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What’s New in San Francisco - January/February 2016

“What’s New” is compiled by the San Francisco Travel Association.


Jan. 25, 2016 — Past editions of “What’s New” and a list of “Recent and Coming Attractions” are available in the Media section of San Francisco Travel’s website,


Snap a Selfie with Ten Giant “Bay Area 50’s” 
In celebration of Super Bowl 50, which will be played on Sunday, Feb. 7, 2016 at Levi’s Stadium, 10 “Bay Area 50’s” have been installed outside San Francisco’s City Hall and throughout the city. Each weighing 1,600 lbs., the Bay Area 50’s stand six-feet tall and eight-feet wide. From Super Bowl rings and tickets to footballs and confetti, all 10 Bay Area 50’s incorporate different design elements representing Super Bowl history. The Bay Area 50’s are solar powered and have lights that will illuminate the front at night. Fans are encouraged to take photos with the larger-than-life 50’s and tag themselves using hashtag #SB50. In addition, lights on the San Francisco Ferry Building also call out the number 50 for the big game.

Super Bowl City Presented by Verizon Offers Free Activities and Entertainment Jan. 30- Feb. 7, 2016
Super Bowl City presented by Verizon is the San Francisco Bay Area Super Bowl 50 Host Committee’s free-to-the-public fan village designed to celebrate the milestone Super Bowl 50 and to highlight its unique place in the Bay Area. Open Jan. 30- Feb. 7, 2016 in downtown San Francisco, this lively fan village offers free activities and entertainment for everyone to enjoy. Headliners Alicia Keys, Chris Isaak, One Republic and Matt Nathansan will perform on the City Stage presented by Levi’s® while the Fan Stage will have spirited rallies, chalk talks, player appearances and photo opportunities. Guests will be encouraged to visit the many restaurant and shops in the area and throughout San Francisco. The Fan Energy Zone celebrates the Bay Area’s leadership in technology and innovation, and will showcase the latest in interactive gaming, social media and data visualizations.  Learn more at  Media contact:

Get Tickets Now for NFL Experience Driven by Hyundai
Tickets for NFL Experience Driven by Hyundai – pro football’s interactive theme park – are on sale now at  This pro football theme park puts the ball in the fans’ hands, offering exciting interactive attractions, you th football clinics, free autograph sessions from NFL players and the opportunity to get up close with the Vince Lombardy Trophy.  Media contact: Crystal Fukumoto,, 310-709-8690. 

Roaming “Cultural Concierge” to Help Super Bowl Visitors find Arts and Culture
San Francisco Travel has enlisted a crew of cultural insiders to share insider tips about arts events and happenings throughout the city during Super Bowl week. Wearing Victorian capes and top hats glowing with LED-lights, San Francisco’s Cultural Concierge are available to shed their light on how best to experience San Francisco’s famous cultural events and attractions. 

“The Cultural Concierges are deeply rooted in San Francisco’s cultural community and will offer insights that you can’t get in a travel book. The concierges, in their Burning Man-inspired outfits, are uniquely San Franciscan—a little wacky, unexpected and generous of spirit—that’s what we are all about,” said  Joe D’Alessandro, San Francisco Travel president and CEO. 

Meet the Cultural Concierges at either of San Francisco Travel’s two Visitor Information Kiosks near Super Bowl City for an Instagram worthy selfie.  They may also be spotted roaming the crowds offering illuminating ideas to visitors. San Francisco Travel will also provide visitor information in their display at the NFL Experience and at their Visitor Information Centers on the lower level of Halladie Plaza (outside the Powell Muni/BART station) and on the lower level of Macy’s Union Square.  Media contact: Laurie Armstrong, 415-227-2615,

Super Bowl 50 Develops Green Legacy for San Francisco Bay Area
The NFL and the Super Bowl 50 Host Committee teamed to develop a series of initiatives reducing environmental impact of Super Bowl activities and to leave a “green” legacy throughout the San Francisco Bay Area. Verizon has also joined as a key partner in several of these projects. The NFL has incorporated environmental projects into the management of Super Bowl for more than 20 years.

A series of environmental projects, funded by Verizon, the NFL and the Super Bowl 50 Host Committee, will take place throughout the Bay area leading up to the game.  Events include:

  • Saturday, Jan. 30 – Sunday, Feb. 7 – Play Your Part online campaign, a collaboration between the Host Committee, 50 Fund, in/PACT and Citizen Group focused on engaging with fans and inspiring them to personally contribute towards the Host Committee’s goal of delivering Super Bowl 50 as a “Net Positive” event. For example, no single-use plastic will be used to serve fans in Super Bowl City and water-filling stations will be offered. As a reward for their Net Positive behavior, the 50 Fund will enable fans to decide how $200,000 from the Sustainable Environments Game Changer Grant is allocated to a short list of Bay Area environmental nonprofits, as well as provide fans a chance to win one of nine daily Super Bowl 50-related prizes including tickets to the Big Game. Fans can also pledge to take “Net Positive” actions on-line at the Host Committee website starting January 13. 
  • Saturday, Jan. 30 – Sunday, Feb. 7 – The Host Committee is working with regional transportation agencies to ensure sufficient service levels for all public transit during Super Bowl week. This will include additional service on key services such as WETA and Golden Gate Bridge Ferries, and Muni. Super Bowl 50-branded Clipper cards will help promote the use of public transit via the Host Committee’s partnership with the MTC. On Super Bowl Sunday, the Host Committee has coordinated a special ‘SB50’ pass with VTA and Caltrain to ensure that public transit remains a viable option to get to Levi’s Stadium. Thanks to funding from the Bay Area Air Quality Management District, the Host Committee has partnered with the San Francisco Bike Coalition to establish a bike valet at Super Bowl City, and encourage both biking and bike share.
  • Sunday, Feb. 7 – Super Bowl 50 Fan Express and Car Share - The Host Committee’s Fan Express motor coach program will provide Super Bowl 50 ticket holders with convenient, sustainable transport to Levi’s® Stadium on Gameday. Pick-up points will be spread throughout the Bay Area and will include buses being utilized that are locally based and running on renewable diesel. In addition, car sharing will be promoted through Uber, with a dedicated pick-up and drop-off at the stadium on Gameday.

