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Where to celebrate my daughter's 16th birthday?

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Los Angeles...
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Where to celebrate my daughter's 16th birthday?

We will be there Dec. 26-29 celebrating my daughter's 16th birthday. She wanted to go to San Francisco rather than have a Sweet 16 party. She is bringing one friend (15) with her. My husband and I are also bringing our 5 year old son, so there are (5) of us in total.

Is there a cool restaurant with a view that is not super expensive or what about a dining cruise?

Any recommendations? Thanks in advance :)

San Francisco
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1. Re: Where to celebrate my daughter's 16th birthday?

Here are a couple of places that come to mind however, IMO it is pricey..

Hornblower's has a dinner cruise that includes a four course meal and a live band. Goldstar.com offers discounted tickets. It may not be ideal for a 16 year old birthday.

There is also Teatro ZinZanni's Maestro's Enchantment - Enjoy Dinner and a Spectacular Show. I think she may enjoy this show better then Hornblower's cruise. Goldstar.com offers discounted tickets.

San Francisco
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2. Re: Where to celebrate my daughter's 16th birthday?

I think the dining cruises are more about the "excursion" than the food. And there's no leaving until you're back at the dock. And if anyone gets motion sick it becomes an unpleasant trip. My office did it for Christmas one year and I couldn't get off that boat fast enough. I think going on a 1-2 hour Bay Cruise is a much better value.

Teatro ZinZanni is a good idea. I went once some year's back. Food was OK (it is pricey so the suggestion to check Goldstar is a good one) but the show was kind of fun. It's in a tent near the Embarcadero. No view though.

The Bistro at the Cliff House has decent food but it's a bit of a haul all the way out to the ocean. This is a spot that's better for lunch as, once it's dark the view disappears.

Butterfly on the Embarcadero is a possible option if everyone enjoys Asian fusion food.

Problem is, there aren't many restaurants with a view and food that's worth the price that's being charged.

San Francisco
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3. Re: Where to celebrate my daughter's 16th birthday?

You might consider Greens at Fort Mason ... good views of the GG Bridge (if no fog), interesting food, and you could spend time before or after along the Marina Green or Crissy Field. It's not necessarily fancy, though ... I mean, you could dress up, but you'd also be dining with people who aren't dressed up at all. Another idea for SF charm/history and a pretty view of the ocean (before it gets too dark to see) is the Beach Chalet on Ocean Beach.

Los Angeles...
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4. Re: Where to celebrate my daughter's 16th birthday?

Thank you for the great suggestions... I will look each one up and go from there....

I love looking at Christmas decorations... is there any specific place or area that we should check out?

Again, thanks in advance!

Portola Valley...
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5. Re: Where to celebrate my daughter's 16th birthday?

I also thought Teatro Zinzanni could be fun.

Chicago
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6. Re: Where to celebrate my daughter's 16th birthday?

I second the suggestion for Teatro Zinzanni. I bet four of you would love it. (Not sure about the 5 yo, tho.)

Another option is the Burger Bar in Union Square. It's on the top floor of Macys. Great burgers with an endless selection (e.g., pages) of options, really good side dishes, and amazing milkshakes. The adults could order a shake with liquor. I think I got the French Twist. Really good!

San Francisco
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7. Re: Where to celebrate my daughter's 16th birthday?

The Christmas lights are always really pretty in the big old hotels on Nob Hill: Fairmont, Mark Hopkins. I imagine the St. Francis and the Sir Francis Drake at Union Square would also be decorated very prettily. And for that matter the Palace Hotel on Market Street, which is worth seeing whether it's decorated or not: don't miss the Garden Court! That could be a special place for a meal or tea with your daughter....

San Francisco...
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8. Re: Where to celebrate my daughter's 16th birthday?

I like Ana Mandara at Fisherman's Wharf, it is in line with Napa Rose @ Disneyland, wonderful setting, jazz band, right at Ghiradelli. The ambiance inside is great. They are child friendly too, but no direct view of bay from within the restaurant.

McCormick & Kuleto's Seafood another idea also at Ghiradelli Square, has the bay views.

Another birthday we celebrated for a friend at Marakkech, and she loved it, belly dancer, and her boyfriend even got up and played drums, also no view though. Now they are offering a magic show following dinner, that is child friendly.

Teatro Zinzanni is really expensive, haven't tried, but was a little taken back by the price, $167 per person. Didn't like Sinbads, Waterfront too formal, Boulevard also too formal. Didn't like Cliff House, or any of the Fisherman's Wharf Italian Restaurants that have been to that much, also didn't care for Greens either.

We also like Dim Sum places for birthdays like Yang Sing.

Bocce's in North Beach is fun for parties (no view, but lighted courtyard is nice), as well as Beach Chalet that has view of ocean.

I used to take people to Carnelian Room & Citycape in San Francisco for birthdays, gorgeous views, but both no longer open to public.

One other place is maybe Cheesecake Factory Union Square top of Macy's.

Hope ideas help.

Edited: 17 August 2011, 04:25
San Francisco...
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9. Re: Where to celebrate my daughter's 16th birthday?

Scoma's at Wharf does have good reviews, think went there for mother-in-law's birthday one year, nice but we were at big table in middle, didn't really get to enjoy any views although it is a view restaurant. A smaller group may be able to snag bay view if arrive early enough.

Santa Cruz...
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10. Re: Where to celebrate my daughter's 16th birthday?

Scoma's gets very crowded and noisy. I don't think it is the best venue for a birthday party.

I had cracked crab, which you can't really ruin, but my companions weren't too enthusiastic about their meals. It probably suffers from the "Fisherman's Wharf" malaise...i.e. prices for tourists and shortcuts in the kitchen because they probably will not be repeat customers. This is generally true of most of the restaurants in this area.