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Charming Macondray Lane Flat with Bay Views

Bedrooms 1
Property type apartment
Minimum Stay 30 nights


About the property

Apartment, 1 Bedroom + Den, 1 Bath. Sleeps 2 comfortably; 3-4 less so.

This is a charming and Bohemian San Francisco flat centrally located on Russian Hill. The flat is the top of two units in an historic cottage on Macondray Lane, a lovely walking Lane which runs between Taylor and Jones streets. This lane is vibrant green with abundant gardens and a brick and cobblestone walk way. One feels in the country rather than the city and the noise of the streets and city sounds are muffled in this sequestered lane. The house was built in 1850 and has a warm charm and lovely furniture and decor. The owners prefer to rent to those who'd like to stay for two weeks or longer.

It has a tower bedroom with spectacular views of the San Francisco Bay and Alcatraz Island. (There isn't a bathroom connected to the master bedroom.) Just off the tower bedroom is a roof deck with wrought iron table and chairs and a gas grill for entertaining. This deck includes views of the Bay Bridge, Alcatraz and Coit Tower. The 4th of July fireworks can be enjoyed from here. The second room is a small den with a daybed/trundle which can sleep 2, and has a separate TV/DVD. (No closet.)

The living room has historic warm Mahogany paneling, views, a fireplace, and a table for eating. The dining room seats 8 - 10 and is equipped for entertaining including cloth tablecloth and napkins. The kitchen has a Wolff stove, and is fully furnished for your convenience, and is adjacent to a sunny breakfast room which looks out on Taylor Street. The bathroom has a shower as well as a separate whirlpool tub.

This unit contains lovely and sometimes rustic decor, art and books. It is by no means an impersonal condo. Please be aware that due to new laws imposed by the City of San Francisco, we can only rent it for stays of at least 30 days.

Most tenants find they do not need a car as there is a Green Grocer, Wine Shop and the SearchLight Market within 2-3 blocks, and it is an easy walk to North Beach, Polk Street Shopping District, China Town or Fisherman's Wharf. Convenient bus stops are just 1 block away. However, tenants can rent a secure parking space in a building 3 blocks away on Hyde Street.

MACONDRAY LANE (Information from the Russian Hill Neighbors website):

'Sandwiched between Green and Union Streets and between Taylor and Leavenworth Streets, Macondray Lane is a secret find. The block between Jones and Taylor is most significant. Macondray Lane has long captured the hearts of San Franciscans and visitors for its woodsy enclave with charming cottages, interesting new buildings, and most special of all, gardens on the south side of the public path. As you traverse the lane you will find many different garden areas, yet they all seem to fit together. This was an early enclave for artists and writers including California Poet Laureate Ina Coolbrith and, for many years, some of the city's leading newspapermen. The informal landscaped gardens began early in the twentieth century.

In the late 1970s, Macondray Lane was memorialized as 'Barbary Lane' in Armistead Maupin's Tales of the City.

15-17 Macondray Lane, 'Giuseppe Cadenasso Flats,' Architect unknown, c.1872-1892 depending on the historic resource. This is the sole Macondray Lane survivor of the 1906 fire—a very simple rectangular plan building with baroque garlands of plaster draped across each of its two front doors. One source suggests that this building was pre-built and shipped around the 'Horn.' Its second owner, Cadenasso (resident from 1908-1918) was a major California landscape painter and taught in the art department at Mills College in Oakland.'

Keywords: flat, unit, cottage

More Details
Registration Number : Long-Term Only


Russian Hill Apartment Accommodation and Amenities

Property Type:
  • apartment
  • floor 2
  • Guests provide their own meals
House Rules:
  • Max. occupancy: 4
  • not suitable for children ...
  • non smoking only
Location Type:
  • Water View ...
  • Clothes Dryer
  • Heating
  • Iron & Board
  • Linens Provided
  • Telephone
  • Towels Provided
  • Washing Machine ...
  • Wireless Internet
  • Wood Fireplace
  • Coffee Maker
  • Cooking Utensils
  • Dishes & Utensils ...
  • Dishwasher
  • Kitchen
  • Microwave ...
  • Oven
  • Pantry Items
  • Refrigerator
  • Stove
  • Toaster
  • Dining Area
  • seating for 8 people
  • 1 Bathroom
  • Bathroom 1 -
  • 1
  • 1 Bedroom, Sleeps 4
  • 1 Queen size beds on the upper floor. You can see the view without lifting your head off the pillows! The Den has a trundle bed: a twin day bed beneath which is another twin bed, which slides out; the beds are on two different levels: one sofa height, the other close to the floor. Flat is great for 2. Good for parents with a teenager, or another adult or 2 who are game to squeeze in.
  • Books
  • CD Player
  • DVD Player
  • Music Library ...
  • Satellite / Cable
  • Stereo
  • Deck / Patio ...
  • Outdoor Grill
Pool / Spa:
  • jetted tub
  • churches
  • cinemas
  • library
  • live theater
  • marina
  • museums
  • restaurants
  • zoo
Leisure Activities:
  • antiquing
  • bird watching
  • boating
  • shopping
  • sight seeing
  • walking
Local Services & Businesses:
  • ATM/bank
  • groceries
Sports & Adventure Activities:
  • cycling
  • pier fishing
  • sailing
  • sound/bay fishing
  • wind-surfing
Please be aware that due to new laws in the City of San Francisco, we can only rent to those who can stay at least 30 days.


