This independent North Beach icon, founded by Beat writer-mentor Lawrence Ferlinghetti, goes beyond your average bookstore by shelving beat literature, anthologies, and fiction from Latin America, the Caribbean, the Middle East, Africa, Asia and much more. Experience San Francisco through the words written by some of the area's most famous, and sometimes hard-to-find, writers. The store has its own publishing house, City Lights, which has enriched the San Francisco community since 1953 by promoting emerging writers with an edge.
The Ferry Building Marketplace is a must-see for San Francisco visitors. This multi-million dollar development has an abundance of activities for the entire family. This marvelous building was designed by renowned architect Arthur Page Brown in Beaux Arts Style. Similar to that of the iconic Giralda Bell Tower in Seville, the clock tower of this building is a popular landmark and call be seen from afar. Take a tour of the historic Ferry Building, browse through antique shops, enjoy a view by the bay and a bowl of chowder at Ferry Plaza Seafood or buy organic produce at the Farmer's Market. Enjoy the sights and sounds of what makes the Ferry Building one of the Bay's most popular destinations for entertainment, food, and fun.
No music lover's trip to San Francisco would be complete without a visit to this warehouse-sized music store. The Upper Haight store bustles with hundreds of shoppers flipping through vast selections of CDs, records, tapes, videos and posters. The deals on used and yellow tag (cosmetically damaged, functionally guaranteed) items are the best in the city, as is the selection of obscure and independent-label titles.
A grand expansion at one of North America's largest shopping centers brings it more levels of premium designer boutiques, chain retailers and two major department stores: Nordstrom and Bloomingdale's. The center offers a vast area of upscale dining, entertainment and office space. Its breathtaking architecture dates back to 1896 and with modern additions there is no shortage of natural sunlight to guide you on your way. Let the circular brass escalators wind and unwind you past more than 150 shops and stores. The center is equipped with an information desk and ATMs.
Don't leave San Francisco without a stroll through this legendary square nearby Fisherman's Wharf, which is named after San Francisco's original chocolate-maker. There is a bakery and several restaurants and, of course, there's the Ghirardelli Ice Cream Shop where you can savor the deliciousness of the old-fashioned Ghirardelli sundae or buy some sweet goodies to bring back. Take some time and visit the art galleries, gift and specialty stores, and shoe and clothing shops.
Located on Piedmont Avenue, Rare Bird is one of the best store to shop for some quality antiques. Specializing in vintage products, the store has something for all. Apparels for women, accessories and more all are stocked under one roof here. You can also decorate the walls of your house with a range of quality home decor products available here. The staff here is quite friendly and knowledgeable about the products. The store also displays its products made in various workshops like candle making, block printing, painting and weaving. If you looking to treat yourself or your loved ones with some unique gifts, than head to Rare Bird.
The brainchild of Andrew and Jennifer Hall, The Beer Hall is a beer lover's haven. From the customized beer bottle capped back wall, a sleek bar with countless beer behind it, and beer racks, it would be tough not to like this tiny yet inviting beer shrine. With more than 242 beers, you will surely find a favorite. Specializing in handcrafted beer, there is a small but fine selection of wine as well. Enjoy the drinks in the tasting room or pick some up for your beer party at home. Don't miss this place if beer is on your mind and in your heart.
Whether you are a comic book collector, or a casual comic book reader, you will find a visit to Isotope worth your while. Anyone living in Hayes Valley who likes comics and graphic fiction, knows this place, and that is not just for its impressive collection of books, though it is very commendable. This lounge-cum-comic-book-store brings the best of both together to create a unique gallery-cum-reading-room kind of place, where customers can lounge around on the leather sofas while reading a book or two, or attend a live event featuring known names in the comic books business. What's more, you can tag along your furry four-legged friend to partake in this experience, since Isotope welcomes dogs.
One of the few places in San Francisco to stock reel-to-reel tapes, this shop also sells books, tapes, posters and vinyl, including a huge selection of 33 rpm records. What it does not deal in, however, is the compact disc. This quirk makes Grooves the music store to hit if you like to listen to music versus technology debates between staff members as you shop. To get the full spectrum of The City's music store scene, stop here before heading to Tower or Virgin.
Industry of All Nations is a clothing store based all over the world, one such store is based in San Francisco. Their goal is to deliver garments which have been made in countries like Argentina, Bolivia, India, Kenya and many more all over the world. It helps artisans from all the world to sell their product on a larger scale. The store has garments for both men and women inspired by the culture in the country it was made.
Fashion at ROLO comes hot off the runway, but without the haute couture price tag. This store is the model of downtown chic, featuring the best names in men's and women's apparel like Helmut Lang, D&G, Miss Sixty and Levi's Hard Denim. It always offers the cutting-edge of the looks that hipsters crave. Shopping is refreshing at this local San Francisco original.
This little independent grocery market is where the residents of Hayes Valley go to buy whole foods to maintain a healthy diet. The store has all the groceries the health-conscious shopper could want. You will find all-natural vitamins, organic produce and vegan goods. Plus, there are coffee, tea, soy milk, tofu, fresh baked breads, bulk grains, energy supplements and other essentials. This market even stocks organic wine. It is one of the few markets in the neighborhood but it does reside among several chic boutiques and fine restaurants. Please call for further information.