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Love Thy Neighbor(hood): Russian/Nob Hill vs. NoPa

In other places, singles are willing to get in a car or a cab and travel miles to meet and mate. In economically stressed San Francisco, it’s hard to find anyone willing to date off their Muni line. Transit limits mean that each neighborhood has evolved its own dating culture and rules. Here's a cheat sheet.


The Singles:
It seems like everyone is 32 with a decent-paying job within walking distance (even if the office is just Peet’s).

Where to Find ‘em:
Crunch fitness, the Buccaneer, Bullitt, the sushi-to-go section at Whole Foods.

Typical First Date:
Breakfast the next morning.

More Than Just a Hookup:
A sober make-out session; brunch at Rex or the Bell Tower followed by a few hours of roaming around the neighborhood (you will definitely run into people you know).

Isn’t It Cheap/Romantic:
Sunday afternoon hike to Aquatic Park; sundae night at the Loving Cup.

(S)he’s Just Not That Into You:
Drinks at Tonic or Shanghai Kelly’s, where (s)he is nasty to the server.

How Far For love?
The 49 bus goes to the Mission, but that’s a whole different universe.



The Singles:
Thirtysomethings on skateboards, fashion designers, culture writers, artsy carpenters, foodies, families, and cyclists on a beer break.

Where to Find ‘em:
Eating a homemade pop-tart at Matching Half Cafe; taking classes in sewing, mixology, or heavy metal aerobics at Workshop; biking up the Wiggle.

Typical First Date:
Sake and conversation in the Corkerage parklet; live music or a free movie at the Independent.

More Than Just a Hookup:
Thursday cocktails at Nopa; then bahn mi from Rice, Paper, Scissors, the Vietnamese pop-up in Mojo Bicycle café; then more drinks at Mini Bar or Bar 821; then bed.

Isn’t It Cheap/Romantic:
Deep-dish pizza from Little Star for a picnic in the panhandle; liquor-store champagne for dessert.

(S)he’s Just Not That Into You:
“Let’s grab a box of chicken from Popeye’s and head to the Haight.”

How Far For Love?
Mission and Hayes Valley are Nopa’s soulmates, but the rest of the city’s either too hectic or too lame.



This pair lucked out. Between their two stomping grounds are some of the best neighborhoods for dates. There's the Fillmore for a jazz show, Japantown has the Kabuki Theatre, and Polk Gulch is full of bars. They're really only a 20 minute Muni ride away, so if they're not willing to travel, it's a good indicator that it's not going anywhere.  

More on neighborhood romance:
Temescal vs. Palo Alto
The Marina vs. The Mission
SoMa vs. The Sunset



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