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San Francisco

You'll need at least a weekend to hit all the shops—and a month to pay the credit card bills. At Friend (401 Hayes St.; 415/552-1717), columns etched with poetry set the stage for mod furniture and accessories. Avant-garde threads by Belgian and Bay Area designers share floor space with Oakland artist Ann Weber's biomorphic cardboard sculptures at MAC (387 Grove St.; 415/863-3011). Alabaster (597 Hayes St.; 415/558-0482), a store for antique home-furnishings and curiosities, stocks vintage hotel silveralongside contemporary Fortuny silk scarves. Half-restaurant, half-pâtisserie, Citizen Cake (399 Grove St.; 415/861-2228; lunch for two $35) is the perfect spot to refuel: try a crisp Cuban sandwich. STAY Book a room at the Inn at the Opera (333 Fulton St.; 415/863-8400; www.innattheopera.com; doubles from $129) within walking distance of it all. DON'T MISS Emerging artists at the Bucheon Gallery (389 Grove St.; 415/863-2891), housed in a space designed by local sculptor Lawrence LaBianca.
—Kevin Raub

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