Welcome to Curbed Comparisons, a regular column exploring what you can rent for a set dollar amount in different neighborhoods. Is one person’s studio another person’s townhouse? Today’s price: $3,100.
This Inner Sunset apartment on 11th Avenue bills itself as “Old Hollywood meets Tiffany’s in Paris.” Got to hand it to them, that’s a strong opening play. “This gorgeous unit was designed by a professional interior decorator and feng shui professional,” the ad continues, although it neglects to drop any names. The listing also assures potential renters in the first sentence that it’s “a real apartment” and “not a scam.” The offer is one-bed, one-bath, and 500 square feet for $3,100/month. It comes with a private deck, “lots of windows, beautiful crystal chandeliers,” and a black marble bathroom. The lease even allows pets—the ultimate SF luxury.
A few blocks west in the Outer Sunset a similarly priced apartment opts for a less baroque approach with neutral contemporary interiors, white kitchen, wide-plank floors, “new fixtures throughout,” and a “shared landscaped zen garden,” all marketed as “newly finished” at two beds, one bath, and 930 square feet for $3,000/month. No feng shui expertise for this one, though, unless the cool minty facade does anything to settle your spirits. There’s no mention of pets.
The Book Concern building on McAllister just below the Tenderloin makes another appearance. The circa-1906 building was completely overhauled and converted into “efficiency units” in 2007, including this top-floor, two-bed, one-bath loft for $3,000/month. Unusual for this building, the ad does not mention how large the home is, but rest assured that wide open spaces are never the Book Concern’s primary concern. There’s room for both cats and dogs regardless.
Meanwhile in Cow Hollow, here’s a one-bed, one-bath loft of a different color, situated inside a shingled Victorian on Green Street. The Planning Department dates the building to an indeterminate pre-earthquake period, whereas the ad places it somewhere in the 1880s. “Mahogany floors, high vaulted ceiling, large redwood loft,” and “peacefully landscaped backyard” are included in the package for $2,975/month. “Great period character,” according to the ad, but apparently not characterized by approval for animal companionship.
Things wrap up in the Mission. In fact, this apartment is within eyeball’s distance of 16th and Mission, where two beds and one bath is $3,100/month. The ad claims that the apartment has “well painted all spaces with maintaining of Victorian style deco,” but precisely what that’s means is up for debate; the results seem firmly contemporary either way. No pets allowed, which is also fairly contemporary, sad to say.
Which rental would you choose?
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Inner Sunset apartment
Outer Sunset apartment
Cow Hollow loft