Financial District Neighborhood Vibe
The Financial District is just about as urban as you can get in San Francisco. It’s dense, congested, and commercial, with some condominiums thrown in for good measure. It’s not so much a neighborhood with businesses on a few streets; it’s a commercial district with a few condos scattered about.
Popular Financial District Home Styles
As far as we know, there’s not a single-family home to be found in this neighborhood, making condos the king of the roost. Stunning conversions turned early-1900s buildings into luxury condominiums, and large condo buildings were added to the neighborhood starting in the 1960s.
Getting Around the Financial District
You’ll probably hate having a car in this neighborhood, if for no other reasons than the traffic and the parking. It’s well-served by multiple bus lines, BART and Muni light-rail under Market Street, and even the historic cable cars (although the tourist quotient on the cable cars might make them a less-than-ideal commute option). Many condos in the neighborhood don’t have parking, so if you absolutely need a car, budget at least a few hundred bucks a month for a leased parking spot.
The name “Financial District/Barbary Coast” is a nod to both the present and the past. During the Gold Rush in 1849, the Barbary Coast was ground zero for the, ahem, needs of the 49ers (the miners who rushed West, hoping to strike it rich). It was a lawless area back in the day, with brothels, saloons, gambling, and other nefarious activities. It gradually morphed into a more orderly area, and what was then the Barbary Coast is now Chinatown, Jackson Square, and North Beach.