Wikipedia lists over 100 San Francisco neighborhoods but the one known as “NOPA”--North of the Panhandle--is surprisingly not included. It does, however, have a place on the San Francisco Realtors® map. So if you’re searching for homes online and interested in NOPA, start your search in District 6F.
NOPA is surrounded by Golden Gate Park, the University of San Francisco, and the University of California Medical Center. Located in almost the geographical center of the city, NOPA residents have their choice of walking, biking, busing, or driving to work and/or recreational activities. The NOPA neighborhood is city living at its best.
Just like the name implies, North of the Panhandle is a neighborhood with Falletti Foods at one end, Petrini Plaza in the middle, and Whole Foods at the farthest end, next to Haight Ashbury. The infamous commercial shopping district is only two blocks south of the Panhandle. There’s a farmers market held every Sunday at Grove and Divisadero too.
Pacific Primary Preschool opened in 1974 and is located in the heart of NOPA. Having a preschool within walking distance is definitely a plus for the noticeable baby boom. Adult students will find that San Francisco Community College, located at the corner of Masonic and Hayes, offers a variety of credit and noncredit courses with programs in the daytime and evening. The neighborhood also houses several other public and private schools that serve all age groups.
In the past few years the commercial stretch on Divisadero, at the eastern boarder of the neighborhood, has blossomed with new restaurants and shops. Eateries include local favorites like Bar Crudo, Mojo Bicycle Cafe, Nopalito and Little Star Pizza. The Perish Trust and The Brooklyn Circus are two unique boutiques within the area. The renowned and critically acclaimed restaurant NOPA was one of the first upscale restaurants to move to the neighborhood. With consistent praise, it’s become the ultimate foodie destination for dining. When the New York Times did a restaurant review on NOPA, everyone knew there was something to be excited about.
The Victorian style home is alive and well in NOPA. Homes and condos here are generally updated or recently remodeled before stepping onto the market. Homeowners tend to move to NOPA because they plan to live in the neighborhood for an extended period of time. The North of the Panhandle Neighborhood Association is an active force within the community, and becoming a member is a great way to get involved and meet your new long-term neighbors. Finally, the weather tends to be less foggy in NOPA than the more western neighborhoods. All-in-all this is a great location and worth looking closely at when considering your options for buying a San Francisco home.