1581 Masonic

According to Leah Garchik, the Mayor and Mrs. have a new house in the “Upper Terrace.”

“The seller, interior designer and antiques dealer Candace Barnes, doesn’t want to talk about all-important details like the price, but I’ve been told she’s made the house a showplace for her professional skills.

The house has four bedrooms, herringbone-patterned wooden floors, balconies that face east (getting acquainted with the sunrise will be pleasant to new parents walking the floor with a baby) and a Roman soaking tub.”

We figure somebody will figure it out sooner or later. And it might as well be you.

UPDATE: That would be sooner. Originally asking $3,300,000 for 1581 Masonic in February but reduced to $2,980,000 in May. No reported contract price, however, as according to the MLS the sale has yet to close escrow.

UPDATE: A soon to expire peek inside via a plugged-in reader who also notes it’s officially a “Haight Ashbury” home. But not for long.

UPDATE (6/10): Scratch that with respect to the Haight, apparently San Francisco’s MLS has its neighborhoods wrong. So while the listing notes 5-B (“Haight Ashbury”), 1581 Masonic is, in fact, already 5-E (“Parnassus/Ashbury Heights”).

45 thoughts on “The Mayor Moves To (Real Estate) District Five”
  1. Well, there goes what little street parking there is in the neighborhood. When the security gets done changing all the spaces near the house to no parking the neighbors will consider voting Republican.

  2. According to the tax records Candace Barnes is the owner of 1581 Masonic so that’s gotta be the one. Previously listed for 3.3 million with my colleague Jon Taylor at Paragon. Re-listed for 2,980,000 with TRI. And by the way it’s not Upper Terrace (though that is the cross street), it’s actually Haight Ashbury (District 5B). I can just see the headlines now…Mayor moves to hippie ville, opens pot club in basement! At least he is staying in the city. Good for him. http://sfarmls.rapmls.com/scripts/mgrqispi.dll?APPNAME=Sanfrancisco&PRGNAME=MLSLogin&ARGUMENT=J3Fdd1GxaolXSzftwK%2BQkOjMEsjaovGQZPpI23mhVOI%3D&KeyRid=1

  3. Shocking. Zillow has an estimate of $1.6M but went off the market to something close to $2.8M. I guess Gavin hasn’t been reading up on Socketsite w/ LMRiM.
    Great to see Gavin out of “North of California”. The area is for the 80 year old grandmothers.

  4. Julie Peisner wrote:
    > According to the tax records Candace Barnes is the owner
    > of 1581 Masonic so that’s gotta be the one.
    And the tax bill is sent to Candace Barnes Antiques at Vermont Street…
    > it’s actually Haight Ashbury (District 5B). I can just see the
    > headlines now…Mayor moves to hippie ville,
    I can just hear the Mayor (while running for Governor) telling people that he lives in a “middle class area” in the “center of the city” (after someone calls him a “rich kid from a rich neighborhood)…

  5. Oh yeah, and this looks very McMansion-y to me. Like Gavin himself, it wouldn’t look out of place in any of the Pleasanton or Lamorinda developments of the past 25 years or so.

  6. I think it looks comfortable. Though that Japanese-esque gate and out front looks out of place.

  7. From the previous MLS listing:
    “NOTE: Neighborhood should be 5E Ashbury Heights – SFAR has been notifed of the database error and is working to correct the issue.”

  8. the neighbors will consider voting Republican
    Uh… if they want to get rid of the problem, they should register Dem and get him into the primary for governor, then vote for him for that office. Then he’ll move to Sacto.

  9. Oh yeah, and this looks very McMansion-y to me. Like Gavin himself, it wouldn’t look out of place in any of the Pleasanton or Lamorinda developments of the past 25 years or so.
    According to the listing the house was built in 1915, around the time Wright was building the Prairie Houses. Barring any later exterior changes, the house is a great early modern design.

