A Centennial Time Capsule
Restoring the San Remo
San Francisco brothers Tom and Robert Field renovated several vintage properties in the city before focusing on the San Remo Hotel in the North Beach neighborhood as a promising centerpiece for their family's real estate and renovation accomplishments.
When they first inspected the property in 1970, they were immediately impressed with the location value and the hotel’s colorful history. Unfortunately, the San Remo had seriously deteriorated during the previous two decades. Virtually everything required an upgrade or replacement, but the brothers accepted this formidable challenge with hands-on enthusiasm.
Although they were experienced in collecting antiques and had assembled a small library on authentic restorations, the Fields realized the San Remo project required expert advice. They commissioned two highly respected resources for architectural detailing and design: San Francisco Victoriana, a local business dedicated to preserving Bay Area Victorian architecture, and Sunrise Salvage (now Sunrise Specialty), an East Bay company specializing in antique house parts and plumbing.
The first renovation step was removal of stucco that encased the building, concealing original wooden details. San Francisco Victoriana confirmed the classic Italianate Victorian construction beneath the stucco and provided drawings and plans for authentic restoration. The company performed custom millwork for recon-struction of window trim, ground floor columns, molding and entrances.
Sunrise Salvage provided interior details, including marble sinks, antique faucets, pull-chain oak toilets and wood paneling. Fixtures for the ground floor bar and restaurant were also supplied by Sunrise Salvage.
Since 1971, the Field brothers have maintained the spirit and architectural integrity of a Victorian masterpiece.