Super Bowl City presented by Verizon - In partnership with PG&E, much of the energy to power Super Bowl related activities will be renewably generated. Gen 4 temporary power generators used in Super Bowl City will run on Neste NEXBTL renewable diesel. Where renewable power is not feasible, renewable energy credits (RECs) will be utilized to reduce greenhouse gas impact. Travel emissions for Super Bowl teams and officials are being offset in partnership with TerraPass. TerraPass will also provide RECs where needed to offset emissions from other venues including Levi’s Stadium, site of Super Bowl 50. TerraPass is also working with the Host Committee to offset all their tier 1 and 2 emissions and will offer the same opportunity to fans and Host Committee partners.

The NFL and Host Committee are working together with a coalition of nearly a dozen food banks and food recovery organizations to recover prepared food from kitchens and minimize food waste. Prepared food will be distributed to soup kitchens and community centers throughout the Bay Area in the days leading up to and following Super Bowl.

During the week following the game there will be an intensive drive to collect and donate everything left over from Super Bowl events. Building material, décor, fabric, carpeting and sign materials will be donated to local organizations that can reuse, repurpose or remanufacture the material. This project keeps material out of local landfills and also turns this material into valuable items for resale or reuse.

Visit for information about Super Bowl events and activities in San Francisco. For more information about all the ways the NFL is celebrating Super Bowl 50, visit, follow @SuperBowl on Twitter or hashtag #SB50.  Media contact:

Visit “Super Castro” for History and Fun during Game Week
Warmly inviting Super Bowl 50 revelers to ‘Come Out’ and Play,' the merchants of the Castro neighborhood in San Francisco have created, a website catering to those traveling to San Francisco for Super Bowl 50. Accommodating travelers who prefer to ‘travel like locals live,’ Castro Merchants have compiled a thorough and easily navigable list of all the best that The Castro, SF’s LGBT epicenter, has to offer. Guests will easily find the best places for watching pre-Super Bowl coverage (and the game, for those who don’t have tickets), dining and shopping options as well as ’50 minutes of history,’ and the ‘best 50 minutes’ in The Castro. 

Also listed on the website will be game-related offers and events produced by Live! in the Castro including entertainment from CheerSF,, on Jan. 30 at 1-2 p.m. and the all-male Velocity Circus Performers on Feb. 6 at 12-2 p.m., both in Jane Warner Plaza, where Market and Castro streets meet. Media contact: Dan Bergerac,, and Dawn Shalhoup,      

San Francisco Symphony Concerts in Tune with Super Bowl Celebrations
The San Francisco Symphony joins the Bay Area’s Super Bowl festivities with two events celebrating the intersection of sports and music on Feb. 3-4, 2016 in Davies Symphony Hall. Concerts feature the iconic music and filmmaking of Emmy Award-winning NFL Films, with conductor Joshua Gersen leading the Orchestra in live accompaniment. Learn more at   Media contact: 415-503-5474,  

San Francisco International Airport’s SFO Museum presents “The Nation’s Game: The NFL from the Pro Football Hall of Fame”
Few could have imagined the phenomenal popularity of today’s National Football League when representatives from four Ohio football clubs gathered nearly a century ago in Canton, OH, to establish a new standard of professional football.  Today, each NFL game attracts nearly 70,000 attendees, more than any other professional sports league.  Professional football remains the nation’s favorite spectator sport by a large margin and its popularity shows no sign of abating.  The league’s annual championship game, the Super Bowl, has become a secular holiday for many Americans, and more than one million people are expected to attend the week-long festivities in the San Francisco Bay Area leading up to Super Bowl 50 on Feb. 7, 2016, at Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara, CA.  

To celebrate this momentous event, SFO Museum presents a selection of memorabilia and artifacts from each of the league’s 32 franchises.  Among the objects on display are game-worn items belonging to Hall of Famers from across generations and throughout the league, including Joe Montana’s home jersey, Walter Payton’s helmet, and Jim Brown’s shoulder pads.  All objects and images on exhibition are presented courtesy of the Pro Football Hall of Fame unless otherwise noted. The online version of the exhibition is viewable at:

“The Nation’s Game: The NFL from the Pro Football Hall of Fame” is located in Terminal 3, Boarding Area F from through Feb. 28, 2016. The exhibition is located post-security and is only accessible to passengers ticketed for travel through Terminal 3.  There is no charge to view the exhibition. For more information, visit  Media contact: Doug Yakel, San Francisco International Airport,, 650-821-4000.

Super Bowl Exhibit at Levi’s Stadium 
The 49ers Museum presented by Sony at Levi’s® Stadium recently opened a new Super Bowl exhibit, “Super Bowl Memories.” This temporary exhibit showcases artifacts and anecdotes from all five of the 49ers Super Bowl victories in a spectacular visual representation. This exhibit – with original artifacts, highlight reels and captivating design elements – supplements the Super Bowl content already featured in the museum such as the 49ers signature film, Heritage Gallery artifacts and, of course, the Super Bowl Gallery, home to all five Lombardi Trophies won by the 49ers. The Super Bowl Memories exhibit includes well-known artifacts like the Super Bowl XVI jersey worn by Earl Cooper when he caught Joe Montana’s first-ever Super Bowl touchdown pass, John Taylor’s Super Bowl XXIII practice jersey, and a vintage flag that once flew over Candlestick Park. 

Guests can view highlight reels of the greatest moments of each 49ers Super Bowl and take in newspaper headlines proclaiming each victory. The exhibit additionally features lesser-known artifacts like the Waterford crystal trophy presented to Head Coach Bill Walsh after the team’s Super Bowl XXIII victory. “Super Bowl Memories” also includes the women’s versions of the championship jewelry from the 49ers wins in Super Bowls XVI, XIX, XXIII, and XXIV, and an array of souvenirs such as game programs, ticket stubs, and pieces that capture the identity of the host cities are included to evoke the fan experience of the 49ers and the first 49 years of the Super Bowl. 

