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Curbed Cup Round 1: (6) Bernal Heights vs. (11) Pacific Heights

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The Curbed Cup, our annual award for the San Francisco neighborhood of the year, is kicking off with 16 areas vying for the prestigious (fake) trophy. This week we'll have two matchups per day, and all the results and the full tournament bracket will be reviewed on Friday. Voting for each pairing ends 24 hours after it begins. Let the eliminations commence!

Nestled around that big, remote brown hill on the southern side of the city is Bernal Heights. Or at least it used to seem remote. As the southern side of the city has boomed over the past few years, Bernal Heights went from feeling like the city's best-kept secret to being at the epicenter of change. Houses sell for way over asking and Airbnb landlords seek to cash in on even the crappiest of apartments. Bernal was even named the hottest neighborhood in the United States by real estate website Redfin earlier this year. Despite all the fuss, Bernal hasn't lost its small-town feel. Strolling down Cortland Street Avenue, with its mix of bookstores, cafés, and local shops, feels more like being in a village—or maybe just the 90s?—than somewhere in the big city. That atmosphere is probably one of the reasons that Bernal is so beloved, but can it last?

Pacific Heights is the grand old dame of San Francisco neighborhoods, set apart by multimillion-dollar homes, lustworthy Fillmore Street shops, and Danielle Steele's magnificent hedge. The neighborhood is best known for its classic Gold Coast mansions, like Zynga founder Marc Pincus's $18 million place or the $39 million home that is the most expensive property on the market right now in San Francisco. The views are incredible and the residents are notably well mannered. This year, however, Pacific Heights also saw the most new action that it's had in years, with groundbreakings for flashy new condo buildings like Rockwell and the Pacific. Despite the new construction, one of the best things about Pacific Heights is that it won't ever change too much.

Poll results

· No Surprise: SF's Housing Market Was Bonkers This Spring [Curbed SF]
· 200-Square-Foot Utility Closet from Airbnb Goes Legit, Seeks a Whopping $1400/Month [Curbed SF]
· Trend Watch [Curbed SF]
· San Francisco of the Early 1990s Is Alive and Well and Open for Business at Thrillhouse Records [Bernalwood]
· Here Now, a Photo Tribute to Danielle Steele's Enormous Hedge [Curbed SF]
· Zynga Founder Mark Pincus Lists Gold Coast Manse at $18M [Curbed SF]
· Pacific Heights' Rockwell Breaks Ground on 260 New Condos [Curbed SF]
· Flashy Condos at Pacific Heights' 2121 Webster Break Ground [Curbed SF]
· SF's Most Expensive Home Wants an Eye-Popping $39 Million [Curbed SF]