Creative Coordinates: San Francisco

Travel inspires us. It takes us to new places and new spaces: it transports our minds, animates our spirits, and enlivens our senses. Creative Coordinates, our travel guide series, charts the world’s creative hotspots – places beaming with musical, artistic, cultural, and culinary inspiration.

It’s no secret that San Francisco is the center of the technology world. Innovation abounds, and, of course, so too do the sweatshirt-doning entrepreneurs, coders, and designers who make it all happen. Less apparent, however, are the restaurants, shops, and museums that give the “city by the bay” its unique creative spirit.

Stay — The Battery Decorated to a T, adorned with art from artists both emerging and established, and built around an idyllic central garden, you’ll feel at home in no time. If that doesn’t suit your fancy, check out any number of options on AirBNB — SF is the startup’s birthplace, after all.

Grab a morning bite — Jane and Tartine are staples of San Francisco foodies in-the-know. Try any number of healthy options — yes, they both have avocado toast — or indulge in a pastry. (Or both.)

Art Pay a visit to SFMoMA, freshly expanded by Norwegian architecture firm Snøhetta. The architecture is just as good, if not better, than the art. Then wander over to the de Young Museum, right by the Golden Gate Bridge. Here too, the building — designed by Herzog & de Muron — is just as worthwhile as the expansive, global collection of fine art it houses.

Refuel At the iconic Ferry Building, there is no shortage of delicious options: Frog Hollow, Delica, any Hog Island Oyster stand out from the bunch. On your way out, grab a juice at SOW, a coffee at Blue Bottle, or a beer at Fort Point. If the Ferry Building feels too daunting (or you’re looking to dodge a serious sea of tourists) head to Souvla in Hayes Valley.

Shopping — Spend the afternoon exploring Hayes Valley while shopping for exceptionally curated menswear at Maas & Stacks, technical gear at Aether, and glasses at RetroSpecs. Then head to the Mission to check out gadgets at Dijital Fix and curiosities at Paxton Gate.

Dinner — Unwind over a nice meal at Rich Table or Flour + Water, two of SF’s most inspiring new restaurants. If you’re up for something more casual, swing by Little Gem or Sushi Zone (where the moustached sushi chef plays an unrivaled selection of local jazz), but don’t expect any less of a wait. And if SF’s nature has you feeling like saving the planet, head to The Perennial.

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