The 49ers Museum – a celebration of the 49ers past, present and future – features 11 unique gallery and exhibit spaces spread out over 20,000 square feet inside Levi’s® Stadium. The journey begins in the main lobby at the Trending Gallery, where fans will learn what’s new with the team and the space. From there fans move to the Morabito Theater to watch the 49ers signature film and then into the Edward J. DeBartolo, Sr. 49ers Hall of Fame to walk amongst the 49ers greats. The Museum’s Heritage Gallery innovatively illuminates the history of the team through artifacts and multimedia exhibits and leads perfectly into the active In the Game Gallery on the lower level. Read more at Media contact: Bob Lang,, 408-562-4949.


Top Chef Returns to the City Where It All Began – San Francisco
Bravo Media’s Emmy and James Beard Award-winning “Top Chef” continues its epic gastronomic road trip up the coast of California. With nearly 1,000 miles traveled, the unprecedented six-city expedition challenged the “cheftestants’” culinary skills like never before as they journeyed across the Golden State, stopping in Los Angeles, San Diego, Santa Barbara, Oakland and the Greater Palm Springs area and finally ending in San Francisco where the series first began. 

The chefs go knife-to-knife in iconic destinations and agricultural regions across the state to prove they have what it takes to out-cook their competition. Along with the return of the Sudden Death Quickfire challenge, the culinary showdown ups the ante this season with the most daunting Restaurant Wars ever. Additional pressure-filled challenges include a final California elimination paying homage to Hubert Keller’s San Francisco institution, Fleur De Lys. 

Throughout the season, the chefs will be tasked with serving up food for culinary stars and celebrity guest judges including San Francisco culinary luminaries Martin Yan, Traci Des Jardins and Keller. Learn more at   Media contacts: Elizabeth Schmidt, 212-664-5276,,  Rebecca Boswell, 323-965-6709,  

Southern Brazilian Steakhouse Fogo de Chão Opens in South of Market Location
Internationally-renowned southern Brazilian steakhouse, Fogo de Chão (pronounced fo-go dee shown), opened its second Northern California location on Dec. 23, 2015. The new restaurant located on the corner of Third and Howard is in the heart of San Francisco’s SOMA district. Fogo de Chão also operates a nearby location in San Jose. Fogo de Chão is a leading Brazilian steakhouse, or churrascaria, which has specialized for more than 36 years in fire-roasting high-quality meats utilizing the centuries-old southern Brazilian cooking technique of churrasco. The company was founded in 1979 in Porto Alegre, Brazil, and expanded into the U.S. in 1997. There are currently 40 locations throughout Brazil, the United States and Mexico.  

Fogo de Chão shares the Brazilian gaucho traditions of churrasco, the art of roasting meats over an open fire, and espeto corrido, or “continuous service,” which allows guests to control the variety and pace of their dining experience. The San Francisco culinary team is led by Head Gaucho Chef Juliano Santos, who first learned the gaucho style of cooking on his family farm in the state where Fogo was founded, Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil. Fogo’s Brazilian-trained gaucho chefs butcher all of the meats in-house, roast them over an open fire, and then carve each cut tableside.  The menu features a wealth of savory, fire-roasted meats. 

Additionally, Fogo offers a gourmet Market Table & Feijoada Bar with seasonal salads, soup, fresh vegetables, feijoada (traditional black bean stew with rice, fresh orange and yucca flour), and much more. The menu is complemented by an award-winning wine list, an extensive cocktail program including many traditional drinks from Brazil such as the Caipirinha, and a tempting dessert menu featuring indulgences like their signaturePapaya Cream, Crème Brûlée, and Brazilian Flan, all of which are made in-house. Fogo de Chão in San Francisco is one of the first locations to offer a new Gaucho Lunch Menu, featuring convenient options to meet weekday lunchtime diners’ busy schedules. The new location also features Bar Fogo, the recently introduced concept offering a casual way to experience Fogo with shareable small plates, cocktails and daily Happy Hour specials in the bar and on the patio. Media contact: Heather Kasunic,, Nicole Kilian,, 415-274-2510.   

The Taste Awards Return to San Francisco on Feb. 11 at the Castro Theatre
The Taste Awards are coming to San Francisco for the first time in years on Feb. 11, 2016.  The event will be held at the Castro Theatre.  The Annual Taste Awards (also known as the TASTY Awards) celebrate the year's best in food, fashion, and lifestyle programs on television, in film, online, in apps and on radio. The Taste Awards show features a star-studded lineup of food and fashion TV celebrities and has included appearances by stars, celebrities, producers and executives from networks and platforms such as the Food Network, the Style Network, Bravo, the Cooking Channel, TLC, Discovery, Lifetime, E! Entertainment Television, PBS, APT, Create TV, NBC, ABC, the CW, HGTV, the Travel Channel, HD Net, Hulu, YouTube, Sony Pictures, Dreamworks, The History Channel, Bio, iHeart Radio, MyxTV and more. 

Award winners will be honored and feted at the Taste Awards Red Carpet ceremony and show in San Francisco on Feb. 11, followed by an after-party reception. Celebrity presenters include P. Allen Smith (PBS, nationally syndicated stations), Brian Boitano (Food Network), Bobby Bognar (History), Jolene Sugarbaker (YouTube), and more to be announced. As part of its long term concept, the awards rotate regularly between Hollywood and San Francisco, with the next event planned in the City by the Bay. With its strong leading-edge culture of both culinary and technological innovation, the Bay Area community is embracing the event with open arms. A full list of current previous award winners, honorees and nominees plus event photos and coverage can be seen on the site, Media contact: A.K. Crump,

Ferry Building Marketplace Opens North Arcade Shops
The iconic Ferry Building Marketplace has opened a row of new permanent North Arcade Shops with heated outdoor seating.  Housed between Gott's and the clock tower, the arcade shops provide additional space for local food artisans to root themselves in the community of businesses at the Ferry Building. The north arcade area was originally where the old ferry ticketing windows were until the 1950s. Marla Bakery, Sow Juice and Blue Bottle Coffee are fully open, with Fort Point Beer Company to join them shortly.  And finally, Dandelion Chocolate will move outside to the arcade area by the end of January. Each new stall has its own small, heated patio under the arcade so it’s cozy and covered. Media contact: Jane Connors,, 415-983-8001.  

