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Walking Tour of Nob Hill
"Of all the many hills San Francisco is famous for few contain the special history and strange regard of the local population as the hill - Nob Hill at the top of downtown. Once home to governors lumber barons railroad tycoons and wealthy land speculators the hill at the top of California street played an integral part in the special history of what makes San Francisco special weird and unique.   Your walking history tour of this once uber-affluent neighborhood begins at front of the Fairmont Hotel with your choice of a morning or early afternoon departure. After meeting your guide and the rest of your small group
From $30.00
Nob Hill Walking Tour in San Francisco with Optional Lunch
"Your tour departs from the San Francisco Cable Car Museum at 11am. From here your expert guide will narrate the history of this distinctive neighborhood one of San Francisco's famous ""Seven Hills"" while taking you to the area’s most iconic and historical landmarks. Learn about this affluent neighborhood’s rise to fortune staring in the mid-1800s with gold silver and the Central Pacific Railroad. You’ll discover the interesting little-known fact that the name ‘Nob’ comes from the area's earliest settlers deriving from a Hindi word for a very wealthy or powerful person. After the infamous 1906 earthquake and fire
From $40.00
San Francisco Movie Sights City Tour
"Talk about a comprehensive city tour... Start at Pier 43 1/2 on Fisherman’s Wharf with a classic clip from The Birdman of Alcatraz (definitely not based on a true story) and a hot-off-the-presses clip from the Dwayne Johnson blockbuster San Andreas. On the way to North Beach check out crooked Lombard Street and Taylor Street where Steve McQueen in Bullitt catches big air in the most famous car chase scene of all time. In North Beach enjoy Sts. Peter and Paul Church and Washington Square. Watch out for the Scorpio killer from Dirty Harry! Then see the Financial District home to the Towering Inferno which is destroyed
From $49.00

Nob Hill Tips (17)

Huntington Park - Nob Hill.

Just in front of Grace Cathedral in Nob Hill stands Huntington Park. This was once the site of the mansion of Collis P. Huntington, who helped build the Central Pacific Railroad. The mansion was destroyed in the 1906 earthquake and fire. However, Mr. Huntington's widow donated the property to the city of San Francisco to set up a park in 1915.

The park has a replica of the fountain, Fontana Delle Tartarughe or Fountain of the Turtles. This was bought by William and Ethel Crocker for their estate at Hillsborough, California. Later this fountain was given to the city of San Francisco by the Crockers' four children. It was installed in Huntington Park in 1954. The original fountain is in the Piazza Mattei, Rome.

Also in Huntington Park there is a statue called Dancing Sprites by French sculptor, Henri Leon Greber. This statue was donated to the city by Mrs. James Flood in 1942. The Flood family amassed a fortune in the gold and silver fields.

IreneMcKay's Profile Photo
Feb 27, 2016

Hang Around the Top of the Mark

spectacular views of the city that rivals my fave lounge in Mariott Marquis in SOMA

Top of the Mark is the place for spectacular brunches and they also serve light dinner besides being one of the best bars here in the city. The area becomes soo packed that they don't accept reservations for the evenings!

The Top of the Mark is the second most romantic cocktail lounge in San Francisco(hey i'm biased since I like the ambiance more in the View Lounge in Marriott Marquis in South Of Market ok). Legendary since its opening in 1939, It sits atop the Mark Hopkins Hotel on Nob Hill. Always elegant, it has been a favorite with famous (& infamous), rich and beautiful people from all over the world who love this attractive area with its breathtaking 360 degree views of San Francisco and beyond. Their ambiance sports an elegant club-like decor, with stunning night lights and day views of the San Francisco skyline. This is the place to be on Valentines Day, or any day for romance. Even if you choose another San Francisco restaurant to dine in, this is where you go for after dinner cocktails and the pinao man at the bar is par excellance bar none!

