Hayes Valley

Hayes Valley is home to the famous Painted Ladies

For San Franciscans who attend theater opening s and symphony galas, Hayes Valley is the place to buy a one-of-a-kind gown, eat a terrific meal, and then dash off to hear Michael Tilson Thomas, without traveling more than three blocks. But dashing from here would be a shame.  This as a neighborhood designed for browsing.  It is lined with galleries, antiques shops, boutiques, and restaurants that cover most tastes, from soul food, to grilled ahi, to award winning California Chef’s cuisine.  Hayes Valley offers lots of diversions.  There’s the San Francisco Women Artists’ Gallery on Hayes, as well as the Polanco Gallery of Mexican Art, with beautiful crafts and paintings by some of Mexico’s well-known artists. There’s also an impressive blown-glass gallery, and J.C.’s Collections, a cramped shop with an assortment of kitsch including Star Trek action figures and Batman lunch boxes.  For those with Imelda-like tendencies, stop at Gimme Shoes.

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