San Francisco – EverydayInsider! (TM) Trip 10

Everyday Insider! (TM) seeks to share events or venues which tourists to San Francisco can use to enjoy California life with the locals and to experience the sights they have dreamed of seeing in the famed City by the Bay.

16. Aquatic Park is 3 blocks west of Fisherman’s Wharf and it consists of Hyde Street Pier with old-time exhibition ships and ship-shaped Maritime Museum. Municipal Pier is a popular spot for locals to fish.

Tours by SF Maritime National Historical Park rangers begin in the lobby of the historic, boutique Argonaut Hotel. There is a Museum there, too.

I have already written an article about some of the area at: San Francisco’s Historic Ships

Argonaut Hotel, in the refurbished historic Haslett Warehouse Building
495 Jefferson Street at Hyde
San Francisco, CA 94109
Tel: 415.563.0800
Toll-free: 866.415.0704

17. The Cannery at Del Monte Square (or “The Cannery” as it has always been called by San Franciscans) is one of the City’s most treasured places. It is located at the foot of Columbus Street, overlooking San Francisco Bay, and was originally built in 1907.

By 1909, it was the largest fruit and vegetable cannery in the world. It was especially famous for the peaches canned there.

The canning process was different then and the machines had different tasks, but even so, the factory filled 200,000 cans of food a day, and had a huge workforce of 2,500 people. The Cannery became idle in 1937 due to the economics of the Great Depression, even though Del Monte survived and thrived. The Del Monte Company still brings California’s fruits and vegetables to the world.

Several decades ago, with private money, in the early 1960s, the brick warehouse was converted into three levels of winding walkways, balconies and bridges connecting to an inviting courtyard with 130-year-old olive trees and several outdoor cafes. All of the outside walls, except those in the central corridor, are from the original Del Monte packing plant.

The Cannery received the 1970 Honor Award from the American Institute of Architects and, it, along with Ghiradelli Square, spurred a national movement fostering historic preservation of old commercial buildings in a way to recycle these older buildings for modern recreational and small business use. Their SF endeavor influenced tax legislation to help preserve these national treasures.

Today, The Cannery at Del Monte Square is a vibrant architectural gem, true to its roots.

And, it is a focus to help preserve other gems. For example The Cannery houses priceless interiors: a 14th Century Moorish ceiling and a 17th Century Long Hall commissioned by King James I (and designed by England’s famous Inigo Jones), have been preserved and incorporated into the building.

Now, the complex waterfront marketplace features an organic market (possibly still there), one-of-a-kind shops and restaurants, offices, live entertainment and even a world-class jazz club.

The Cannery Farmers Market:
Friday and Saturday 8am-noon
Fresh, local organic fruits, vegetables, and flowers.
There is a Farmer’s Market nearby at Farmer’s Market at Fort Mason, if The Cannery is not hosting this one this year.

___ A nearby center, the nautically-inspired Anchorage Square, offers shopping, dining and lodging as well.
The Cannery at Del Monte Square
SF History of The Cannery

___ Nearby, consider visiting Buena Vista Café, where the first version of fabulous “Irish Coffee” was invented. More about BV another time.

Buena Vista Café
Address: 2765 Hyde Street
Cross Street(s): At Beach Street
Phone: 415-474-5044
Days / Hours of Operation: Open Monday through Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 a.m., Saturday and Sunday from 8:00 a.m. to 2:00 a.m.

Directions: One of the easiest and most popular ways to reach the Buena Vista is by Cable Car. Any Powell & Hyde Street Cable car going towards Fisherman’s Wharf will take you directly to our doorstep on the corner of Hyde and Beach Streets.

More of the 49 Mile Drive, tomorrow.

Part 1 and Series Archive: San Francisco Everyday Insider

San Francisco Archive

©2010 mystic at Travel Vacation Review

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