Russian Hill home offers sweeping view of bay, Alcatraz
1912 home ready for renovations
Updated 5:16 pm, Friday, May 3, 2013
For the first time in nearly four decades, 864 Francisco St. in Russian Hill is available for purchase. The tri-level home built by John Galen Howard in 1912 offers sweeping views of San Francisco Bay and Alcatraz.
Though the home's kitchen and bathrooms are primed for an update, the home itself has a luxurious setting and intricate design features, said Allison Kalhammer of Pacific Union Real Estate, who is listing the home for $7.9 million.
"On a scale of one to 10, the location is an 11," she said of the home set blocks from Little Italy, Joseph Conrad Square and the San Francisco Art Institute. "This block is the Gold Coast of Russian Hill."
Offering northern views with a southern garden, the home blends scenic views with abundant natural light. The exterior courtyard, designed by Tommy Church, features brick walls, trimmed hedges and shelving space for potted plants, and sits off the formal dining room. Inside, the dining room is adorned with crown molding and leads to a study looking out at Francisco Street and the home's entryway.
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Beyond the foyer is a storage space that's been converted to a wine cellar capable of holding about 500 bottles. A long gallery leads to a spacious living room overlooking the water and famous island prison. To the right, built-in shelving offers a place to store books, curios and photographs. To the left sits a wood-burning fireplace decorated by a hand-carved wooden surround.
"The window really gives you a sense of how large the bay is and how far from land Alcatraz is," Kalhammer said.
Also included on the main level is a kitchen with butler's pantry and additional storage spaces.
The lower level of the home offers two bedrooms with water views and a split bath. Additional storage space and mechanical operations for the home, like the hot water heater, are downstairs as well.
The top level is accessed by a grand staircase and is dominated by a master suite featuring a private deck, walk-in closet and terrace. A family room with a fireplace and views of the water is also set on the top floor, along with two additional bedrooms and a bathroom.
A landing area is warmed by west-facing windows and includes hardwood floors and built-in bookshelves.
Plans to extend the lower level never materialized, Kalhammer said, yet the future of the home is limited only by one's imagination.
"The home has amazing potential," she said.
Kalhammer pointed to an upstairs bedroom with a sitting area and Bay views as one area that could be repurposed, as well as a rear garden with views of the Golden Gate Bridge.
"It's the perfect palette for someone to put their own signature on," she said.
The home is available for private showings only.
Address: 864 Francisco St., Russian Hill
Price: $7.9 million
Features: Detached on all sides, Tommy Church-designed courtyard, built-in bookshelves, wine closet, views of Alcatraz and San Francisco Bay.