As long as chilly weather, walking uphill, and really expensive real estate don’t turn you off, San Francisco has no shortage of positive qualities. Though numbering fewer than a million people, this coastal city packs in so much—from world-class restaurants and museums to community fairs and music festivals, a large educated class, and an improving economy—that many proud San Franciscans will tell you that its finish at the top of Businessweek.com’s 2012 best cities ranking is well-earned.
“World class restaurants and museums?” [Citation needed]
Well, ok, I’m not really qualified to judge restaurants (although I will note I’ve started caring more about food since I moved here), but world class museums? No. SFMOMA’s not bad, and it may have a great collection, but its current home is relatively tiny and it can’t host the sort of exhibitions that MOMA or Tate Modern can. The de Young is a baffling grab-bag of western hemisphere cultural artefacts, American painting, and some modern art (with an annoying habit of concentrating on cash-cow impressionist exhibitions), while the Museum of the Legion of Honor is also tiny. The Exploratorium isn’t a bad hands-on museum, and the California Academy of Sciences is an adequate natural history museum, but I wouldn’t describe either as world class.
I will grant that the two Golden Gate Park museums do have wonderful buildings.
We looked at … educational attributes (public school performance, the number of colleges, and rate of graduate-degree holders)
Ah, so the fact that the state schools suck in the city can be outweighed by all those Google and Facebook PhD holders who commute down to the Valley and the fact that there’s a couple of universities here. Right.
Major professional league and minor league teams, as well as U.S.-based teams belonging to international leagues in each city were included.
There’s no agreeing on which is the “best” city for you to live in. For that, family connections, occupation, lifestyle, and perhaps a lifelong devotion to a doomed sports team all come into play.
That sentence was going so well, until the final stanza. What.
There’s also the question that if there’s no agreeing, what are you doing publishing such a list? Oh, except for the pageviews from commentary such as this. Oops.
That, along with sheer breathtaking views, attracts about 129,000 tourists every day, according to the San Francisco Travel Association.
Given that London attracts about a third of a million, I’ll grant that that’s an impressive per capita ratio of tourists to locals. Let’s just hope they keep to Union Square and Fisherman’s Wharf, eh?
While cultural institutions such as the de Young Museum may house famous works
When I went looking for a list of famous works, I found a site that listed five paintings by American artists. Would it be unfair to use the word “parochial”?
As the city has grown wealthier, it has lost some of its legendary grit. Yet it has one of the largest U.S. populations of homeless people.
At least that factoid’s true.