San Francisco Neighborhoods, The Presidio

Friday June 10, 2011 at 12:12 AM | 1 Comment

"Golden Gate Bridge" "San Francisco" "Presidio" neighborhood

Golden Gate Bridge viewed from San Francisco's Presido Neighborhood

Welcome to the Neighborhood, A Series About San Francisco Neighborhoods
About the author. Dianne Admire is the co-owner of San Francisco company Carried Away. Carried Away offers private, custom, experiential tours of San Francisco and the Bay Area for up to 4 people. Dianne and her business partner Vikki Garrod (a.k.a. The Ladies of Carried Away) are known for creating “the best day ever” in San Francisco and the Bay Area. To book one of their sights, food, wine, or shopping outings you can contact them at

"Presidio" "San Francisco"

Rental housing is availble in The Presidio San Francisco Neighborhood

The Presidio Neighborhood

This unique San Francisco neighborhood was founded in 1776 as a military post and remained a military post until 1994, when the military moved out and the Presidio became a national park/San Francisco neighborhood. That is a long story made way short. Instead of focusing on the detailed military history of the Presidio, we’ll get right to the question you may be asking yourself: “how does a national park also serve as a neighborhood in San Francisco?”

The Presidio is managed by The Presidio Trust (well 80% of it; everything except the coastline). The Presidio Trust is charged with making the area financially self-sustaining, which the trust has accomplished ahead of schedule. One of the sources of income is rental housing in former military homes. These homes range from the charming stucco and red tile roof homes to the the grand military doctors homes built in the 1930’s to more basic accommodations constructed in the ’60’s. The trust has rehabbed the homes to their former glory, with thoughtful modern upgrades in the kitchens and baths. These homes are truly desirable (if pricy) accommodations in the city.
In addition to rental housing, businesses have moved in. Naturally, when you have businesses and homes, a neighborhood of sorts sprouts up. In addition to the natural bounty of the area (breathe in the eucalyptus!), you will find restaurants, outdoor art, museums, and Yoda. Yes, the Yoda from Star Wars.

Presidio Trees

Wander through trees in the Presidio, a national park and neighborhood

Explore San Francisco’s Presidio Neighborhood

On the Presidio’s almost 1500 acres you’ll find plenty of places to get your nature on. We have three faves:
Chrissy Field. The uber-popular walking path along Chrissy Field is a must-do. One of the few places in the city to enjoy a beautiful flat walk, Chrissy Field offers people (and dog) watching, activity on the bay and views of the bridge, bridge and more bridge. Park at the East Beach parking lot and walk 1.5 miles to the path, which ends at Fort Point. If you go Friday – Sunday 10am -5pm, you can explore Fort Point once you reach the bridge. Walk all the way to the top of this Civil War-era building, and your climb will be rewarded with stunning views (the bridge so close you can almost touch it!). The scenery on the way back isn’t too shabby either.
Presidio Habitats. Dotted around the Fort Scott area of Presidio, the Presidio Habitats is a series of 11 outdoor art installations. Each one of them is dedicated to an animal in the Presidio, and as a group they celebrate the “wild Presidio”. Our favorites are The Winged Wisdom and Patience. You will no doubt find your own favorite by exploring each of the exhibits on foot. Start at the exhibition Pavillion (which is worth a visit on its own), to get a map and instructions for the self-guided cell phone tour.

Golden Gate Bridge
Golden Gate Bridge from San Francisco’s Baker Beach

Baker Beach

The ultimate urban beach – there is usually parking, you’ll feel like you’re a million miles away from the city (but it’s just right there), views to the Pacific Ocean horizon on one side and the GGB on the other, and a perfect picnic spot. Please note, the east end of the beach is clothing optional and even on the chilliest of summer days, it’s populated.

Eat & Drink in San Francisco’s Presido

After a day in nature, you’re going to need to eat! Here are a two options in the Presidio:
Presidio Social Club. California comfort food is what it’s all about at the PSC. Housed in former enlisted men’s barracks, the Presidio Social Club is beautifully renovated with a communal table constructed from a tree trunk and a marble bar with comfortable stools. We love the dungeness crabcake sliders, chicken liver pate, and the gruyere cheese toasts with tomato dip.
La Terrasse. A French accent in the all-American Presidio, La Terrasse’s French bistro menu should warm you up on a foggy day, and replenish your reserves (hello pommes frites!).
Both the Presidio Social Club and La Terrase offer extensive cocktail menus and wine lists (would we recommend a resto that didn’t?).

