Vibrant, colorful and diverse are adjectives that come to mind when describing the Mission District, commonly referred to as “The Mission”. One of California’s oldest missions founded in 1776, Mission Dolores is located in the heart of this neighborhood. Known for its excellent Mexican taquerias, the Mission is now home to many trendy cafes and restaurants due to the gentrification that has occurred since the Internet boom. Flamboyant murals, women making tacos in storefront windows, and numerous thrift stores are all sights to see while strolling the streets San Francisco’s oldest neighborhood.
Given its prime location along San Francisco southern waterfront, it’s not surprising that the South Beach neighborhood has been the heart of the development of what has come to be called “New San Francisco.” Since the mid-1990’s, the South Beach neighborhood has undergone a drastic transformation from an area featuring low slung office buildings, warehouses convertedinto stylish lofts projects and hordes of parking lots that primarily served the Financial District, to one of the country’s most dynamic urban neighborhoods. With the Embarcadero, the long boulevard that stretches from along the City’s northeastern waterfront, and the San Francisco Bay providing an exceptional backdrop, South Beach now is the focus of much of San Francisco’s culture with its hip and trendy restaurants, numerous nightclubs, and AT & T Park, home of baseball’s San Francisco Giants. Newly built luxury condominium towers like The Brannan, The Watermark and Rincon Towers now dominate the South Beach skyline as well as its real estate landscape, competing for attention of homebuyers with the numerous loft projects and high rise hotel condominiums in the area. The smooth transition from The Embarcadero to the King Street on ramp to Highway 280 makes for an easy escape from the City as do the multiple on ramps at the base of the Bay Bridge. Public transportation is close at hand with the CalTrain Station at 4th and Townsend Streets and the MUNI light line that runs along the Embarcadero and King Street.
Located just to the south of the Mission District, Bernal Heights is defined by more than just its namesake hill where hikers and dogs roam freely. For example, Cortland Avenue, Bernal’s main commercial strip boasts an eclectic mix of shops, cafes and bars that have helped the area defy the hallmarks of gentrification that have taken over other neighborhoods in San Francisco. Holly Park, found just south of Cortland Avenue and Precita Park near Cesar Chavez, are Bernal Heights other public common areas where baby strollers mix with dog walkers and soccer players. Single family homes comprise most of the housing stock in Bernal Heights with smaller multi-unit buildings making up the rest. Properties on the pricier west side of Bernal Heights usually enjoy the dramatic view of San Francisco’s famed Twin Peaks while some homes on the north side of the neighborhood afford impressive downtown city views.
Bernal Heights is roughly bounded by Mission Street to the west, Cesar Chavez to the north, Bayshore Avenue to the east and Interstate 280 to the south.
As one of San Francisco’s oldest neighborhoods, Nob Hill was once known for its stately Victorian mansions and original cable car line to one of the city’s most affluent neighborhoods. While the 1906 earthquake and fire destroyed most of the original neighborhood, the affluence and cable car line still remains over a century later. While perhaps best known around the world for its renowned hotels including the Fairmont and the Mark Hopkins, Nob Hill is also home to many luxury condominium and cooperative apartment buildings just a short distance from the landmark Grace Cathedral and neighboring Huntington Park. In conjunction with adjacent Russian Hill to the north, Nob Hill offers some of San Francisco most picturesque city views from some of the buildings that define the San Francisco skyline and shares Polk Street, one of San Francisco’s most distinctive business districts.
Nob Hill is roughly bounded by Van Ness Avenue to the west, Broadway Street to the north, Mason Street to the east and California Street to the south.
St. Francis Wood has always been identified as one of San Francisco’s first-class suburban neighborhoods with its wide tree-lined streets and detached homes with landscaped front and back yards. On any given day, families can be found playing tennis, basketball and soccer in the sizable community park nestled in the middle of the neighborhood or simply strolling along its quiet streets. While it can be considered to be on the “south side” of the city, St. Francis Wood is actually very centralized due to its convenient location near freeways to the South Bay and public transportation to downtown San Francisco. The charming commercial block of shops and restaurants along adjacent West Portal Avenues, positions St. Francis Wood as an ideal location for many San Franciscans to call home.
