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Haight Legacy Business Candidates: Stanyan Park Hotel and The Gold Cane

These businesses are candidates in our Heritage in the Neighborhoods: Haight-Ashbury legacy business voting contest, running from August 1-31, 2022. VOTE HERE

While the hotel under its current name has been operating since 1982, the building at 750 Stanyan Street has played host to hotels and inns for 118 years.

The Stanyan Park Hotel at 750 Stanyan Street. SF Heritage photo.

In 1904, owner Henry P. Heagerty replaced his saloon on the southeast corner of Stanyan and Waller Streets with a fashionable hotel meeting the elegance of the neighborhood’s new Queen Anne and Classical Revival residences. Originally called the Park View Hotel, the Martens & Coffey-designed building was one of the largest and most fashionable buildings in the neighborhood at the time.

The hotel building in 1910, when it was named The Golden Gate Hotel.

Heagarty, an Irish immigrant, lived at the property with his wife Matilda, a Finnish immigrant. They employed people of different backgrounds at the hotel: servers from Finland, bartenders from Wisconsin, and Chinese-American men as waiters, cooks, and porters.

Over the years, the building continued as a hotel under a variety of owners and names: Hotel Golden Gate (1907-1919); Hotel Roamer (1925-1930); Stadium Hotel, in reference to Kezar Stadium across the street (1930-1975); The Fremont House (1960-1961); and finally, the Stanyan Park Hotel in 1982. According to the Stanyan Park Hotel’s website, the owners had originally planned a remodel, but instead decided to restore the building to its original splendor after a neighbor shared a historic photo of the original hotel (still on display in the lobby). Today, the building is the oldest extant hotel on the border of Golden Gate Park, and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

National Register of Historic Places plaque on the Stanyan Park Hotel’s building. SF Heritage photo.

The Stanyan Park Hotel features in our Haight Neighborhood Walking Tour, which you can find here.

Exterior of The Gold Cane at 1569 Haight Street. SF Heritage photo.

What is now known as The Gold Cane started its life in 1926 as A.G. Cassimus Restaurant, located at 1505 Haight (addresses have changed slightly over time, but this space now occupied by Club Deluxe). By 1951, family member Socrates Cassimus converted the restaurant into the Haight Grill, now operating at 1509-1511 Haight.

Circa 1950s photo of the Haight Grill and The Gold Cane, found inside The Gold Cane.

Later that decade, his family added The Gold Cane Tavern to one side of the restaurant, and it was these businesses that saw the neighborhood’s influx of thousands of new residents flocking to the Haight during the Summer of Love. Socrates Cassimus, the family owner of The Gold Cane during this time, told the San Francisco Examiner in 1965 that he was noticing the influx of hippies but “they don’t come here. They have their own places to patronize.”

Socrates Cassimus, owner of the Gold Cane during the hippie influx into the Haight-Ashbury in the 1960s, comments in “Are “Beats” Good Business?”, San Francisco Examiner, Wednesday, September 8, 1965.
Peace March in April 22, 1972. Gold Cane Cocktails seen in the background at its original location at 1509-1511 Haight Street. (OpenSFHistory / wnp28.3267).

According to the bar, The Gold Cane eventually lost its lease at 1509 Haight, which prompted the family to close the restaurant and reopen as The Gold Cane Cocktail Lounge a few doors west at 1569 Haight Street in 1978. It remains here to this day.

Inside the Gold Cane, SF Heritage photo.
A menu from the Haight Grill is preserved inside The Gold Cane, along with other ephemera and photographs. SF Heritage photo.

A spacious location with several tables, an outdoor patio, and a place to play pool, 1569 Haight was previously home to businesses such as Florence Wine Company (1950s), Tracey’s Donuts in the 1960s (which had pinball machines installed), and Sanders and Others Mama Restaurant and Family Cooking Co. in the early-mid 1970s.

The Gold Cane continues as a beloved bar at the center of the Haight’s commercial corridor, with regulars who have been coming to the bar for decades.

Legacy BusinessesHaight-Ashbury

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