"Yoda" "Star Wars"

Yoda statue in San Francisco's Presidio Neighborhood

Shop Presidio

The Warming Hut Bookstore & Cafe. It’s know for their coffee and and sandwiches, soups and snacks, but this is also a great place to pick up a memento of your day in the Presidio.

P.S. about that Yoda… For Star Wars fans, the Yoda fountain outside of George Lucas’ Letterman Digital Arts Center is a mecca of sorts.

What is your favorite neighborhood in San Francisco? What are your favorite things to do in San Francisco?

Related Posts:

San Francisco Neighborhoods – Divisadero Corridor

San Francisco Neighborhoods – North Beach

San Francisco Neighborhoods – Pacific Heights

Things to Do in San Francisco

Where to Eat Cheap in San Francisco

Yoda statue photo courtesy of Niall Kennedy’s Flickr Photostream

Kids Golf Free at Puakea and Princeville’s Makai Golf Club, Kauai, Hawaii

Friday June 3, 2011 at 12:12 AM | 1 Comment


Puakea Golf Course, Kauai, Hawaii, golf

Free Golf to Junior Players at Puakea Golf Course

Puakea Golf Course Begins ‘Kids Play Free’ Campaign in June Puakea Golf Club’s Annual Kids Play Free campaign begins June 1 and will run through Sept. 30, 2011. The campaign allows junior golfers ages 7 to 17 to play the course for free when accompanied by a paying adult (one free junior for each adult). The offer is valid seven days a week and rental clubs are available for junior golfers.

“This is a way for Puakea to support the growth of the game,” said Puakea General Manager Dave Werner. “We offer this program every summer to encourage families to introduce their children to the game and get out and enjoy a healthy activity together.”

Puakea ranked No. 16 on GOLF Magazine’s prestigious “2010 Best Courses You Can Play” by state list. The course resonates with golfers of all ages since its tropical landscape and backdrop served as the set for the hit movie Jurassic Park.


Makai Golf course, kauai, hawaii, golf

Free Golf to Junior Players at Princeville’s Makai Golf Club

Makai Golf Club Offers Savings to Multi-Round Players and Free Golf to Juniors Players who want to enjoy multiple rounds at Princeville’s Makai Golf Club can now earn substantial savings by purchasing a choice of two special offers.

The “Makai Golf Pass” provides three 18-hole rounds for $420 to be used within seven days of purchase, with additional rounds added for $140 each. The “Makai Golf Week” provides six rounds at $696, to be used within 30 days of purchase. The passes are non-transferable, but are good for rounds on both the 18-hole Makai and the 9-hole Woods course, as well as for merchandise at the Makai Golf Shop.

Makai Golf Club is also continuing its popular “juniors play free” program through 2011. Players ages 6 to 15 can play free when accompanied by a paying adult (one free junior per one paying adult; additional juniors or unaccompanied juniors pay 50% off adult rate). Juniors ages 16 and 17 receive 50% off green fees when accompanied by a paying adult. Juniors can also use complimentary Callaway rental clubs, a $55 value.

The Makai Course, located in the Princeville at Hanalei resort, recently underwent a multi-million dollar renovation that featured the introduction of Seashore Paspalum turf grass on all tees, fairways and greens, providing spectacular playing surfaces for golfers of all skill levels.


golf, family-friendly golf

Kaua’i: Discover Golf’s Ultimate Island Green
Kaua’i offers more than 50 miles of white sand beaches — more beach per mile than any other island in Hawaii.  Only four percent of the island is developed for commercial and residential use.


1. Princeville Golf Courses

  • 45 holes of golf — the 27-hole Makai Golf Club at The St. Regis Princeville Resort and the 18-hole Prince Golf Course — all designed by Robert Trent Jones Jr.
  • The Prince Course (800.826.1105) is rated the No. 1 course in the state and was rated No. 67 in Golf Digest’s “America’s 100 Greatest Golf Courses 2009-10.” It is currently undergoing a refurbishment project and will be closed until the fall.
  • The Makai Golf Club 808.826.1912 reopened in 2010 after an extensive 15-month renovation and now features the 18-hole Makai Course and the 9-hole Woods Course
  • The St. Regis Princeville Resort completed a multi-million-dollar renovation and opened the first week of October 2009

2. Kaua’i Lagoons Golf Club 800.634.6400

  • Voted, along with Kaua’i Marriott Resort, one of the “Top 50 Resort Courses” worldwide by GolfWorld magazine in its “2009 Readers’ Choice Awards”
  • Currently 18 of the 36 holes designed by Jack Nicklaus are in play, consisting of nine holes from the Kiele Course and nine holes from the Mokihana Course. The Kiele Ocean nine is receiving extensive upgrades, including the addition of one new ocean hole that will create a one-half-mile long stretch of oceanfront golf. Completion of the Kiele Moana (Ocean) nine is scheduled for May 2011
  • The front nine holes feature the par-3 fifth green encircled by a tropical Mango and Guava tree forest

