Fun things to do in San Francisco

written by liz on Monday, February 22 2010

Michael and I got a rare chance to explore San Francisco (also known as The City in my house) without the kids yesterday and - we had a lovely time. If I am exploring a new city (or a city I know well but have not been to in a while) I am a happy happy girl.  We started our adventure at Flax. Flax is an art supply store that has any art supply you might need, as well as a mind boggling room full of beautiful paper, there is also a great selections of pens, stationary, gifts, picture frames, journals, kids art supplies, books- you name it and your art fantasies are within reach. I could browse here for hours…. but we only had enough quarters to feed the meter for a short while so we pressed on.



Our next stop was Potrero Hill where we went to another amazing art store called Arch. Arch is in a light filled  space that also has a vast supply of  art, drafting and graphic supplies. This is a perfect place to buy a gift for the creative artsy cool people in your life. I found a few treasures.

After drooling over all the fun things at Arch, Michael wanted to visit a local bag making company that does all its manufacturing in the city itself (kind of rare these days). We walked in the door of Rickshaw Bag Works to see their office, manufacturing facility (complete with sewing machines) as well as a little retail shop all onsite.  Rickshaw makes messenger bags, tricked out diaper bags, and other goodies too.   A super sweet and welcoming woman came over right away to see if we had any questions and showed us the very cool  “zero waste bag” in which all scraps that are made in its production are used (not wasted)… very cool indeed. Rickshaw does custom bags and they have a little shop onsite with quite a few options that are already made. 

Next up was one of my all time favorite shops Collage Gallery . This is the greatest shop. Not only do they have a cool selection of vintage clocks and cameras…. the jewelry is beautiful. There are lots of little nooks and crannies and if you see a little file drawer or piece with tiny drawers, pull it open and there will probably be a beautiful piece of jewelry hiding inside for you to discover! What a treasure trove. Collage also has a schedule on its website that lists upcoming workshops for collage making. I got a great cocktail ring for $20 but none of the pictures I tool do it any justice, hopefully I can get a good picture to post at a future date. 

All this shopping made us thirsty , and it was almost 5:00 after all. Happy hour! I really have been craving a vacation lately so I suggested the View Lounge on the top floor of the Marriott Hotel. This is the closest thing to a different perspective as I could imagine (39th floor!)  and even though I am terrified of heights, I love this bar. It is a such a great way to view the city! The happy hour had a Skyy Vodka special running and so I had a delicious drink called a purple sunset…. which was a  chilled cocktail of Skyy Vodka, pineapple juice and Chambord. Actually I had two…. and I loved every sip. Woo Hoo! The rest of the drinks seemed kind of pricy and almost double the happy hour price of $7 …. so happy hour specials are the way to if you don’t want to feel like someone stuck it to you when you weren’t even paying attention…..


Here is a video of The View Lounge I found on You Tube ….

Next stop (we don’t get out much so we have to cram a lot into one adventure) was a stop at one of our all time favorite restaurants The House. We have going to this tiny little place since before we were married some 13 years ago and it is still as great as ever! Yum! I am still thinking of my wasabi noodles with sea bass. This place really is so good! Michael had noodle with beef (below) . It is so good you think about it for days and days and days after having it.



Some how we ended up walking across the city to get to dinner, so we had to take a BUS to get back to the Westfield Center for one last stroll to window shop and people watch… then it was back to the car to drive home and sleep like babies.

San Fran, you still got it baby!

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