Wonderful! 4.9/5 -
(10 traveler reviews)

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Charming Macondray Lane Flat with Bay Views
average rating of 4.9 based on 10 reviews
Montreal , QC CANADA

Quiet lane in a busy city

  • 5 of 5

Everything about the apartment was great: the location , the view, the style..even the stairs! Would go back anytime!

Johanne Gravel

  • Submitted: Nov 27, 2017
  • Stayed: November 2017
  • Source: VRBO, from HomeAway
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jersey shore

Visit SF and come "home" to a Hillside Cottage above the Bay on a secret Tropical Lane!

  • 5 of 5

Amazing location: hillside above the Bay with impressive interior and exterior (roof patio) Bay views. This cottage is literary, historical, and artistic. The kitchen is stocked with gourmet tools. We preferred to pick up local fresh fish and farmer's market produce and eat at home...on the roof patio! Two blocks from the Hyde/Powell Trolley Car, your stop is famous Swenson's Ice Cream (hurry home with a "Swenson's Pint"). This Secret Tropical Lane is a couple of blocks from The Wharf & Pier 39, The Marina, North Beach (little Italy), Coit Tower and Filbert Steps, and Grace Cathedral (with interior and exterior Labyrinths)! The Telegraph Hill Parrots visit every afternoon. The Host/Manager is easy to work with and flexible. We still dream about San Francisco and The Cottage. It is one of our favorite vacations ever!

  • Submitted: Dec 26, 2014
  • Stayed: June 2014
  • Source: VRBO, from HomeAway
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Edinburgh, Scotland, United Kingdom

A privilege to stay here

  • 5 of 5

Lovely, warm, homey place to stay in San Francisco. Russian Hill has such a nice feel to it. The Lane is very pretty and secluded. The apartment felt really spacious and was full of interesting and beautiful things.

The views from every window were exceptional but it was lovely to sit in the living room in the evenings with a glass of wine and to look out over the Bay.

The roof terrace adjoins the master bedroom and is amazing. Sometimes I would creep out of bed in the night, just to look up at the stars. I was also able to enjoy some truly stunning sunrises and sunsets from there. At the moment, the Bay Bridge twinkles through the night, thanks to Leo Villareal and the Bay Lights Project. I enjoyed seeing that and also a floodlit Coit Tower.

On a practical note, it was convenient to have a washing machine/dryer in the apartment. I also appreciated the wi-fi.

This was my fifth trip to San Francisco but the first time I’d seen the wild parrots. They visited the Lane frequently during our stay and favoured the tree by the living room window, so we saw lots of them.

The owner was thoughtful, responsive and accommodating and we could not have asked for more. The apartment exceeded all our expectations and had the most spectacular views of the Bay. I agree with all the positive comments in earlier reviews: charming, unique, magical. It was a privilege to stay here.

  • Submitted: Oct 8, 2013
  • Stayed: September 2013
  • Source: VRBO, from HomeAway
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Athens, Georgia

Unique, Charming Apartment

  • 5 of 5

Staying at the flat on Macondray Lane was a remarkable experience, satisfying in every way. It's in a great location convenient to public transportation, close to wonderful markets if you want to cook, and close to great restaurants if you don't. We knew that the photos of the view and the interior were too good to be true, but, in fact, they don't do the place justice. How can you photograph the charm of an apartment that has all the personal touches of years of living well? It felt like a home that a friend had graciously allowed us to use for a little while. Some days we didn't go out as much as we intended because it was all so charming and the view so spectacular. It was just too easy to have another cup of coffee, another glass of wine, read another chapter. The only downside could be the stairs, which might be an issue for mobility-challenged folks, but we can't imagine staying anywhere else in San Francisco. The owners clearly care deeply for this family treasure, so if you chose to stay in the flat please be kind to it and treat it with respect.