Umberto Gibin and Staffan Terje Open Volta
Restaurateurs Umberto Gibin and Staffan Terje, owners of the acclaimed Perbacco and barbacco, have launched their new restaurant, Volta.  In a lively and convivial atmosphere, Volta offers a menu that pays homage to France and draws from Chef Terje’s Scandinavian heritage, alongside carefully selected wines and beers, classic cocktails and housemade aquavit. The talented team brings approachable, high-quality cuisine to a modern and welcoming space designed by CCS Architecture to the growing SOMA Downtown neighborhood. Volta is located at 868 Mission St., in close proximity to Downtown, South of Market, the Westfield Centre, and the Moscone Convention Center. For more information, visit  Media contact: Yasemin Sussman,


The David Ireland House at 500 Capp Street Opens
After a complex restoration effort, David Ireland’s Mission district house at 500 Capp Street—the late conceptual artist’s enigmatic residence and site-specific art installation—opened to the public on Jan. 15, 2016 as the city’s first historic artist’s home. During the thirty years Ireland lived there, he embedded the house with his own pieces and transformed it into a work of art in its own right. The home is now widely admired as both the source of and repository for the influential West Coast artist’s most important artwork. Timed public tours are available for booking starting Dec. 15, 2005. Learn more at  Media contact:  Wendy Norris, Wendy Norris, 415-307-3853,

“Mel Shaw: An Animator on Horseback” through Sept. 12, 2016 at The Walt Disney Family Museum
Navigate through a comprehensive exhibition at The Walt Disney Family Museum that focuses on the life and work of Mel Shaw (1914–2012) - an artist and storyteller whose skills were in demand by the icons of Hollywood, from Orson Welles to Walt Disney. Guest-curated by producer Don Hahn, this retrospective features more than 120 works, including caricature sketches, storyboards, conceptual artwork, and more from some of the most influential films of the twentieth century, stretching from Fantasia (1940) to The Lion King (1994). Explore Shaw’s life story as an artist, creative entrepreneur, and master horseman, which is as romantic and adventuresome as the animated stories he helped bring to life. Media contact: Victoria Rainone 415-660-9971,

San Francisco Arts Commission Opens New Main Gallery in War Memorial Veteran’s Building
The San Francisco Arts Commission (SFAC) Galleries will celebrate the opening of a new and greatly expanded 3,000 sq. ft. g allery space in the historic War Memorial Veterans Building on Jan. 22, 2016, with the inaugural group exhibition Bring it Home: (Re)Locating Cultural Legacy through the Body, curated by SFAC Galleries Director Meg Shiffler and independent curator Kevin B. Chen. The new Main Gallery located on the ground floor of the War memorial Veterans Building.  Learn more at  Media contact: Kate Patterson, 415-252-2229,

The Bay Lights Returns Permanently to the Bay Bridge Jan. 30, 2016
One of San Francisco’s most beloved art installations becomes a permanent fixture on Jan. 30, 2016. The Bay Lights, Leo Villareal’s monumental light sculpture comprised of 25,000 LED lights, will add shine and sparkle to the western span of the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge from dusk to dawn, year-round.  The return of The Bay Lights is in large thanks to the generosity of private donors, Illuminate the Arts and the State of California. Learn more at Media contact: Tami Kelly, 925-640-9997,

Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archives Opens Jan. 31, 2016 
Visitors will experience innovative art exhibitions, film screenings and live performances in a cutting-edge building designed by Diller Scofidio + Renfro. Learn more at www.bampfa.berkeley.eduMedia contact: Peter Cavagnaro,, 510-642-0365.

Oscar de la Renta Retrospective at the DeYoung Museum March 12-May 30, 2016
The world premiere retrospective of Oscar de la Renta’s work celebrates the life and career of one of fashion’s most influential designers. The exhibition, located at the de Young and curated by André Leon Talley, will include more than 100 ensembles produced over five decades, and is presented in collaboration with the house of de la Renta and the designer’s family. Learn more at Media contact: Erin Garcia,, 415-750-8904.   

Counter Pulse, Opens in a New Location on March 12, 2016  
After 24 years at 1310 Misson St., CounterPulse, an incubator for grassroots culture and a stage for intrepid art, will launched its inaugural season in November.  The season culminates March 19, 2016 with their Grand Opening Celebration at the new location, 80 Turk St. Experience a packed season of gutsy, experimental performance from the Bay Area and around the globe.  Learn more at  Media contact: Shamsher Virk, 415-626-2060,

Minnesota Street Project Opens on March 16, 2016
Minnesota Street Project will offer affordable space for art galleries, artists and related nonprofits and retail, as well as a location in the heart of the historic Dogpatch district to put down roots and build a dynamic arts hub. Phase 1 of Minnesota Street Project will open March of 2016 at 1275 Minnesota St. in the city’s Dogpatch Neighborhood. While the first building is under construction, Minnesota Street Project will present rotating visual arts exhibits three blocks away at 2291 Third St., which will serve as Minnesota Street Project’s temporary headquarters. Learn more at  Media contact: 415-243-0825,

Bill Graham and the Rock & Roll Revolution at the Contemporary Jewish Museum March 17-July 5, 2016
The first comprehensive retrospective about the life and career of legendary rock impresario Bill Graham (1931–1991) comes to the Contemporary Jewish Museum.  Recognized as one of the most influential concert promoters in history, Graham launched the careers of countless rock and roll legends in the 1960s at his famed Fillmore Auditorium. He conceived of rock and roll as a powerful force for supporting humanitarian causes and was instrumental in the production of milestone benefit concerts such as Live Aid (1985) and Human Rights Now! (1988). As a promoter and manager, he worked with the biggest names in rock, including the Grateful Dead, Jefferson Airplane, Jimi Hendrix, Santana, Led Zeppelin, and the Rolling Stones. Media contact: Nina Sazevich,, 415-752-2483.


