The (1895) Cliff House at Ocean Beach in San Francisco

The first Cliff House was built at Ocean Beach in San Francisco in 1863. On Christmas day, 1894, it burned to the ground. Mayor Adolph Sutro had it redesigned by architects (as a “…large and pretty chateau”) and it was rebuilt in 1895 in its above reincarnation. This building lasted until  1907, when it burned to the ground. In 1909 a 3rd, much plainer version was built. This was remodeled several times, the latest in 2003, and the present version is disappointingly soulless and has none of the character or charm of its predecessors.

Hundreds of photos are at:

About Lloyd Kahn

Lloyd Kahn started building his own home in the early '60s and went on to publish books showing homeowners how they could build their own homes with their own hands. He got his start in publishing by working as the shelter editor of the Whole Earth Catalog with Stewart Brand in the late '60s. He has since authored six highly-graphic books on homemade building, all of which are interrelated. The books, "The Shelter Library Of Building Books," include Shelter, Shelter II (1978), Home Work (2004), Builders of the Pacific Coast (2008), Tiny Homes (2012), and Tiny Homes on the Move (2014). Lloyd operates from Northern California studio built of recycled lumber, set in the midst of a vegetable garden, and hooked into the world via five Mac computers. You can check out videos (one with over 450,000 views) on Lloyd by doing a search on YouTube:

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