Wednesday, 30 October 2013

San Francisco Day 3

This morning we slept in and woke up with slightly sore and tired legs and glutes. Too much walking uphill I think! So today we opted for a more relaxing day of shopping and the hop on hop off bus.

Day 3 Plan
  • Brunch at The Cheescake Factory
  • Buy a new pair of shoes because my shoes are not made for walking long distances
  • Hop on hop off bus to Golden Gate Bridge
  • Shopping

Brunch
The Cheesecake Factory
Address: Level 8, Macy's, Union Square, San Francisco
 My workmate HS had told me that I had to go to The Cheesecake Factory at Macy's so I decided to take her advice and go there for brunch. We arrived a little after 11am and easily secured a table on the terrace overlooking Union Square, Sak's Fifth Ave and Tiffany's and Co just to name a few points of interest. The menu is extensive and we got quite confused. I ordered garlic noodles with shrimp (lunch size) and a dulce de leche hot chocolate and hubby ordered a mushroom burger (don't worry he's not turning vegetarian, it does come with a beef pattie). We were served some complimentary slightly warm bread which was not overly exciting and my hot chocolate was way too sweet! So sweet that I had to dilute it out with water and I still couldn't finish it as it was a massive glass. Our food arrived and the servings were massive! I was glad the waiter asked me whether I wanted the lunch size, I can't imagine how massive the usual serving size would be. My noodles were not bad, filled with lots of vegetables and three big shrimps, it was a little salty but apart from that no complaints.
Hubby's burger was tasty but the bun was a bit too oily. Our meal ended up costing US$35 (after tax before tips) which was not too bad. If you plan to go, get there before or just after 11am as they filled up quickly and when we left there was a queue waiting to be seated, alternatively make a reservation but make sure you ask for a window seat on the terrace.
Taste Test Score 7.5/10 (Worth going more for the outside terrace than the food though)

The Cheesecake Factory on Urbanspoon


Hop on hop off bus
The San Francisco Sightseeing Company
For $36 you can enjoy the hop on hop off bus service provided by The San Francisco Sightseeing Company for 48 hours (there are heaps of these hop on hop off buses available, I think they're all pretty similar but some have more stops than others and there are price differences). We jumped on at Union Square where all the hop on hop off buses from all the different tour companies pick up and drop of tourists, you can buy your tickets at the Union Square stop as all the sales representatives a stationed there. It took about 30 minutes to get from Union Square to the Golden Gate Bridge and the bus driver provided us with live commentary of the surrounding scenery as we went by. On our way back from the bridge, the bus tour ended at Fisherman's Wharf so hubby and I decided to walk back to Union Square. Make sure you wear a hat and scarf or you might get a headache from the wind and chill.
Verdict: I am happy to recommend their service but would probably choose another vendor next time because they don't have an enclosed area on the bus so it was freezing whether you sat upstairs or downstairs.

Exploring 
Golden Gate Bridge
The bridge is spectacular and we got some nice photos of the bridge and us. We were very lucky that the weather was so beautiful today (blue skies but still pretty chilly). We hopped onto the second loop (bus route) available from San Francisco and that took us to the other side of the bridge and Sausalito if you so wish (unfortunately we didn't have time to go). The Golden Gate Bridge is approximately 2.7km in length and hubby and I took 55 minutes to walk back with photography breaks and taking in the view breaks included.
Verdict: Of course you have to go, it's one of their most famous tourist attractions!

Shopping
Goorin Bros Hat Shop
Official site: http://www.goorin.com
Address: 1612 Stockton St, San Francisco
Hubby and I walked past this store on our way back from Fisherman's Wharf and as we both love hats, stepped in. The quality of the hats are really good and the ones we picked up ranged from $65 to $150 each but well worth the price. Interesting fact, they made the Heisenberg hat for the television series Breaking Bad. They have shops all over USA and a couple in Canada so you don't necessarily need to go to the one on Stockton Street.
Verdict: If you love hats, this shop is worth a visit and maybe a purchase.

Union Square Shops
There are so many places to shop but today we shopped around Union Square where we walked around Macy's and then went over to the Nike shop and bought a pair of shoes before heading to the Golden Gate Bridge. After the Golden Gate Bridge, we made our way down to the Westfield San Francisco City Centre where Bloomingdales, Nordstrom and lots of other stores are located. Whatever you want to buy, you will be able to find it at a shop in Union Square. Just bring your credit card or lots of cash.
Verdict: I love shopping so Union Square is a little piece of heaven.

Dinner

Akiko Sushi
Address: 542 Mason Street, Nob Hill
At 9pm I was hungry and slightly cranky so we had to find food. My feet were so sore that I was happy to just get room service at our hotel but we opted for a Japanese restaurant less than 200m from our hotel. As soon as we entered this tiny restaurant which only seats 12 people, we heard them speak Cantonese. The waitress was asking the boss whether to accept us or not as the kitchen was closed but in true Asian style, they asked us to sit down but we were only able to order sushi or sashimi. To be honest, I was a bit judgemental but the food was actually pretty good so I was pleasantly surprised and felt bad for judging. Service was not the best but it was bearable and our total came to $45 (after tax before tips). I guess the saying don't judge a book by its cover applies here.
Taste Test Score 7/10

 Akiko's Sushi Bar on Urbanspoon

My feet are absolutely killing me, hopefully they'll be okay by tomorrow. Good night. xx