. This is our first time back since, so we will likely re-enact. 

Good to hear the review on the night tour. Booking that today then for Halloween Night (If open) or the following Wed Night. :thumbup:

 

OTHER HOTELS WE'RE LOOKING AT: 
Hotel Fusion

Hotel Union Square

Doesn't look to be anything too great on AirBNB in the area... outside the Wyndham Canterbury which is a bit further out than I'd like from the Show, but I could uber if I'm not feeling like hoofing it (often carrying stuff, in a suit). The accomodations do look nice though. 




 

 

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Booked the 4:50 (last one) Behind the Scenes & Night Tour (included) on Thursday night. :thumbup: 

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Restaurants in SF my wife and I love. I'm sure I'm forgetting some.

La Taqueria - Best burrito in America (not only my opinion, its been voted on.  Order it dorado style) and the tacos are just as good, IMO.  

Alba Ray's - Great new creole/cajun spot.

Super Duper burger - local burger chain that rivals In N Out for quality.  

Trick Dog - Trendy new bar.  Great cocktails and menu

Tommy's Joynt - Classic SF Dive with great heart attack-on-a-plate type food.

House of Prime Rib - Prime Rib is the only thing on the menu and it's excellent.

Zuni Cafe - A little more upscale and pricey for it being named a "cafe", but the food here is excellent.  

Burma Superstar - Burmese food.  The tea leaf salad is a must try.

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Awesome Scoresman... thanks! Bookmarking everything in Yelp. 

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Do they still have that place with the "famous" $9 coffee cocktails? Hated the touristy aspect of it but those coffees were no joke.

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Also add Coqueta to your yelp list.  It's on the Embarcadero close to the tourist stuff and it has great cocktails and tapas. 

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6 minutes ago, McGarnicle said:

Do they still have that place with the "famous" $9 coffee cocktails? Hated the touristy aspect of it but those coffees were no joke.

The Irish Coffee at The Buena Vista maybe?  I think that's near Fisherman's Wharf.  

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Looking at the Dontatello. Can get a stellar deal on it (99% sure) on Hotwire... may pull the trigger. 

Seems like a safe enough area for the GF 

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You say you're a bourbon guy but if you like beer too check out the La Trappe Cafe. Very cool atmosphere, when I've gone the owner tends bar downstairs. The guy is a beer encyclopedia, and he has some cool stuff from his own personal collection available. 

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41 minutes ago, [icon] said:

Looking at the Dontatello. Can get a stellar deal on it (99% sure) on Hotwire... may pull the trigger. 

Seems like a safe enough area for the GF 

Donatello is fine, your girlfriend will be safe. Don't you live in Memphis? That city is a dangerous dump compared to SF, I wouldn't be too concerned about some strung out heroin addicts in the Tenderloin.

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Love the calzones at Tommaso's.  Actually all the stuff I've had there has been great.

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20 minutes ago, Snickers said:

Donatello is fine, your girlfriend will be safe. Don't you live in Memphis? That city is a dangerous dump compared to SF, I wouldn't be too concerned about some strung out heroin addicts in the Tenderloin.

Memphis, like most cities, has dodgy areas and extremely safe ones. While it's very easy to avoid the downright dangerous spots, I generally wouldn't walk her walking around in the dodgy ones. I'd consider Tenderloin to be simply dodgy... but she's a 5'2" 110lb petite asian chick who's "city smarts" exposure is somewhat limited... so she can make a pretty easy target. Just like the peace of mind of avoiding that area unless she's with me. 

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10 minutes ago, The Kansas Comet said:

Love the calzones at Tommaso's.  Actually all the stuff I've had there has been great.

Nice! :thumbup:  Definitely hoping to get up to North Beach at some point. 

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1 hour ago, Kraft... said:

You say you're a bourbon guy but if you like beer too check out the La Trappe Cafe. Very cool atmosphere, when I've gone the owner tends bar downstairs. The guy is a beer encyclopedia, and he has some cool stuff from his own personal collection available. 

I enjoy beer, but diving too deep into beer nerddom would be pretty much lost on me. That said, the place looks cool and may drop in with a coworker. Thanks! 

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great suggestions already. would add: 

- Farmer's Market on Sunday AM at Ferry Plaza
- concert at The Fillmore (depending on who's playing, and if you like them)
- brunch at Zazie in Cole Valley
- tour at Anchor Steam Brewery
- if you're eating at Burma Superstar (i do 2nd that recco), stop in at The Plough & The Stars across the street for a pint...great Irish pub 

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Just now, [icon] said:

Nice! :thumbup:  Definitely hoping to get up to North Beach at some point. 

Tomasso's is good.  Also check out Tony's Pizza in North Beach.  Probably the best pizza in the area.  

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1 minute ago, [icon] said:

I enjoy beer, but diving too deep into beer nerddom would be pretty much lost on me. That said, the place looks cool and may drop in with a coworker. Thanks! 

