Hiding Everywhere: Public Spaces in Private Places | A Giambattista Nolli Tour of SOMA

San Francisco, CA

  • The public atrium inside 101 2nd Street
  • Close up of the Piazza Navona and Pantheon in Nolli's 1748 map of Rome.
  • The cafe in 111 Minna Street.
  • The gallery space at 111 Minna Street.
  • The lobby of the former Pac Bell Building, 140 Montgomery.
  • Outside of the former Pac Bell Building.
  • The new lobby for SFMOMA, with stairwell designed by Snøhetta.
  • The original lobby for SFMOMA, designed by Mario Botta.
  • The waterfall in front of the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial at Yerba Buena Garden.
  • Yerba Buena Gardens.
  • Interior of St. Patrick's Church.
  • St. Patrick's Church in 1905. Photo: Bancroft Library, UC Berkeley.
  • Visionaries of the San Francisco Renaissance at the Monadnock Building.
  • Monadnock Building San Francisco.
  • The grand entrance to the Garden Court at the Palace Hotel.
  • The Pied Piper Bar, named after Maxfield Parrish's painting sitting behind the counter at the Palace Hotel.
  • The tower and reverse terraced facade of Golden Gate University.
  • The modern day drawbridge leading to Golden Gate University.
  • Artist's rendering of the Oceanside Center tower overlooking the Bay Bridge.
  • Construction at Oceanside Center in progress in 2017.
  • The interior of the Salesforce Transit Center.
  • Artist Julie Chang's terrazzo floors in the Salesforce Transit Center depicting "The Secret Garden."
  • 5.4 acres of green space on top of the Salesforce Transit Center.
  • The organic curvilinear metal mesh on the exterior of the Salesforce Transit Center.

2 hours
1.4 mi
Guided by Dave
Dave Alpert


Come on an exploration of hundred-year-old icons and just-completed skyscrapers, of parks and plazas, of Beaux-Arts classics and organic, Neo-Futurist marvels. This walk explores the evolution of interior public spaces hiding in private buildings throughout the South of Market neighborhood. Explore a new perspective on San Francisco's history and values as told through the city's architecture and design throughout the ages. "Hiding Everywhere" was created in partnership with the American Institute of Architects San Francisco (AIASF).

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About Your Guide

Dave Alpert is an award-winning architect with a passion for the real world. He has led landmark projects for some of the most respected global design firms including Gensler and Skidmore Owings & Merrill. He is currently the co-founder and CEO of Geopogo, a virtual reality company building 3D software to build and explore virtual spaces.

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Guide Points

  1. 101 2nd St

    101 Second Street is a 26-floor office tower designed in the early 1990s by Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (SOM). The design won the "beauty co…

  2. 111 Minna St

    Thirsty? Looking for some new artwork to hang on the wall?

  3. Yelp Headquarters | 140 New Montgomery St

    Today, this is the headquarters of Yelp, but when it opened in 1925, it was the Pacific Telephone Building. You may not be familiar with th…


    SFMOMA is a story of two architectural styles wrestling on top of a shared foundation. Some elements clash while others complement, but the…

  5. Yerba Buena Gardens

    If you stood here in the early 90s, you would find yourself on the eastern edge of the Tenderloin, skid row.

  6. St. Patrick's Catholic Church

    Head inside the church to study the Gothic features; you don't see places like this in San Francisco. Massive pillars, organ pipes and marb…

  7. Monadnock Building | 685 Market St

    The 10-story Monadnock Building opened the year after the 1906 earthquake. It is decorated in exquisite Beaux Arts features: the rusticated…

  8. The Palace Hotel

    The Palace Hotel dates back to 1875 when it was the tallest building in the city. Miraculously, it survived the 1906 earthquake. World famo…

  9. Golden Gate University | 536 Mission St

    This is a completely unvisited space unless you are a student at Golden Gate University. Most people look at the Brutalist design and think…

  10. Oceanwide Center | 50 First Street

    There isn't much to see yet, but the saga behind this construction site is as story-worthy as it comes.

  11. Salesforce Transit Center - Exterior

    The Salesforce Transit Terminal opened in August 2018 in anticipation of 100,000 commuters passing through it everyday. And yes, it is just…

  12. Salesforce Transit Center - Roof Garden

    Stroll the roof garden of the Transit Center - it isn't that expansive, but it does feel larger than it is by the way it is sectioned and d…

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