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Step back in time on this Art Deco walking tour in San Francisco. Led by an art historian, this tour takes you to buildings featuring distinctive 1920s and 30s architecture. Learn about renowned architects and designers such as Timothy Pflueger as you visit the Rincon Center, the Pacific Exchange, the 450 Sutter Medical Building, the Westin St Francis Hotel in Union Square and more, and hear fascinating stories about how these architectural masterpieces were constructed.


  • 3-hour San Francisco architectural walking tour
  • Learn about San Francisco’s unique 1920s and 30s architecture from your art historian guide
  • Visit several Art Deco buildings including the Pacific Exchange and the Rincon Center
  • Learn about Timothy Pflueger, one of San Francisco's most prominent architects and designers
  • Receive a complimentary map, photos and information on other hidden Art Deco gems to visit later

Recent Photos of This Tour

What You Can Expect

Art Deco Walking Tour of San Francisco

Statuary in Front of the Pacific Stock Exchange Entitled 'Industry' by Ralph Stackpole

Meet at the Rincon Center in San Francisco. Your guide – an art historian, vintage enthusiast and Art Deco expert – will tell you all about this building complex, which was designed by Gilbert Stanley Underwood in the Streamline Moderne style. Step inside and learn why dolphin friezes adorn the doorways and windows, and inside, admire watercolor murals depicting California’s history.

Then, head to the Stock Exchange Tower on Sansome Street. This historical building opened in 1930 and was designed by Timothy Pflueger, a prominent architect and interior designer. A San Francisco native, he also designed the luxurious cocktail lounge inside Top of the Mark at the exclusive Mark Hopkins Hotel, the patent leather bar at the Westin St Francis Hotel and the Cirque Room at The Fairmont Hotel.

While sitting on the steps of the Pacific Exchange, your guide will hand out tour notes including photos and addresses of other hidden art and architectural treasures that you can visit later.

Then, hike up Sutter Street to visit another Art Deco gem of Pflueger’s: the 450 Sutter Medical Building. This spectacular tower is world renowned for its unique neo-Mayan design elements.

Lastly, head to the lobby of the St Francis Hotel in Union Square, where you’ll see Ansel Adam’s stunning photographs of Pflueger’s interior design of the famed patent leather bar. Your tour concludes here, where you are free to stay and enjoy a drink at the bar or carry on to find other art deco gems on your map.

Customer Reviews

John N

5 star rating: Highly Recommended October 2014

This is a solid walking tour that features an extremely knowledgeable, very friendly and forthcoming guide who will escort you to places that the average tourist would never see. You begin at an Old Post Office with WPA-style murals, and then proceed through various lobbies of skyscrapers to see unbelievably beautiful murals, decorative patterns and stucco designs. You end up at Union Square, which means you see a good part of the Financial District. For any architecture buff, this is a must see tour.

muriel m

5 star rating: Highly Recommended February 2014

I had a private tour. It could not be nicer. A great Thann to thé tour guide

Gregory C

5 star rating: Highly Recommended December 2013

We were really impressed with our guide Alice Jurow. She was extremely knowledgeable about Art Deco, architecture and the historical period. She communicated complicated information in an easy to understand manner. She was very personal and flexible. She was a highlight of our trip.

michele m

5 star rating: Highly Recommended November 2013

This was a great tour! The guide was the best and very well informed I highly recommend it for anyone visiting SF it will give you a new perspective of the city and its beautiful buildings!

Marion S

4 star rating: Recommended March 2015

I enjoyed my tour very much -saw lots and it was great to have architectural details pointed out. Guide was very knowledgable -I would definitely recommend


3 star rating: Worth doing March 2014

I was bit disappointed with this tour as it was advertised as an academic experience. The guide was friendly enough but seemed to lack detailed knowledge and tended to focus more on what she liked.

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