Take a day to discover and enjoy San Diego’s spectacular niche neighborhood: South Park! As evidenced by its walkable business district, wide tree-lined streets, and marvelously restored homes, this is a distinct and special sector of urban San Diego.
South Park, considered an area within the Greater Golden Hill Community, is comprised of predominantly single- family residences with a few small apartment complexes and bungalow courts. The first San Diego suburbs began emerging in the late 19th century, one of which was the area of South Park in 1870. Today’s South Park is notable for its assortment of Craftsman and Spanish Colonial Revival style homes built between 1905 and 1935. The current residents
uphold the character of the neighborhood by highlighting and preserving elements of the original homes design. Each year in June the community hosts the Old House Fair which comprises a walking tour showcasing the historic homes of South Park, a neighborhood walking tour, live music, and local vendor booths.
South Park living is ideal for singles and families alike. Residents enjoy the over 40
one of a kind businesses South Park provides starting with San Diego’s oldest Fire Station No. 9, built in 1912, which has been restored and converted to house South Park Fitness. Local delights include Grant’s Marketplace, a specialty grocery store that carries local and fresh foods, as well as a variety of boutique shops offering everything from eco-friendly fashion to handmade stoneware. Bicycle enthusiasts frequent Velo Cult Bike Shop, which offers commuter bikes and an ample selection of classic and vintage bikes, and Thomas Bikes which specializes in restoring, repairing, and rebuilding bikes. Lulu’s by Travis Parker is noteworthy for its luxury nail services. The salon features a no-acrylic policy, top quality polish in the latest colors, plush
chairs, and copper baths. Rebecca’s Coffee House hosts live music including acoustic Thursdays, jazz Fridays as well as an open mic poetry reading twice monthly. South Park is extremely dog-friendly, as evidenced by the thriving South Bark Dog Wash (home of the Blueberry Facial) and the Grape Street Dog Park.
South Park features some of the most unique restaurants in town starting with the one and only Station Tavern and Burgers. Located at
the corner Fern and Ivy Streets, the restaurant design incorporates the history of the area by incorporating elements related to the electric street cars that traversed Fern Street in the early 1900s. The Station features the previous building’s original
redwood siding, an outdoor patio designed to emulate a train platform, and a large wooden trolley for play in the outdoor children’s area. In 2009 the restaurant was awarded the San Diego Orchids and Onions Grand Orchid for its outstanding achievements in architecture, interior design, urban design, sustainability, historic preservation, landscape architecture and public art.
Other South Park eatery stand-outs include the funky El Camino Super Cocina and the exotic yet cozy Vagabond Kitchen of the World. Stop in at El Camino for their Taco Tuesday specials, which include $3.00 Coronas, Margaritas, and Sangrias, and half-price taco platters. At Vagabond the chef periodically changes the menu to make for a wonderfully different flavor encounter each time you visit. The extensive and varied wine list, the charming décor (which is comprised of objects from around the world), and eclectic music add to the Vagabond experience. When looking to satiate a sweet tooth look no further than South Park. One of San Diego’s best-kept secrets, The Daily Scoop on Juniper is locally famous for their unique ice cream flavors, Hawaiian shaved ice, and red velvet cupcakes.
When it comes to finding a place to grab a drink, South Park boasts some of the best bars in town. Hamilton’s Tavern attracts beer aficionados from far and wide with their selection of the finest quality beers from around the world. The Whistle Stop is the hippest of dives. Stop in for one of their regular happening’ events including Friends Chill – Board Games and Mellow Grooves, HOMI Hour with the MIHO Gastrotruck, Knittin’ Time, Booty Bassment, and much more.
To visit San Diego’s hidden treasure: South Park is located just north of the 94 freeway, south of Upas Street, east of 28th Street and west of the 15 freeway. The business district located is along Beech Street between 28th and 30th Streets, along 30th and Fern Streets north of Beech Street, and on Juniper Street between 31st and Fern Streets. Public transportation serving South Park and
Golden Hill is MTS bus route 2.