  • Submitted: Nov 25, 2012
  • Stayed: August 2012
  • Source: VRBO, from HomeAway
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Vancouver, B.C. Canada

a home away from home

  • 5 of 5

This home away from home is truly wonderful! I can't imagine finding another place in San Francisco that would suit me better and I enjoyed every moment of my three week stay. The flat is very well-appointed and the décor is unique and charming. When spending a peaceful day at home reading on the roof deck I enjoyed watching the antics of the wild parrots, but most days I took advantage of the apartment's great location and explored the city. So many of San Francisco's best attractions are within walking distance and returning to the gardens of Macondray Lane and the comforts of home at the end of the day was a joy. I previously stayed at this flat in springtime, when the lane was a-bloom, and again this fall, when warm, leisurely days lingered and sunrises and sunsets were quite magical viewed from the roof deck. During my sojourn I invited friends and family to drop by and all agreed that the accommodation provided and the special atmosphere of the place were ideal for a great visit. In addition, I found the owners very helpful and responsive to requests and needs. If I was lucky enough to live in San Francisco, this flat would be where I’d want to hang my hat!

Favourite walks starting at Macondray Lane led me to Union Street for shopping; the Cable Car Museum en route to Nob Hill; and Union Square, where I recommend visiting the shop on Maiden Lane designed by Frank Lloyd Wright. Nearby North Beach highlights include great restaurants; Grant Avenue boutiques and bakeries; and City Lights Bookstore, which is open till midnight! One day I trekked up to Coit Tower from the end of Grant Avenue and down the steps on the other side of Telegraph Hill, through beautiful residential gardens. This was a bit of a hike but worth doing, especially if you follow it up with a delicious meal at a local North Beach eatery. Try Trattoria Contadina, just down the street from the flat, and you will have enjoyed another good day in San Francisco.

  • Submitted: Nov 12, 2012
  • Stayed: September 2012
  • Source: VRBO, from HomeAway
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Horsham, PA

even better in person

  • 5 of 5

Our 12 yr old daughter wanted to move here! We had such a fantastic visit being to centrally located and easy to hop on either cable car. (Buy a multi day cable car pass at the ACE hardware on Polk.) And always made time to have down time at the flat as it is so cozy. If we visit SF in near future - we would make date fit availability of this flat. The pizza on Polk St, Gioia, fantastic. Ate at Luella + Frastcati - both around the corner. Liked Luella better and rec. it. Can't say enough nice things about this place. This was our first VRBO and we're now converts.

  • Submitted: Aug 27, 2012
  • Stayed: August 2012
  • Source: VRBO, from HomeAway
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Property Manager

Sands Hall
Member since: 2010
Speaks: english
Response time:
Within 12 hours
Response rate:
Calendar last updated:
February 1, 2018

About Sands Hall

Sands Hall is the daughter of Barbara and Oakley Hall (owners of the flat). The flat was the home of her parents until the death of her father, novelist, Oakley Hall. She and her sister Brett have taken over the care and feeding of the flat and enjoy welcoming tenants who enjoy its unique charms.

Sands Hall purchased this apartment in 1983

Why Sands Hall chose Russian Hill

Our parents lived in the flat between 1983 and 2008, until our father's death. We love finding tenants who appreciate the unique and warm character of the place. It has a definite bohemian quality, and though it has many amenities, it is not at all like a condo or hotel room. It contains many books and quirky works of art belonging to and sometimes created by our parents. Please be aware that due to new regulations in the City of San Francisco, we can only rent to those who can stay at least 30 days.

What makes this apartment unique

One feels in the country rather than the city and the noise of the streets and city sounds are muffled in this sequestered lane. The views are spectacular. The house, built in 1850, has a warm charm and lovely furniture and decor.


Nearest Point of Interest
Pier 39
Nearest Point of Interest
Lombard Street - Crookedest Street
Nearest Point of Interest
Fisherman's Wharf
Nearest Point of Interest
Nearest Point of Interest
The Marina
Nearest Point of Interest
Golden Gate Bridge
Nearest Point of Interest
Fort Mason
Nearest Point of Interest
North Beach
Nearest Point of Interest
China Town
Nearest Point of Interest
The Embarcadero
Car: not necessary


Rates & Availability

Taxes and fees are additional

Additional information about rental rates

Refundable damage deposit $200

Please inquire only if you are able to stay at least 30 DAYS. Due to new regulations imposed by the City of San Francisco we cannot rent our flat for less than ONE MONTH. Thanks for your interest!

Manager's Cancellation Policy

Please ask the manager or check their rental agreement when booking the property.

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