28 Jan 2015

San Francisco Travelogue: Cole Valley

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The loudest word that springs up in mind when I think about Cole Valley is LOVE, LOVE, LOVE it!…

"Community" is the operative word in this thin slice of San Francisco real estate, bordered on the west by Stanyan Street and the Sutro Forest, on the south by Tank Hill and on the east by Clayton Street. Residents are largely families and young professionals, though there is no trace of the snootiness that has affected other parts of the city. Most of the businesses in Cole Valley are of the mom-and-pop variety, in lieu of chain stores or franchises, and shop owners are outwardly supportive of each other.

Food and coffee are the specialties in Cole Valley. In the three-block commercial strip along Cole Street and part of Carl Street, there are more than a dozen restaurants and cafés, some of which draw visitors from around the Bay Area. EOS, for instance, is considered one of the city's top dining spots, while Zazie is a magnet for locals on weekends for brunch. For historians and old-timers, traces of Cole Valley's past are still visible. Above the Crepes on Cole awning, along the Carl Street side, remains the old sign for the Other Café, a comedy spot where Robin Williams and Dana Carvey performed before they hit the big time. Even more historic are the photos in the Kezar Bar and Restaurant dating from the early 1900s, when the region was home to dairy farms. {via SFGATE}

I believe it was during an afternoon walk that I ended up in Cole Valley. I walked from our apartment on Clayton Street turned left towards the hill. I then turned off Carl Street and there it was, a beautiful place that took my heart by storm.

I didn’t know it name until the last Saturday in San Francisco when I went for a walk in the morning and ended talking to a nice local. He told me about the September Fair, and place comes alive even more during that time.

Cole Valley is tucked away few blocks from hectic Haight Street. It’s a community and you can tell the moment you end up there. I was more than happy to keep going there for just the most silliest thing, like going to walk up and down the street or buy a bottle of milk. One Tuesday we took the N Judah Muni Metro light rail at the intersection of Carl and Cole Streets, Sunset Tunnel to the center. When we got back in the evening we went out for dinner. We choose Crepes on Cole, because I love crepes. The portion was excellent and fed myself to my satisfaction.

It was during this evening outing that I saw Tantrum, {a whimsical children store which I’m going to feature soon on my blog}.

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From Cole Valley you can easily get to the hill’s summit for the panoramic view of San Francisco but I didn’t have the chance to do that. The neighbourhood is home to a mix of young professionals and hip families. Also it was popular with dot-commers during the late 1990s. During my nine o’clock morning walk on that Saturday, before we left San Francisco, I saw Zazie packed with locals and I wanted so much to mingle with them. With the fog stretching away down the valley, there was a sense of magic in the air.

I’ve always loved San Francisco for some reasons I can’t explain yet, now that I’ve found the neighbourhood for me, I know where it was meant to be.

I was so tempted to take I can’t believe I don’t have better photos than these one, well it will be my aim to capture better photographs during our next trip.

I left my heart in Cole Valley.

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#colevalley #sanfrancisco #baytourism #shoptantrum #tantrum #iheartsanfrancisco #sanfranciscoheartme

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