Sunday, June 3, 2012

Excerpts from my week in San Fran - 2

May 26th:

Just back from a really 'fresh' breakfast at La Boulange. (yes, they have branches in the downtown area too!) Although I was initially a little irritated that the hotel (Palace Hotel - we moved yesterday!) didn't have a coffee machine in the room (it's such a basic thing!), I was ultimately glad to get out and enjoy the morning sunshine.

Yesterday was slow compared to the previous days - M wasn't feeling too well and we also took some time shifting hotels. I found Palace Hotel to be a truly beautiful, historic building. It has a way of transporting you back in time - especially as you walk past lit chandeliers and gilded decor and listen to Mozart playing in the lobby at 8.00 in the morning! The attention to detail is amazing. (note to self: must have tea in the large ballroom under the glass dome. The guidebook wasn't overstating it when it described it as the 'most beautiful room in California'. After dragging the reluctant husband to lunch at Tulan for some Vietnamese, I ventured out to SF MoMa. Discovered an artist I hadn't heard of - Clifford Stills, who makes Rothko look like an amateur. The highlight of the place though, is Mario Botta's light shaft. While not very graceful from the exterior, it works really well for the atrium, bathing the interiors in a silver halo. A quick stop at the museum store for my usual picks of postcards and it was time to head out for the evening meal.

M was feeling better after a nap and felt enthused about trying out a pizza place we had heard about nearby. While the pizza disappointed (I guess we just got too adventurous with the toppings), the drinks at a place next door didn't. 'Cucumbita' (self explanatory!) for me and crispy fried asparagus and corn on the cob on the side...yummilicious!

The beautiful 'antique' Palace Hotel.

Cheap but flavourful - Tulan.

Clifford Stills at the SF Museum of Modern Art. 

Walking under Mario Botta's light shaft, through a connecting bridge into the art galleries - SF MoMa

The Palace Hotel Ballroom where we did eventually have breakfast. Above - A closer look at the beautiful glass ceiling.

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