San Francisco is racked with many glorious neighborhoods that hold historical significance. There are four squares in the city of San Francisco that each possess their own character, style, and story. Those squares are Union Square, Jackson Square, Alamo Square, and Ghirardelli Square. Today we’ll be traveling over to Ghirardelli Square and divulging portions of its past as well as getting in touch with its present state! (photo via Ghirardellisq.com)
Ghirardelli Square, located in the Fisherman’s wharf area of San Francisco (900 N. Point St. Sf, Ca 94109), is today a landmark location with a portion of the area being registered on the National Register of Historic Places as Pioneer Woolen Mills and D. Ghirardelli Company. In 1849 Domingo Ghirardelli relocated from Italy to San Francisco during the Gold Rush Era to make his fortune as a chocolatier. He made the realization that the miners in the field were in need of something grand to spend their hard earned gold dust on. He capitalized on this opportunity by keeping his local shop fully stocked with a generous selection of chocolate treats. He proved himself right and found himself extremely successful. In 1893 he went on to purchase an entire San Francisco city block for the purpose of creating the headquarters for the Ghirardelli Chocolate company. However, in the early 1960′s the Ghirardelli company was bought by the Golden Macaroni Company which moved its headquarters to San Leandro, CA and sold the square to San Francisco natives William Roth and his mother in 1962.
The Roths went on to hire architects and converge the square, and its historic brick structures, into the beloved restaurant and retail plaza that it stands as today. This was the first major adaptive re-use project in the United States. As of today Ghirardelli Square stands as a favorite of San Francisco natives and tourist alike, with its upscale shopping, fine dining, wine bars, spas, live entertainment, and more! Below we take a look at a few of the majestic businesses and events that have found a home within the Ghirardelli Square! (photo via wikipedia.com)
We’ll begin with the Fairmont Heritage Place. This isn’t so much a business as it is for businessmen, those that spend a portion of their time in San Francisco and a portion of their lives elsewhere. The Fairmont Heritage Place, located inside the walls of the world renowned Ghirardelli Chocolate Factory, is a part of the Fairmont exclusive collection of private residence clubs which are located in some of the worlds most celebrated locations. The Fairmont offers fractional home ownership which allows it’s buyers to posses a second home that is graciously staffed by the Fairmont’s dedicated owner services team. These homes are available for a minimum of 35 days per year with 1/10th deeded fractional ownership. This is a rare chance to own an additional home within one of the city’s most famous national historic landmarks. To learn more about the Fairmont Heritage place please visit: fairmontatghirardelli.com (photo via: fractionalpropertyguide.com)
Next we have Kara’s Cupcakes, an artisan bakery that emphasizes the use of organic products. Voted best cupcake in San Francisco. Kara’s Cupcakes bakes their products fresh throughout the duration of the business day and ensures that each is sold within hours of baking. They are also a community of activists who donate all unsold cupcakes to local charitable organizations. With a menu that offers gluten free sweet vanilla, chocolate velvet, and coconut cupcakes, as well as S’mores and milk chocolate ganache, Kara’s cupcakes is sure to satisfy even the sweetest sweet tooth. For more information please visit: Karascupcakes.com or phone 415.351.CAKE (photo via fairmontatghirardelli.com)
Moving along to the Ghirardelli Ice Cream and Chocolate Shoppe, the original Ghirardelli ice cream and chocolate manufactory. Here you are given the opportunity to view the original chocolate manufactory equipment, sample famous chocolate squares, and fill up on hot fudge sundaes! There is also a chocolate cafe in addition to Ghirardelli on the go which sales pre packed Ghirardelli gifts to go! For more information please visit: Ghirardelli.com or phone 415.474.3938 (travels.com)
Next we have Crown and Crumpet, an astounding England style tea salon and antique shop located right here in San Francisco. Here you are afforded the luxury of hosting your very own high tea party or simply stopping in on a casual day for tea and other libations as well as several delectable treats and a unique english antique shopping experience. For more information please visit: Crownandcrumpet.com or phone 415.771.4252 (photo via fairmontatghirardelli.com)
Next in line we have, Cellar 360, a premium winery, wine bar, and restaurant that provides SF residents with the wine country lifestyle right here in the center of the city. Cellar 360 offers an entire array of premium wines, wine focused foods, winery events, and more! For more information please visit Cellar360.com or phone 415.440.0772
We now travel over to an old time favorite, Lori’s Diner, which offers a great 50′s fashion American Diner atmosphere with a classic diner menu complete with Malts and ice cream sodas to accompany it. For more information please visit: lorisdiner.com or phone 415.409.1950
We’ll end there on the business side of the Square and briefly move along to information about some of the great events that take place here. There are as follows:
The Chocolate Festival: Held September 11-12 ideal for chocolate lovers of all ages. You’ll be granted the oppurtunity to indulge in chocolate treats, sip wine (if you’re 21+), part-take in family activites, and soak up the sweet energy.
There’s also Fleet Weekend October 8-11. Ghirardelli Square has been known to provide the best view for the Blue Angels air show and their is also a great deal of live music and other forms of entertainment provided.
You’re also always invited to come out and get into the Christmas spirit during the holidays at which time Ghirardelli Square host their famous, Tree Lighting ceremony, which provides live entertainment for the entire family throughout the entire day!
This square in its entirety is a divinely magical place that is surely not to be missed. For more information on Ghirardelli Square and all of the events and businesses listed above please visit Ghirardellisq.com. Let us know how you feel about Ghirardelli Square below and for information on luxury properties nearby please visit sf.condodomain.com or phone 877.852.6636 to speak with a CondoDomain Representative!