Large-scale residential development in Pacific Heights is as rare as pixie dust, so the conversion of the building at 2121 Webster Street, the site from a former dentist’s school (aka the least ritzy thing in the world), into a collective of 76 very plush new homes dubbed The Pacific has been hot news for some time.
Now that they’re finally getting ready to sell, developers at Trumark Urban are making their sales pitch with a glitzy and ambitious marketing video showing off the building and the city…and that’s where things go in an unexpected direction. Don’t get us wrong, it’s perfectly clear that these people love the neighborhood and the city—but possibly too much?
We open on what looks for all the world like the credits montage from Woody Allen’s Midnight in Paris, only if Allen’s camera accidentally craned 5,500 miles to the west and shot San Francisco instead. A genial narrator quotes Dylan Thomas’ famous ode to the city: "You wouldn’t think such a place as San Francisco could exist."
It’s a good line, although Thomas of course died 63 years ago, when San Francisco was a radically different place than it is now. Then the narration barrels on to declare Pacific Heights the apotheosis of San Francisco, and that "it would be impossible to do better."
The average residential home in Pac Heights costs over $10 million, viewers are reminded, "the most expensive place to live in the U.S." This is hardly the first time anyone has brought this up, but such statements are not often celebrated.
(Around this time, Trumark throws a little Ken Burns into their Woody Allen mix, with a couple of historic photos, including a working-class cable car.)
Now comes our favorite part: The video notes the "tech-fueled gold rush" and shows us some ghost images of forthcoming Transbay towers hovering over downtown, "compressing as much luxury as possible into the smallest living spaces imaginable."
And then comes the pitch, hard and right down the center: "There is nothing else like [The Pacific] in San Francisco. In London or Paris, perhaps you may find buildings of this quality and grandeur, polished like gems, but here it is a rare exception."
The "perhaps" was a nice touch of...levity?
Things pick up with a look at the new units, "76 impeccable jewel boxes," as they’re called here, as well as the on-site amenities, including a valet, a "yoga garden," and an observatory where the clouds will be your "private ballet in the sky." They also note the high ceilings and oversized windows. "Or as they say in the design world: good bones."
Well, they’re not being modest, that’s for sure. The video is a beautiful production, and if it sold the building any harder your browser might give out just trying to contain the ritziness. Sales at the Pacific are for spring, although there’s no specific date yet. Until then, you can watch the video.