Our Weekend in San Francisco
Of all weekends to escape LA for the Central Coast, we definitely picked a good one. Our San Francisco weekend trip, planned as a little getaway to spend some much needed quality time with each other, came as a massive heat wave struck Southern California with over 110 degree heat! Aren't you so jealous you don't live here? It felt incredibly wrong to be packing jeans and a sweater in my carryon while it was 104 outside but I was very happy to do so!
Our trip from start to finish was just stellar! We got our favorite breakfast burritos from Fresco, the cafe in the Burbank airport, and I devoured mine embarrassingly fast -- they are seriously that good! After getting our burritos I had a mini-blogger/celeb siting of Joy Cho from the very well known design blog Oh Joy! (she's got a kid's line at Target!). She sat in front of us on the plane and I'll admit I totally snooped between the seats and watched her design a new set of kid's shoes on her computer. (Also, on our flight back Shailene Woodley from Big Little Lies was on it and we made eye contact and she smiled and then I died, so this blog post is actually posthumous.) When I wasn't spying, I spent the 46 minute flight with a new episode of my favorite podcast, Bad On Paper. I was about fifteen minutes into the advice episode when I heard them say, "This question comes from Logan....Ran..hofer?" My face literally became the wide-eyed emoji and I rewound the episode for Brett and I to share an earbud and listen to Grace and Becca answer my question. Getting my question answered was so fun, but what I really appreciated the most was Grace (blogger of The Stripe) said "Yes, Logan is a frequent commenter on the blog and Instagram..." It was just very cool to feel that honest and real connection with someone I follow on a daily basis and see as a huge inspiration for blogging. So thanks Grace for really making my day!
Touchdown in Oakland! We caught a Lyft from the airport to our hotel in the city and were sharing the ride with another Lyft-er who very relatably had her final destination as In-N-Out. She said she moved to Portland and it had been way too many years without In-N-Out, to which we deeply understood after living for 3 years without it. If we hadn't been so full from our burritos we probably would have asked the driver to pull through the drive-thru.
The Golden Gate Bridge is the gem of the city but I think there is something also to be said of the Bay Bridge. I loved flying into Oakland and being able to drive into the city over it and get an amazing view of downtown and the East Bay. Our hotel, The Alise, was close to Union Square which made walking to shopping in the Financial District and down to the Ferry Building and water very easy. On our first trip together to SF for our 1 year wedding anniversary, we stayed at the Four Seasons which is right on Market Street and we really loved the walkability of the area. It is quite touristy though, so I think that if we were to go again I'd love to stay at a hotel in a neighborhood deeper into the city for a change of pace. The Alise was super nice and modernly decorated and the service was very accommodating. For a $25 resort fee you get access to a cupcake happy hour, free wifi, unlimited water bottle refills (which is super nice), and access to using the bikes they have on hand for really getting around the city! We didn't take the bikes for a spin this time (SF hills are no joke), but it would have been fun to use them to bike down to the water! The rooms are tinnnyyy, which makes me believe it used to be an old apartment building, but incredibly nice! The bed was super soft and comfy and each person gets their very own comforter which means no sheet hogs! I didn't grab a photo of the bathroom but it had floor to ceiling marble and had the most perfect lighting I've ever seen in a hotel, so well done Alise!
After checking-in, we set our sites on some coffee and shopping! We spent a couple of hours walking around Union Square and up and down Market Street. One store I always loved to stop in is the Levi's store. Levi's started in San Francisco so it's fun to by the brand in its hometown. I got a few shirts, tried on some 501 which were terrible on me (how do they look so cute on everyone else!?), and Brett got his VERY FIRST jean jacket! Friday was the hottest day of our trip with a high of 76, but it felt much hotter in the sun walking up and down those hills. We had to head back to the hotel after lunch to change because the butt sweat was very REALLLL. Because we came into this trip with absolutely no plans it was nice to just lay in the cold hotel bed watching Suits and not feeling bad for choosing to lounge instead of explore 100% of the time.
