The YMCA gym is the best deal in the city! On top of that, they also offer discounts for different age groups in addition to financial assistance. The Chinatown gym is hardly ever used and often you will be the only one there. It is also very unintimidating. They also have a pool and fitness classes.
PROS: Financial assistance, no waiting for machines
CONS: Close earlier than most gyms
This is another one of those city treasures that is surprisingly never crowded. They have perhaps the nation's most comprehensive collection of Asian art and displays them in the most intriguing manner. They also have a section for temporary exhibitions which tend to focus on contemporary art which rivals that of MoMA. They also feature free and discounted nights as listed on their website.
PROS: rarely crowded and also has contemporary exhibitions
CONS: bad neighborhood
This store looks like it is left over from the thriving days of Haight-Ashbury. They also do a quality job on your shoe repairs. Take advantage of the suggestions they offer, they aren't trying to sell you stuff but are honestly trying to help you out. They also sell the most amazing insoles that are worth the price and are better than anything you can get at Walgreen's. Highly recommended for those who live in the Haight!
PROS: High Quality Shoe Repair
CONS: Sometimes it's just easier to go to your neighborhood shoe repair
The Berkeley Art Museum is totally underrated. They haae an amazing collection of ancient, modern and contemporary works. Their collection does rotate, so it is worth checking out every few months. The architecture is also amazing and they have a great cafe to top off the entire experience. They are open late on Thursdays and once a month they are free.
PROS: Never crowded
CONS: Requires a small amount of transportation effort
Yes, they are very expensive but they also go through a ridiculou amount of training to make you look good. They also have a training program where you can get your hair done for about $20, but it takes a long time, about 2-3 hours. But, that time is well spent and your hair will look amazing. I prefer the student cuts to the regular ones, but it comes down to a matter of time availability.
PROS: Best hair cut ever
CONS: expensive or time-consuming
We are incredibly lucky to live in the Bay Area where a service like this is offered. Many of us who live in the city have little use for a car unless it is to pick up something big or to buy groceries. City Carshare is cheaper than owning a car if you use it infrequently. They also offer a discount at night, so if you run errands at night, it costs much much less than a taxi and just slightly more than the bus.
PROS: Lots of cars available, cheaper than a car, more convenient than bus
CONS: You have to work with the car's availability
I don't think anyone can leave this museum without a new admiration for cartoon art and history. Although they're fun to look at, cartoons also have a strong historical basis which the museum cleverly presents. They have classic to contemporary cartoons in their permanenet collection. In addition, they have special exhbits which change every few months, so it's recommended to go multiple times a year. The gift shop also has a great selection of alternative books and is a great place to buy gifts.
PROS: Interesting collection, great place to buy gifts
CONS: Make sure to see what days and itmes they are open
San Francisco is loaded with Thai restaurants. What makes King of Thai stand out is their ability to offer a selection of scrumptuous Thai food at a low, low price. Each meal can serve two, or you can take it to go and make two meals. The King of Thai on Geary is no frills--the service is quick and it's never too crowded. The table is also loaded with a variety of condiments to experiment with.
PROS: Cheap, fast, good
CONS: Decor is a little lacking
This is the coolest art spot in San Francisco, and it's free! This is a space where artists with developmental disabilities create and exhibit their art. Their is a front room with books and postcards, and a back room where the artists work. You can also look through the work in the back as it available for purchase. They have parties every so often and the vibe is amazing. you get to mingle with the artists, see them at work, and sort through thousands of works layed out on walls and tables, all at great prices.
PROS: Not a snooty atmosphere and the art is unique and affordable
CONS: Not open on Sundays
I think Peet's offers the best tea, coffee and pastries in Berkeley. The coffee is robust and not watered down and I've never had a tea there that I didn't like. They often have samples of their drinks and snacks out on the counter, so don't forget to take advantage of that. The employees are always pleasant so I don't mind tipping. They are a little bit pricier than convenience store coffee, but it's worth it!
PROS: Great selection of quality drinks, coffees, and teas
CONS: slightly pricey