On September 15, Trumark Urban held a grand opening party for its new condos called The Pacific in the former home of the University of the Pacific dental school at Sacramento and Webster.
REAL ESTATE | PATRICK BARBER
While the highest end of the housing market has been slowing in San Francisco over the past few months, buyers will still pay big prices for properties in prime condition in locations that also offer top-shelf views.
Such was the case with 2755 Fillmore Street, which sold for its asking price of $13.25 million in late July. Many industry insiders were surprised at the high price, given that the home traded less than three years ago for around $10 million. To put the most recent sale in perspective, it netted nearly $2,600 per square foot — a big number even in Pacific Heights, where single-family homes sold for an average of about $1,700 per square foot during the last year.
The four-bedroom, 5,142-square-foot home, extensively renovated in 2013, has a contemporary design and showed well during open houses. But perhaps its biggest selling point is its view of the bay, Alcatraz Island, the Palace of Fine Arts and the Golden Gate Bridge. Even in a market gradually normalizing after a frenetic few years, a sale like this demonstrates that the luxury segment remains resilient.
Patrick Barber is president of Pacific Union.
By THOMAS R. REYNOLDS
In celebration of its 110th anniversary this year, Japantown leaders proposed a gift to the neighborhood: a simple Zen rock garden at the foot of Cottage Row to honor the first generation of Japanese-Americans, the Issei, who established the community here after the 1906 earthquake and fire.
To create the garden, they enlisted the renowned landscape designers Shigeru Namba, who oversees Oracle boss Larry Ellison’s extensive Japanese garden, and Isao Ogura. Together the two have already created memorial gardens at San Francisco State and at Tanforan mall, the first stop for residents of Japantown evacuated and interned during World War II.
The gardeners would donate their services and all costs would be paid by private donations. Organizers hoped to complete the garden before the end of the anniversary year.
Then they ran into Bush Street resident Marvin Lambert.
By CHRIS BARNETT
For devout Catholics who plan ahead and believe in eternal life, a meeting with Judie Doherty might be wise. She is the overseer of the most desirable property of its kind in San Francisco — a final resting place in the columbarium at St. Dominic’s Church at 2390 Bush Street.
Inside the Gothic-style church, with its flying buttresses and roots that date back to 1873, are the final 48 of the original 320 niches reserved for the cremated remains of parishioners of St. Dominic’s.
The placement of the columbarium in the church makes it prime property. “It’s within the Friars Chapel behind the grand main altar of the church and along the ambulatory walkway that encircles the altar,” says Father Michael Hurley, the pastor of St. Dominic’s. “It’s where the Dominican brothers would meet and say the different daily prayers.”
By FRAN JOHNS
A magic act of sorts happens in the neighborhood every weekend.
Forest Books, a small treasure house of used and rare books at 1748 Buchanan, on Japantown’s Buchanan Mall, transforms itself every Saturday morning into a quiet spot for Soto Zen meditation. From 9:30 to noon, bookshelves are rolled back, shoji screens set up, pillows brought out of the children’s reading nook — and proprietor Gregory Wood, a student and teacher of Zen Buddhism, leads a zazen, or seated meditation, in the dimly lit space.
FIRST PERSON | KEN DAIGLE
My husband JD Schramm and I have been on the most amazing journey of our lives: the journey to fatherhood.
We decided to become parents to a child — or children — who needed us and what we have to offer. That decision has stretched us beyond our limits and has limited us in ways we could not have expected. Yet each and every painful or joyful step has brought us to a place of peace, a place of joy and a place of surrender.
LANDMARKS | BRIDGET MALEY
The two English-inspired Tudor style townhouses at 3356 and 3362 Jackson Street are a perfectly matched set. Built for George and Ruth Beveridge in 1898, this charming Presidio Heights ensemble was designed by the short-lived architectural partnership of Newton J. Tharp and Edward L. Holmes.
George Beveridge, a successful miner who made considerable investments in Mexico, married Ruth Coffin in 1895. Two years later, he purchased the double lot on Jackson Street and commissioned Tharp and Holmes to design two abutting, well-appointed townhouses — one for the Beveridges to occupy and the other to sell or rent.
A NEW SHARED “forward-thinking workspace” with refined aesthetics and upscale amenities is in the works in a long-vacant upstairs space at Fillmore and Sacramento.
Expected to open in September, Canopy will offer shared tables, a personal desk or a private office in an airy space with communal areas and conference rooms for a price: $650 to $4,000 per month.
The concept of “workspaces located in the heart of where people live” is the brainchild of industrial designer Yves Behar, developer Amir Mortazavi and investor Steve Mohebi, all of whom live nearby.
“Canopy was born from a desire to have a place near our homes where we could work and be inspired,” said Behar. “Our goal is to bring great people together in a mature work environment that stimulates great ideas that design can amplify.”
Many of Behar’s own designs will be featured, including his modern office furniture for Herman Miller, his Juicero Press juicer and Sodastream sparkling water. Jane on Fillmore will do the catering, and there will be Sight Glass coffee and Pique tea.
While Fillmore is the first Canopy location, the founders hope to expand the concept to other locations throughout the country and eventually around the world.
“Pacific Heights — and specifically Fillmore Street — was the perfect place to prototype the Canopy concept,” Behar told Forbes, “because the demand just wasn’t being met.”
Mortazavi pointed to the many desirable aspects of living in Pacific Heights and to Fillmore’s restaurants and boutiques.
“We never really need to leave the neighborhood, except to work,” he said. “Canopy fulfills the missing piece of having a perfect living situation.”
LOCALS | MARK J. MITCHELL
Sports fans mourned the death of Nate Thurmond, one of the greatest basketball players of all time, who died on July 16 at the age of 74. He was the first player ever to score a quadruple-double in the history of the game and the only player to have his number retired by both the Cleveland Cavaliers and the Golden State Warriors.
He will be remembered as an immortal of the game, and many San Franciscans will also think of him as the man behind Big Nate’s Barbecue for 20 years.
Those of us with deep roots in the Fillmore have other memories.
Back in the 1970s — when Pacific Heights started strictly on the north side of California Street and everything south was still the Western Addition — Nate the Great roamed our little corner of San Francisco.