New “Maritime Arts” Exhibit Showcases Skills and Techniques of the Sailors’ Trade, Opening Jan. 28, 2016 at the Maritime Museum
With rope, wood, a brush and even a camera, sailors and artisans used their skills to transform maritime experiences into beautiful and enduring forms. "Maritime Arts - At Sea and Ashore," a new exhibit opening Jan. 28, 2016 in San Francisco Maritime National Historical Park’s Maritime Museum, showcases remarkable examples of work from the sailors’ trade. "Maritime Arts" is open daily, from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. with no admission fee. 

Lobby exhibits include detailed scrimshaw, artwork and a carved rudder yoke (part of a boat’s steering system) adorned with fancy metalwork. A figurehead is painted to represent a character in a Walter Scott poem, and a burlwood block is hand-shaped into a “mast truck” (the ball which sits atop a mast). In the Prismatarium, blow-ups of professionally-shot glass plates and snapshots from officers’ family photo albums tell proud, sweet and heartbreaking stories, including: sailors’ animal companions, a well-composed photo of the riverboat Fort Sutter’s 1912 Hunters Point launch, and a fateful crew portrait of the Andelena taken just three days before she capsized with all hands lost. 

San Francisco Maritime NHP is located at the west end of Fisherman’s Wharf in San Francisco. The park includes a magnificent fleet of historic ships, Visitor Center with more exhibits, Maritime Museum, Maritime Research Center, and the Aquatic Park Historic District. For more information, call 415-447-5000 or visit Media contact: Lynn Cullivan, 415-561-7006, 

“The Hunger Games: The Exhibition” Opens at the Palace of Fine Arts Exhibition Hall in San Francisco Feb. 13, 2016
“The Hunger Games: The Exhibition,” the highly anticipated new traveling exhibition based on the blockbuster movie franchise, will open in the Innovation Hangar at San Francisco’s Palace of Fine Arts, the next stop on its global tour, on Feb. 13, 2016 (the closing date has not been announced). The exhibition invites visitors to step inside and explore the world of Panem as created by the films. Hundreds of authentic costumes and props, high-tech and hands-on interactives and detailed set recreations reveal the amazing artistry and technology that brought these incredible books to life. Visitors will follow Katniss Everdeen's inspirational journey, from her humble beginnings in District 12 to her emergence as the Mockingjay, sparking curiosity and excitement.

The exhibit will feature seven galleries including District 12, Tribute Train, The Capitol, Making the Games, District 13, Fan Gallery and Katniss’s Journey. Highlights include iconic costumes from the films, such as the Girl on Fire dress, the Mockingjay dress and the Mockingjay armor; key artifacts including the Mockingjay pin, Cinna’s sketchbook and Katniss’s bow; and interactives, including an explorable map of Panem, gamemaker’s control table and a stunt choreography interactive. The San Francisco engagement follows a successful New York premiere at Discovery Times Square. 

The blockbuster “The Hunger Games” franchise, one of the most successful motion picture franchises of all time, has already grossed more than $2.8 billion at the global box office and sold 82 million books around the world.  The fourth and final chapter, “The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2,” has grossed over $500 million worldwide in more than 90 countries and is currently playing on over 30,000 screens around the world. For more information on the exhibition or to purchase tickets, visit  Media contact: Andrea Bertolini,, 415-591-9614. 

First Female Executive Director Takes Helm of USS Hornet Museum in Alameda
Jill Knowland Rapposelli has been named the new executive director of the USS Hornet Museum, making her the first female to hold this position in the history of the Bay Area’s renowned “floating museum.” Rapposelli comes to the Hornet from Oakland’s Chabot Space & Science Center, where she served as Chief Operating Officer for the past 10 years. The USS Hornet Museum, a popular tourist destination in the San Francisco Bay Area, is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to inspiring people of all ages. Through field trips and live-aboard experiences, the USS Hornet, which opened as a museum in 1998, offers educational programs focusing on naval history, science and space technology. 

A registered state and national historic landmark and home of the largest collection of Apollo space mission artifacts on the West Coast, the ship is open to the public daily from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and permanently berthed at 707 W. Hornet Ave., Pier 3 in Alameda, CA.  Regular museum admission is $10 for youths age 7-17 (age 6 and under are free with paying adult); $15 for students with ID, seniors, and military with ID; and $20 for adults. Admission is free for Museum members. Ample free parking is available across from the pier. The USS Hornet is also a unique, unforgettable venue available for corporate events; trade shows and expos; private parties and big band dances; and TV and film productions. For more information, including group tours and event planning, visit or call 510-521-8448.  Media contact:  Victoria Sanchez De Alba, 650-270-7810,


Hotel Zeppelin San Francisco to Launch in Spring 2016
New name: Hotel Zeppelin San Francisco
Formerly: Prescott Hotel
Location: 545 Post St., 94102
Union Square
Media contact: Nancy Uber, 415-672-2950,
Viceroy Hotel Group has announced the launch of Hotel Zeppelin San Francisco, opening in Spring 2016. Set in an historic building, two blocks from Union Square, Hotel Zeppelin celebrates San Francisco's tradition of counter culture with a mischievous approach to design. 

Acquired as the former Prescott Hotel in early 2015 by Pebblebrook Hotel Trust (NYSE:PEB), the property is managed by Viceroy Hotel Group, now their second San Francisco establishment in just three years, following Hotel Zetta’s widely acknowledged success.  Hotel Zeppelin will deliver a provocative style that fosters innovation, collaboration and an inspired experience unlike anything offered in San Francisco. There will be 196 guest rooms including 20 suites. Amenities will include 3,000 square feet of meeting and event space, a game lounge and a café. Syncing with the bustling heartbeat of San Francisco, Hotel Zeppelin will be incorporating a café curated by Bulldog Coffee for guests and locals alike. Zeppelin Café will serve Bay Area favorites including Sightglass Coffee, Dynamo Donuts, and provisions from Jane.  

