We know that buying a house is a big deal, and we're here to help make the process as smooth as possible. We've collected some information that we hope will be helpful as you take a look at making South San Francisco your new home.
Considering making the move to South San Francisco? Then you're in luck. Job growth is booming thanks to the biotech industry, so much so that driving into town, you might notice a sign dubbing the city "The Birthplace of Biotechnology." Home to the headquarters of major biotech firm Genentech, South San Francisco is attracting plenty of tech professionals—which means you get to benefit from a thriving business scene plus new residential development and shopping destinations. So this is an exciting time to live and work in South San Francisco. Living here, you'll enjoy mild winters and dry, cooler summers that are perfect for taking advantage of the city's many outdoor recreational activities, either by land or by sea. From exploring the historic downtown district to boating, fishing, or swimming in the bay, you'll benefit from South San Francisco's well-planned community interspersed with parks and trails, plus close proximity to all the greater Bay Area has to offer.
One thing that homes in South San Francisco have is plenty of character. Because the city was founded in the early 1900s, you'll find charming older homes (some dating back to the Victorian era) with desirable architectural details like hardwood floors, crown molding, and high ceilings. There's also a broad selection of ramblers with two to four bedrooms, thanks to a population boom the city experienced in the 1950s and 60s. However, due to growth in the biotech industry and the area's prime location on the San Francisco Peninsula, communities with larger homes and luxury condominiums have been popping up throughout the city in recent years. Wherever you choose to live, South San Francisco's BART (Bay Area Rapid Transit) station makes getting around a breeze, especially if you need to commute to work.
First off, you should know that South San Francisco is its own city, not the southern part of San Francisco. Though people not familiar with the area often make that mistake, South San Francisco doesn't even border the city of San Francisco. In fact, it's separated from San Francisco by the city of Brisbane. While San Francisco residents refer to their hometown as simply "The City," South San Francisco locals have adopted "South City" as their nickname. South San Francisco features a small downtown area centered around Grand Avenue that is home to a host of shops and restaurants—making it the perfect destination for a bite to eat or a little retail therapy after a long day at work. Incorporated in 1908, the city's historic downtown district has businesses that have been in continuous operation since South San Francisco's earliest days: Galli's Sanitary Bakery since 1909, the Metropolitan Hotel since 1912, the Carnegie Library since 1913, and Bertolucci's Ristorante since 1928.
South San Francisco's great natural setting (between the bay and two mountain ranges) and balmy weather make enjoying the outdoors an anytime event. The city has plenty of parks, trails, beaches, and other public spaces where you can relax, get some exercise, or spend time with family and friends. Oyster Point Marina on San Francisco Bay is a popular spot that includes a 33-acre park with a 2.5-acre sandy beach, picnic spots, and walking/jogging trails. The marina itself has a fishing pier and boat launch. If your sea legs aren't up to a sailing outing, then you can head over to the level greens of the highly rated course at the California Golf Club of San Francisco, more commonly known as Cal Club. Another large park in the center of the city offers some sightseeing to go along with your hiking. Sign Hill is home to a South San Francisco landmark that is reminiscent of famous Hollywood Sign, except this one reads: "South San Francisco, The Industrial City" in large white letters. The sign dates back to 1920s and has been placed on the National Register of Historic Places. The site also features 30 acres of green space and two miles of hiking trails. Orange Memorial Park is a good option if you have kids or teens to entertain. The park offers baseball/softball fields, soccer fields, tennis courts, basketball courts, an indoor swimming pool, and a skate park. Spacious, grassy, and tree-lined, Orange Memorial Park also has a playground and picnic grounds with outdoor grills. While the kids play, adults can wander through the sculpture garden or play a few rounds of bocce ball. The park also hosts a Saturday farmer's market from May to October, which features only California-grown products. If you're a dog owner, a separate dog park is located adjacent to the main park.
If you like a combination of urban living and accessible outdoor spaces, paired with a prime location that offers easy access to downtown San Francisco and other Bay Area destinations—then the answer is yes. South San Francisco is a little-known Bay Area gem that offers a vibrant, growing business community, plenty of recreational opportunities, and an compelling past that remains visible in the city's historic (but thriving) downtown district. Whether you choose a classic rambler or a modern home or condo, South Francisco is waiting to welcome you!
Based on information from MLSListings MLS as of All data, including all measurements and calculations of area, is obtained from various sources and has not been, and will not be, verified by broker or MLS. All information should be independently reviewed and verified for accuracy. Properties may or may not be listed by the office/agent presenting the information.
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