Mon-Sat 6:30 am - 2:30 pm

Mon-Thu, Sun 5 pm - 12 am

Fri-Sat 4 pm - 1 am

Sun 10 am - 1 pm

machomikemd's Profile Photo
Sep 06, 2014

Nob Hill

See my general tips for much more on Nob Hill.
The Mark Hopkins Hotel was built in 1925 at the site of the mansion of Mark Hopkins, one of the 'Big Four' railroad tycoons. Like many other wooden mansions it was destroyed by fire in the aftermath of the 1906 earthquake.
It's interesting to note that not all fires were caused by the earthquake directly. Many people, not covered by earthquake insurance, chose to set fire to their place so they could claim fire insurance, which they had. Which isn't to suggest that this was one of those situations.
This is another of those, "If you have to ask the price you can't afford it" hotels. Start thinking around $400 plus.

iandsmith's Profile Photo
Aug 05, 2011

Best Free Thing #19: Hobnobbing on the Hill

You may not have the wherewithall to stay in them but you can get a look at some of Nob Hill's famous posh hotels for free. A walk down California street from Grace Cathedral will take you by 3 gilded grande dames: The Fairmont, Mark Hopkins and the Ritz-Carlton. Act like you know what you're doing and walk right in for a discrete gander at their plushy club lounges, foyers, gigantic floral arrangements and shops. You might even sneak peeks at some of the ballrooms and meeting areas. Brazen curiosity seeker that I am, I jumped the elevator up to the fabled Top of the Mark restaurant/bar one morning for some stealthy shots of SF the skyline.

I think they're used to tourists so unless you make a nuisance of yourself (don't point the camera at the guests!) no one will raise a salon-plucked eyebrow. Have a hankering for some swank but not the budget? Put on your Sunday best and go for just a drink or proper afternoon tea in one of the cushy lounges.

These are also good places to make a potty stop - the restrooms near public or meeting areas are always spic and span!

goodfish's Profile Photo
Jun 14, 2010
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Hotels Near Nob Hill

950 Mason Street, San Francisco, California, 94108, United States
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600 Stockton Street, San Francisco, California, 94108-2305, United States
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Number One Nob Hill, 999 California Street, San Francisco, California, 94108, United States
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1075 California Street, San Francisco, California, 94108, United States
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465 Grant Avenue, San Francisco, California, 94108, United States
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Nob Hill (Snob Hill)

this is part two of my tips on SNOB Hill, again I am sort of biased since I find the Views in View Lounge Better than the Top of the Mark. Nob Hill, besides the home of San Francisco's Big Four (Leland Stanford, Collis Huntington, Mark Hopkins and Charles Crocker) and Nice views of Car Chases in the movies, the Snob Hill is also the home of the Big four (the Fairmont Hotel, the Mark Hopkins Intercontinental Hotel, the Stanford Court, and the Huntington Hotel) Hotels and the Iconic Grace Cathedral and Masonic Center.

machomikemd's Profile Photo
Aug 30, 2008

Good Views Around SF via Cable Car!

SNOB Hill ooops Nob Hill (sorry, since most people here are snooty rich types) due to it's reputation as a privileged only area in the gold rush and recent times. The area is home to Posh hotels like the fairmont, Intercontinental, top of the Mark and others and also offers the best view of the bay area when riding the cable car so when the cable car stops at this area, I suggest you let your digicams and videocams ready!

machomikemd's Profile Photo
Jul 31, 2008

Welcome to Snob Hill!!!

Nob Hill is an affluent district, home to many of the city's old money families. Sometimes it is sarcastically referred to as Snob Hill. Its also home to some of the most expensive hotels in the city like the Farimont Hotel, Mark Hopkins, and the Huntington Hotel to name just a few. The Farimont Hotel has been used in many different Hollywood films so its the most famous of all the hotels. Grace Cathedral also resides on the hill which is located at the intersection of California and Powell, Grace Cathedral is one of the most beautiful churches in the city and was built in the same style as Notre Dame. There is also a small park with a beautiful water fountain if your looking for a place to relax and take in the rich folks that pass by!

wilocrek's Profile Photo
May 08, 2008

Nob Hill's Grace Cathedral

If there was a downside to our otherwise spectacular trip to San Francisco, it was when my camera battery died just as we were ready to tour GRACE CATHEDRAL. I was so disappointed!!