Claremont Club & Spa in Berkeley Debuts as a Fairmont Hotel
Claremont Club & Spa, A Fairmont Hotel is the newest addition to Fairmont Hotels & Resorts’ portfolio, joining the ranks of landmark Fairmont hotels including Fairmont San Francisco, The Plaza in New York, Fairmont Banff Springs in Canada, and The Savoy in London. Built in 1915, and nestled at the base of the Claremont Canyon Regional Preserve overlooking scenic San Francisco Bay, the Claremont offers 276 handsomely restored guestrooms and suites, an impressive club and spa, and an unparalleled dining portfolio. Fairmont’s parent company, FRHI Hotels & Resorts purchased the Claremont in 2014 in partnership with California financier Richard C. Blum and his family.Following a multi-million dollar capital investment project, which updated the hotel’s facilities and enhanced its castle-like architecture, the majestic hotel sits in the Berkeley and Oakland hills and is now poised to continue its rich legacy into the next millennia as a Fairmont hotel. 

The Claremont marked its 100th anniversary in 2015 with the culmination of an extensive restoration that starts at the hotel’s entrance. The lobby has been opened up to spectacular views of the bay, while the welcoming lobby lounge and bar are a haven for the weary traveler to linger and the surrounding community to enjoy. Aging hardwood floors have been restored as well as new  carpets, book matched mahogany and hand carved leather upholstery create a rich and refined, plush ambiance. Bold touches of color keep the design fresh and current, while transitional furnishings of exceptional quality complement the classic interior and whimsical contemporary art suggest the presence of a true collector. 

All 276 guestrooms have been updated, including the unveiling of a luxurious new Presidential Suite.Slated to open in early 2016, Chef Dominique Crenn’s elegant neighborhood brasserie will serve a locally sourced seasonal menu, joining the hotel’s three other exceptional restaurants and lounges. Claremont Club & Spa, A Fairmont Hotel also boasts a spa and club facility complete with kids’ pool, tennis and fitness center.  Meeting and social event planners will have access to 20,000 sq. ft. of meeting space, including the Empire Ballroom that can accommodate upwards of 450 attendees and a number of meeting rooms with spectacular Bay views.

The iconic urban resort is also home to a private social and tennis club with loyal members who enjoy hotel amenities, fitness facilities and lifestyle programming. For more information or reservations, visit  Media contact: Michelle Heston, 707-939-2477,

Great Hostel Give Back Offers Free Stays for Groups of Community Volunteers
For the sixth consecutive year, Hosteling International USA is offering groups across the country free overnight stays at HI USA hostels in January and February 2016 through their Great Hostel Give Back (GHGB) program. During January and February 2016, qualifying groups of eight or more people receive one free night's stay (up to five nights) at an HI USA hostel for each day its members spend volunteering at least two hours in the community surrounding the hostel. Hosteling International USA  has locations in San Francisco at City Center,, Downtown, and

HI USA’s lounges, kitchens and dining rooms ensure plenty of opportunities to connect with other travelers. Participating groups are invited to join in with free events, tours and activities to meet like-minded travelers and explore the hidden gems of the city. For more information and to apply, visit  Media contact: Lydia Petrovic,, 415-474-5721. 

Hotel Nikko San FranciscoRecognized as “Best Hotel in the City” and One of the Bay Area’s “Best and Brightest Companies to Work For”
Hotel Nikko San Francisco was named “Best Hotel in the City” by the “San Francisco Examiner” in their inaugural “Readers’ Choice” competition and celebration held on Oct. 22, 2015 at Drake Lounge, Bar and Restaurant. Hotel Nikko San Francisco also won several categories at the California Hotel and Lodging Association’s recent Star of the Industry Awards on Nov. 19, 2015 in San Diego. The hotel won the Star of the Industry Award for the “Special Events On-Going” category for its acclaimed gift give away, while Hotel Nikko Controller Polina Spectorwon the CH&L Association’s Star of the Industry Award’s “WIL Connect Leader of the Year”. 

Vice President and General Manager Anna Marie Presutti, who was recognized at this year’s Hotel Hero Awards for Lifetime Achievement as a Hotel Executive, was also honored with a CH&L Star of the Industry Award for “Outstanding General Manager of the Year.” Presutti, who was the recent recipient of the 2015 Peter Goldman Award of Excellence, became the first woman named to JAL Hotel Company’s Corporate Executive Officer’s Board. 

The National Association for Business Resources (NABR) named Hotel Nikko San Francisco one of the San Francisco Bay Area’s Best And Brightest Companies to Work For ®at the San Francisco Bay Area’s Best and Brightest Companies to Work For® symposium and awards gala on Nov. 12, 2015.  The distinction honors companies that excel at employee relations, use innovation to motivate employees, implement creative compensation programs and practice ground-breaking strategies as well as represent best practices in industries as diverse as energy, medical, financial services and nonprofit. For information about Hotel Nikko San Francisco, visit  Media contact: James Smith, 415-296-0677,

Fairmont San Francisco Unveils New Gallery of Art with “Quintescential San Francisco” Photography Exhibit Presented by Students from Academy of Art University
Fairmont San Francisco and Academy of Art University (AAU) have partnered to celebrate and showcase the work of young artists in the new “Gallery of Art” located on the Fairway level of the landmark hotel. In October 2015, Academy of Art University launched a photography contest inviting students to share their unique visions of San Francisco.  More than 100 students responded to the call and the hotel unveiled the winning works at a reception honoring the student artists on Dec. 17. The exhibit will be on display through mid-December 2016. The 18 photos that line the Fairway of the hotel show fresh perspectives of iconic San Francisco treasures such as City Hall and the Golden Gate Bridge and capture timeless glimpses of living in the city.

Grand Prize winner, Kushal Kapoor, received a $1,000 Fairmont San Francisco gift card for his portrait, “Sail,” which shows a lone sailboat as it passes through the vast shadow cast by the Golden Gate Bridge. Each Academy of Art University photography student whose work is on display at the Fairmont’s Gallery of Art was awarded an overnight stay at Fairmont San Francisco, plus breakfast. Local contemporary artist, John Waguespack, who as the hotel’s inaugural artist-in-residence transformed a portion of the hotel’s lobby into a working studio in 2013, was on hand to congratulate the artists. For information about Academy of Art University, visit For hotel information and reservations, call 800-441-1414 or visit Media contact: Samara Diapoulis,, 415-385-6507.


