Thursday, December 3, 2015

From a grand brunch to kung pao kosher comedy
and ice-skating in shorts, here's how to spend the holiday in northern
California.
While chances are the East Coast might be bracing for a
nor'easter during the holidays, Christmas in San Francisco often means a
lengthy yuletide brunch followed by ice-skating in shorts.
Should you find
yourself in the City by the Bay wondering how best to enjoy the sunny winter
weather, here are some of our favorite ideas.
Stately Brunch Start the day with a grand brunch at the recently
renovated Palace Hotel.
Sit beneath the dome in the ballroom, one of San
Francisco's most opulent spaces, which does not hold back when it comes to
dressing up for Christmas—from the life-size nutcracker dolls greeting
patrons in the foyer, up to the monstrous Christmas tree, and down to the
poinsettia-studded tables.
Try the house take on pancakes and eggs: sturgeon
caviar, buckwheat blinis with crème fraiche, and a bottle of bubbly.
Ice Skate in Union Square Work off your Santa-size breakfast nearby at
Union Square's seasonal pop-up ice skating rink.
Locals and families in town
for the holiday strap on white skates and take to the ice, amid Macy's and
Saks Fifth Avenue holiday-themed window displays and truck-size wreaths.
Or,
just grab a coffee at the square's cafe, sit back and watch the hilarious
show of tender-footed Californian's trying to ice skate.
See the Reindeer Romp Depart downtown's Christmas cacophony and venture
to the coast for a nature fix at the San Francisco Zoo.
Each year, the zoo
hosts a Reindeer Romp exhibit, featuring furry-horned Rudolphs.
After a visit
to the North Pole, check out animals from other corners of the globe, like
lemurs, pandas, and lions in humane enclosures.
Don't overlook the zoo's
impressive garden.
Union Street Decorations San Francisco doesn't have a Christmas Day
parade.
Instead, it has Union Street—a stretch of grand pastel Victorians
decorated with glowing strands of Christmas lights, wreaths, lawn candy canes
poles, and windows dusted with fake snow.
Start at Steiner and Union streets,
then stroll down to Van Ness, gawking at the old time-y holiday feel along the
way.
Kung Pao Kosher Comedy If you're not doing a traditional Christmas
dinner, definitely book it to San Francisco's quirkiest Christmas evening
tradition: Kung Pao Kosher Comedy in Chinatown.
A lineup of Jewish comedians
entertain guests dining on pot stickers and kosher walnut prawns during the
seven-course dim sum meal at the massive, 370-seat New Asia Restaurant in
Chinatown.
The evening concludes with everyone breaking upen fortune cookies
containing Yiddish proverbs.
Jenna Scatena is on the San Francisco Bay Area beat for Travel +
Leisure.
Follow her on Twitter and Instagram.
In town for the holidays this year? Here's how to have
the perfect Christmas Day in San Francisco.

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