After a few episodes we decided to finally leave the room and head to our favorite Italian restaurant for dinner. We stuffed our faces so fast we finished the entire meal in 30 minutes...just in time for ice cream (lol, catch our food coma rants on the San Francisco Weekend highlight on my Instagram profile!). To make us feel a little better about ourselves and give us time to build some room for ice cream, we walked 30 minutes to the Ferry Building for a cone. We enjoyed our ice cream on a bench overlooking the water and Bay Bridge at sunset and capped the night with a long walk back to the hotel and more Suits.
Saturday was a day for exploring! On our first trip we ventured to a lot of tourists spots and explored Cow Hollow, Nob Hill, and the Marina/Presidio neighborhoods, so this time I wanted to go into the heart of the city to the Lower Haight, Mission District, and Castro neighborhoods. We slept in till SEVEN, which was amazing after waking up consistently at 5:54 am to let Denver out and going on our usual morning walk with the dogs at 6:15 am. We were planning to hit a brunch spot that is highly recommend and were prompted to get there early because there is ALWAYS a line. Thankfully we made it to the restaurant after 10 minutes of opening and got seated right away even though we were the 10th group in line. Breakfast was done early and we needed to kill some time until the shops opened up in the neighborhoods we wanted to explore, so we grabbed some coffee and took a Lyft to Alamo Square. Yes it's touristy, but I love it! Because it was early it was mostly locals with their dogs or doing yoga in the park and we enjoyed the sun and the city view.
After a nice lounge in the park we made our way to the Mission District for some shopping and more coffee (Brett is obsessed with coffee so we had to go at least 3 times a day)! I was so excited to see there was no line for the Everlane store and ran inside! I loved the in store experience just as much as the online one, but if there is a line, just stick to online. I got the Modern Babo's in Blush (SO SOFT and they can be worn as mules or booties!) and the black denim skirt (can't believe a denim skirt is in my wardrobe again and it's not from Abercrombie). Brett was really impressed with their men's clothes too! He picked up the Sun-Faded Slub Crew in Pale Sage (pictured below) and the Modern Snap Backpack in Reverse Denim! He also tried on their slim fit jeans and loved them but because he's mister "I already have a pair a jeans" decided to hold off (Tip for family members reading this: This is a great store for Christmas presents for Brett!) For lunch I was majorly craving Dim Sum so we headed into the Castro to a cute little asian place tucked into the neighborhood. After lunch we got more coffee, just kidding, we walked around a bit, stumbling upon this completely ivy covered house! Did the owners buy it like this? Did it just get so out of control they decided to just roll with it? What color is their house?! So many questions! After enough aimless walking we headed back to the hotel for a bit of a rest (my feet were begging for it!) and you guessed it...more Suits!! We actually ended up finishing the series and we are deeply saddened, but thankful season 8 returns next week! I was craving Mexican and wanted to head into Cow Hollow, because it's one of my favorite neighborhoods. We had an incredible dinner and again walked about after just enjoying the cool breeze and surprisingly quiet streets.
On Sunday we packed up our belongings, playing clothing tetris with the items we brought and the new ones we bought and then headed out to breakfast to a highly rated crepe place close to our hotel. Again, with no plans in mind and keeping relaxing our top priority we decided to walk down to Union Square and sit and enjoy the sun and Brett sipped on some coffee for the 76th time this trip. The water was calling our names so to the Ferry Building we went again! This time we stopped at all the little stalls and got some bread and coffee (wow, I'm not sure how we are alive after all this caffeine). We took our massive sourdough baguette and coffee to the a pier and looked at the boats and Bay Bridge. Today we did have the plan to go towards the Golden Gate Bridge, but trying to time our schedule to when we needed to be back at the hotel to grab our belongings and get a Lyft to the airport, we needed to kill some time. So in that pursuit we decided to walk to Fisherman's Warf and then grab a ride to a cafe near Chrissy Field and the Golden Gate Bridge that I wanted to visit.