WOW air Offers $99 Flights from California to Iceland
WOW air, the ultra-low-cost transatlantic airline from Iceland, has announced fares from Los Angeles and San Francisco to Iceland for as low as $99 for flights including taxes. Travelers also have the option to continue their trip to WOW air´s 21 European destinations including London, Paris, Berlin, Frankfurt, Dublin, Amsterdam, Copenhagen and Stockholm. Flights to the other European locations start as low as $199 one-way including taxes with a short one hour stopover in Iceland. Tickets on the select routes went on sale on Jan.12, 2016.

Skúli Mogensen, founder and CEO of WOW air, said: “This is a game changer for WOW air, and arguably the travel industry, making travel to Iceland and other European countries both easy and affordable from California. We are thrilled to add Los Angeles and San Francisco to our fast growing network.  With the addition of our new long-range A330-300 aircraft to our fleet, we will be able to offer fares from Europe to the West Coast of the United States far cheaper than our competitors whilst maintaining great service with a smile, as we did with our routes to Boston, Baltimore/Washington D.C., Toronto and Montreal. I look forward to welcoming Californians to Iceland and Europe with our super low fares to Europe.”  

WOW air will begin flying to the West Coast of the United States in summer 2016 with inaugural flights staring in San Francisco on June 9 and in Los Angeles starting on June 15.. Service from San Francisco to Iceland will be available five days a week and service from Los Angeles to Iceland will be available four days a week with connecting flights on to other European destinations. 

Launched in November 2011, WOW air now connects twenty-seven destinations across the U.S. and Europe with the Icelandic capital. WOW air’s annual passenger capacity will be more than double in 2016 to over 1.8 million, up from approximately 840,000 in 2015. The California routes will be serviced by three new Airbus A330-300 aircraft, the first wide-body planes in the WOW air fleet, which will each carry 340 passengers in a single-class configuration. Seat pitch will vary from 30 inches as standard to 34 inches at an additional charge.For more information on flights to Iceland and North America please visit For additional information and bookings please visit  Media contact: Dustin Lawrence,, 310-854-8242

SFO Welcomes Fiji Airways
Fiji Airways, voted Best Airline in the South Pacific as awarded by Global Traveler, has announced plans to commence seasonal twice-weekly direct services from San Francisco to Nadi, Fiji this summer and next December starting June 16th, 2016.  The flights will operate from San Francisco International Airport (SFO) to Fiji (NAN) on Thursdays and Sundays, with flight times to provide easy connectivity within Fiji, to Australia, New Zealand, and the South Pacific Island nations.  Flights will be available for purchase on

The new services will allow more Americans to visit Fiji and experience the natural beauty of its islands and the world-renowned hospitality of the Fijian people. The flights will also make it convenient for the Fijian, Samoan and Tongan communities living in San Francisco, to take trips back to their homeland to see family and friends. Media contact: Doug Yakel, San Francisco International Airport,, 650-821-4000.



San Francisco Sketchfest
Various locations
Nationally recognized comedy festival that mixes national headliners, local favorites and the best up-and-coming groups from throughout North America for a month of sketch, improv, stand-up and alternative comedy.

Noir City: San Francisco Film Noir Festival
Castro Theatre
Dedicated to noir philosophy, attitude and style in films, books, art and music, the festival is the largest of its kind in the U.S. and promises “ultra rare films and very special guests.” 

Golden Gate Kennel Club Dog Show
Cow Palace, Geneva Avenue and Santos Street, 415-404-4111
More than 2,000 dogs and 175-plus breeds vie for “Best in Show” and compete in dog agility demonstrations daily.

Chinese New Year Parade and Celebration
Chinatown, 415-680-6297
The festivities ushering in the Year of the Monkey include a Chinese New Year Flower Fair (January 30-31) Miss Chinatown USA Pageant (February 13), and the Chinatown Community Street Fair (February 20-21). It's all built around a fantastic parade from Market and Second Street to Columbus Avenue on Saturday, February 20. Chinese New Year Day is Thursday, February 8.


Union Street Has a Crush on You Valentine Wine Walk
Union Street from Gough to Steiner and Fillmore Street from Union to Lombard, 
This annual tasting event includes restaurants and merchants offering wine samples, finger foods and special treats.

San Francisco Independent Film Festival (SF IndieFest)
Roxie Theatre and various locations, 415-662-3378
This film festival screens the best of independent films and videos from the Bay Area and beyond.

San Francisco City Golf Championship
Presidio, TPC Harding Park and Lincoln Park Golf Courses, 415-561-4661 
This is the 100th year of the oldest consecutively played amateur, match play, golf tournament; offers men’s, women’s and men’s senior championship flights as well as men’s and women’s open division flights; semi-final and final matches at TPC Harding Golf Course. 

KNBR/Giants Winter Fanfest
AT&T Park, 415-995-6800 or
Fans can participate in an array of interactive games and displays on the Promenade and Club levels. Members of the Giants team will be on hand to sign autographs, pose for photos and participate in Q&A sessions. 

San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition
Fort Mason Center
More than 5,000 wine lovers converge to enjoy breathtaking views of the Golden Gate Bridge, outstanding food, conversations and a bit of education, as they peruse samples from more than 800 wineries.

Tulipmania Festival
Pier 39, 415-705-5500
Thousands of brilliantly colored tulips from all over the world coupled with free, guided tours.

Kaiser Permanente San Francisco Half Marathon & 5K
Golden Gate Park, 415-759-2690 and
One of the most scenic half marathons ever features a course throughout Golden Gate Park and along the Pacific Ocean with both starts and finishes together in the park. 

San Francisco Tribal & Textiles Arts Show
Fort Mason Center, Festival Pavilion, Marina Boulevard and Buchanan Street, 310-455-2886 
Featuring an assortment of museum-quality masks, textiles, sculptures and jewelry from more than 100 galleries from around the world.

