Let’s start with the history of our beautiful neighborhood. The Marina District of San Francisco is located between Van Ness Avenue and Lyon Street (though our Merchant’s Association incorporates all those in The Presidio as well) and from Filbert Street up to the Waterfront (though other maps designate Lombard Street as the Southern Point). Our beautiful neighborhood has been developed over the former site of the 1915 Panama-Pacific International Exposition, which was a world’s fair held in our city to celebrate the reemergence of San Francisco after the 1906 earthquake (and also celebrating the completion of the Panama Canal).
Incorporating a front-row view to the Golden Gate Bridge, our neighborhood enlists a variety of eclectic shops, restaurants, cafes, watering holes, arts complex/ event space, and our Marina Green which stretches into Chrissy Field. Our neighborhood is home to The Palace of Fine Arts Theatre, which showcases a variety of art exhibitions; it also happens to be one of the few surviving buildings from the 1915 Exposition. We are also home to the Fort Mason Complex, the former Army post; which today is home to the Fort Mason Center for Arts & Culture which houses a variety of organizations, galleries, and the largest gathering of the Off the Grid food experience. The Marina is a bustling area that is emerging with new innovative restaurants, boutique shopping, and an amazing group of legacy businesses that have been a part of this neighborhood for decades.
Marina Merchants Association
What helped you decide to open in the Marina District?
We chose to open in the Marina because we had hundreds of existing customers who already lived in the Marina and we wanted to be able to serve them in their own neighborhood. We also saw that the neighborhood had repeatedly supported cannabis legalization at the ballot box, so we figured we would be a good fit.
What is your most memorable experience since opening?
My favorite thing is when people come inside for the first time and the mouths drop open and then say, “Wait, this is a dispensary?” We have a beautiful space; our flagship Castro store was named the best designed dispensary in the country by Architectural Digest. Naturally I am biased, but I think the Marina store is even more beautiful!
That said, every day has been memorable, from the moment we opened our doors on July 26, 2017.We see folks from all over San Francisco, Marin County, and since recreational marijuana became legal, tourists from all over the globe. It is so much fun building relationships with the folks that visit our store, our neighbors, and all of the Marina merchants!
What is your favorite restaurant, business or shop in the neighborhood?
It is very hard to pick a favorite place in the Marina. I love Maybeck’s & BOHO, Over the Moon Creamery, Monaghan’s and Reed & Greenough. Every shop and restaurant has been so welcoming, and every spot brings something different to the table to match every mood.
What do you hope for the future for the Marina District?
I hope for this upswing of new shops moving in to continue. I want the legacy businesses to keep thriving. I want more foot traffic from tourists and the locals. Ideally, we will bring back the [formerly Steiner Street] Farmer’s Market (in addition to the Sunday Market at Fort Mason), and I would LOVE to help develop a street festival (similar to the Fillmore Jazz Fest). I am excited to be a part of this continued growth and for the Marina to be a destination when visiting our incredible city.