SOMA is roughly bounded by 12th Street to the west, Market Street to the north, 2nd Street to the east and Townsend Street to the south.
Located at the western end of Market Street in the middle of the City, is San Francisco’s well-known Castro District. Noted since the 1970’s for its large gay, lesbian and transgender population, this lively neighborhood supports numerous shops, restaurants, bookstores, bars and theaters primarily around the intersection of 18th and Castro Streets and along the western section of Market Street. Traditionally, the Castro has been known as Eureka Valley and is generally considered to include the neighboring Dolores Heights and Duboce Triangle areas. Like nearby Noe Valley, true pride of ownership is synonymous with this somewhat hilly district that counts numerous beautiful Victorian houses and exceptional modern architecture as part of its housing landscape.
With its terrific weather and close proximity to downtown San Francisco and freeways that serve the Peninsula and East Bay, Noe Valley has always been an ideal place to call home for many San Francisco residents. Bustling 24th Street serves as the heart of this diverse neighborhood with its half mile-long business corridor. While home prices in certain segments of Noe Valley can rival those in some of San Francisco’s northern neighborhoods, the large size of this quintessential San Francisco neighborhood offers something for most homeowners. Residential properties in Noe Valley’s run the gamut from quaint Victorian homes along Dolores Street to the multi-million dollar view homes that line the hillsides, from Edwardian flats to modern condominium projects, and from small two-unit buildings to large multi-unit apartment buildings.
Noe Valley is roughly bounded by Upper Market to the west, 21st Street to the north, Guerrero Street to the east and 30th Street to the south.
No neighborhood encompasses more geographic area in San Francisco than the Sunset District which extends from Cole Valley and the Haight to the Pacific Ocean, covering a two mile western expanse south of Golden Gate Park along the way. Comprised primarily of smaller single family homes, the Sunset District can generally be divided into three areas, all which enjoy a terrific proximity to Golden Gate Park. The Inner Sunset consists of homes and smaller multi-unit properties from 1st to 19th Avenues, the Central Sunset from 19th to 36th Avenues, and the Outer Sunset from 36th Avenue to Great Highway and Ocean Beach. The popular Inner Sunset area is centered around the central business district surrounding Irving and Judah Streets near 9th Avenue and is known for some of the larger Edwardian homes found in the Sunset. Noriega Street bisects the Central Sunset and its wide expanse of homes and serves as the main commercial Strip for both the Central and Outer Sunset areas. The Outer Sunset comes as close to a beach district as San Franciscans can provide, though the City’s traditional foggy weather makes sweaters a more common site than swim suits in the neighborhood. One unique characteristic of the Sunset District is its median home price which has always followed the median San Francisco home price more closely than any other City neighborhood.
San Francisco’s intimate Cole Valley neighborhood seems to have a little of everything that the City has to offer. There’s the wonderful variety of architecture from stately Victorians homes to mid century Art Deco buildings. Then there’s the small commercial strip on Cole Street itself with its uber hip restaurants, wine bars and retail stores. Cole Valley, which generally includes parts of the Haight, Parnassus Heights and Ashbury Heights, is a short distance from Golden Gate Park and provides quick access to downtown via the MUNI light rail line that bisects the neighborhood, while being conveniently close to 19th Avenue, the Cityÿs on-street connection to the North and South Bays.
The small yet highly desirable North Beach district, nestled in the valley between Telegraph and Russian Hills, has long been known as San Francisco’s wonderful old Italian neighborhood. Washington Square serves as the epicenter of this true San Francisco neighborhood with its distinctive assortment of restaurants, bakeries, delicatessens and shops. North Beach’s short distance from the Financial District always creates high demand for it mostly older real estate supply.