Noise Pop Music Festival
Various locations, 415-375-3370
San Francisco’s premier independent music, film and art festival is a full-scale cultural happening, which also includes gallery art shows, a music-themed film festival, an indie-designer trunk sale and educational panels.

Chinese New Year’s Treasure Hunt
Justin Herman Plaza, 415-564-9400
Largest and most popular treasure hunt of its kind in the United States; inventive clues and unique, little-known treasure spots draw thousands of spirited participants who return year after year for this fun-filled event.

Black Choreographers Festival: Here & Now
Various locations San Francisco and Oakland
All-community event offering performances, mentoring, master classes, symposia and special events celebrating African American art and culture.     

Annual Youth Speaks Teen Poetry Slam
Various locations throughout Bay Area, 415-255-9035
Youth Speaks, one of the leaders in Spoken Word performances, works with 45,000 teens annually and is a presenter of local and national youth poetry slams, festivals, reading series and more. Preliminaries take place in March followed by the semi-finals and finals, climaxing with the Grand Slam Finals at Davies Symphony Hall on April 16. 

The Zinfandel Experience
Bentley Reserve and Pier 27
Zinfandel, often called America’s heritage wine, is the draw here. Join in celebrating Zinfandel’s 25th anniversary. Savor the flavors of this authentically American varietal and experience its distinctly classic personality at several extraordinary events. More than 250 wineries participate in this food and wine tasting which draws some 10,000 wine lovers.

Pacific Orchid Exposition
Fort Mason Center, Festival Pavilion, 650-548-6700
The annual edition of the San Francisco Orchid Society's show dazzles with 150,000 flowers including hundreds of award winners selected by the American Orchid Society. 

The Great San Francisco Crystal Fair
Fort Mason Center, 415-383-7837
More than exhibitors celebrating earth and spirit with a wide variety of gems and minerals (quartz, amethyst, tourmaline, etc.), jewelry, metaphysics, healing tools and the mystical arts.

Academy of Friends Academy Awards Night Gala
San Francisco Design Center Galleria, 415-995-9890
A gala celebration benefiting Bay Area AIDS/HIV organizations.

MARCH 2016

Black Cuisine Festival
Bayview Hunters Point, 1751 Carroll Ave at Third St, 415-822-1444
Kiddieland, dancing, a soul food contest, marketplace and live music are among the draws and this annual tribute to black cuisine.

San Francisco International Chocolate Salon
Herbst Pavilion, Fort Mason Center
Those with a yen for chocolate can indulge in artisan, gourmet and premium chocolate from more than 50 chocolatiers and confectioners. Non-chocolate exhibitors and artisans will be on hand as well including wineries participating in the San Francisco Invitational Wine Salon.

MARCH 5-22
Jewish Music Festival
Various locations throughout San Francisco, Berkeley and Oakland, 510-848-0237 ext 126 or 800-838-3006
Oldest festival of Jewish world music in the U.S. will take its final bow.  

MARCH 10-13
Ocean Film Festival
Cowell Theater, Fort Mason Center, 415-561-6251
One of the largest and most diverse of its kind, the festival features documentaries, animations, narratives and other traditional screen fare on topics ranging from ocean adventures to island culture and more.

MARCH 10-20
CAAMFest (Presented by the Center for Asian American Media. Formerly San Francisco International Asian American Film Festival)
San Francisco, Berkeley and Oakland, 415-863-0814   
CAAMFest is the nation’s largest showcase for new Asian American and Asian films; annually presenting approximately 130 works in San Francisco, Berkeley and Oakland. Since 1982, the festival has been an important launching point for Asian American independent filmmakers as well as a vital source for new Asian cinema.

Bay Area Brew Festival
Pier 35, 415-345-7500
The event features dozens of international and domestic beers, and San Francisco’s best food trucks. 

St. Patrick’s Day Parade
Second and Market to Civic Center
One of San Francisco's largest annual parades and one of the longest-running parades in the U.S. is celebrated with live music, dance, beverages and traditional Irish cuisine.

ODC/Dance Downtown Gala
St. Regis Hotel and Yerba Buena Center for the Arts Theater, 415-549-8508
ODC/Dance, San Francisco’s internationally acclaimed contemporary dance company, presents its 45th annual home season.  

Dance Anywhere
Bay Area
Dance Anywhere ® is a simultaneous worldwide public art performance in which people from around the world, of all ages and artistic capacities will stop at noon (PST) and dance.

Earth Hour
Major cities around the world, including San Francisco, show that the simple act of turning off lights for one hour can have a lasting impact on climate change starts at 8:30 p.m.

Macy’s Flower Show
Macy’s, Union Square, 415-397-3333
This annual floral tribute is a spring tradition; the two-week celebration includes guest speakers and special in-store events.

Union Street Spring Celebration & Easter Parade
Union Street between Gough and Fillmore, 800-310-6563
More than 30,000 people turn out for “the biggest little parade in San Francisco,” which features children’s activities, alfresco dining, the Easter Bunny, a petting zoo and flowers from local garden clubs.

2016 Spring Book Sale
Festival Pavilion, Fort Mason Center
Held at Fort Mason Center’s Festival Pavilion, the Spring Book Sale will feature more than 250,000 books, DVDs, CDs, books on tape, vinyl and other forms of media in more than 70 categories. 

The San Francisco Travel Association is the official destination marketing organization for the City and County of San Francisco. For information on reservations, activities and more, visit, read the Visitors Planning Guide or call 415-391-2000.  San Francisco Travel also operates Visitor Information Centers at Hallidie Plaza, 900 Market Street at the corner of Powell and Market streets and on the lower level of Macy’s Union Square.  For more information, visit   

American Express® is the official Card partner of the San Francisco Travel Association.

San Francisco International Airport (SFO) offers non-stop flights to more than 39 international cities on 34 international carriers. The Bay Area's largest airport connects non-stop with 77 cities in the U.S. on 13 domestic airlines. SFO offers free upgraded Wi-Fi with no advertising. For up-to-the-minute departure and arrival information, airport maps and details on shopping, dining, cultural exhibitions, ground transportation and more, visit Follow SFO on and

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