3. Poipu Bay Golf Course 800.858.6300

  • Along with Grand Hyatt Kaua’i Resort & Spa rated No. 16 in GolfWorld’s “America’s Top 50 Resort Courses, 2009″
  • Four closing holes play atop a 150-foot sea cliff
  • Home to the PGA Grand Slam of Golf from 1994 through 2006, it has frequently hosted players like Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson, Vijay Singh and other major champions
  • Course re-opened in December following a renovation project, highlighted by the installation of the eco-friendly Seashore Paspalum turf on all greens

4. Puakea Golf Course 866.773.5554

  • Consistently rated a favorite among Kaua’i golfers in local media outlets and ranked as the No. 15 course in Hawaii by Golfweek.
  • Golf Course Architect Robin Nelson used the natural layout of the land when he planned this layout, testing golfers of all levels and treating them to beautiful views of Mt. Ha’upu and deep lush ravines on several holes.
  • Owned by AOL co-Founder Steve Case

What are your favorite things to do in Kauai, Hawaii?

If You Go:

Golfing on the Island of Kauai, Hawaii 800-262-1400.

Follow Kauai Golf on Twitter, and follow Nancy D. Brown on Twitter for all things  travel-related.

Related Post:

Horseback Riding at Princeville Ranch, Kauai

Photos courtesy of Buffalo Communications

Wallaroo Hat Company – Travel Apparel Review

Friday May 27, 2011 at 12:12 AM | 1 Comment


Wallaroo Hat, sun hat, sun protection, travel, nancy d. brown

Wallaroo Adventure Hat

Who doesn’t love the sun, sand and sea? Yet lurking within those words slips another “s” word – skin cancer. As a travel writer, I notice fellow travel writers wearing Ultraviolet Protection resistant clothing and Ultraviolet Protection Factor (UPF) hats.  There’s a good reason for this sun-sensitive travel apparel – along with unprotected sun exposure comes skin cancer.  In fact, one of my travel writing buddies was recently diagnosed with non-malignant skin cancer.

What exactly does Ultraviolet Protection mean? Ultraviolet radiation, or UV, is present in sunlight. The Ultraviolet Protection Factor (UPF) shows how well a fabric protects your skin from solar UV.

The fabrics are tested by the Australian Radiation Protection Agency and block 97.5% of the sun’s ultraviolet rays.  But remember, a sunhat only protects the skin it covers. Safeguard the rest of your body by wearing sunglasses and sunscreen.

Coppertone Sunscreen Products

Unfortunately, I’m a prime target for skin cancer. Thanks to my Norwegian heritage, I have fair skin that sun burns easily. I have more moles on my body than a connect-the-dots word game and I live in Northern California where the sun shines long and bright. While my husband has dark skin that tans easily, our children inherited my light skin complexion.  One teenager is a swimmer and a life guard, spending hours by the swimming pool as her summer job. The other teen is a water polo player and life guard. Both have suffered the consequences of forgetting to re-apply sunscreen lotion, resulting in severe sunburn.

Coppertone recently sent me a new product to test. The Coppertone oil free foaming sunscreen lotion offers SPF 75+, lightweight sun protection. The sunscreen won’t clog pores and provides broad spectrum UVA/UVB protection. It goes on like shaving cream, rising to fluffy peaks. I imagine that young children would have a ball rubbing the sunscreen on their arms and tummies. While the sunscreen did provide excellent coverage on a recent golf outing with my husband and son, both teenagers prefer continuous spray sunscreen. As long as they remember to re-apply the sunscreen, I’m happy.

Sun Safety Tips

The Wallaroo Adventure Hat retails for $36.00 and comes in three color schemes: natural with camel interior; white with hydrangea interior or camel with black interior.

If You Go:

Pack your Wallaroo Hat

Like Wallaroo Hat Company on Facebook and follow Nancy D. Brown on Twitter for travel tips.

Wallaroo Hat Company supplied me with this hat for a travel apparel review.  Coppertone supplied me with a six oz. can of Oil Free Foaming Sunscreen Lotion and  8 oz. of Coppertone Sport Sunscreen Lotion for review.

Related Posts:

Top 10 Sun Safety Tips by UV Skinz

ExOficio Travel Apparel Review

Photo courtesy of Travel Writer Nancy D. Brown

Travel Tips on raveable