THE SAN FRANCISCO FERRY BUILDING
Return visits “home” to San Francisco instantly evoke excitement to my core. It is early Saturday morning, 6:37am to be exact and I am just pulling up to my parent’s house from Los Angeles. In typical Dad fashion, I see he has been up waiting for my arrival. After an exchange of greetings, he starts advising me to save my city plans for another day so I can get caught up on sleep. However, even after a long night of non-stop travel, operating with very little sleep, I am too excited for my planned day in San Francisco, that I am not willing to sacrifice it for sleep.
I arrive at King Station, just across from AT&T Park which marks the kickoff for my day. The sun is on the rise, and with not a cloud in the sky I can tell it is going to be a beautiful day in the city. As I head to the machine to purchase my ticket, I notice for a Saturday morning the station feels quieter than I can remember. With a little wait, I jump on the Muni Redline, grab a window seat, and sit back for the 22-minute ride. It is just enough time for me to catnap, daydream and express gratitude before I arrive to my desired stop. It is in this moment that I am grateful for how accessible public transportation is in San Francisco. Not having to sit in a car again after last night’s road trip is a gift!
I jump off the muni at the Embarcadero Metro Station and with a short walk I can get to the area on the Embarcadero I need to be. Once I reach the foot of Market Street, the magnificent 245- foot tall clock tower on top of a waterfront building marks my arrival to one of my favorite destinations, the historic San Francisco Ferry Building. The iconic clock tower is “a famous city’s most famous landmark” (Caen) and stands as a dual representation of measurement; one of past time, history, and accomplished journeys; the other of present time, new connections, and aspiring adventures.
Once I step inside the Ferry Building, I feel the undeniable connection this place has to the heart and soul of this city. Originally, served as San Francisco’s only focal point for transportation, this hub was the only place where commuters and travelers could access the city, unless traveling from the Peninsula. Much like Carl Nolte observed, I have a similar feeling that, “Adventures began and ended...here”.
Now, way more than just transportation hub, the Ferry Building’s renovated Marketplace and weekly CUESA Farmers Market on Tuesday and Saturday, have made this a premiere destination for locals, foodies and travelers alike. Home to some of the finest farmers, food purveyors and restaurants it is “a testament to how much the Northern California’s culinary landscape has changed…” (Wall Street Journal). It has become much larger than the local culture, its lasting impact has been defined, and the Bay Area has changed how America eats.
As I walk through the Ferry Building, I can’t help but want to embark on a new journey for my time spent there; a celebration of all things food and San Francisco. As I take my time walking from shop to shop, the slower pace is allowing me to truly enjoy the organic artisan cheeses from Cowgirl Creamery, the well-cured meats from Buccalone, the warm bread from Acme, and the freshly shucked oysters from Hog Island Oyster Company. When I finally make my way down the long corridor, with very little stomach room to spare, I venture outside to the waterfront farmers market, where the stands of vendors seem endless. Having to stroll at a quicker pace because of time, I find myself stopping too frequently to sample the variety of fresh fruits and vegetables. Finally reaching the end to my loop, I make a final stop to buy fresh flowers for my parents. It is the street cello player next to me that signals the perfect end to my journey at the San Francisco Ferry Building.
Ferry Building Marketplace
One Ferry Building
San Francisco, CA 94111
Phone: (415) 983-8030
Monday- Friday: 10:00am- 6:00pm
Saturday: 9:00am- 6:00pm
Sunday: 11:00am- 5:00pm
Transportation: The Marketplace is accessible by MUNI, BART and Ferry Boat. The historic trolley cars (Line F Market) stop directly in front of Ferry Building.
Parking: Ace Parking Operates the Washington Embarcadero Parking Lot right across the street from the Ferry Building. Validations from Ferry Building Marketplace Merchants accepteded at this parking lot.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Eleni Hopkins grew up in a home where art and fashion were always the forefront of conversation. A Native to San Francisco, her passion for style, color and texture have made her fearless to take risks in order to stay on the cutting edge of fashion and beauty trends. It was her craft with palettes of color and make-up brushes that prompted her move to Los Angeles and her love for clothing, designers and street trends that have kept her here. With a creative but critical eye, Eleni is excited to share her love for dress up and show readers how to spice up their wardrobe and enjoy their time in front of the mirror.