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Palace of Fine Arts

Palace of Fine Arts

You just might forget you’re in the United States when you stumble upon this stunning landmark in the Marina District. As you approach the Palace and pass by the lovely lagoons filled with swans, you will feel as though you have left San Francisco and passed directly into Europe!

The structure was designed by Bernard Maybeck to resemble Greek and Roman ruins and was originally constructed to exhibit works of art for the 1915 Panama-Pacific Exposition, to be taken down after the event was finished. The Palace of Fine Arts was so beloved by locals and visitors alike, it was saved from demolition thanks to efforts led by the Palace Preservation League, founded by Phoebe Apperson Hearst. However, since it was originally designed to survive the length of the exposition, the instability of the structure coupled with vandalism meant by the 1950’s the structure began to turn to ruin. Ergo, in 1964 the original palace was completely demolished and reconstructed as a perfect replica, built with sturdier materials in order for it to stand the test of time as well as increase the likelihood of surviving any earthquakes. 

The Palace of Fine Arts remains one of the most admired and photographed sites in all of San Francisco.

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