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Places We Go : San Francisco's Jackson Square

Last Friday, Jayne and I checked out San Francisco's earliest commercial area, dating back to the 1849 gold rush. Jackson Square is known for its classical revival and Italianate style architecture. Adjacent to Chinatown and North Beach, it was once part of the Barbary Coast. When I moved to San Francisco in 1990, it was filled with glorious antique stores and art galleries. Over the years, those are gone but the area is coming back in a new ways. Let's take a look.

Sweet alleyway pictured just as Karl the Fog was leaving for morning.

Fjällräven is the quintessential Swedish outdoor clothing brand with an outpost on 478 Jackson.

Niche fashion line Isabel Marant - a French designer known for luxe, high-quality pieces - is at 455 Jackson.

Australian clothing designer, Zimmerman is at 458 Jackson. Dresses range from $700 to $2,000.

A London-based The Rug Company showroom is at 722 Montgomery.

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Jayne and I took a tour inside to see scrumptious rugs which included handknotted, handloomed, needlepoint and crewelwork - all created in Nepal.

The most special of their rugs are made from silk, mohair, merino or linen. The showroom looks out to a charming inner courtyard.

The Rug Company is known for collaborations with well known designers. Jayne and I saw Glasswings by Alexander McQueen in person. Hand knotted silk, a 6' x 4' is available for $10,080.


There are a number of restaurants in Jackson Square. The Old Ship Saloon is a historic bar in San Francisco. It was originally opened in 1851 and is one of the oldest bars in the city. The saloon was converted from a 19th-century sailing ship that ran aground during the California gold rush. The Old Ship Saloon is known for its fish and chips.


Another dining option was Maison Nico. Don't you love the image in the window's reflection?


Maison Nico is well known for its selection of pâtes en croûte, pâte terrines, quiches and pastries.

Next time, we might eat at Cotogna (490 Pacific Ave), Jayne's favorite Italian restaurant.

On Friday, we happily landed at Postscript (499 Jackson) for lunch.

Postscript is also a coffee roaster.

While we liked the Scandi interior, we loved the Smoked Salmon Tartine ($22). I will dream about this open-faced sandwhich. "Rize Up seeded sourdough, coastal harbor smoked salmon, lemon-dill vinaigrette, Bellwether Farms creme fraiche, avocado, kahirabi, dill," according to the menu. Absolutely delicious.

We ended our afternoon with Tres Leches cupcakes at La Luna Cupcakes in the Crocker Galleria (50 Post), a few blocks from Jackson Square.

If you're in the City, be sure to check out Jackson Square. It's definitely fun to see it turning the corner .

Jackson Square Historic District (top right) is a 6 block area in downtown San Francisco and the earliest commercial buildings in the classical revival and Italianate styles. During the 1850s, after the gold rush, this waterfront area was constructed on fill, part of which consists of abandoned ships that still lie below the ground.


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