In my Instagram of the Golden Gate Bridge I said, "Note to Self: Don't wear a hat to San Francisco." It was SOOOO windy on Sunday especially by the water. I spent the whole day holding my hat and thinking my arm might permanently be stuck this way. Wind aside, the Golden Gate was just as majestic as it always is! I'm so jealous of locals who get to witness it whenever they want; and if the Bay Area weren't so expensive I'd try to convince Brett to move up there ASAP. (Dear family members: yes I know it's very liberal up north but I don't care and neither should you. Life is too short to let others people's political stance determine your life.)
I loved this trip so much! After a rough few weeks of Brett traveling for work (he was gone 12 out of 14 days and then more after that!), we desperately needed this time to just be us and not care about anything but each other and what food we were going to stuff our faces with next. I also noticed I didn't have a lot of photos on my phone because I took so many on a disposable camera. I'm so excited to see them when they are developed! Film cameras need to make a mainstream comeback because it's so fun to actually be surprised by how the picture came out and you don't have to waste time taking 184 pictures on your phone before you get the "perfect" one. Also, you get some pretty funny looks when you're winding up the film for the next photo!
My San Francisco Tips
wear comfortable shoes
bring light layers, but keep the hats at home
take the bus (we did this the first time and it definitely saved us a lot of money, should have done it ths time too!)
Map out your days by neighborhoods to keep bus or lyft rides to a minimum
window shop, if the store looks cute head inside
always go to the Golden gate bridge
Where We ate
Philz Coffee - we dream about this coffee and while it may not be special to Local San Franciscans, it's still a must try. Brett gets Jacob's Wonderbar (their specialty Dark Roast) and I like the Mint Mojito Sweet and Creamy or the Philz Iced Tee with cream and Honey
Hogwash - Yummy Sausage Place! brett got the Abe Froman and I got the Kale Salad (which is AMAzing!)
Firenze by Night - Our favorite Italian restaurant in chinatown! we would fly to SF just for this place. Brett got Pappardelle Toscana and I got the Gnocchi Firenze (literally mouth watering).
Humphry Slocombe - Crazy good specialty flavor with inventive flavors! Brett got Peanut butter fudge ripple and i got black sesame (sounds weird but it's so good!).
Brenda's French Soul Food - This place is a classic and always has a line down the block for brunch on weekends so get there early! definitely order the BEIGNETS and ask the waiter for their favorites because we weren't impressed with our standard egg and potato breakfast.
Four Barrel Coffee - Brett's favorite coffee is Blue bottle but he said four barrel is now #1
Mama Ji's - good Dim Sum and cute Location. We shared the Shanghai Dumplings, Sweet Pork Buns, and Chinese Broccoli with Garlic.
Flores - incredible Incredible mexican food! we started with the Esquite which was AMAZZEEE, shared the Carne Asada, and ended with Churros *Insert Heart Eye Emoji*!! Everything was DELICIOUS and we would DEFINITELY go again.
Honey Honey Cafe and Crepery - get there early because there will be a line! Brett got the Chicken Pesto Crepe and I got the Nutella Strawberry.
Blue Bottle Coffee - Brett's favorite, but now Second Favorite coffee. They don't sell anything but coffee, so don't be a fool like me and ask for a Chai tea latte.
Acme Bread Company - Born in Berkley but has a location in the Ferry BuilDing, incredible sourdough!
Warming Hut - cute little cafe and store run by the Parks Department. It's at the end of Chrissy Field and has a perfect view of the Golden Gate Bridge.
Before I say goodbye on this post, I wanted to let you know that Early Access for Nordstrom cardholders of the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale starts tomorrow! Look out for lots of posts collecting the best of the best of the sale for the next few weeks. This is my first year as a cardholder and I'm so pumped to be able to shop Early Access this year.