Homes overlooking Marina Green. (Photo by Carson Masterson on Unsplash)

Modern Guide to the Marina: Fitness, Day Drinking, Festivals + Bay Views

By

This story is brought to you by Poppy the AV, an all-electric self-driving Cruise vehicle, who knows the ins and outs of the City.


The Marina gets a lot of flack for its athleisure-clad mommies who juice-lunch between Pilates and shopping and for its puffer-vest-wearing bros who share investment tips over beers.

But let's be real: We all like it for its (sometimes-sun-soaked) Marina Green—the expansive lawn with a waterfront view of the Golden Gate Bridge and Alcatraz is hands down the city's best spot for running, biking, and playing with the pups. Plus there's something to be said for a 'hood where day drinking is encouraged and brunch is basically a sport.


It's time to open your mind and give Chestnut Street a chance.

Where to Eat + Drink in SF's Marina District

(Courtesy of A16)

Wilder (3154 Fillmore St.) specializes in comfort fare inspired by international cuisines and the great outdoors. At brunch, chow down on shakshuka and smoked brisket hash; dinner brings skillet mussels, grilled pork chops, and daily specials. The bar is a perfect spot for grabbing a drink with a friend. // Norcina (3251 Pierce St.) plates Italian favorites like sourdough crust pizzas, housemade pastas, and a ton of bites intended for sharing—chicken liver toast, burrata, and meatballs. // Enjoy Peruvian flavors in a modern, upbeat setting at Jaranita (3340 Steiner St.). Bring the pup for Tuesday "yappee" hour and $1 off your cocktail will benefit Muttville. // Blue Barn (3344 Steiner St.) has an amazing salad menu, offering combinations of locally sourced ingredients that you could never come up with on your own. // Serving Greek sandwiches and salads starring spit-fired meats (plus new vegan "lamb"!) in a comfy-casual space, Souvla (2272 Chestnut St.) is ideal for lunch on the go or a friendly catch-up with a glass of rosé. Order it "Greek-style" to get it stuffed with fries, and do not miss the fro-yo with an olive oil drizzle. // Glaze Teriyaki (2095 Chestnut St.) offers mix-and-match teriyaki dishes inside and out. // Build your own sandwich or order the #1 Italian combo at Lucca Delicatessen (2120 Chestnut St.), a charming neighborhood staple since 1929. Take home prepared salads, cheeses, and bottles of wine. // Fuel up for a night out in the Marina with a quality, budget-friendly burger at Super Duper (2203 Chestnut St.). // Mel's Drive In (2165 Lombard St.) serves a taste of Americana: the legendary diner that has appeared in quite a few Hollywood movies. // A16 (2355 Chestnut St.) is a neighborhood anchor, dishing regional Italian fare like blistered Neapolitan pies, ricotta gnocchi, and porchetta. Fun fact: A16 is named after the highway that connects Naples and Canosa, Puglia in Italy. // For a modern Thai experience, try Le Moon Thai Eatery (2380 Lombard St.), which serves an array of classics in degrees of spiciness. // For the quintessential Marina experience, line up at Delarosa (2175 Chestnut St.) to share a table full of antipasti and pizza carbonara plus brunch dishes on weekends. // Causwells (2346 Chestnut St.) is beloved for its burger, but we bet you knew that already. // Potrero Hill's Cracked and Battered (2240 Chestnut St.) has arrived in Marina, bringing with it fluffy pancakes, crispy chicken sandwiches, and spicy shakshuka. // Try all the Colombian-style arepas at MaMo (3659 Buchanan St).

Snacks + Sweets

In search of a post workout pick-me-up? Look no further than Project Juice's (2234 Chestnut St.) superfood smoothies, bowls, juices, and healthy bites. // Your sweet tooth will thank you for a trip to Susie Cakes (2109 Chestnut St.), which has shelves upon shelves of cakes, cupcakes, and cookies. // There's always room left for a donut from Dynamo (110 Yacht Rd.). The original kiosk at the Yacht Harbor remains our favorite pit-stop after a long walk at Crissy Field. Will it be maple bacon apple or chocolate star anise?

Drinks

The Marina just wouldn't be the same without the The Tipsy Pig (2231 Chestnut St.). The gastropub serves rustic food as a solid foundation for the inevitable many drinks to come. // It's always a party at The Dorian (2001 Chestnut St.) where a posh interior sets the scene for martinis and Provocateur's Punch. // Order colorful cocktails, slushies, and punch bowls from a tiki lounge swing at Del Mar (2125 Lombard St.). There's always something happening here—think Wednesday game night and DJs Thursday through Saturday.

