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Thursday, May 24, 2012

Why I love San Francisco

Yesterday I spent the day in San Francisco for a mixture of work and play, and I want to share the fun!
Having my office just 23 miles south of the City, one would think I spend lots of time there.  But because so much of my wedding planning work is done via email and phone, I do not get up to SF as often as I would like.
But now, after discovering a new-to-me wedding venue, reconnecting with beloved friends over lunch, and taking a refreshing walk along the SF Bay, I am reminded once again why I love San Francisco. 
My first stop of the day was to tour a potential wedding venue in a neighborhood of San Francisco known for lovely homes and quiet streets.  Forest Hills Clubhouse was built in 1919 by Bernard Maybeck and is still owned and maintained by the Forest Hill residents.  My friend Jutta Lammerts, who is the property manager for the Clubhouse, invited me for a tour so I would have all the information needed to recommend this hidden gem to my wedding clients for their upcoming celebrations.  Thank you, Jutta!

 From left, Gloria Wong, holding Ginger's baby, me, Joey Cheung, Ginger Wada, Associate of Gloria Wong, Jubilee Lau, Megan Woods, Amanda Kong (baby due in 3 weeks), Associate of Jubilee Lau, John Woods, and Kevin Chin.

After my time at the Clubhouse, I met for lunch at Palomino Restaurant  with several dear friends whom I have come to know well during my years as a wedding planner.  Hosted by Jubilee Lau, we were all invited to relax over a delicious 3 course lunch, celebrating the babies being born into our "family".
I am so grateful for the professional connections and loving relationships  I have developed through partnering with such creative professionals to serve our clients; now we create celebrations to mark and remember the milestones in our lives.

 After our delicious lunch, I took advantage of the beautiful day,  the 3 hours I had before my next appointment, and the fact that Palomino is directly across from the Coastal Public Walkway, to explore more of my beloved San Francisco.

  This plaque quoting the well known SF Chronicle columnist Herb Caen began my adventure at Pier 1, and is an apt description of my experience of San Francisco.

"It's the indescribable conglomeration of beauty and ugliness that makes San Francisco a poem without meter, a symphony without harmony, a painting without reason--a city without equal."  
My first view was of Treasure Island with the Bay Bridge

Farther down I walked to the end of  the promenade near the Waterfront Restaurant to look back and enjoy this stunning view of the SF Skyline.  I seemed to have this lovely area all to myself. 

I continued my walk down to this point, near Pier 23, and returned along the other side of Embarcadero which has its own diverse beauty to explore.

Just past this intersection is the Fog City Diner, a San Francisco dating back to the 1920s; shiny metallic front with neon signs, black and white tile facade, and spinning stools at the counter.

Within in sight of the trolley cars and busy traffic I found this idyllic scene...Levi Park, created by the Levi Corporation adjacent to their headquarters to provide a respite for their staff, and a place of beauty for all to enjoy.

Several fountains which are very much like natural streams and waterfalls are scattered through out the park; I stopped to enjoy this one before heading back to where my walk began, near the Ferry Building, another SF landmark for tourists, and a cornucopia of enticing food options for SF locals....I was ready for some refreshment!
SF Ferry Building is still the arrival/departure point for ferries from Sausalito as well as cruise boats for tours of the entire SF Bay.

Once I entered the Ferry Building Pavilion, I knew exactly where I was headed....Ciao Bella, my favorite gelato shop in SF.  As I was deciding what flavor to order, my friendly servers offered to pose for me to get a unique shot of 2 unexpected flavors...what can I say?  Only in San Francisco!  One more reason why I love it  here!
By the way, I chose Raspberry, but next time I am going to try the mixed Berry Rhubarb....

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