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Activities & Attractions

DOWNTOWNSAN FRANCISCO

Union Square

Union Square, the park for which the area is named, is filled with chess players, trysting lovers, café tables and chairs, special events and fairs. Many of San Francisco's largest department stores can be found here, including Macy's, Neiman Marcus, Nordstrom's, Gumps, Saks Fifth Avenue, Tiffany's, and Cartier as well as luxery hotels, anitque bookshops and clothing boutiques. If you are looking for a great place to stay, we have several beautiful vacation homes to choose from.If being in the heart of it all is your thing, stay at our Inner Sunset home, where you are blocks away from great restaurants, shopping and Golden Gate Park.

Maiden Lane is a must see tree-lined alley that extends two blocks east of Union Square from Stockton to Kearny Streets. Once known as Morton Street and considered disreputable, it now features exclusive shops, bridal boutiques, and sidewalk cafes.

Transamerica Pyramid Building

The Transamerica Pyramid has become an iconic landmark worldwide, and is the easiest building to pick out of the San Francisco skyline.

It all began in 1968 when President John R. Beckett noticed that the trees in a city park - unlike the surrounding, box-like buildings - allowed natural light and fresh air to filter down to the streets below. Wanting to achieve the same effect with Transamerica's new headquarters, he chose an unconventional pyramid shape for the building.

The result: an openness that allowed access to the environment. The Transamerica Pyramid is now both a distinctive building revered by San Franciscans and a landmark of international recognition.

The Transamerica Pyramid is located in the heart of the Montgomery Financial District at 600 Montgomery Street in San Francisco, California. It is a part of Transamerica Center (a complex that includes Two Transamerica Center and Transamerica Redwood Park) and includes nearly one city block.

The Transamerica Pyramid building and logos featuring it are registered trademarks of Transamerica Corporation and are the company's primary icons of product authenticity.  If you want an amazing view of the Transamerica building and the San Francisco skyline while you sip your coffee on your private deck, than our Potrero Hill house is for you.

San Francisco's Cable Cars

In 1873, Andrew Hallidie, inventor of the Cable Car, was on board for the launch of the cable car system.

Before the 1906 earthquake, more than 600 cars were in use. Hallidie was inspired to build the cable car system due to witnessing an awful accident. A horse drawn tram slipped down a hill, dragging the horses with it.  Be sure to ride the cable cars at least once while you are staying in a pristine San Francisco vacation rental.

The Cable Car Barn

Both a museum and the power behind the cable car system, the Cable Car Barn is located at 1201 Mason Street and is open 10am to 5pm daily. The engines and wheels that wind the cables through the system of channels and pulleys beneath the city streets are anchored to the ground floor.

Chinatown

Second only in size to New York City's Chinatown, it is the largest Chinese community on the West Coast. Initially, only a small community at Portsmouth Square, once the gold rush began, the Cantonese came by the boatload, fleeing famine and the Opium Wars. By 1850 there were more than 4,000 Chinese men (and only 7 Chinese women) in the area.

When the area was burnt down by the 1906 earthquake and fire, city politicians planned to relocate the Chinese to less valuable property. The industrious Chinese rebuilt with such speed that they reclaimed their district before City Hall could respond.

Locals shop on Stockton where the freshest vegetables, produce and fish spill over in boxes onto the crowded streets, in order to avoid the more touristy section of China town on Grant St.  If maybe this kind of hustle and bustle is too much for you we have several San Francisco vactation rentals that are in a more relaxed area.