There is so much more to this other San Francisco scenic spot than just a showcase of man’s creations. “Although it was meant to give delight by its exterior beauty, its purpose was also to offer all visitors a stimulating experience within doors,” says the creator of this iconic park.
The magnificent structure was Bernard Maybeck’s brainchild, an architect who was known for his ingenious styles. His jump-off point in designing this project was “in the mood of a Piranesi engraving,” choosing the ruins of Rome as his inspiration.
The result- a harmony of poetry and romance, an alluring fusion of Roman architecture and Grecian adornment, enchanting. Ideal description of this amazing edifice and the only structure standing in the original design of a complex.
|Beautiful against the California blue sky, beautiful as reflected on water.|
There used to be three buildings built for the exposition but only this remain. The other two were the Japanese Tea House –not the tea house in the 1894 Japanese Tea Garden in Golden Gate Park- and the Bill Graham Civic Auditorium. Maybeck’s Palace of the Fine Arts was the last structure to be constructed. The palace rested on a perfect location, on the lagoon and a group of Monterrey cypresses nearby. Exuding a very old world European appeal, an artist’s dream is fulfilled- a structure as beautiful against the California sky as it is reflected in the water.
The palace was an instant hit to the public and its appeal never diminished to this day. Its tranquility and romantic essence of the palace has even made it a preferred site to exchange vows. Saving the palace was a wise decision indeed.
What a great way to end another day of fleeting around San Francisco. The tranquil ambience the Palace of Fine Arts radiated was very soothing to these tired tourists.