Your Neighborhood Guide to the Historical Jackson Square

Jackson Square

NESTLED BETWEEN NORTH Beach and the Financial District, Jackson Square is one of San Francisco’s 11 historic districts and the city’s first commercial center. Bordered by Broadway on the north, Washington Street on the south, Columbus Avenue on the west and Battery Street on the east, the neighborhood is marked by 1850s- and 1860s-era three-story brick buildings, with vintage fire-protective cast-iron shutters still visible on some. What lies beneath the streets is also notable. The bay’s original waterline reached to about Montgomery and Jackson streets, and in addition to the fill that the district is situated on, here lie the hulls of ships abandoned during the Gold Rush. Nowadays, Jackson Square is known as the original interior designer’s locale, where the aesthetically driven can find furnishings, art, rugs and such. In recent years the neighborhood has seen a renaissance, with new fine dining establishments and a slew of high-end boutiques populating the historic buildings.

Jackson Square

1. COI
Last January, chef Daniel Patterson stepped down from the restaurant he began, letting Chicago chef Matthew Kirkley take the helm. Boasting two Michelin stars, Coi serves a menu of modern seafood.

Since 1985, this employee-owned company has supplied artists with everything they need to paint, sculpt, silk-screen, make origami and facilitate other creative endeavors.

3. BIX
Nightly live jazz, some of the city’s best classic cocktails and the 1930s vibe make this two-story supper club a timeless San Francisco establishment.

This bi-level bookstore has been the go-to place for design titles for more than 30 years, carrying some 20,000 books that cover architectural, graphic, industrial, furniture and interior design.

The gallery offers engravings and lithographs focusing on California, natural history prints, some of the first maps of Alaska and Hawaii and many other antique maps.

Opened in September 2016, Pia sells a curated selection of women’s ready-to-wear, jewelry and accessories from coveted brands like Diane von Furstenberg, A.L.C. and others.

Marant’s third store in the U.S. carries classic cool, French girl fashions. The shop is located on the ground level of the Hotaling Building, once the largest whiskey repository on the West Coast.

This Detroit-based retailer sells quality watches, bicycles, and leather goods. Conveniently, the store flows into Filson, which offers rugged outdoor clothing and travel bags.

Based on the kaiseki cuisine principle, former Sushi Ran chef Nori Kusakabe introduces lesser-known sushi styles into an 8-course omakase meal at this Michelin-starred spot.

Aside from the restaurants mentioned, other popular eateries nearby include Cotogna, Trestle, Roka Akor, Quince, Kokkari Estiatorio and Tosca.

There are three options nearby in addition to street parking. A garage at 825 Sansome Street, between Broadway and Pacific Avenue; a lot at 635 Sansome Street (and Jackson Street); a garage at 170 Columbus (and Pacific Avenue).

This article originally appeared in Marin Magazine’s print edition with the headline: “Jackson Square”.

Kasia Pawlowska

Kasia Pawlowska loves words. A native of Poland, Kasia moved to the States when she was seven. The San Francisco State University creative writing graduate went on to write for publications like the San Francisco Bay Guardian and KQED Arts among others prior to joining the Marin Magazine staff. Topics Kasia has covered include travel, trends, mushroom hunting, an award-winning series on social media addiction and loads of other random things. When she’s not busy blogging or researching and writing articles, she’s either at home writing postcards and reading or going to shows. Recently, Kasia has been trying to branch out and diversify, ie: use different emojis. Her quest for the perfect chip is never-ending.