Union Square, San Francisco

4 out of 5 stars 64 Reviews

Bordered by Powell, Geary, Stocton and Post Streets (415) 781-7880

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  • Union Square on a sunny weekday afternoon
    Union Square on a sunny weekday...
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  • Union Square
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  • view from powell
    view from powell
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  • atufft's Profile Photo

    Ruth Asawa Fountain at 345 Stockton Street

    by atufft Updated Feb 24, 2008

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Just off Union Square, at 345 Stockton Street in the plaza of the Grand Hyatt Hotel is a very curious bronze fountain that exhibits a seemingly chaotic mixture of San Francisco elements. This is one of several Ruth Asawa fountains in town, actually. The molds for this bronze sculpture were created from 41 separate panels that Asawa had made from baker's clay. Inviting children and friends to help, she includes in this fountains many of the geographic and unreal elements that make up San Francisco. Asawa was a very proflic contributor of art in the Bay Area and a professor of art at UC Berkeley. The link below describes more about her life.

    Fantasy Fountain Fantasy Fountain
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    Center of Downtown

    by heryanta Written Nov 24, 2007

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    I consider Union Square as the 'center of downtown' - at least for touristic purposes.
    A number of well-known hotels are cramped into the area and you will find, somewhat unfortunately, a lot of touristy bars and restaurants.

    What to see & do:

    Shop. The Macy's flagship store is located right on Union Square, and so is Neimann Marcus. Along Post street you will find fine boutiques like Burberry and Prada.
    Other well-known shops include Borders (Books), the Disney store and Niketown.

    Eat. Walk west towards Jones and there are lots of ethnic restaurants on Geary and Post. Some of my favourites include Borobudur (Indonesian on Post & Jones) and Katana-Ya (Ramen house on Geary & Taylor). The famous Lori's diner also has a couple of branches here, although it's not my favourite spot to eat. Other good & famous restaurants that I have or haven't tried in the area include Farallon (Seafood on Post), Michael Mina (American at Westin St Francis Hotel) and Postrio by Wolfgang Puck (Prescott Hotel on Post).

    Drink. The rather famous Redwood room at Clift Hotel is 5 minutes walk on Geary and Taylor. Also there's a lively Irish bar called Johnny Foley's on Mason & O'Farrell.

    Sightsee. The Westin St. Francis hotel has those famous elevators that runs outside of the building. The gigantic Christmas tree is put up during Thanksgiving time, and the "Heart" of Tony Bennet (from the song).

    Give money to charity. What? Yeah, there's a bunch of homeless people asking for spare change.

    the Christmas tree the 'heart of Tony Bennett

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    Hang out in Union Square

    by KevinMichael Written Sep 18, 2007

    This is a good place to read a book, hang out with friends or family, or mingle with either the tourists or the native San Franciscans.

    For singles it could be an ideal place to meet someone (better than a bar).

    Union Square San Francisco Union Square: a place to hang out and get some sun
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    Union Square

    by Muya Written Mar 6, 2007

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    Tiffany, Armani, Prada… a few among the most luxurious signboards that line Union Square. But it is also the place to go if you are looking for bookshops.

    The name of this vast square comes from the frequent demonstrations in support of the Union, held there during the American Civil War.
    A granite column in the center of the Square commemorates Admiral Dewey’s victory at the Battle of Manila Bay during the Spanish-American War of 1898.
    So, it is a place that is also linked with History...

    The first underground garage ever build in the US lies just beneath Union Square, and is a four-level parking facility.

    Union Square Another view on Union Square and the column

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    Union Square

    by Tom_Fields Updated Jan 2, 2007

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    This is the very heart of San Francisco--the center of where the action is. Union Square always has something going on. It's close to everything.

    The monument commemorates Commodore Dewey's decisive victory over the Spanish fleet at the Battle of Manila Bay in 1898. This made America the dominant naval power in the Pacific for years to come.

    Union Square is located near some of San Francisco's top art galleries. On the day of my last visit, there was a huge art fair going on.

    Union Square The monument in the center Art for sale Union Square by night
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  • Ritzy And Fun

    by woodydag Updated Nov 20, 2006

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    Union Square is a shopping mecca that has a little something for every price range from free outdoor movies on select summer nights, half price ticket booth, to Tiffany’s. Since free is a great price, check out free MP3 tours of Union Square (www.geogad.com) that you can download. They point out the interesting attractions and historic trivia that is all around this area. You can find some great, inexpensive restaurants and cafes. For the best views and people watching, try Emporio Rulli. It is a very European style cafe that sits on an exclusive corner of the Union Square park itself. On a beautiful sunny day, it does not get much better than this. If you want to continue the European cafe theme, try Cafe de la Press right outside the Chinatown gate on Grant and Bush. It is pricey, but it has international newspapers that can make ex-pats feel at home. Of course, when you are in Union Square, you are right next to scenic cable cars that can take you from Union Square to Fisherman’s Wharf. While in Union Square, visit the pricey hotels around the square and the surrounding blocks to see how the upper crust live, which can be mighty entertaining all by itself. Locals know that one of the best places to kick back and enjoy some peaceful surfing on the Net while downing some quality coffee is on the second floor of the Borders at 400 Post St. Google has a free WiFi hot spot that covers the Border’s upstairs cafe. Bring your laptop and flip through a stack of books and magazines.