Toronado is your spot for beers. 

 

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Hey, if you don't know what to do with your girlfriend for a week, then I'm afraid you need more help than what can be provided here.

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8 minutes ago, Galileo said:

Hey, if you don't know what to do with your girlfriend for a week, then I'm afraid you need more help than what can be provided here.

:lol: We'll be fine in that regard.... just dipping into the FBG wealth of knowledge about a city I havent been to in a bit. 

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2 hours ago, [icon] said:

:lol: good suggestions here on GG photo. We actually got one 14 years ago when we were first starting to date. This is our first time back since, so we will likely re-enact. 

 

fwiw... I grew up in Sausalito and was just talking with my mom who still lives there- Vista Point (right at the Sausalito end of the GG) has become a ####-show in terms of traffic. she said it backs up in the right lane most of the way across the bridge, and then gets people trying to cut in blocking the rest of the lanes further down. do yourself a favor and head up into the headlands above the bridge. very pretty, great photo ops, and less crowded. also where I used to go chill after a night out when I was too high to go home.

eta: getting to sausalito- a lot of people seem to be renting bikes (there's a precarious ride down into town from the bridge), but another nice way of getting over there is via ferry.

and definitely go to Muir Woods. also insanely crowded, but still magical every time I go.

Edited by El Floppo
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3 hours ago, eoMMan said:

Drive to one of the spots you can park at near the golden gate bridge. Get a pic of you two kissing with it in the background. Most girls dig stuff like that and my guess is your gf will too.

It about time he puts a ring on it, seems like the perfect place.

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12 minutes ago, El Floppo said:

fwiw... I grew up in Sausalito and was just talking with my mom who still lives there- Vista Point (right at the Sausalito end of the GG) has become a ####-show in terms of traffic. she said it backs up in the right lane most of the way across the bridge, and then gets people trying to cut in blocking the rest of the lanes further down. do yourself a favor and head up into the headlands above the bridge. very pretty, great photo ops, and less crowded. also where I used to go chill after a night out when I was too high to go home.

eta: getting to sausalito- a lot of people seem to be renting bikes (there's a precarious ride down into town from the bridge), but another nice way of getting over there is via ferry.

and definitely go to Muir Woods. also insanely crowded, but still magical every time I go.

:thumbup:  on both Sausalito via ferry and Muir Woods

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Looking into Sausalito ferry setup. Looks great. Not bad at $25 round trip. What are some good lunch or dinner spots or bars in Sausalito? I saw something about Trident having a nice patio but being overpriced. I'm assuming this spot is best enjoyed in an afternoon vs Evening? 

Does chilly Nov weather take some of the shine off the ferry ride and patio dining/drinking? Or no? 

Thx! 

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4 hours ago, [icon] said:

The Pickwick Hotel is being suggested by my boss due to low cost and proximity to the show. It looks pretty run down and the area doesn't look great. A little nervous about the GF wandering around that area in the mornings/afternoons.

I can be a hotel snob, but given the CEO is staying in a dive (Mosser) across the street from the venue for some reason, I'm trying to avoid going crazy on accommodations. :unsure: 

OMG I put it in a girl's butt in the Mosser.

Would recommend this dude for a food tour: https://www.facebook.com/FoodieAdventures/

 

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2 hours ago, Scoresman said:

Restaurants in SF my wife and I love. I'm sure I'm forgetting some.

La Taqueria - Best burrito in America (not only my opinion, its been voted on.  Order it dorado style) and the tacos are just as good, IMO.  

Alba Ray's - Great new creole/cajun spot.

Super Duper burger - local burger chain that rivals In N Out for quality.  

Trick Dog - Trendy new bar.  Great cocktails and menu

Tommy's Joynt - Classic SF Dive with great heart attack-on-a-plate type food.

House of Prime Rib - Prime Rib is the only thing on the menu and it's excellent.

Zuni Cafe - A little more upscale and pricey for it being named a "cafe", but the food here is excellent.  

Burma Superstar - Burmese food.  The tea leaf salad is a must try.

Seconded for Burma Superstar and La Taqueria.

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Sept-Oct is the best weather of the year but Nov can get a bit dicey if you get unlucky.  The Sausalito ferry is nice but you're already taking a boat ride to Alcatraz.  You don't need to do advance booking of the ferry so I'd play it by ear.

A lot of good suggestions so far.  The only comment I'd add is that the Ferry Plaza farmer's market is on Saturday, not Sunday.  There's also a smaller one on Tuesday but the porchetta sandwich vendor isn't there.

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Lot's of great suggestions in here.  I'll second the Ferry Building on Sat morning, Buena Vista, and R&G Lounge as highlights. 

I'll also through out La Fusion in the Financial District. I have some co-workers obsessed with Li Po for cocktails, but I have never been. Hong Kong Lounge is the best dim sum I have had in the US.

Fun city, hopefully will get a trip out there later this year.

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