10 San Francisco Arts and Meeting Venues with Intimate Theatres (Under 300 Capacity)

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10 San Francisco Arts and Meeting Venues with Intimate Theatres (Under 300 Capacity)

Situated in the cultural hotspots of beautiful San Francisco, here are the 10 best San Francisco venues that seat 300 people or fewer.

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Nothing can match the intimacy of a small and elegant venue. In San Francisco, certain smaller venues offer an unparalleled experience for attendees through state-of-the-art theaters, advanced film screening capabilities and spectacular auditoriums.

Phyllis Wattis Theater at the SFMOMA (151  Third St.)
The stunning San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA), showcasing an already-noteworthy art collection, offers a newly remodeled 278-seat Phyllis Wattis Theater with cutting-edge audio and projection equipment ideal for presentations, lectures, screenings and live performances. This light-filled, multi-level venue experience also offers up both indoor and outdoor space including the 135-foot tall Evelyn and Walter Haas, Jr. Atrium featuring a sweeping new staircase and flanked marble columns, which is another favorite for alternative theater presentations accommodating 400 guests.

Koret Theater at the de Young (Golden Gate Park)
The Koret Theater, located within the de Young Museum, offers a warm and inviting setting complete with hardwood floors and leather seating for 269 guests. The space is perfect for theater screenings, lectures and plenty of other special events. The museum itself features art from the 17th through the 21st centuries, photography and art from Oceania, Africa and the Americas. Guests can also enjoy taking a trip up to the ninth-floor Hamon Tower observatory located inside the museum, which offers 360-degree panoramic views of San Francisco and the majestic Pacific. 

The Gunn Theater at Legion of Honor (100 34th Ave.)
The Gunn Theater, located inside the Legion of Honor, seats 316 people and offers a fully equipped stage with AV services, lighting, projection and sound. The theater is ideal for award ceremonies, presentations and important meetings. A reception area is also attached where participants can enjoy food and drinks. The theater offers a splendid neoclassical setting, which reflects the overall style of the Legion of Honor building. Guests will love the location as well, with the Legion of Honor housing 4,000 years of ancient art and European masterpieces while overlooking the Golden Gate Bridge and Lincoln Park. Now that’s art with a view.

Goldman Hall at the Contemporary Jewish Museum (736 Mission St.)
The Goldman Hall, located in the Contemporary Jewish Museum (CJM), is truly a multi-faceted venue offering a variety of formats for your guests. As a conference hall and theater, it fits 233 attendees but can also serve as a banquet hall and classroom. This 3,555-square-foot space has a retractable seating system, which explains why it’s so dynamic for intimate events such as film, readings and theatrical performances as well as events such as award ceremonies and corporate meetings. A reception area is ideal for serving cocktails and other refreshments. The CJM is known for its dynamic exhibitions, educational programs and dedication to sharing Jewish culture and history.

The Kanbar Forum at the Exploratorium (Pier 15)
The Kanbar Forum at the Exploratorium is a state-of-the-art space featuring a Constellation acoustic system from Meyer Sound Laboratories, meaning you’ll enjoy unparalleled sound quality and complete control of the forum’s acoustics. In fact, the acoustic properties of this venue are so ideal that they can also serve as a recording studio. You can also configure this forum to host theater seating or a banquet. The 3,600-square-foot venue holds 200 people and is perfect for lectures, training, conferences, live music and a variety of other special events. The Exploratorium also offers more than 600 art and science exhibitions and is located at the beautiful Embarcadero waterfront.

The Museum of African Diaspora (685 Mission St.)
Museum of the African Diaspora (MoAD) is a fine arts museum that showcases the history, art and cultural richness of Africans who have migrated throughout the world.  Located inside the five-star St. Regis Tower complex, the museum is ideal for gatherings of all kinds including corporate events, product launches, cocktail receptions, holiday parties, film screenings and fundraisers. Guests are welcome to mill about the main salon as well as the entire museum during events and can take advantage of a quaint theater accommodating a group up to 80 people. MoAD is easily accessible from both Powell and Montgomery BART stations, is just one block from The Moscone Center and is surrounded by various shops and restaurants.

The Walt Disney Family Museum Theater (104 Montgomery St.)
The Walt Disney Family Museum features a small but highly intimate theater setting that can seat 114 people in a 2,327-square-foot space. Located in the Presidio, The museum explores the life of Walt Disney, featuring his animation, movies, music and even a full replica of Disneyland. The same imagination that fueled Walt Disney’s dreams is translated into this theater setting, with a beautiful view of the Golden Gate Bridge on display for guests. When weather permits, two wings of the porch on this building can also be opened up to guests complete with an open café. In short, it’s the perfect space for inspiration, whether you’re holding a corporate meeting, presentation or evening discussion.

The Planetarium at California Academy of Sciences (Golden Gate Park)
The Planetarium is the type of venue that leaves a lasting impression on guests. Seating 296 people in a 1,300-square-foot space, this is the world’s largest all-digital planetarium. Presentations come to life on an HD projector with Blu-Ray capabilities, regardless of whether you’re delivering a corporate presentation or hosting a cultural event. The California Academy of Sciences building itself is full of scientific wonders housed in a building that is known for its architectural beauty and environmentally friendly design. You can also rent the Main Lobby out in conjunction with the planetarium venue, which is a perfect place for registration as gift bags can be placed under a towering T. Rex skeleton.

Diane B. Wilsey Center for Opera (401 Van Ness Ave., 4th Floor)
The Diane B. Wilsey Center for Opera offers a flexible theater to host a variety of different events for up to 299 guests. Featuring a Meyer Sound Constellation acoustic system, this is another venue that offers superb sound quality experience. Connected to the War Memorial Opera House, the entire complex recently underwent a massive $156 million retrofit and renovation, making this 1932 beaux-arts-designed building even more beautiful than it once was. Attached to this theater is also a rehearsal space and an education studio.

The Strand Theater (1127 Market St.)
Opened in the spring of 2015, this dynamic new stage introduces a simple but vibrant venue to San Francisco's theater community. Located on Market Street, at the site of a century-old cinema, the restored space offers an intimate 285-seat auditorium and a 120-seat black box theater, stage support, a public lobby and cafe, and brand new facade have revitalized both the space and the neighborhood, positioning the Strand Theater as an important voice in the community. 

If you’re looking to book and plan out an event at one of these intimate venues in San Francisco, then it’s time to speak with the team at San Francisco Travel. We can help you book hotels for the event, promote it across the city and even arrange reservations at restaurants for post-event celebrations.

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