Where to Shop in the Marina, San Francisco

(Courtesy of Marine Layer)

Fashion + Beauty

Bay Area brand Marine Layer (2106 Chestnut St.) still makes the softest T-shirts ever and maintains eco-friendly practices. // Taylor Stitch (2030 Chestnut St.) outfits guys with custom shirts and hip basics including denim, outerwear, and sturdy shoes. Every item is made sustainably and intended to be worn for the long haul. // Two Skirts (2124 Chestnut St.) is a Marina fashionista's heaven, stocked with all the on-trend brands such as Mother, See by Chloe, and Re/Done. // Carrying chic basics and standout pieces, Dress (2271 Chestnut St.) is another one stop shop for modern womenswear by the likes of IRO, Ulla Johnson, and Rails. // Luxury cosmetics store Blue Mercury (2060 Chestnut St.) is the place for high-end brands like Augustinus Bader, Tom Ford, Trish McEvoy, and La Mer.

Home + Garden

If you're in search of a hostess gift, calming candle, or some new decor, stop by Ei Home (2176 Chestnut St.). // Even plants look fit and healthy in the Marina. Sloat Garden Center (3237 Pierce St.) has all hearty greens you need, from seeds to fiddle leaf figs.

Things to Do in San Francisco's Marina

West Coast Craft is among the popular fairs held regularly at Fort Mason Center.

(Courtesy of West Coast Craft)

Fitness + Outdoors

A grassy destination for residents from neighborhoods all over the city, Marina Green is the place for running, biking, picnicking, flying kites, and throwing the ball for the dogs at the edge of San Francisco Bay. This is a good jumping off point to check out the Wave Organ (1 Yacht Rd.), a sculptural installation of underground pipes that creates musical sound when water runs on top of them. Go at high tide to get the full experience. Workout junkies, meanwhile, can show off their hard-earned abs at the outdoor Fitness Court. // Moscone Dog Park (1800 Chestnut St.) is also popular among pets who love to sniff out stray tennis balls from the nearby courts. // Athleisure is the neighborhood uniform, and for good reason—how else do you work off all those boozy brunches? Sprint your way through a 50-minute run-meets-strength class at Barry's Bootcamp (2246 Lombard St.). It might feel like the worst hour of your life, but you can reward yourself with a smoothie from the Fuel Bar. // Feel the burn with a Sculpt reformer class or tap it back in a cycling class at BodyRok (2128 Lombard St.)—you'll leave the high intensity workout feeling like a rock star. // For a Megaformer class with a twist, try the Ramped class at Core40 (1902 Lombard St.)—the machines move up and down throughout the session for an added challenge.


Arts + Culture

Built for the World Expo in 1915, the Beaux-Arts-style Palace of Fine Arts (3301 Lyon St.) is a romantic landmark, especially popular among brides looking for photo ops among the Grecian-inspired columns. Spread your blanket on the lawn overlooking the duck pond any day of the week, and check the online calendar for events including concerts and standup comedy. // Once a military base by the sea, Fort Mason Center (2 Marina Blvd.) is now one of the city's hubs for arts and cultural events. Popular annual happenings include Renegade Craft Fair (Nov. 6-7, 2021), Friends of the SFPL's Big Book Sale (Oct. 27, 2021), and West Coast Craft (Nov. 20-21, 2021). On Sundays (9:30am to 1:30pm), you can fill your straw totes with fresh produce from more than 35 vendors at the Fort Mason Farmers Market. // The Art Deco neon sign still glows at the Lee Neighborhood Theatre (2340 Chestnut St.) where you can catch the latest Wes Anderson flick.

Meet Poppy, Cruise's all-electric self-driving spokesvehicle. Five years of nonstop driving in San Francisco has made her a local's local. Like you, Poppy has been exploring every corner and celebrating all the city has to offer. From her very first drive to delivering thousands of meals during the pandemic, Poppy's journey is a love letter to San Francisco, one neighborhood at a time. Be sure to also follow her adventures and unique city knowledge on Twitter, Instagram, and TikTok.

Thank you to our partners at Cruise.


Related Articles
Most Popular
Neighborhoods
From Our Partners