1001 California Street

We’ve always loved the William Randolph Hearst-built Beaux-Arts building at 1001 California Street, both in terms of location and style. And as far as we know, the 3,500 square foot #9 was the last unit to change hands eighteen six months ago (12/12/07) with a reported contract price of $2,888,000.

And while unit #8 is only a one-bedroom, it is rather large (1500 square feet) and offers multiple terraces and “views for miles.” Asking $2,495,000 which doesn’t include a parking space or the $2,237 monthly dues. Once again, if you have to ask…

∙ Listing: 1001 California Street #8 (1/1.5) – $2,495,000 [MLS]

34 thoughts on “One Expensive One-Bedroom In A Beaux Arts Building We Love”
  1. LOL!! This has got to be the funniest listing ever!!
    If this 1 bedroom condo with no parking goes for anywhere near $2.5M, I’m officially giving up on SF real estate.

  2. My very quick and inaccurate math suggests a new owner at $2.5M will pay about $13K per month after taxes to live in this place. How many rooms with similar views, no garage, and same total square footage at the Ritz Carlton could you get for the same price? I want to play poker with the moron that buys this.

  3. Foolio, this will be the proof that this market is on drugs.
    It reminds me of the Grand Bazaar in Istanbul. $50 leather jackets advertised for $200 just so that a big sucker would make a $100 low-ball offer.

  4. It’s a nice building but this is rediculous, specially when a 3,500 sqft unit costs 2.9 vs 2.4 for 2,000 square feet less.

  5. 18 months?
    Seems like a little over 6 to me (12/12/07)
    [Editor’s Note: Today’s early score: readers 2, editors 0. We’re blaming the heat.]

  6. MarinaBoy forget location location location. I lived in a penthouse round the corner on Jones and it was cold, windy and there is no real life around the area. A great view of course. We happily moved to Cow Hollow and exchanged the view and chill for a lush garden, great restaurants, and neighbors we know. Stay in the Marina if that’s where you are. The view and building are not worth no parking and out of sight monthly fees.

  7. One glance at this place and I already feel like going to the opera! Where is my mink? Jeeves, get the car–oh, wait, there’s no parking.

  8. This kind of place in this kind of building/location isn’t really for folks living in the area no matter how rich – it’s more for little princes and minor sultan’s looking for a stop-over pad on the international market. I wouldn’t be surprised if it sold on that basis alone.

  9. If the little prince or Sultan just wants a stop-over pad, there’s always the Fairmont across the street, too.

  10. Looking at the stock market these last few weeks, I wonder how long this stupid-but-plentiful money is gonna last.
    Oh well, we’re paying close to $5/gallon. I guess the stupid money is coming from our pockets…

  11. Yeah, I know about gas prices in the EU. But European life is less dependent on driving than ours. They structured the core of their space before the automobile age. And if you look at demographics, people have massively migrated from low density to higher density areas where public transportation is convenient. We’re hooked on gas and no easy way out.

  12. That’s nothing! The bottom 9350 sf restaurant space was for sale a few years back at $3.3 Million. Classic hardwood bar, Wine Cellar, Library Cigar Room, Commercial kitchen etc. Of coarse every restaraunt that went in there failed. The dealbreaker was the HOA was $6500 / month or something like that. Haven’t stopped by lately, what’s in there now?

  13. How could any restaurant make a profit with those types of costs for raw space? 9,350 sq.ft is not very large. What would owners in the buildng do if a Cheesecake Factory moved in downstairs?

  14. According to the listing, this is a penthouse unit. Was #9 also a penthouse? If not, that could explain the difference in the price.
    Also, because this is a penthouse, it has a wrap around terrace.
    But I agree with others; this is a great pied-a-terre, not a place for a local to call home.

  15. Was this the notorious home of former “realtor to the stars of San Francisco” Vincent Fria (sp?). This was back in the late 80’s – early 90’s I think, but didn’t he have to escape through the bottom floor restaurant kitchen window to flee from authorities who were trying to arrest him on tax charges? This was during the Herb Caen reign of San Francisco and about every week, there was another account of the exploits of what was at the time the most infamous realtor in the city. I am not a realtor, so I don’t remember the whole story, but I knew someone who owned in this building at the time, and it was the talk of Nob Hill for quite a while.

