A classic shot looking up Point Lobos Avenue near the Great Highway around 1947.
When the 157-year-old Cliff House restaurant closed its doors in December 2020, it was “another blow to lose an iconic restaurant in San Francisco,” said Nicole Meldahl, executive director of the Western Neighborhoods Project. Nevertheless, as one door closes, a window opens.
An after dark projected artwork animating
windows of the former Cliff House now on display.
Western Neighborhoods Project (WNP), a community history nonprofit, will open a temporary museum in the former Cliff House Gift Shop in partnership with ACT Art Conservation and The Great Highway gallery with support from the Golden Gate National Recreation Area’s Park Archives and Records Center (PARC) and the Global Museum at SF State.
When Alexandra Mitchell, the owner and principal fine art conservator at ACT Art Conservation, learned that the Cliff House’s art works and memorabilia were slated to be auctioned off in mid-March, she knew something had to be done.
This picture from photographer A.J. McDonald shows the view looking north from the roof of the first Cliff House towards Cliff Cottage and Point Lobos, circa 1880s. The Cliff Cottage was badly damaged when the schooner Parallel exploded in January 1887, and this site went on to become home to the Sutro Baths. Photo courtesy of a private collector/Western Neighborhoods Project/OpenSFHistory.
The Cliff House, one of San Francisco’s iconic and enduring landmarks and eateries, closed on Dec. 31.
A series of restaurant closures in the Outer Richmond District has left the northwestern edge of San Francisco without several of its beloved dining spots.
On Sept. 5, the Cliff House continued the 42-year-old tradition with a private reception and luncheon in the Terrace Room that features the same sweeping view of part of the Coast Guard’s territory; the Pacific Ocean and Seal Rock, the scene of the rescue over four decades ago.