Happily, located handily below the sanctuary, there was a gift shop which carried post cards of this magnificent cathedral, which was opportune!

picture #1 Grace Cathedral was constructed from 1927 to 1964 and is an Episcopal church. It sits atop Nob Hill, exuding good will, purity and righteousness--just like God's house should! The design was inspired by French Cathedrals.

picture #2 The central sanctuary is shown with the Connick choir windows. There are several services conducted each Sunday, among which is the 11 am service, placed on the web weekly.

picture #3 The east rose window (1964) depicts a famous poem of Saint Francis. Referred to as the Gabriel Loire window, it is 25 feet in diameter and has nearly 3800 pieces of faceted glass. As the sun shimmered through its multi-colored segments, it truly was a gorgeous sight!

These photo postcards are published by C. Harrison Conroy Co.

VeronicaG's Profile Photo
Aug 22, 2007

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Posh neighbourhood

Nob Hill is one of the famous San Francisco hills, very close to the city centre and Union Square. The hill hosts a park surrounded by a bunch of top-class hotels with excellent views to the city and the bay and Grace cathedral -- once imposing and now dwarfed by the towers.

The best way to go the hill is walking, but it may not be option for everybody. Taxis and rental cars are good choices, too, but maybe the best non-walking transport method is to take a cable car running on California street.

nomadig's Profile Photo
Mar 20, 2005


Nob Hill - take in the temples of grandeur or sit on a bench in Huntington Park. Nob Hill is the old playground of railroad barons and high society, at the top of California Street, a short cable car trip from Union Square. Or climb the steep-grade on foot from Powell Street.

Gothic Grace Cathedral:
Grace Cathedral Website

Fairmont Hotel: Tea Time 2:30-6 p.m. daily. Meander through the lobby!

Mark Hopkins Hotel: Tea served in the Top of the Mark lounge.

Huntington's Nob Hill: Cozy Big Four restaurant, have a glass of port in a deep leather chairs by the fire.

The Ritz Carlton is a two-block walk down California Street.

100ACRE's Profile Photo
Oct 16, 2004

Interior of Grace Cathedral

On the interior of the church, there are a few interesting features. There is an interesting labyrinth near the rear of the church (and one outside) which symbolizes three stages of a holy life, Purgation (letting go), Illumination (receiving God) and Union (joining God).

I was also quite taken by the height of the central nave. It's enormous! The altar, on the other hand, was a bit disappointing in its simplicity.

On the other hand, the stained glass window were interesting. One set is done by an American artist Charles Connick and the other done by a French guy whose name I can't recall. There are also some great murals on the north side walls of the nave which are the work by Antonio Sotomayor and depict the founding of the church.

The church is actually the parish successor of Grace Church which dates to 1849, California's Gold Rush year.

acemj's Profile Photo
Jul 04, 2004

Hard work!

Ok, if you feel not enthusiast going up walking Nob hill , then think how people living or working everyday do and..cheer up, this is waht i thought thinking of going back to the flat flat Netherlands.

isolina_it's Profile Photo
Sep 22, 2003

Things to Do Near Nob Hill

Things to Do

Cable Car Museum

The inventor of the cable car, Andrew Hallidie came to the US in 1852 from England. He worked as a blacksmith and surveyor in the gold fields of California. At the age of 19, he designed and built...
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Grant Avenue, between Bush Street and Broadway is the main tourist street of Chinatown. The avenue is lined with dragon-entwined lamp posts and buildings that borrow elements from Chinese...
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Things to Do

Grace Cathedral

Along the main walls are beautiful murals by Polish-born John De Rosen (1949-50) and Bolivian-born Antonio Sotomayor (1982-83). De Rosen’s unfinished series features world church and Anglo-Episcopal...
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Cathedral of St. Mary of the Assumption

In stark contrast to the traditional, old-world style of the nearby Grace Cathedral, the Cathedral of St Mary of the Assumption is built in an ultra-modern style. The design, by Pietro Belluschi and...
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North Beach

Beach Blanket Babylon Musical Revue Steve Silver's Beach Blanket Babylon was recommended to us by two friends independently. one currently living in San Francisco and the other had just returned from...
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Transamerica Pyramid Center

Located off Montgomery Street on ground level is the visitor center and gift store. It includes historical displays Chronicling the Pyramid from Conception to its Importance to the Skyline today,...
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Getting to Nob Hill


Area surrouonding California Street at Taylor


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