  16. I haven’t heard the name Vincent Friia in a long, long time. His sign was on every swanky property in Pacific Heights and beyond and he was constantly in Herb Caen’s column in the 80’s.
    He had a New Year’s Eve party in Paris every year. He rented out Maxim’s for it. Way back in the 80’s, Herb Caen reported that Friia had reserved Maxim’s for NYE 2000. But by 2000, the Friia real estate signs were no where to be seen and Herb Caen was gone.
    Whatever happened to Vincent Friia?

  17. One of the best addresses in SF. Another little factoid: the Hearsts lived at the building during the Patty Heart drama of the ’70s.
    Paul — I’ve heard that the ground floor will not be a restaurant again.

  18. “Whatever happened to Vincent Friia?”
    Indeed! For those who have lived in this city for less than ten years, you cannot imagine what a different place used to be. Friia’s parties and other “activities” are part of what was a city you would not recognize. Melvin Belli running naked from his mansion (outer Broadway) firing a pistol at his wife who hosted a real estate show for the highest priced properties on television, Noe Valley was an affordable neighborhood that a school teacher could buy a home in. The Castro and Soma were actually neighborhoods that had REAL nightlife with clubs staying open till 7am, not places where homes could be flipped and condos could have an “edge”. What I miss most is that it was a city that wanted to have fun, instead of a city that produces another IPO or Dwell Victorians. I am 43 years old, but am really feeling nostalgic for a city that I cannot even describe to people who move here now. Thank goodness I bought my home when this city was affordable (and it WAS!).
    The reason Herb Caen’s columns were so intersting is because San Francisco was so interesting THEN.
    Socketsite should do a story on what was the Friia and Company Empire, and what became of it.

  19. Vincent Friia was sued by his mother, brother and sister years ago and the story appeared in the pages of Philadelphia Magazine. He ended up losing his money and his mind. He didn’t want any of SFO to kow he had AIDS and his mind was affected by the illness. He was left with $800K and that is it. He also ahd another brother and sister that took his side but Mama Friia ended up with all of it.

  20. I must admit, this has always been my favorite building in SF. It’s a good thing this fool doesn’t have that much money to spend. 🙂

  21. Vincent lived at 1055 California. Ann Martin’s account is true. He spent his final few years living in Hawaii together with me and my family. He was the most generous and caring person I have ever known. Wealth was a means to do for others. That unfortunately worked against him. I miss him terribly and those that really knew him do as well.

  22. Vincent Friia my brother ….. A loving and kind person that had a Heart of gold. His final days were spent with my sister Linda Friia Novelli who took care of him and also brought him to know Jesus Christ. Today “ALL” the family is together and NOT apart any more. There is no Family that does not have problems. My family ….. Thank God has worked their way through them. Some of the descriptions of my brother were sensationalized & not true. When you pass judgement on others …. God will also pass judgement on you in the same manner.

    1. I am happy his final days were with his family. I knew Vincent between 1993 and 1996. I later ran into him in the Castro maybe around 2004 after Hawaii. He was a really good guy who got caught up in all of that San Francisco society which in the end turned on him. I think he always liked me as I saw through it all. God bless Vincent and his family.

  23. Worked in the real estate business for years. 1001 California is the top drawer for old money. And yes more scandal and skeletons than you can imagine. One and two bedroom apartments selling for millions, one reason is the building is so exclusive. Two bedroom unit sold in the past year for 7,000,000 to a Texas billionaire that has never even moved in! Use to be the apartment of the parents of Patty Hearst, lived there after the kidnapping. Real money, class in the building.

  24. The claim that Hearst built this building is false. I would like to know how the Hearst name became associated with it. It was built by Stanley White Morshead and his wife Etta Morshead, who visited France several times to bring back design ideas. Stanley Morshead bought the lot in 1910, and they moved into the Fairmont Hotel across the street while it was under construction. They occupied the top two floors joined by a grand staircase, and leased out the lower floors to wealthy tenants. A high profile divorce in 1919 resulted in the rent revenues going to Etta Morshead as part of the settlement.

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