San Francisco Revisited

San Francisco….a city filled with bustling vendors, incredible architecture, and of course, its own signature sourdough.This weekend I was fortunate enough to take a trip with my family to San Francisco to tour the facilities of the Oracle, the United State’s “boat” that is completing in this year’s America’s Cup. The America’s Cup originally started out as a race between to opponent yachts  (one yacht being the winner of the previous race and the second yacht being known as the challenger). The competition takes place in the home country of the current champion/defender and thus the race has been held in many countries all over the world. This year the race is taking place in San Francisco Bay, where the defending Oracle (of the Golden Gate Yacht Club) will race their challenger, the Artemis (of the Royal Swedish Yacht Club)


.  Not only will the U.S. and Sweden go toe to toe for the chance to win the Cup, but they will have to surpass five other serious competitors; Team Bar of the Royal Cornwall Yacht Club (U.K.), Team China, Team Emirates of New Zealand, Team Energy of Yacht Club De France, and Italy’s Luna Rossa of the Circolo della Vela Sicilia. The race is scheduled to be held in September and marks the 35th America’s Cup (having originated in 1851). I would encourage you to learn more about this iconic race by visiting their homepage [].

Yachts weren’t the only thing to be seen in the city this weekend.  The streets were filled with people; some running, some walking, some even riding bicycles naked! Driving through Market Street, people were moving like throngs of cattle, avoiding the possibility of being trampled before they got to their intended destinations. Keen on spotting that specific “urban” style that popular cities are notorious for, I kept my eyes peeled for fashion set apart from the herd. Maybe I was expecting too much, but I feel that the general style was simply…blah. Much like spotting a four leaf clover, an eclectic “San Fran” style is hard to come by, at least on a weekend in June. Most of the  women seem to prefer comfort over couture, and vans, skinny jeans and t-shirts of a mixed color palette was the attire of choice. Not that there weren’t pops of diversity among the throng; I spotted a young woman striding down McAllister St. looking very fresh in black and white spotted Dalmatian skinny pants, a black blouse and a electric blue blazer. And just outside of Bloomingdale’s I saw a pretty blonde woman wearing a navy and gray polka dot long sleeved dress, coordinated with matching grey suede booties. Unsurprisingly, it was menswear that took the cake in regards to fashion excellence; I found most of the men (unless they were homeless) had very coordinated taste, wearing suits or blazers with pressed denim. There were even a couple of dapper gentlemen rocking the bow tie and bowler hat look (such a well-groomed look!).DSCF9045The real treat was to walk up and down streets where the higher end department stores were located (Neiman Marcus, Nordstrom, Bergdorf Goodman, Saks 5th etc). On my last visit to the city I was lucky enough to see not only Oscar de la Renta’s spring line in Neiman’s front windows, but several smaller high-end shops displayed costume pieces to promote opening night for the San Francisco Ballet. And while these costumed treasures were beautiful ( and definitely worth mentioning), more impressive is the actual architecture of the city. A mixing pot of styles,  just by strolling through the streets one can see modern glass skyscrapers built right alongside  1930’s and 40’s apartment buildings. Only a few blocks up, Chinatown offers brightly colored structures set in small alleys, strings of red Chinese lanterns strung across rooftop to rooftop.  Down by the wharf, old piers are being remodeled to preserve their original structure, and old dinners and bars offer a spectacular view of the bay. By the water next to pier, stadium seats are being set up to hold the thousands of America’s Cup spectators that will no doubt flood the city this September.  It is the architecture paired with the nature beauty of the bay that keeps  San Francisco at the top of many a tourist’s bucket list.Alley near ChinatownAll in all, though the general style may be lacking in sophistication and uniqueness, the city itself offers a complexity and individuality that far surpasses any designer’s cutting edge trends. So if you’re ever in California, head over to San Francisco. It’s a great place to people watch, take in some boating if you are there in September, and enjoy some amazing sourdough.


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