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It's Down At The End of Lonely Street
January 28, 2008 12:56 AM   Subscribe

San Francisco's Hugo Hotel, the current home of Brian Goggin's Defenestration, has been seized by eminent domian and will probably be demolished. Fear not; San Francisco has many other ancient hotels.
posted by fandango_matt (17 comments total) 5 users marked this as a favorite

 
6th street gets a bad name, but it is home to the delicious Tu Lan.
posted by telstar at 1:34 AM on January 28, 2008


I stayed in the worst backpackers hostel in the world on 5th St, which from Google street view appears to also be condemned. Hurrah for demolition.
posted by cillit bang at 2:52 AM on January 28, 2008


Yup, well, there's some fleabag hotels in SF, for sure. I do love the old HOTEL signs, though... that's the kind of gritty, real urban stuff that I found so compelling and appealing many years ago, as a kid: that fascination and identification with the urban landsacpe that planted a seed in me early on, and got me out of the goddamn suburbs as soon as I was old enough to get out.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 3:55 AM on January 28, 2008


I'm reminded of the time an administrator at work found she could get much better rates than the official hotels for SIGGRAPH, and booked everybody their rooms. When I arrived at 3 am, the blanket on the bed was an amalgamation of multicolored pubic hairs incorporated into a felt-like weave. The lockless window opened to the roof of the building next door, where a couple huddled in the rain on the far side smoking crack under a blanket.

I actually stood in the center of the room touching nothing until the sun came up and I went out and found another hotel. Ended up at a pretty nice bed and breakfast, but the next morning I found myself at the kitchen buffet sharing breakfast with Ron Jeremy and his costars, who I believe were shooting in their room.
posted by StickyCarpet at 7:36 AM on January 28, 2008


that fascination and identification with the urban landsacpe that planted a seed in me early on, and got me out of the goddamn suburbs as soon as I was old enough to get out.

Yeah, me too. It made me go rural.
posted by Eekacat at 7:37 AM on January 28, 2008


There may be lots of other hotels, but none of them have furniture leaping from the windows. Goodness knows the city needs more affordable housing, but I will miss Defenestration. I hope they maintain some of the pieces, or ask the artist to do something new when the re-build the Hugo.
posted by gingerbeer at 7:51 AM on January 28, 2008


I found myself at the kitchen buffet sharing breakfast with Ron Jeremy and his costars, who I believe were shooting in their room.

You said that like it was a bad thing.
posted by kjs3 at 7:58 AM on January 28, 2008


Is it too obvious to point out the epony-ness of StickCarpet's comment (not to mention the double meaning of "shooting")?
posted by Burhanistan at 8:19 AM on January 28, 2008


You said that like it was a bad thing.

Not really. I said to him, "um, you're an entertainer, aren't you?" He smiled a broad grin and said, "Yes, Yes I am."
posted by StickyCarpet at 8:34 AM on January 28, 2008


They aren't all rotten hotels though. I lived in the St. Paul Hotel on Kearny street for years and met the most amazing collection of drunks and drifters you could hope for. Somewhere in my journals from that time there's a great novel. From the looks of the website though they appear to have been bought out and gone 'upscale' for whatever that is. Come to think of it there's a ton of these hotels all over North Beach.
posted by thankyoujohnnyfever at 8:50 AM on January 28, 2008


what?! they're getting rid of the furniture'd building? that sucks. it's one of the greatest random things in SF
posted by jcruelty at 11:49 AM on January 28, 2008


but, gotta admit, it's a shitty neighborhood & maybe they'll find some good use for the building.
posted by jcruelty at 11:51 AM on January 28, 2008


Thanks for posting this. My dad lived in a downtown hotel just a few blocks from this area for a few years, and I have mostly fond memories of visiting him there. Sadly, they renovated the place a few years back and it's no longer the charming dump I remember.
posted by dhammond at 1:08 PM on January 28, 2008


"Shitty" neighbourhood? I protest!

A few years ago my regular bar was "Pow!", on the corner of 6th and Mission, and many of my friends lived within a block. I spent a lot of time in the neighbourhood, most of it late at night. Of course the area is low income and daily occupancy hotels so you see a lot of street people etc.; a lot of drug and alcohol use, panhandling.... You needed to keep your wits about you, but I never felt unsafe. Treat the people with respect, acknowledge them as human beings and they prove to be funny and interesting -- at least I found them more interesting than the people in the "safe" areas. And being a low-income area there were lots of artists and musicians in the community. It was one of the coolest places that I've spent time in.
posted by phliar at 2:21 PM on January 28, 2008


Alas, if only I did enough heroin to be able to frequent those beautiful old buildings. Sigh.
posted by miss lynnster at 7:17 PM on January 28, 2008


6th and market: I saw a street cleaner jump out of her truck and get in a fight with a woman on the street for no obvious reason and then jump back in her truck( which was still cleaning the street) and continue on down the way. 6th street is full of crack zombies, but the whole SOMA is like that.
I live on 9th and folsom and the first murder of 2008 happened just down the street at 5:30 a.m. on January 1st, at least I think it was the first murder I really haven't researched. But I have never felt that unsafe in my neighborhood or at least, I have felt less safe in other parts of the city.
The building in question is really cool and an icon, but sf has a " Beautification of 6th st." project going on so I guess the translation is "gentrification of 6th st." I really hope they redo that art somewhere else.
posted by wolfewarrior at 9:32 PM on January 28, 2008


Alas, if only I did enough heroin to be able to frequent those beautiful old buildings. Sigh.

Rehab is for quitters!
posted by chillmost at 1:11 AM on January 29, 2008


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