Built in 1922, The Castro Theatre is San Francisco's only remaining movie palace. When it's not hosting film festivals, this 1400-seat house runs a repertory calendar heavy on film classics; there is no better place to see The Wizard of Oz. The interior reflects the elegance of a bygone era with its red velvet seats and walls that feature molded plaster and fresco detailing. The fanciful ceiling, from which an imposing art deco chandelier hangs, is designed to evoke the interior of a Bedouin tent. A mighty Wurlitzer organ plays between evening shows and completes the antique feel of the theater.
An architectural masterpiece, The Fillmore itself is as worth seeing as any band that plays here. Stand on the main floor next to the historic stage and look up at soaring ceilings, embellished with carvings and gold paint, while the booming speakers rattle your bones. If you choose the tranquility of the balcony instead, sink into velvet-covered seats, sip cocktails, and eat French fries. With posters representing almost every group that has ever played here, the history of American music is on full display.
With one ticket, guests can see three to five bands in one night at Bottom Of The Hill. All musical genres are represented here, and it is a good bet that whatever you like will play here eventually. Modest Mouse, Yo La Tengo, MGMT, Mates of State and the Mighty Mighty Bosstones are just a few of the cutting-edge performers to have graced Bottom of the Hill's hallowed stage. Occasionally, all-age shows allow even the youngest music fans to rock-out with the big kids.
Constructed as a temporary attraction for the 1915 Pan-Pacific International Exhibition, Palace of Fine Arts continues to enchant the city. The original plaster, which made up the monument's exterior, has been gradually replaced, with funds raised by the Marina's residents who wanted to preserve a graceful part of their landscape. Swans in the adjoining lagoon glide by the soaring ocher-tinted colonnades and the imposing dome rigged with panels of centaurs and warriors. Stroll inside the dome and marvel at the uncanny acoustics, then enjoy a picnic lunch on one of the park benches to provide an unparalleled view of this gem.
Get tickets in advance for shows at the Great American Music Hall because even though it's a big venue, sell-outs are common. All ages can enjoy the music in this historic venue, with talent spanning the entire spectrum from punk to country, famous to unknown, local to international. Jonathan Richman, Nick Lowe, Boss Hogg, !!!, the Ponys, and the Dirtbombs are just a few of the acts to have graced this hallowed stage. Watch from rows, tables, balcony seats, or the stage-level dance floor. The ornate gold and red velvet curtains are a throwback to the Barbary Coast days. The venue serves food and drinks to the large crowds.
Situated nicely on the courtyard of Fisherman's Wharf, Cobb's features nightly lineups of talented comedians. Both tourists and locals are found here, laughing themselves to tears. Wednesday's three-hour "All-Pro Showcase" has 14 comics, featuring well-known, occasionally famous, acts. Previous performers include Robin Williams, Jerry Seinfeld, Rob Schneider and Kathy Griffin. It can get expensive with a cover and a two-drink minimum, but can you really put a price on joy and laughter?
Named in honor of the college's former coach and baseball legend, Louis Guisto Field opened in 2012. Enclosed by pine trees with the hills as a backdrop, this baseball field replaced its namesake arena. The base of Saint Mary's College of California's Gael baseball team, it is a great place to catch all the action of the home team.
The Taube Atrium Theater is nestled inside the opulent building of San Francisco War Memorial. The theater was named after California Businessman, philanthropist and San Francisco Opera Board Member Tad Taube and his wife Dianne. Inaugurated in 2016, the space is painted in a light grey tone with carved walls and a hazy, circular skylight on the ceiling. With minimalist architecture and a distinct grey theme, the place has a calm vibe. Equipped with modern sound and light systems, it is a perfect blend of contemporary and traditional. Since it is a flexible space, it is used for a variety of smaller concerts and operas.