  10. PS: The house was designed by James Rupert Miller. Timothy Pflueger had joined JR Miller’s in 1907 and eventually became Miller’s partner. Pflueger’s designs include the Pacific Telephone and Telegraph Building in 1924 and I.Magnin on Union Square in 1946.

  11. but I’ve been told she’s made the house a showplace for her professional skills.
    really? The interior of that house is an explosion of beige/off white. I’m somewhat surprised a designer came up with that. There is no color whatsoever. The floors, walls, ceiling, and furniture all blend together making every room completely unremarkable. this house needs a punch of color somewhere. or at least different shades of monotone.
    then the kitchen is dark. When you scroll through the pics the kitchen is almost shocking!!! Beige beige beige beige beige BLACK.
    Luckily, painting is the easiest thing in the world to do, and I’d guess that a little paint and a little color will make this house stunning. And as we all know, GN loves his color so this won’t be a problem.
    People may mock the fact that he’s in an expensive home in a central neighborhood, but I think it’s great that he moved to an area like this. He’s NEVER going to move to the Mission so we should take what we can get.

  12. This house is a block from one of the classiest cruising parks in the city. After dark, Buena Vista is swarming with closeted gay men looking for fun. Rumor has it that one famous young NFL quarterback was caught by police going deep with a tight end in the park.
    The park is so famous for this behavior the wikipedia entry for it has this “The park, with its thick foliage, secluded pathways, and proximity to The Castro, has long been known as a nighttime “cruising ground” for gay men, who meet in the park for anonymous sexual encounters.
    According to an article in the San Francisco Examiner, when longtime resident Isabel Wade was asked if she feared for her safety because of the “cruising” activity in the park, Wade replied, “My feeling is it’s probably the safest park in the City now. If you scream, you know 15 guys will pop out of the bushes to help you and a lot of them carry whistles.” [2]”
    What kind of dog does the mayor have?

  13. I hope the parking comment above isn’t true. I live a few blocks away and would hate to see our parking situation get squeezed.
    As for Buena Vista Park, I believe it’s still active at night. I see lots of people walking down Buena Vista Terrace at night — people who likely don’t live here. Fortunately, they’ve probably just had lots of sex, so they’re probably nice and mellow, not violent.

  14. Ah yes, back when I moved to SF in 98, one of my friend’s co-workers was a frequent flyer at what we started referring to as the buena vista social club. I guess he just liked turning the “straight” guys because he was not in the closet.

  15. Poor guy, he’s going to have to take the 37-Corbett from now on. I guess no one’s going to win the “Spot Gavin” challenge after all, because that bus is empty enough to carry his whole entourage, police escort, and SUV.

  16. Currently Parks & Rec is rebuilding the whole S/SE side of Buena Vista park (it started long before Gavin moved in).
    I don’t know if that’s going to kill the cruising scene, but if it doesn’t, it will make cruising wheelchair-accessible.

  17. Yeah, and service on the 37 will now end at 11:00 pm with the new Muni cuts. So no more late nights at the office for our hard-working mayor.
    (I hope the sarcasm of that comment was evident…)

  18. Interesting – I was walking towards this house the morning of Bay to Breakers, and saw the garage open and a blond girl say what I remember to be “Thanks Candace” to an older woman driving away in what I think was a 7-series BMW. The blond then almost hit me with what looked to be a Tesla or a Lotus Elise as she backed out of the garage without looking.
    I gave her my “shame on you” stare, and she very sweetly said she was sorry, which made me feel guilty for looking all “mean.” I thought she looked a lot like Jennifer Siebel, but she had sunglasses on and I didn’t think much more about it.

  19. The Chron is running a phot of the Mayor’s new house (a day after Socket Site) with some Socket Site style gossip: “One thing the listing doesn’t mention: Troublesome neighbors. In November 2008, Barnes submitted a letter to the city alleging that one neighbor, who was connected to a contractor whom she fired, prevented her from finishing work on the house by filing eight complaints with the city.”
    P.S. Does anyone know Judi A. Rees who bought the Mayor’s condo for $2.9mm (and also bought a home in Menlo Park for $2.4mm) last month?

