In today’s Four on Friday, we talk with Sina von Reitzenstein, vice president of leasing at PIER 39, a popular shopping destination in San Francisco. Von Reitzenstein gives us a comprehensive overview of the well-known property, provides some outstanding tips for visitors to the City by the Bay reveals which legendary punk band is favorite San Fran musical act.
Von Reitzenstein: Located along the historic San Francisco waterfront, in the Fisherman’s Wharf district, PIER 39 is a 45-acre complex that is a gathering place for millions of San Francisco locals and visitors. In addition to its 14 full-service restaurants, more than 90 shops and other popular attractions, PIER 39 is home to a five-acre waterfront park and a 300-berth marina.
PIER 39 is known for its spectacular views of San Francisco Bay — including the Golden Gate Bridge, Bay Bridge and Alcatraz — as well as the world-famous California sea lions hauled out on K-Dock.
What are some of the factors that make PIER 39 a big draw for both tenants and consumers?
Von Reitzenstein: For the visitor: the incredible views, the sea lions, our free entertainment, the attractions, the restaurants and, of course, the shopping. We have gorgeous landscaping and some of the most spectacular views of both the bay and the San Francisco city skyline.
For the tenants: the millions of visitors naturally translate into high sales! PIER 39 is an internationally recognized brand with proven sales and visitation. That is how we are able to maintain a 3 to 4 percent vacancy rate year-round (and we are moving towards 2 percent with some space reconfiguration).
If someone's visiting San Francisco for the first time, what are the three or four things they simply have to do?
Von Reitzenstein: In my opinion the four MUST do’s (in addition to visiting in September or October for the best weather) are:
1) Visit PIER 39 and get ON the Bay, either via Rocket Boat or the Blue and Gold Fleet Bay Cruise; the view of San Francisco from the water side is truly spectacular.
2) Walk across the Golden Gate Bridge, or better yet, rent a bike from Blazing Saddles and ride along the waterfront all the way to the Golden Gate Bridge, ride across the bridge down to Sausalito, and then have lunch on the water, savoring the gorgeous San Francisco views. Then take the ferry (with your bike) back to PIER 39.
3) Walk from Union Square through Chinatown and then through North Beach back down to the waterfront. What a great feast for the eyes: you start with high fashion, then immerse yourself in Chinese culture and then transition to the tranquility of North Beach — our Little Italy — and end up at the working waterfront.
4) Eat fresh Dungeness crab in season!
The Bay Area is home to some famous musical acts: the Grateful Dead, Journey, Jefferson Airplane, Santana, the Steve Miller Band, to name but just a few. What's your favorite San Francisco band?
Von Reitzenstein: As an old punk rocker, The Dead Kennedys are my favorite San Francisco-based band. Jello Biafra, the lead singer at the time, even ran for mayor in 1979 and finished fourth out of the 10 people running!!