Our go to guide for San Francisco Travel

San Francisco is such a breath-taking city that crooner Tony Bennett infamously left his heart there. The golden city offers an indigenous experience, full of inventive eateries, imaginative boutiques and a helluva national park.

PLAY

If you’re in the mood for some art traipsing, head to MoMa, and finish your visit in the rooftop garden where you’ll get a little closer to the city’s awesome skyline.

While it sounds touristy, Chinatown is pretty awesome. It is the largest Asian town outside of Asia and the oldest in America. While the Dim Sum at Hang Ah is delicious, the best part of Chinatown is just exploring.

After an afternoon exploring the Presidio National Park, take a pre-dinner wander to Hawk Hill at sunset for unbeatable views of the Golden Gate Bridge.

SHOP

For first-rate denim, head down the street to Self Edge. A haven for denim buffs, the store carries a long list of brands including Japanese labels Sling & Stones and Stevenson Overall Co, as well as its popular own brand. For some truly unique souvenirs, Paxton Gate is a one-stop concept shop brimming with terrariums, beautifully crafted gardening tools and wrap closure journals.

Also, the dapper causal and fine clothing carried by menswear boutique Unionmade on Sanchez Street warrants a visit. Ranked as one of the top 10 independent men’s stores by GQ, the space offers US labels including Eastlands alongside European brands such as Folk and Globe Trotter.

EAT & DRINK

Start the day with a delicious breakfast at Craftsman & Wolves, located in the hip Mission district. Gauge yourself on really good pastries and the house special Rebel Within muffin, a bacon and yolky egg dream. Don’t worry about the calories – a mid-afternoon trek around the stunning Presidio National Park will more than work them off.

For a dinner with a difference, head to Saison on Townsend Street. The concept of the restaurant is based on foods found in the hearth of a campfire, equating to simple dishes that allow each ingredient to speak for itself. The open fireplaces and blankets placed on the backs of each chair create an authentic camp cook-out vibe and the welcome is always warm.

Finally, draw a pleasantly hazy line beneath the day with a pint of Anchor Steam California lager in the rough-luxe lounge of Twenty Five Lusk. The intimate couch areas and booths will undoubtedly evolve one quick nightcap into several.

SLEEP

The Manual recommends the Hotel des Arts for a design hotel experience that won’t cost the earth. The basic but well-designed rooms have been painted by emerging street artists including Buff Monster and Terrence Hughes and the hotel’s art gallery features worthy works by local artists.

Image credit: Sean Pavone/123rf.com

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