4 Open Spaces in San Francisco to Get You Off Your Corporate Couch

Part 1 of a series

It shouldn’t be a problem to find wide, open spaces in San Francisco if you feel the sudden urge to use nature as backdrop for something you’re working on in front of your computer. Unlike many who choose to work in a Wi-Fi enabled café the whole time they’re taking a break from their corporate apartment, you probably like to switch things up—be outdoors one minute to wander around and gather your thoughts and indoors next time when you just want to sit down, drink coffee and chill around people. There’s nothing like the fragrance of a glorious Indian summer.

For those who just relocated to northern California, here are 4 among so many other great spots with wide open spaces. They should help you get off the couch or the comforts of your corporate home and be out there, even just to take a breather.

  1. Yerba Buena Gardens. 750 Howard St, San Francisco, CA 94103

yerba buena gardens

Skyscrapers here are not buildings, but nature—towering trees and water fountains. The public gardens offer The Esplanade, Sister Cities and the East Garden near the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts amid 20 types of trees and a cornucopia of flowers. If you want to get some work done amid the splendor of the grass, there are many benches around. Or just plunk down on the grass for some green relief.

For some caffeine fix, there are two cafes offering both indoor and outdoor seats. Don’t miss the butterfly garden and the soothing waterfall from 22 feet above the Martin Luther King Jr. memorial. There are so many to marvel here. If you really want to have some quiet time, the water fountain effectively blocks noise from the street at the East Garden.

  1. 343 Sansome Street

sansome strreet

Hop all the way up to the 15th floor of this building to reach the rooftop garden reportedly completed in 1930. Yes, it has a lot of history to complete your mellow mood. A private property but open to the public between 9 am and 6 pm on most working days, it is one wide open space that doesn’t even have pigeons flying by.  Come here to soak in the sun. There are some trees to provide some shade to the white benches and a patterned tiled floor surrounding a small replica of the Washington Monument. It’s hard to ignore, as it gives the deck an eccentric vibe.

  1. 100 First Street

The moment you step into this rooftop garden, you’ll notice the beautiful landscaping. A privately owned public open space like 343 Sansome Street, you will find tables and benches around if you need time to open your computer and do some work. What’s the most interesting part about this lush garden is how the maze design helps give people pockets of privacy from one small corner to another.

  1. One Market Plaza 1 Market Plaza, SoMa

If you like a panoramic view of the Bay, you don’t want to miss this one. Unlike Yerba where you will enjoy staying all day, you come here just to get a dose of the glimmering ocean. Then you should be well on your way to do other things. Despite the name, it has two large plazas that can be accessed from Spear Street, between Mission and Market. Take the elevator to the 7th floor. (DC)