Max and I finally got to getaway for our 20th anniversary and decided to stay in the city. We considered Napa, but this time of year it’s exorbitantly expensive. We thought, let’s pay half that price and stay at the Four Seasons in SF, which we never have done.
The Four Seasons San Francisco is tucked away off Market Street and shares it’s building with Four Season residences. The hotel lobby is on the fifth floor and has a cozy long bar with a fireplace area.
The MKT restaurant attached has floor to ceiling windows on some of the prettiest architectural landmarks in the city. We had breakfast there both mornings and it was amazing. The fresh fruit and juice and lemon ricotta pancakes were my favorite!
Drinks in the bar were good. We tried chicken sliders and the pub cheese appetizers which were exactly what we wanted.
The rooms have window seats onto the city and feel spacious yet cozy. Of course the bed and bedding was incredible and I slept like a baby both nights. The location is perfect. You’re minutes from shopping, Union Square, and the new MOMA which we couldn’t wait to check out.
After we checked in Max wanted to surprise me by taking me to a San Francisco landmark, Smuggler’s Cove. This tiki-bar was voted Best American Cocktail Bar by Spirited magazine in 2016, and one of the Best Bars on Earth by The London Times! It’s got a cult following so we got there a few minutes before five on Friday and joined a small line. The plain exterior belies the tropical explosion of Polynesia inside. We climbed to the top floor where I felt like I was drinking in the treehouse from Swiss Family Robinson!
I had some flashbacks to my 17th birthday at Don the Beachcomber. Remember that place? I always begged my parents to take me there and hoped one day when I became the magical 21, I might order one of the huge drinks in seashell to share. Smuggler’s Cove has many drinks like that, but they don’t appeal to me now…Lol.
However there are three pages of drink creations it was hard to decide! All the drinks are rum-based, made only with fresh juices and fruits and you can choose your rum if you’re so inclined. There’s a special award if you try each drink on the menu. Don’t try this in one night! It might take someone the better part of a year if they were motivated. The drinks are strong so plan on Ubering or walking!
After we wandered down just a few blocks to Hayes Valley. Love the restaurants, shops and vibe of this neighborhood. There’s a zillion cool spots to eat here and great independent boutiques. like Azalea where the San Francisco girls get their cool look. This is where to get the perfect oversized sweater, a long coat for those foggy cool days, brogues and generic chic totes. There’s all you need here to look simple yet stylish. There’s a specific look many SF gals sport and I’d call it art student moves to New York. It’s minimalist with a colorful details.
Another great shop in Hayes is Marine Layer, started by two local guys who just wanted soft shirts. (So Northern Cal.) I love this shop and have bought my guys a few button-ups and hoodies they will never get rid of. They carry women’s as well. Don’t miss this spot if you find yourself in the city and chilly. They have the coziest clothes around.
Give yourself a good hour or so to shop around. We did that while we waited for a table at Absinthe, a charming French Bistro. We popped over to Miette, to get Halloween candies for my guys and I cannot resist getting a few packages for my kitchen jars of black licorice cats and sugared pumpkins. This is the most darling sweet shop!
After we ducked into Arlequin wine merchant two doors down from Absinthe, and split a glass of the white on the tasting menu while browsing the collection shelves of wines from all over.
Absinthe had a good crack to it with a mix of locals, travelers and people on their way to see shows. We shared potato encrusted salmon with fennel and whole grain pappardelle with chanterelles. A small wait, but worth it for the delicious food and atmosphere.
Saturday morning I woke up, made myself a cappuccino at the coffee bar downstairs and relaxed by the fire for a bit and read the papers. Love! After breakfast we took the 2 minute walk around the corner to the newly re-opened SFMOMA.
I recommend starting at the top floor and working your way down via the open stairs.
The outdoor cafe for lunch, snacks or hot drinks.
Friends at the living wall.
This sculpture was really cool. It wasn’t possible to see the figure in it unless I was looking through a camera or far away.
One exhibit that really touched me was these posters by Susan O’Malley from her project and book, Advice From My 80-Year-Old Self.
Susan was a multi-talented artist who was working on a project to bring inspirational messages to the masses. She interviewed 100 people from age 7-88 asking if you sat down with your future self, what would you tell you now?
What a perfect spot for lunch after a morning at the museum. Decor is a bit like a treehouse with arts and craft style. You order at the counter and choose a cozy seat by the fire or a sunny table outdoors.
Food was so fresh and yummy. Great Verve coffee and baked goods as well if you want to just stop by for a late day cappuccino outside. Breakfast was popular with French toast and many of the dishes feature artisan bread by Semifreddis which is just the best.
Sunday we had breakfast in the lovely MKT restaurant at the hotel.I Just gorgeous views and it was hard to pull myself away from the cozy window seat in our room too.