  20. Welcome to the neighborhood, Mr. Mayor. If you wanna appeal to the comman man you say you live in “the Haight” and for a more upscale audience you say “the Terraces.” I’m sure Gavin can adjust to playing both sides.

  21. Judi A. Rees, President, JMB Services, Inc. – Judi Rees has been president of JMB Services, Inc., which arranges customized convention housing for trade shows and conventions, since she founded the company in 1988. Since early 1999, Judi has been an active participant in Make-A-Wish activities, including serving on the Board of Directors for three years.

  22. @EH: It was very much a Prairie Style house. Sadly, it’s now like one of those women who’ve had so many facelifts and injections you can’t tell what they looked like. They’ve been working on it for two years, and result looks more like Beverly Hills than Ashbury Heights.
    I live around the corner from this house. Sadly, much as I like Newsom, I’d have preferred a lower-profile buyer. Masonic Avenue (at this point) is a. narrow b. on a bus line and c. the route from the Haight to Roosevelt Way/17th Street/Twin Peaks. Look for street closings and additional traffic on Buena Vista West and Ashbury.

  23. EH: Sure it is. Or, at least the California version. It shares the horizontal lines, the deep eaves, the pattern of fenstration. It shouts “1915” quite loudly.

  24. Nah, I lived in the Panhandle for years and still go visit people over there all the time. I use Ashbury and/or Clayton to go over the top, as does the Muni 33 line. I have gone through that part of Masonic before once in a cab, but it is confusing and almost no one goes that way.

  25. Saw it quite by accident while on the 37, can’t believe it’s right in the middle of all those intersections. I can see the concern about the parking, etc..

  26. As a neighbor, I tucked into what was billed as an “by appointment only” open house. The agent was rather desperate to get rid of it he let me and bunch of others right in despite the fact that we looked like we stepped out of “Les Mis.” Told me and others, “I’ll let you in, but don’t tell anyone!”
    So as for the house. . . A wee bit overdone. As a gay man, I find it hard to believe a straight guy would live in this house a la “ultra high queen.” Plus, warped floors downstairs, poor washer/dryer placement, and really, the views are just plain old okay from the second floor front left room. They’re good, not great and certainly not plentiful. Although the downstairs fireplace is cool-two sided so it is in and outside.
    In addition, I can confirm Candace and her neighbor fought like devil dogs. They loathed each other. Petitions, letters, lawsuits, they all flew back and forth between the drama queen designer and high strung therapist next door.

  27. I’ll be the somebody to take this occasion of revelation to wish the Mayor and his wife happiness, good health and lots of babies in their beautiful new home.

  28. Bland beige interior decorating of a bland beige stucco ‘palazzo’. I thought the mayor had better design sense…

  29. welcome to the neighborhood Mr. Mayor.
    Sure the place was painted beige, but it was painted for sale– those familiar with Barnes know she would have covered the place in gilt if she was going to live there. I am sure the mayor and his wife will bring turn up the color.
    The street does have a fair bit of traffic, problems with speeding and rolling stops at low visibility intersections. Hopefully the presence of the mayor’s security will get drivers to slow down a little.

  30. The Judi Rees that’s mentioned here a few posts ago was dumped by her ex husband. He apparently had all the money and Judi Rees only worked at JMB Services for about a year. One thing is for sure is that she didn’t build this fortune and it’s all her ex-husband’s labor.

  31. To the previous poster, (Judy Smith). I know Judi Rees very well and I can assure you that every sentence in your version of the story is entirely incorrect. You would do very well to mind your own business and stop speading slanderous remarks about people you obviously have never met. In fact you sound quite a lot like the new X-girlfriend of the husband in question. Very interesting………

  32. P.S… In fact I do recall hearing that the new girlfriend of B.R was actually another Judy. Even more interesting…

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