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Visit Union Square in San Francisco!

Jeff Howard June 15, 2021

There are many reasons to visit Union Square in San Francisco, and this iconic section of The City has unveiled a revitalized brand identity during the Summer of 2021. Known as the epicenter of shopping, dining, shows, and more in SF, Union Square went very quiet during the pandemic and is expected to experience a renaissance this year as life returns to normal. Stroll downtown with us just a few blocks from Trinity Place as we check out the best art galleries, entertainment venues, events, restaurants, landmarks, and other awesome experiences to try.


Union Square is undoubtedly one of the best places in The City to grab a bite, and you can find a full directory with the hundreds of local restaurants here. The area is known for its multiple great steakhouses, including Bob’s Steak & Chop House, The Morton’s Steakhouse, John’s Grill, and Mastro’s Steakhouse. However, it’s not just steak to eat downtown, and you can grab fresh fish at Akiko’s Restaurant, Maru Sushi, Sakana Sushi Bar & Grill, and Miyabiya Sushi & Grill. In the need for some excellent but inexpensive naan and curry to enjoy on a cold SF afternoon? Head to Pakwan or Shalimar just a few blocks from the Trinity Towers apartments at 888 O’Farrell. We may not be Times Square, but Union Square in SF has plenty of great options to grab a slice or full pie, including Del Popolo, Uncle Vito’s Pizza, and Abe’s Pizza. A very different but highly-rated & delicious option to try in the area is Tacorea, a Mexican and Korean fusion spot serving a kimchi burrito with spicy pork, cheese, and Spanish rice!

You can also check out this comprehensive list of the best restaurants surrounding the 1177 Market, 33 8th, 1190 Mission, and 1188 Mission apartments in the Mid-Market area.



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Known as one of the finest shopping areas in any major city, Union Square boasts various high-end boutiques such as Cartier, Valentino, Hermes, Fendi, Tourbillon, Saint Laurent, and many more! This section of The City continues to grow as a shopping destination. It is anchored by a large Neiman Marcus, Macy’s, Sak’s Fifth Avenue, Bloomingdales, and Nordstrom, at the Westfield Shopping Center. With Gap Inc. and Levi’s headquartered in SF, it is not difficult to find their stores in Union Square.

You can also visit shopping staples such as the Apple Store, Nike, Wiliam’s Sonoma, Target, and The North Face.



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Named in recognition of the Union Army supporters who gathered at this location during the American Civil War, Union Square is filled with historical landmarks commemorating many different aspects of San Francisco. The park was originally deeded by John Geary, a Union Army general who was the first mayor of San Francisco. Perhaps the most recognizable landmark within Union Square is the Dewey Monument, which honors Admiral George Dewey for his victory in the Battle of Manila Bay in the Spanish-American War. Pictured above, Ruth Asawa’s Fountain features a collection of iconic San Francisco landmarks molded together using clay to create the beautiful bronze fountain. Union Square is also home to The Cable Car Turnaround, where you can watch operators hand-turn each cable car as part of the world’s last manually operated system.

Other Union Square landmarks include The Flood Building, The Westin St. Francis, Maiden Lane, Dragon’s Gate, and The Frank Lloyd Wright Building.

Art Galleries

There is no shortage of fine art in Union Square, with many galleries reopened and ready to display their unique and beautiful creations. Gefen Fine Art boasts over 10,000 square feet of exhibition space known for its color, vibrance, and modern appearance. The San Francisco Art Exchange (pictured above) offers renowned pop-culture photographs depicting music, film, sports, publishing, and more! Another nearby option, Weinstein Gallery, showcases an upscale and pricey selection that includes renowned artists such as “Chagall, Bauer, Calder, and Picasso, to name a few.”

Other popular galleries to visit nearby include CK Contemporary, Caldwell Snyder Gallery, Christopher Clark Fine Art, and Hang Art.

Bars & Clubs

Small local bars & clubs such as Sam’s Cable Car Lounge took the biggest hit during the Covid shutdown, but you can expect them to come back with a vengeance this summer! Grab yourself a “Cable Car Cosmo” next time you’re in Union Square, and let the good times roll! If you’re looking to catch a game with a big group or play games on their many tables, Golden Gate Tap Room has a drink and an activity for everyone to enjoy. Another awesome option in the area perfect for a boozy brunch is the rooftop bar Dirty Habit located on the rooftop of Hotel Zelos.

You can also enjoy a drink at Novela, Rickhouse, The Lark, Mikkeller Bar, and Peacekeeper.

Events & Venues


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Large gatherings, festivals, and, ultimately, parties are returning to San Francisco with plenty of fun events set to occur in Union Square and the neighboring Theatre District. The Curran Theatre in Union Square plans to host Harry Potter and the Cursed Child later this year, while The Orpheum Theatre near Trinity Place will resume showings of Hamilton. San Francisco Playhouse has also resumed shows and will be open for in-person events by late July. Along with the array of ticketed shows opening at Union Square’s iconic theaters, you can also attend free outdoor concerts in Union Square each Saturday.

You can also catch a movie nearby at Century Theatres San Francisco Centre or see a live show at the American Conservatory Theatre, Custom Made Theatre Co., Moment Improv Theatre, or The Un-Scripted Theater Company.

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