Faves and raves by Stuart Siegel
Years in The City: 23
Occupation: Yoga and Sanskrit teacher. His Web site is www.omstyleyoga.com.
Self Description: Into, in no particular order: yoga, his boyfriend, vegetarian food, nature, the beach, hot springs, bicycling, dancing, chanting, music, friends and family.
WHERE: The Presidio, under the Golden Gate Bridge parking lot
WHAT: Gorgeous view of the Golden Gate Bridge, peaceful and clothing-optional
My friends call this place Marsha’s Beach, but officially it’s Marshall’s. It is just under the Golden Gate Bridge parking lot. You have to hike down the path on the hillside. It’s also accessible just north of Baker Beach on the trail. This beach has a gorgeous view of the Golden Gate Bridge, is very peaceful, mostly gay and clothing-optional.
WHERE: 904 Valencia St., between 20th and Liberty streets
WHAT: Great selection, cheap prices, hipster clothing
INFO: (415) 647-2764 or www.room4.com
Room 4 is a fairly new place on Valencia Street, with great selection and cheap prices. They have very classy hipster threads for super cheap, and the staff there is always very nice and helpful.
Thai House Express
WHERE: 901 Larkin St., between Cedar and Geary streets
WHAT: The best Thai food in town
INFO: (415) 441-2248 or www.thhexpress.com
I like authentic and cheap, both of which this place offers. The food offers complex, subtle flavors that you just don’t find at other Thai restaurants, except in Thailand. The scene is very hipster, and there’s fun people watching, too. They serve the best Thai food in town.
Asian Art Museum
WHERE: 200 Larkin St., between Fulton and McAllister streets
WHAT: 2,000-year-old Ganesh statue
INFO: (415) 581-3500 or www.asianart.org
There is a Ganesh statue at the top of one of the escalators that is more than 2,000 years old!
Ritual Coffee Roasters
WHERE: 1026 Valencia St., between 21st and Hill streets
WHAT: Vegan doughnuts and cupcakes
INFO: (415) 641-1024 or www.ritualroasters.com
I am not so big into sweets, but they have vegan doughnuts and cupcakes, so how can I resist?
WHERE: 1007 Valencia St., between 21st and Hill streets
WHAT: Reasonably priced, vegetarian South Indian food
INFO: (415) 970-8000 or www.udupipalaceca.com
They have authentic South Indian food, it’s cheap and tasty, and it’s near where I live.
The James Turrell Skyspace, aka Three Gems
WHERE: Back garden of the de Young Museum in Golden Gate Park
WHAT: Acoustically brilliant
This dome, in the back garden of the de Young Museum in Golden Gate Park, is acoustically brilliant. Sometimes, when the full moon is on a Friday, I will take my full moon chanting group there.
WHERE: 398 12th St., between Bernice and Harrison streets
WHAT: Gay bar, mixed crowd.
INFO: (415) 626-0880 or www.sfeagle.com
At the beach, or a house party or at the Eagle on a Sunday.
WHERE: Pier 33, Hornblower Alcatraz Landing
WHAT: Natural beauty as well as the prisons — locals should go
INFO: (415) 981-7625 or www.nps.gov/alca
I think most locals have never been, but if you ask me, everyone should go. In addition to the old prison, there is also so much natural beauty there and Indian history too. It is a magical place. Don’t miss the millions of seagulls at sunset.