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    Union Square, best shopping in town.

    by tere1 Written Aug 1, 2006

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    The Union Square is basically the center of San Francisco's shopping district . With many well known shops in it, you will have plenty to see and shop. You can find there Victoria Secret, a huge Levis Store, a Gap store, W-Sonoma and a large Macy's, among many other shops.

    Around it you can also find some of the best San Francisco hotels as well as good restaurants , Fine Arts Galleries and bars.

    Union Square is a must for people who want to do some fine shopping.

    Union Square
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    Walk by and shop

    by alfredop Updated May 7, 2006

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    Union Square, one of San Francisco's main retail and cultural centers, also refers to the actual park bordered by Geary, Powell, Post and Stockton streets. Set aside as a park in 1850 and named before the start of the Civil War as a tribute to the frequent demonstrations in support of the Union troop, the park got a major renovation and restoration in 2002.

    You can just buy yourself a coffee and sit there for people watching or walk among the nearby streets where all major fashion shops are located.This is also San Francisco's main theater district, with some historic, beautiful buildings housing the performances. Shows range from traveling Broadway and off-Broadway shows on limited runs to smaller local productions.

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    The center of shopping in the City

    by USCgirlie Written Mar 22, 2006

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    Union Square is where many tourists stay, but it is also the main shopping area in the City. In this area, you will find everything from designer stores like Prada and Tiffany to Victoria's Secret to Macy's. Union Square itself, like its name denotes, is a very pleasant, wide square where many people sit, relax, and eat. It was renovated just a few years ago and is a very aesthetically pleasing square now, with buildings such as the Westin St. Francis landmark, the Nike Store, and others surrounding it. Beware that food in this area is very expensive!

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    Union Square

    by Jessica88 Written Feb 21, 2006

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    "The city that knows how." William Howard Taft

    Union Square is hotbed of activity in San Francisco. Famed for it's luxurious shopping facilites, restaurants and cafés, amateur dance performances and musicians take center stage here, with throngs of revellers onlooking. Around the square, you can find big American retail names such as Macy's, Ralph Lauren, Gap and Levi's. Close by is the three level Crocker Galleria on Post Street, where more exclusive brands can be found. In both these areas, I found staff to be friendly and welcoming, my favourite store being Levi's, where the very camp staff bent over backwards to help you - and what an awesome, cheerfull bunch they were. If you're into your denim goods, I suggest you check out the downstairs customising section, if like me you are desperate for a really good, uniquely fitted pair of jeans! This area is also home to the cultural and artistic side of San Francisco - with Geary, Post and Sutter Street being the main three. Along here, you can find a variety of art galleries, accomodating for both old classic and more contemporary works. Take a look in a few as they really capture the essence of San Francisco's laid-back, artsy culture. Another recommendation for furniture or antique buyers is Gump's, a San Francisco institution selling beautiful items, in my eyes definetely worth looking around. If you're looking for more quirky goods, head to Maiden Lane, a little alley where you can find a wider variety of boutiques and bistros. Plus perhaps the best thing about Union Square...no hills!!

    The heart of Union Square.
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    Historical Union Square

    by perseushermes Written Sep 10, 2005

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    Apart from the shopping at Union Square, there are some historical monuments. one of them is the Victory monument commemorating Admiral Dewey's battle at Manila Bay . I dibn't think of checking whether it meant the Manila Bay in the Philippines. I am told that this monument withstood the earthquake in 1906.

    Victory
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    Shopping Madness

    by perseushermes Written Sep 9, 2005

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    San Francisco's shopping paradise at the Union Square.

    There are hotels, restaurants, Coffee, Loius Vitton, Macy's and much more. Of course as the photo shows, there is a Neiman Marcus too! Wonderful place to hang around. Shoppers beware, its addictive!

    Neiman Marcus Macys!
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  • spgood301's Profile Photo

    Union Square-the place for shopping in SF

    by spgood301 Updated Aug 30, 2005

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    Here's Union Square, in the center of San Francisco. You'll find lots of places to shop there. The big store is Macy's-one of their biggest stores, in the background-but there's lots more too. It's also got a Disney Store-they were promoting a Disney TV show last time I was there. Union Square can be quite crowded-it not only has lots of stores, but several theaters are a block or two away, plus plenty of restaurants and bars.

    If you're in town during the holidays, stop by to see the Christmas tree. One night right before Christmas, a teen chorus sang some Christmas carols there-it really got me in the holiday spirit.

    Union Square is one of the more touristy areas of San Francisco. I found it doesn't really give that "local feel". Still, there's so much to do there that you can't avoid it.

    Statue at Union Square-note Macy's too
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    Beautiful Union Street

    by spgood301 Written Aug 11, 2005

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    It's one of my favorite areas in San Francisco. Union Street has several blocks of funky shops, little restaurants and coffee houses, a couple of bars too. It rocks both during the day and at night.

    When you're done on Union Street, it's not a far walk through the Marina District to a beautiful view of San Francisco Bay. Golden Gate Bridge on your left, Alcatraz on your right. Let the wide angle lens of your memory take it all in.

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  • cheap_tourist's Profile Photo

    Hip Union Square

    by cheap_tourist Updated Jul 13, 2005

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    Union Square is in the heart of Downtown San Francisco. It was so named because, on the eve of the Civil War, demonstrations were held there in support of the Union troops. It is now known for the high-end shops and department stores that surround it. You can do some serious shopping there.

    The square is like a quiet island in a sea of frenetic activity. I like sitting on a bench there and watching the people going about their lives during rush hour. It's one way to feel the city's pulse.

    Street Perfomer at Union Square
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